Olaf Poodle Skirt

Hello friend! Guess what? More Halloween awesomeness is happening today on the blog! I’ll think about cooling it with Halloween…once I make every Halloween recipe and decoration I see on Pinterest.


Speaking of, have you seen this hilarious Pinterest ‘Shake-it-off’ Parody?! I seriously feel like her this week while I’m trying to make all my decorations for the Pinning Party Sunday. Also, my kitchen looked exactly like that today. There were four projects going on! Baaaaaack to the Olaf poodle skirt tutorial though!

I have been racking my brain for a couple months trying to decide what Soph should be for Halloween. I only have a couple years that I get to decide what she should be so I gotta make it good! I needed a costume that could be worn if it was t-shirt and shorts weather or over a snow suit because you never know what it’ll be like on Halloween in the Midwest. I loved having poodle skirts in our dress up growing up and I thought that would be something I could customize for her personality and it wouldn’t be too tough for Daddy and I to dress up with her on Halloween.

materialsMaterials Needed:

  • 1 yd of felt (I had enough for two skirts but I wanted that much in case I messed up)
  • Orange, black, brown and glitter white felt
  • Pom pom ribbon
  • Hot glue gun
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Olaf Template
  • Sewing machine

circle-skirtI checked out this poodle skirt tutorial before making Sophie’s but realized my felt was in a long strip rather than a large square so I just tried to somewhat replicate it and hoped for the best. I measured Sophie’s waist at 20 inches and added two inches to make up for the overlap in the seam. I measured out 11 inches and made a half circle using this super technical technique I call ‘putting your finger in the hole of the ruler and using it as a make-shift compass.’
mistake-measureFrom the center of my C, I measured out 12 inches and did the same fancy compass technique. This is when I made my ‘typical Shelly’ mistake. I did not start skirt 12 inches from the edge of the felt material and had to start over. Thankfully you couldn’t see the pencil marks through the fabric.
skirt-templateBefore sewing anything together I wrapped it around Sophie to make sure it was the right size. It wasn’t. It was too big and super long so I trimmed the edges until I felt like it was a good size (remembering to keep enough length to account for the elastic waist band and the addition of pom poms.) See how un-even it is? It doesn’t matter because no one but me will notice.
pin-waistI wanted Sophie to be able to wear this skirt, possibly, for a year as dress up, so I used elastic as the waist band. I’ve seen some people use buttons or velcro as well. I made a channel (probably not a sewing term) wide enough for my elastic to easily slide through.
pin-seamI matched the two edges together, making sure they were good-side facing each other, and sewed along the edge. I’m not sure if it’s important to do the waist band first or this seam first but it seeamed to work out great this way (see what I did there?)
thread-elasticTo get the elastic through the waist band, use the ole safety pin trick my Mom taught me. This trick comes in handy if the string comes out of your hoodie. I left plenty of extra elastic and tied it in a bow so I could let the elastic out as she gets bigger. It’s hidden under the skirt so no one will see the extra elastic. modelBefore you go any further, try it on your model, if she’s available. Thankfully Sophie was having a bad nap day so she was happy to be my model…as long as there were Cherrios involved. Notice the skirt is inside-out for easy adjusting of the elastic. Also notice Lexi never a foot away from Sophie when food is involved.
templateThe next part was the second hardest part of the poodle skirt making process. The tracing part was easy enough but the cutting out was super tedious and made my eyes cross. Don’t even get me started on Olaf’s eyebrows. I just used a regular pen to trace on the lighter felts and a silver paint pen to trace on the black felt. I also flipped the white templates over and traced them on the back side of the glitter felt so there was no chance of black ink showing once cut.
lay-patternThe next step was, by far, the most frustrating part of the whole project. Once you lay Olaf out approximately where he’s ‘in shape’ (get my Frozen reference?) it’s time to hot glue his teeny tiny arms and eyebrows! I suggest gluing him together fully before gluing him to the skirt and make sure there are no children around to hear your curse words while you burn yourself repeatedly.
glue-pom-pomOnce Olaf is 110% secured (because you KNOW Sophie’s going to try to pick his eyes off) it’s the final touch of the pom pom ribbon! I used hot glue for this step because I’m not a very straight seamstress. If you are better at sewing, you might want to sew the ribbon on and even sew around Olaf for good measure.
finsihed-skirtYAY! Cutest skirt ever and very quick! I got this skirt done between naps in one afternoon+evening. I’d say it was fairly easy to trouble shoot as well, for when I made mistakes! I’m quite proud of my little girl’s first Halloween costume!
happy-olafOlaf seems pretty excited about it too. What are your kids going to be for Halloween this year? Have you ever DiYed their costumes?! Do you all dress as a family or are you too embarrassed to dress up with them? I always loved that my parents dressed up when they took us around! I dress up every year whether I’m going to a party or just handing out candy because why not?! Two years ago I was Effie and none of the little kids understood. They thought I was someone from Harry Potter.

PS I’ll update this post with photos once we go Trick or Treating so you can see the full costume. I’m still deciding on how to make her onesie. I’m thinking about doing a black long sleeve onesie and adding a sparkly felt snowflake. I’m kinda hoping her hair is long enough for pigtails as well. 😉

For more cutie patootie Halloween costume ideas, check out my Halloween board.

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