Saturday, October 22, 2011

Practically Perfect

After spending a lot of evenings working on Scout's costumes, I realized that I did not have anything for myself.  And we actually had a Halloween party on the horizon.  To that end, I took to Pinterest looking for ideas (it's my new Google for these types of things).  I fell in love with this Mary Poppins costume.   When you go to pop-up Halloween costume shops you'll immediately notice that they trend toward more risque versions of Halloween regulars.  I'm not going to go into too much detail, but seriously - you can basically be a dolled up version of anything (Elmo, Sponge Bob, etc.) in a tight, short skirt and thigh highs.  From the get-go, I was pretty sure that this costume would be the polar opposite of that and all buttoned up.  I thought I'd look quite out of place among the college girls downtown if we made it down there.

The first step in pulling together a costume is, of course, research.  There are a few different Mary Poppins costumes that are instantly recognizable as Mary.

(1)  The costume she wears when she first arrives at the Banks' home.


(2)  Her red coat.


(3)  The Jolly Holiday dress.


With these in mind, I headed to the thrift stores to see what I could find.  I assumed that the black skirt/ white shirt combination (similar to the original picture from Pinterest) would be the easiest to replicate, and I was right.

I started with a black skirt and white shirt (brand new with tags) for a total of $5.  I washed them in hot water.  I wasn't sure if they would fit or not, but I was willing to make a few lazy alterations to make it work.

Mary Poppins in progress

To my surprise, it actually fit fairly well.

I added a black wool coat from my closet, because I had no intention of sewing one from scratch.  But it was actually fairly warm on the day of the party, so I substituted an old suit jacket.  Also, I decided to wear a shirt from my closet rather than the Goodwill version which was just a bit too big.

Mary Poppins Costume 02

The hat...

It's really the hat and umbrella that make a Mary Poppins costume instantly recognizable.  Despite using my superior Google-fu skills, I was unable to find a hat that was exactly the shape that I was looking for.  One of the issues was that I was not well-versed in hat terminology, so I wasn't sure where to even start.  The hat has a flat top similar to a boater or skimmer, but is fairly small.  I looked everywhere for a child's sized boater hat that I could paint and embellish, but couldn't not find one.  Instead, I settled for a modern chenille hat, because it seemed pretty close.  When it arrived, it was too round, almost a bowler shape.

Original Hat

With my deadline looming, I decided to make do.  I pinned and then hand sewed around the top to create a flatter look.  I glued the rolled brim (it's hard to see in the picture) in a bit, and then glued fake daisies and berries around the edge.  I think it's passable, though not perfect.

Mary Poppins Hat 01

The bag...

I made a valiant attempt to find a properly shaped bag at all the local thrifting spots.  I decided that I needed a bag.  I found the upholstery fabric on super clearance and purchased the handles with a coupon.  I would not say it's my finest sewing achievement, but again, it's passable.  It has the right "look," but perhaps not quite the exact replication or quality that I would prefer.

Mary Poppins Bag

The umbrella...

I'm going to wave my geek flag high by telling you that I already had this umbrella.  Last Thanksgiving, we took all my nieces, my cousin, and my cousin's kids to see Mary Poppins.  And for some reason, I had to have this umbrella.  In some ways, I guess you could say it's the inspiration for the whole costume.

Mary Poppins Umbrella

The scarf...

I added a scarf at the last minute.  I searched everywhere for appropriate yarn, and then settled.  I think the movie version of the scarf is probably more red and gold, but I couldn't find the right colors.  It's a pretty simple yo, k2tog pattern.

Mary Poppins Scarf 02

Again, I didn't end up wearing the scarf.  It was warm, and it would have been pretty uncomfortable.

More tomorrow...

1 comment(s). Tell me what you think!:

Chrisknits said...

Love it! So, which outfit did Scout wear?

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