I’ve said before how much I absolutely despise Halloween costumes but color me surprised at how much I LOVE my new Minnie Mouse costume. I had no desire to create any kind of costume, let alone model it, but I was met with a reader challenge for a last minute DIY Halloween costume that had to tick off quite a few boxes. First it had to be work appropriate. Secondly it needed to utilize items that could come from or be added to a wardrobe rather than be worn just for Halloween. Because, you know, nothing is more useful than a blood stained prom dress you wore when you went as Carrie that one year… Thirdly, it needed to be kind of warm because it would be worn in kind of chilly weather, so no sexy anything costumes (which I tend to find ridiculous, I wouldn’t even know how to start to make one anyway :)
Speaking of ridiculous sexy Halloween costumes, I just wondered how ridiculous they could get and I quickly found a sexy Freddie Kreuger, a sexy lady lumberjack, a sexy Gumby, cause, you know, that totally makes sense, and a whole freaking lot of sexy cartoon character costumes like Strawberry Shortcake and that’s just freaking wrong, people.
Setting out to make a wholesome type costume quickly :) I to hit up Amazon because if you have Prime you have free 2 day shipping which can be a life saver in all things including last minute Halloween costumes. Now if you don’t have Amazon Prime, no worries because you can sign up to try an Amazon Prime 30-Day Free Trial, get your stuff and cancel before the time runs up and you get charged. :) I do feel I have to tell you many, many years ago, now, I signed up for a Prime account to do just that just so I could get my Christmas gifts in faster and after I started getting stuff so quickly I was hooked and now I’ve been a prime member since pretty much since it started. I love 2 day shipping, straight the heck UP. So you might plan on cancelling but wind up keeping it so know that ahead of time.
Because this needs to be quick we’re going to purchase a lot of stuff you can use right away, we’re going to raid our closet for a few things and we’re going to DIY some quick stuff to save a few bucks. Want to see how I really quickly made my DIY Minnie Mouse Costume? Let’s get it, first starting with the basics you’ll need to raid the closet for or purchase.
Your basic Minnie Mouse Costume items include:
- Red dress with white dots
- White petticoat
- Opaque black tights
- Long sleeve black shirt
Your DIY Minnie Mouse Costume items include:
- Minnie Mouse ears headband (but you can also buy, rather than DIY)
- yellow shoes (no drying time? you can also buy)
- cartoon character gloves
We’re going to start of with a red dress with white dots and there are lots and LOTS on Amazon you can swing for between $20 and $30 easy.
This is my red dress with white polka dots I got from Amazon. I had the hardest time deciding but in the end this is the one I chose. It fits and flares and is lovely. The material has some good stretch but it still feels a lot like a nice, thick cotton fabric.
Now this particular dress might not be to your taste so I’ve rounded up 6 of my favorites so you can easily grab one and go. Just click the dress you like the best to be taken to Amazon to see details or purchase (all of these are affiliate links, by the way). Just FYI, the first dress down there was my second choice. It’s more Minnie Mouse to me, but since this whole costume is in the spirit of having things to add to the wardrobe, I went with the dress I most wanted in my closet :)
Okay, dress sorted we’re also going to need something to go under it. Minnie Mouse wears these pantaloon type thingies that I don’t have so I decided to wear a white petticoat I already have. If you ever wear these poofy dresses, you’ll likely have one, but if not you can get one for between $10 and $20 depending. This is the exact petticoat I have in both black and white and it’s a good value for a decent quality.
Next I raided the closet for black tights and a black long sleeve shirt. Both items are fairly common but can be easily picked up for around $5 apiece at Walmart if you don’t already have them.
And those right there are our basic pieces for our homemade Minnie Mouse costume. Now let’s get into that DIY business. First up, let’s make some girly Mickey Mouse ears on the cheap.
To make Minnie Mouse ears you will need:
- Black felt
- Red ribbon (mine is 4″)
- White paint & round sponge daubers (mine are 1.25″)
- Hot glue gun
We’ll start by making Minnie’s bow. Cut a 28″ length of ribbon. Mine is 4″ tall and is left over from Christmas stuff.
Using whatever white paint you have on hand (this is wall paint!) daub approximately 1 inch polka dots onto the red ribbon. Allow to fully dry.
Using a trace amount of hot glue, make the ribbon into a loop.
Pleat the center of the loop to form the basic bow shape. Now I am terrible at eyeballing business… just TERRIBLE. To keep this looking symmetrical, I actually measured the exact center of my look prior to scrunching it up like this. If you’re like me, this is a highly advisable step but if you’re fab and eyeballing you can skip it.
