Monday, May 2, 2011

Toy soldier costume tutorial....

As usual, I did NOT take pictures through the process of putting together my handsome little M's soldier costume.... but I have detailed the steps to reach the end result....

Co-designed by M and me.... He was so proud when he put it on when it was finally-finally finished.... he automatically puffed up his bony little chest and stood straight as a board, wanting so badly to look as regal as Princes William and Harry.... He chose the "golden" for the trim, and specifically asked for the "shoulder golden" (lanyard) like Prince Harry; but sadly, wanted a red jacket like Prince William; unfortunately, all we could find was a navy pinstripe boys suit jacket (which SCORE! was only $3.99 at Vallue Village - yay Mommy!)

And! Thanks to the evolution of the glue stick and hot glue gun, this baby was a *SNAP*! The hat (with very clear and stern instruction that the chin strap "has to sit right here on my chin, Mommy") was crocheted with black chunky yarn, trimmed with more "golden", and lined with cardboard to keep it nice and tall, and neat and tidy like any good soldier.... I'm thinking these hats would be a great addition to any special little someone's tickle trunk, so don't be surprised if they end up in my etsy shop.... fun, fun, fun!

So quickly, some steps to create this jacket (with some very "professionally hand-drawn illustrations"... sorry).
You'll need:

1 boys suit jacket
a few yards of various trims in "golden", or your preference
8-13 buttons to match trim
glue sticks and hot glue gun
black or white velcro, enough to back 4 buttons

To begin, lay the jacket flat on your table, folding the lapels in toward the centre front, overlapping one over the other. This causes the collar to stand up like a soldiers collar.

Decide how far apart you want your buttons, visually, I used the width of the collar as my guide (see above photo). So once you've determined your button width, you can cut the trim that will run between the buttons. Hot glue the trim to the back of the buttons, so you'll end up with something that looks like this; ok, so not cartoony-like, but you get the point....

Once the button trims/closures are glued together, decide where you'd like them on your jacket. We've evenly spaced ours between M's collarbone and waist. So you'll be gluing just one side of the button trims/closures to the jacket. The other button will act as the closure for the jacket; it requires that half of the velcro to be glued to the button back and the other half to the jacket. You'll need to trim down your velcro so that it sits nicely behind the button. And here's a tip: If you can't find velcro that matches closely to your suit jacket, use white and colour it with a sharpie marker that matches the colour you want. Here's another totally awesome drawing....

Again, I apologize for my very crude drawings, but I know how smart you are my friend and I know this is all you require to get a great picture in your mind's eye.

So, now you just need to attach the remainder of your embellishments. We've added a loop at one of the shoulders for our lanyard to run through.... and this too, is just glue gunned into place. And trim was added to the collar and sleeves.... the extra buttons can be placed at the ends of the collar trim, used as cuff links, and one can be placed on the shoulder loop that holds the lanyard.

You can add any hat you like, or you could keep the fun going by making one like ours using black construction paper and trim, or just go hatless.... it's totally up to you!

This project is so simple and so much fun to do with your little soldier. You can embellish as much or as little as you'd like.... I say the more "golden" the better! I hope you enjoyed this little tutorial, and if you have any questions, please-please don't hesitate to leave me a comment!

Have a great day everyone ;)


  1. Holy Jeez, Batman! That looks AMAZING!!!! Why should I be surprised that you rock the glue gun way more than I? M will be the hit of the Marty Poppins Extravaganza - you better watch out though - the other parents might lynch you and your craftihood... ;) Don't worry, I'll shield your little bod, Babe! xo

  2. You are TOO funny.... you were my inspiration for using the glue gun, so I owe YOU a big THANKS! And a thanks also for 'having my back' ;) Love you Lady!