Bring in the Dragons!
We mostly stuck to the 1st movie with the exception of 2 of the dragons: Cloudjumper (from How to Train Your Dragon 2) and the Light Fury (from movie 3).
Someone at church gave us this great dinosaur costume. For this project, we decided it would be the perfect base for Cloudjumper.
My husband made a PVC harness which I covered with a large set of wings from brown fleece. He can actually flap the wings!
There’s a smaller set of wings I made to go under the arms.
The crest and brow is the most recognizable feature of Cloudjumper. I made the brow from French terry and felt, and the crest pieces from Bosal bag interfacing. All the facial features are made from felt too.
The custom painting on these pieces with acrylic was really fun but also took FOR-E-VER to dry! The crest and brow attach to the costume with safety pins.
Pink Deadly Nadder
I would have liked to have made Astrid’s dragon, Stormfly for my daughter. But I ran into 2 problems:
1)she really, really, really loves pink and Stormfly is turquoise
2)I found a perfect pink dino hoodie that fit her for $1. I couldn’t walk away from it.
So I decided to make Stormfly’s type of dragon–the Deadly Nadder
Since Deadly Nadders come in a variety of colors, I thought, what the hey, let’s make it pink!
To the hoodie base, I added eyes, teeth, nostrils, so many spikes, and a horn all from felt.
The wings were my absolute favorite. I freehand cut them from pique knit fused to Peltex interfacing and backed with felt. I wrote up some tips for sewing without a pattern for freehand cut projects just like this one.
Painting them with nadder’s mottled look was the best part of this process. I used straight acrylic paints. I didn’t heat set the paints, but if I ever need to wash them, I will do just that. Learn how to heat set fabric in How to Block Print Fabric. The wings affix with velcro on the back of the hoodie, and there’s foldover elastic straps so she can flap her wings.
I topped everything off with chenille boot covers with dragon toes.
Toothless and the Light Fury
In the middle of this project, my 3rd son gave me a personal throwdown–turn our beloved toy dachshunds, Popcorn and Pumpkin into Toothless and the Light Fury respectively.
I’ve always made costumes for my animals from when I was little. When I was teaching, I had a turtle puppet named Tilly who taught my kids about music history. One year Tilly had full scuba gear inside of an aquarium I made for her while Saint-Saens’ Aquarium from Carnival of the Animals was blasting on loop in my classroom. Another year? She was Baba Yaga and I made a popsicle stick hut when we were studying Pictures at an Exhibition. She was quite literally In the Hut of Baba Yaga. (So.much. music.nerd.)
So I picked up this challenge happily.
I used baby hoodies as a base. Both of them needed extensive fitting to fit the dogs’ torpedo shape.
My only annoyance was that Toothless’ hoodie was black with white spots. I added so many layers of black paint to try and get him to a solid black without getting all the way there.
Toothless got leather wings.
It was also really fun to recreate his tail prosthetic that Hiccup builds him, complete with the Viking skull.
The tails of both hook onto each dog’s tail with a loop of elastic. Popcorn also has elastic loops on his ears on the inside of the hood. That way you can flap his wings without his hood coming off.
Just like the other dragons, all the extra bits are felt, though I did make the ears from other jersey.
So that’s all of my Halloween sewing. I can’t say that I’ll jump into such a big project next year, but who knows!
Do you sew costumes for Halloween?
For my November sewing: I’m half way through a jacket cut from this faux leather. It’s top of my list in these 8 Great Fall Fabrics to Sew.
Elizabeth Farr is the writer behind the Elizabeth Made This blog where she shares helpful sewing tips, step by step sewing tutorials and videos to help you explore your creativity through sewing. She has written sewing Eguides and patterns, been a featured teacher at Rebecca Page’s Sewing Summit and Jennifer Maker’s Holiday Maker Fest and her work has appeared in Seamwork and Altered Couture magazines. She also created a line of refashioned garments for SEWN Denver. When her sewing machine isn’t humming, she’s playing and teaching violin, and hanging around a good strategic board game with her husband and 4 kids.