Cut a narrow strip of red ribbon, about an inch to 2 inches and hot glue it onto the backside of your bundle, keeping it pleated and scrunched. Bring the ribbon back around to the backside again and secure, making sure it holds the bow’s shape well, but doesn’t squish it down too much. Once the glue has cooled, trim the excess ribbon.
Use your fingers to fluff out the bow, making each side nice and round.
Next cut 4 round circles measuring 4.25″
Sandwich 2 on either side of the headband to form the ears. Apply hot glue around the headband to secure the felt into place. Hold in place as the glue cools to ensure a tight fit.
Continue gluing around the sides of the circles making them hold tight and form one piece of felt.
Trim the excess felt that will get away of your head and use hot glue to close up any pockets that open up. FYI – felt is super aggressive about picking up junk so be careful with these guys around pet hair and styrofoam. Geez!
Glue your bow down on top of the ears, making sure that the bottom curve has enough room to clear your head over the headband.
So cute, right? Now you can totally buy Minnie Mouse ears but it is so cheap to DIY, especially if you’re already the crafty type. I literally had to purchase nothing for this and got everything from my stash so I saved some $$$ AND in all honesty I wanted a GIGANTIC bow. Let’s move on to footwear…
To make yellow shoes you will need:
- Shoes (well, duh)
- White leather paint (optional)
- Yellow leather paint (necessary obvs) – I used this set of Angelus leather paints from my stash.
- Soft bristled brush
- Leather preparer (optional)
I seriously have pairs of these EXACT shoes in my closet. What happens is I’m out and about and wearing shoes that aren’t broken in yet or just plain aren’t sensible for the day’s activities and I run into Walmart and get a pair of these guys for $10 to save myself anymore pain. It’s a collection I’ve started based out of fashion stupidity BUT I know lots of us have an extra pair of shoes laying around the closet so dig those puppies out! The more simple they are in design, the better!
Prepare the shoes with leather preparer/deglazer. These aren’t actual leather but it will help the paint “grab” onto the surface. If you don’t have this stuff and don’t think you’ll use it enough to buy it, a key part of it is acetone. You can borrow your acetone from the garage or give your nail polish remover a go to also complete this step. Or you can avoid it entirely and just get on with things :)
Since I wanted a vibrant, super bright yellow, ala the real Minnie, I first painted 4 (yes 4) incredibly thin coats of white paint onto the shoes, allowing them to dry really well between coats.
After the shoes looked pretty solid, they were then followed up with a single coat of yellow. Cool, right?
Now, in all honesty I was totally going to buy these yellow shoes from Amazon but they didn’t have my size. Painting the shoes honestly took up time here and there from an entire day with dry time. Also, Rob insists they weren’t necessary and that I could have worn black flats but screw him :)
Now if you think I’m not going to be wearing these bananas all over the place, you’re wrong :) Another perfect addition to my closet and not just a “costume” element!
But I do have one last item that is probably not going to make it into your daily rotation! You know those white gloves Minnie wears? Of course you do! We’re going to make some DIY cartoon character gloves easy peasy as you please!
To make cartoon gloves you will need:
- White gloves
- Black paint
Now I suppose the gloves, like the yellow shoes, aren’t wholly necessary, but at this point I was really getting into this whole business. I was able to find a pair of white gloves for around $5 on Amazon and so I snapped them up. I specifically went with these gloves because of those 3 pleated stripes down the backs but that isn’t necessary. Using black paint, in that general area, paint on your thick, black likes. Perfection is not required, just make sure they are thick enough to be noticeable as a design element of the gloves rather than smudges.
Now isn’t that a little worth the effort? Gah! I love ’em! And they can be used for lots and lots of cartoon characters, not just Minnie Mouse!
And all together now, isn’t that just the cutest thing? II have to tell you again, I don’t like to dress up, but this outfit made me so happy that I’m starting to see what all of the fuss is about. Now Carly my baby Boshih doesn’t look impressed, but that’s just her face. She’s really pretty stoked :)
And I’m pretty stoked, too because we can DIY the most amazing adult Minnie Mouse costume that is:
- Work appropriate
- Not sexy (which means it covers well enough to be warm :)
- Can be put together super quickly (if you need help get that free trial for 2 day shipping, y’all)
- Is made up largely of items that can be added to the wardrobe
I gotta say, I feel like I killed it! And because I stash busted and raided my closet it only cost me about $30. And that’s mostly the dress which I’ll wear again and, in all honesty, have been eyeballing for ages anyway! I won’t be wearing the cartoon gloves or the Minnie ears around town any time soon, but everything else, absolutely EVERYTHING else, will be added to, or go back into my closet to be worn on regular days. Cool, right?!?