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Bunny & Buddy’s colonial(ish) costumes

Bunny and Buddy's Colonial(ish) Australian costumes

Recently Bunny and Buddy’s school reached it’s 80th anniversary, so to celebrate they had an entire week of Aussie Colonial and heritage focused events. One of the days the kids needed to dress up in Australian Colonial costumes ( or costumes that reflected their heritage ). Of course, as per usual, i only figured this out the day before the dress up day. Sigh. I need to read my school newsletters more often i guess hehe.

Bunny and Buddy's Colonial(ish) Australian costumes

Anyway my kids are quite fussy about what they’ll wear, i decided to go for something inspired by Australian Colonial wear, rather than a perfect historically accurate costume, which i knew i couldn’t pull off in time.

Bunny and Buddy's Colonial(ish) Australian costumes

This smolder pose was 100% his idea not mine. Work it dude.

Buddy was the easiest, he has a large collection of page boy hats thanks to his Grandma, so that plus a button shirt and some plain pants left us only needing a waistcoat. I used a free pattern by Jess of MeSewCrazy, and it went really smoothly. The sizing was spot on, i sewed a size 6 for Buddy, and it’s perfect. Since it’s winter here i decided to use fleece as the lining to keep him warm… but as you can see here, he decided that he wanted to wear that on the outside (sigh) which i think looks a little odd in real life, but he really loves it so i’m going with it!

Since i was time crunched and didn’t want to deal with putting buttonholes through fleece, i used snaps and i’m pretty happy with that decision. Overall, i actually really love this look on him, and kinda wish i had more excuses to put that kid in a waistcoat!

My plan is to add a star to this one at some point and then it can extend it’s life as a cowboy dress up.

Bunny and Buddy's Colonial(ish) Australian costumes

Didn’t notice the bow at the back had come untied till after i took the photo. Blogger fail!

Bunny was a little harder as she is by far the pickiest. A truly colonial outfit would be more along the lines of a plain button up shirt, tucked into a long gathered skirt (or simple dress along that silhouette) with a plain pinafore apron over the top.

But. Bunny being Bunny, she fell in love with this thrifted sheet that i had in my stash and use for sampling. Always the individual that kid. Love that about her. So i decided to make a very simple gathered skirt with a pinafore attached. I think it looks a little like a pinafore aprony dress LOL. The Mob cap is quite typical of the time, so i feel quit pleased with how that turned out. I used this great tutorial, and it was super easy. We chucked the dress over a Mini Briar tee and she wanted to wear her school shoes, so boom, done.

I am actually seriously blown away by how much Bunny loves this pinafore. You wouldn’t believe the fight we had to get her take it off for a bath. It’s made me think i need to make her some more pinafores in a more modern fabric that she can wear daily. At least for now she can enjoy this one in the dressup box!

Bunny and Buddy's Colonial(ish) Australian costumes

So, at the end of the day, I’m glad we managed to get something knocked out before school – and even though we’re not super historically accurate, i feel like it all fell in the spirit of the day. Plus they look crazy cute, so winning in that area hehe.

I tell you what guys, I can’t believe how much costume sewing i have done since the kids started school a few years ago. I had no idea how much a part of my life that would be, but secretly, i am really loving it!

Bunny and Buddy's Colonial(ish) Australian costumes
About Author

Meg is the Founder and Creative Director of Megan Nielsen Patterns, and is constantly dreaming up ideas for new sewing patterns and ways to make your sewing journey more enjoyable! She gets really excited about design details and is always trying to add way too many variations to our patterns.

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Nicole
Nicole
6 years ago

Gosh, your kids brought back memories. In the 80’s my primary school celebrated a significant event and we had a colonial week too. My mum sewed my sister and I mop hats, gingham skirts and white aprons. We also wore gastly white puffy blouses given to us the previous Christmas. The costumes were put in the old esky we used as a dress up box and played with for years.
I love your Bunny’s pinafore. The thrifter sheet is perfect.

Linda Mundy
6 years ago

The pair are so sweet! Great job for such a quick throw together.

Ping
6 years ago

This is SO CUTE. Is it weird that I would totally wear Bunny’s pinafore as a summer dress?

gingermakes
6 years ago

These two! They’re too cute! The costumes are perfect- you did an amazing job.

Penelope
Penelope
5 years ago

thanks so much for these photos! I have a goldrush excursion to whip up a costume for in a week, and your pinafore is my starting point!

Penelope
Penelope
5 years ago
Reply to  Meg

Can I ask you for a tip on the skirt? i like how “gathered” it is, ie not too full. how did you work out the measurement? I usually do 2.5 times the waist measurement, will this give a similar “gather”? thanks so much. cutting into fabric tomorrow *gulp*