Oct 16, 2013

Minnie costumes with circle skirt tutorial

Since I did a RunDisney race, I needed to make a costume. That's just part of the fun of doing a race at Disney. For my first RunDisney race, Kristina and I kept it simple and decided to go as Minnie Mouse, a classic.

It was a simple costume, black t-shirts, Minnie skirts and ears. We had the black tees, that was the easy part. Then we got the red and white polka dotted fabric to make the skirts. I decided to make half circle skirts. These would give us enough room to move while we ran, but wouldn't be to bulky. And I wanted to have elastic waistbands for ease of movement and getting them on and off. The hardest part was making the patterns. It involves math! Eww! But it's not that hard, if I can do it anyone can.

You just need two measurements, waist measurement and the length of your skirt.

Here are my measurements (so you can see how it works):
Waist: 29 inches
Length: 13 inches

I'm gonna get math-y on you now... Your waist measurement is the circumference. In order to get the radius of the circle to be able to make your pattern you need to divide your waist measurment by 2 x 3.14 (π). But I'll make it even easier for you. Take your waist measurement and add two inches for seams. Then divide by 6.28. My equation looked like this:  31 ÷ 6.28 = 4.93 (I rounded up to 5)

The answer to your equation is the radius of your skirt to make a full circle skirt. Since I was making a half circle skirt, I doubled this number to 10. I then pulled out my pattern paper and marked 10 inches from the corner of the paper. You could use a compass to make the circle, but seriously who has one that big? So just mark your 10 inches (or whatever your measurement is on various spots all starting at the corner, then just connect the dots.

After you have the waist marked, measure from your waist line down to your length. I measured 13 inches down and made the same markings. Then I played connect the dots and cut out my pattern. This pattern will be very wide, so if you have standard 44 inch wide cotton, like I did, you will have to open it up to be able to get your whole pieces cut out.

I cut out two of these pieces and serged all of the edges. I sewed up the sides seams, and then it was time to attach the waistband. The waistband was just a piece of 3 inch elastic cut to my waist measurement plus 1 inch. I sewed the edges of the elastic together to create a tube. Next, I had to attach the skirt to the elastic waist. I pinned the skirt to the elastic at the front, back and sides. The skirt was a bit bigger than the elastic, which you need to be able to get into the skirt. All you have to do is stretch the elastic as you sew and this should give it the stretch it needs.

After you've attached the skirt to the waistband, just sew a small hem. Your skirt is ready to go. (Don't forget to try it on to make sure it fits right.)

Next was time to make the ears. And luckily I found a great tutorial on Bombshell Bling for Minnie ears. Instead of using hot glue, I sewed the ears and used heavy Peltex 70 interfacing for the interior. Our bows were made of the same fabric as the skirts and it was all attached to dollar store headbands. I didn't know if the ears would make it through the race, but they lasted all day long.

This costume was pretty easy once you have the skirt pattern made. Don't let it intimidate you, just measure it out start cutting. This would make a great Halloween costume too. It's super comfy, so it's great for a night full of trick or treating.

P.S. I might have a made a mini verison of this for my niece too!

I love making these running costumes. And since I have a few more RunDisney races in my future, and there will be plenty more race costumes coming.

Have you ever made a costume?


  1. How much material did you have to buy to make your skirt?

    1. It depends on how big your skirt is. Bear in mind that you will need to open up the fabric to be able to fit the whole skirt pattern on it. For me (I'm usually a small, I get a yard).