Homemade Treats

How to make a flamingo fancy dress costume...
I'm coming over all 'Blue Peter' here, and this week's project was a flamingo fancy dress costume. You're probably wondering why on earth one would ever want/need a flamingo costume. Well, in the spirit of this wedding blog, it was in aid of my friend's 'Alice in Wonderland' themed hen party.

My Mam and I had a crafting evening (tulle + sequins + wine = wonderful time!) and we took inspiration from Bjork's famous 'Swan' dress, which she wore to the Oscars in 2001. I loved it then and I love it now!

So, to make the flamingo version of this, you will need:
  • pink petticoat (tutu)
  • pink tulle*
  • pink sequins*
  • pink feathers*
  • thread
  • 1 metre x 20cm pink fabric
  • 1/2 metre wadding
  • hot glue gun and refills
  • black and white felt
  • fabric scissors
  • two safety pins
*I chose two shades of pink, but you could use any number you like.

Step 1 Making the flamingo neck:

Cut your pink fabric into two equal pieces of 10cm x 1 metre each. Put right sides (the pieces you want to be on the outside eventually) together and pin in place. Cut one end into a triangle - this will form the beak. Sew along the long edges and then along the beak end. Obviously a sewing machine makes this a lot easier, but if you don't have one, by hand is just as good.

Gather the neck together and turn inside out (this will now be the right side out). Gather it together again and push the wadding inside, right to the top of the beak. Pull the neck down around the wadding and sew up the end, being sure to enclose the wadding.

Step 2 Adding the ruffles:

Be as creative as you like here - you can never have too much tulle! You only need to add it to the front side. Simply gather it and sew it into place. I added 10 layers to the neck.

Step 3 The skirt:

Repeat step 2 and add your layers to the front of the petticoat or tutu. I added more to the top and stopped around half way down, but you can be is inventive as you like.

Step 4 Adding your feathers and sequins:

My favourite part! Add feathers and sequins to the neck - try to put them under and on top of the layers of tulle. Cover the top of the petticoat in feathers, then add them sporadically to the bottom of the skirt.

Tip: Be careful here, poppets. You do need to take your time when using these - as I discovered - and one big blister and lots of choice language later - I have learned the hard way. It turns out parental supervision is always necessary! DO NOT TOUCH THE HOT GLUE. You have been warned.

Step 5 The beak:

Cut one curved strip of white felt and two triangles of black felt (the same shape as your pink fabric). Stick or stitch the white piece first then add the two black triangles to the end, ensuring there is no pink showing. To make the eye, cut a small circle of black felt and affix above the beak.

Step 6 The finishing flourishes:

Sew the bottom of the neck onto the inside of the skirt and attach the neck to your top with a safety pin.


Standing around on one leg is optional...


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