A new school term is underway and I’m wondering what weird and wonderful costume requests will be coming my way over the next few months.
Since my little twins started nursery and school, I’ve had various demands for fancy dress outfits — for plays or theme days — but never a stranger one than:
‘Mummy, please could you make a grasshopper costume for me?’
Erm. Yes. OK…
Cue frantic Googling of’ how to make a grasshopper costume’.
Which, unsurprisingly, didn’t produce anything of any note.
So after a bit of head scratching, I came up with this.
The cutest grasshopper I ever did see.
And — hopefully — this post will help any other poor unsuspecting parents, whose children want them to make a grasshopper costume (at the drop of a hat).
No need for panic. Here’s what you need to do.
To make a Grasshopper Costume You Will Need:
- Green leggings
- Green long sleeved t-shirt
- A pair of long, green socks (I got some off eBay)
- Green Duck Tape
- Bubble wrap
- Glue (I used my trusty glue-gun)
- Green foam sheets — I bought ours from Hobbycraft
- A needle and thread/some safety pins
Step 1: The Body
To make the body of the grasshopper costume, stick lengths of tape, at equal intervals, on to the front of the top. This is probably the simplest bit, but looks really effective!
Next, stuff the socks with newspaper and stitch each one to the t-shirt, placing them underneath the arms, on each side.
These form the 2nd pair of ‘legs’.
Step 2: The Wings
For the wings, I took a couple of lengths of bubble wrap and cut them into two long, teardrop shapes.
Next, I went around the outside of each ‘wing’ with the green Duck Tape, to form an edge.
The easiest way to do this is to cut short lengths, and stick half on to the edge of the bubble wrap, folding over the second half over the top; pressing down firmly.
Work your way around the outside of each ‘wing’ until they’re edged in a band of green.
Then, if you’re feeling creative, you can also add a little pattern on the face of each one, to give the impression of insect wings.
Tape the wings — or safety pin them if you want them to be extra secure — to the back of the top; and voila.
That’s the body of the grasshopper done!
Next, move on to the headdress.
Step 3: The Headdress
I bought a green foam visor and some green foam sheets from Hobbycraft, although — to be honest — it would be just as easy without the visor.
The curly plastic band snapped after a couple of ‘dress rehearsal try-ons’, so I ended up making a band from the foam instead.
It would have been just as simple to create the visor shape from the foam too.
To begin with I drew round a bowl, to create a couple of circles on one of the sleets of foam, then cut them out with a pair of scissors.
Then I cut the visor into a rounded point and also cut two lengths of foam to make antennae.
Next, I cut a single line — from the edge of the circle to the centre — through each circle; then overlapped the edges and glued them together, creating a shallow cone shape.
These form the eyes of your grasshopper costume.
I drew black circles in the centre of each cone, then began to assemble the head-dress.
Because the curly band of the visor snapped, I cut a length of foam (around an inch and a half deep), to fit snugly around the circumference of my little boy’s head.
This acted as the base for the grasshopper headdress.
I glued the two ends together, but then secured them with Duck Tape to make sure they held safely.
I didn’t want a wardrobe malfunction during the play!!
The next bit was just an assembly job!
I stuck the foam visor onto the front of the headband, then the ‘eyes’ on top of that.
Step 4: Grasshopper ‘Arms’
Next for the ‘arms’.
I took a couple of sheets of foam and glued down the long edge to create a tube, making sure that Bertie’s hands fit snugly into one end; almost like gloves.
Next, I cut the ends of each tube to form the grasshopper ‘arms’.
And that’s it! Put all the components together and that’s how to make a grasshopper costume.
I must admit, Bertie changed the goalposts, slightly, halfway through this project.
He came back from school one day and announced that he wanted to be a praying mantis.
Well — I’m not entirely sure what the anatomical differences are, between a praying mantis and a grasshopper, but I managed to convince him that it would work for either.
I’m sure if your little son or daughter comes home one day and announces that they need a praying mantis costume for school, this will do the job nicely.
Grasshopper — or praying mantis — my little 6 year old was pretty chuffed with his costume.
I’m just waiting for this year’s request. Jury’s out on what it might be… watch this space!
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