When my last baby was born, the youngest of 10, I knew I wanted to take a picture I could hang in my home to always remember my young family at this stage. After throwing out some ideas, I thought of having them recreate the nativity. It would be the perfect Christmas decoration for us to use every year. We have 8 boys, 1 girl, and then our baby boy, which is kind of perfect for the nativity scene, (though we could’ve easily had girl angels, shepherds, and even wise women.) I was so excited but knew I only had a small window to do it while my baby was still young. I scoured the internet trying to find an easy tutorial to make these costumes, but I found nothing I liked. Though I found a few tutorials, I didn’t love what I saw, so I took general ideas from the tutorials I reviewed and then created my own.
If you’re looking for fancy costumes, this tutorial is not for you. But if you are looking for an easy project from materials in your home (or the local thrift store) that you can accomplish in a few hours without touching your sewing machine (unless you want to), I’m your friend! Let’s face it, the people in the nativity were probably not wearing fancy perfectly orchestrated clothing; you can get the general idea without all the fuss!
Before we get started you should know that I was trying to make 10 costumes that my children could wear now but could also still fit into in 10 years. I thought it was smart to make them a little big for my 10 yr old, floor length to his height now, then when he was a teenager it would be about to his knees and we’d have costumes for their entire childhood! I also wanted to make them all the same size so he could be whatever character in the Nativity he wanted each year. It was sound thinking, but my problem came when I tried to have my 18 month old wear the same size as my 10 yr old; she couldn’t walk in it and was accidentally ripping the neck as a result.
If you are like me and hope to only make these costumes once and have them big enough to grow into or to have a variety of sized children wear them, you can make it easier for toddlers to move around by temporarily hemming the bottom of the costumes for your little ones either with a large basting stitch, tape, or safety pins. You may also finish the edges by hemming or surging them which would avoid the ripping.
Now I said you could make this costume without a sewing machine and I mean it. If I did it over again I would make one or two small costumes for my toddlers, I’ll give instructions on how to do that, and have the rest of my small children in the larger size and either pin up the bottoms each time they wore them using tape to keep them up. I figure this is the easiest way and let’s face it, the holidays are chaotic enough!
Now enough talking, let’s get making! Because this tutorial has many pages I thought it easiest to make it into an eBook which you can download HERE. Have fun, and make sure to tag us, 10kidsin10years, on social media when you post the adorable pictures of your family!