Tag Archives: Marin

DIY Toddler Fish Halloween Costume

Last Halloween, Marin wanted to be a fish. This posed a bit of a problem since all the fish patterns I could find were ridiculous. The girl was not even two – how could she walk in this?

After consulting with Ali, I decided to go rogue when I found this picture online. There was no pattern to be found and no instructions on how to create a similar costume. Turns out that creating a cute little fish costume isn’t so hard! Here are my steps:

1. Get a base for the costume. Gap had a long sleeve shirt and leggings in aqua that would make a great base for the costume. I went with blue/green colors because I was afraid that going the goldfish route might look too much like a duck if you couldn’t see the fins. There are a lot of cute ducks out there at Halloween, but I didn’t want anyone thinking Marin was a duck if she wanted to be a fish!

2. Wait for a JoAnn sale and get some felt.  I also picked up some irridescent fabric for the fish belly, Peltex to make the fins sturdy, matching thread, velcro strips, a headband, and styrofoam balls (more on these later). I picked up about a yard of each fabric.

3. Get some measurements of the little one. Luckily I had just seen Marin a week or so earlier and was able to get some basic measurements to make sure nothing was too tight.

4. I started out by making a vest of felt. I could then sew the iridescent fabric to the front for the fish belly and the fins to the back for the scales. I used a pattern from her costume last year, which was a candy corn, for basic shape.

5. After cutting two pieces like this, I moved on to the fish belly, which needed to be a little bigger than the vest so I could wrap it around and sew a hem all the way around. I used the vest I had already cut as a pattern, then pinned the sides in.

6. Time to measure the fins. 4 inches seemed about right, but I used an index card for scale. Then I just cut the index card so it could be my pattern for the fins.

7. Now I used the fin pattern to cut all the fins. Note that its hard to see in the picture below, but I folded the felt and cut two layers. So the felt below is folded at the top to make two layers. This is so I can sew Peltex in between to make them sturdy. I cut a bunch of these and then laid them out to see when the back looked “full” of scales. Then I ironed the crease at the top of each scale.

8. Next I cut a layer of Peltex a little smaller than each scale (so it could slip inside without having white Peltex sticking out!) and sewed that into each scale. You could definitely get fusible Peltex and just iron it in.

9. Next I made a little tail fin. I needed The Huz’s help making the pattern. Again, I cut two layers of felt and a slightly smaller layer of Peltex for in between, and sewed the edges.

10. Now back to the vest. I uses iron-on Peltex for the inside of the vest to make sure it was sturdy and wouldn’t sag with the weight of the scales. I cut some Peltex a little smaller than the felt and ironed it right on to both the front and back of the vest.

11. Time to sew on the iridescent fish belly:

12. Now all the pieces are ready to be sewn together!

13. Line the scales up where you want them and sew a little seam at the top of each scale (the fold). Repeat until all the scales are on, then sew on the tail fin as well.

14. I wanted the costume to be easy on/off, so instead of sewing the shoulders and sides, I just sewed on velcro.

15. Now for her fishy eyes! As I said at the beginning, I picked up some styrofoam balls at JoAnn and cut them in half. These are super hard to cut. I had to enlist The Huz again.

16. Draw the eyes on with a sharpie, and hot glue them to your headband.

17. Then I had a last minute idea that Marin needed pectoral fins, so I cut some more felt and Peltex and sewed it right to her Gap long sleeve shirt.

18. Time to put all the pieces together – its done!

Here she is wearing it. Marin was just the cutest little fish I ever did see!



Cake pops for a 2nd birthday

For Marin’s all-important second birthday, I made some cake pops loosely following (as always!) the kitchn’s recipe.

1 box Trader Joe’s vanilla cake mix
8 oz cream cheese, kinda softened because I have no patience
2 cups confectioner’s sugar
4 T Earth Balance (we never have regular butter!)
1 T Almond Milk (again, we never have regular milk in the house, but that would probably be better)

Make the cake according to the directions on the trader joe’s box. I made mine in a large sheet pan. Let cool overnight if possible.

Working in batches, put large chunks of the cake in your food processor and process until a fine meal. Mix the cream cheese, sugar, butter, and milk together in a large bowl. Add cake crumbs and mix. Eventually you will have to knead this like dough until combined. Refrigerate for at least an hour; I left mine in for 3 hours.

To make the pops, you need:
candy melts (I went through 2 bags and got mine from JoAnn)
lollipop sticks (also from JoAnn, but they were super long so I cut them in half)
sprinkles! I used two shades of pink
food coloring, optional (I colored half of my white candy melts a pale pink)

Roll the refrigerated dough in your palms until it forms a small ball. Mine were a little smaller than a golf ball. Lay them down on wax or parchment and insert lollipop sticks.


Melt the candy melts in a double-boiler (or if you are like me and don’t have one, a stainless steel bowl over a pot of boiling water). Use the sticks to dip the cake pops in the candy coating until covered.
Place the cake pops back on the wax paper to harden a bit before adding sprinkles (I made the mistake of adding the sprinkles right away and got a droopy mess!).

Give to birthday girl and watch her enjoy.

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