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Activity  •  2 August 2023

 

10 easy book week costumes

In need of some book week costume ideas? Look no further, these book week costumes are super simple and kid approved.

Book week is an exciting time for kids!

For kids who are already bookworms, book week allows them to share their passion. Children who don’t generally enjoy reading, on the other hand, might have a love of reading sparked by the week of classroom festivities.

For parents though, it can be a different story. While ‘book week’ conjures up visions of classroom parades for children, the demand of a literary costume is enough to frighten even the craftiest of parents. What would a caterpillar wear? Will my kid be comfy in this? I need how much cardboard?  . . . we’ve all been there.

This year, it’s about to get a lot easier. From the most popular to most unique book week costume ideas, we’ve compiled a list of costumes that are simple to execute. Less stress, more fun.

Scroll on to see our tips for easy book week dress up, featuring some of the best-loved children’s books around:

  • Bluey
  • Emma Memma
  • Chippy Chasers
  • The Very Hungry Caterpillar
  • Matilda
  • Willa and Woof
  • Alice-Miranda
  • Friday Barnes
  • Percy Jackson
  • Ranger’s Apprentice

 

Bluey

Photo of a range of Bluey books on a side table and chair.

Bluey isn’t just a TV character, she’s also the star of the Bluey books.

Thankfully, there are enough Bluey reads to yield several easy costume ideas for book week. Whether your kiddo wants to dress up like one of the Heeler sisters, Bob Bilby or Queen Chilli, these 6 ideas are sure to delight.

Click here for 6 awesome Bluey book week costumes.

(Psst . . . if you’re in a rut and already have a Bluey costume on hand, we suggest simply completing the look with a book. Costume sorted! 😉 )

 

Emma Memma

Photo of Emma Memma holding two of her books.

If your little one is obsessed with Emma Memma, you simply can’t go wrong with this easy costume.

With butterflies in their hair, this costume will make your kid the star of the book parade.

What you’ll need

  • Pink shirt
  • Orange dress
  • Pink and orange craft paper
  • Scissors
  • Glue stick
  • 2 pipe cleaners
  • 2 bobby pins or barrettes
  • Hot glue (with parental supervision)

What to do

  • The base of this outfit is easy. Simply layer the pink shirt under the orange dress.
  • To make the butterflies, use the craft paper. Cut out:
    • Four orange circles
    • Four slightly smaller pink circles
    • A butterfly body
  • Assemble the butterflies by gluing the circles to the butterfly body.
  • Cut each pipe cleaner in half, then cut each half again to make 4 antennas.
  • Glue the antennas to the top of the butterfly.
  • Use hot glue to adhere the butterflies to bobby pins or barrettes.
  • On the day of the book parade, curl your hair, slip on the outfit, and carry the book in hand to show off your best Emma Memma look.

 

Chippy Chasers

Photo of Chippy Chasers books on a box of chips.

The hilarious seagulls of Chippy Chasers: Chippy Jackpot have taken the world by storm. And if your kid is a fan, this might be a great costume for them. With a few white basics, essential spy gear, and chips (of course), your kid will fit right in with Steve-O, Stanley and Stacy in no time.

What you’ll need

  • White clothes
    • T-shirt
    • Pants
    • Shoes
  • White feather boa (optional)
  • Spy gear
    • Sunglasses
    • Binoculars
  • Yellow pool noodle

What to do

  • The simple base of this costume only requires that your kid dress in all-white. An optional feather boa will hint at the seagull characters without all the fuss of feathers.
  • Add spy gear such as binoculars or sunglasses.
  • Finally – the chips! Using a sharp bread knife (adults), cut the pool noodle into 3–4 pieces to resemble extra large hot chippies.

 

The Very Hungry Caterpillar

The Very Hungry Caterpillar against a white and yellow background, with a caterpillar toy crawling on the book.

This last minute The Very Hungry Caterpillar DIY costume just might be a lifesaver.

If your child also subscribes to the 'always hungry' philosophy, maybe  is a fitting pick for Book Week! It's also adorable and perfect for children of all ages, from tiny tots to big kids.

In just a few quick steps, you’ll have a book-week-ready costume, without the drama.

What you’ll need:

  • Printable mask found here
  • Cardboard
  • Plastic or wooden ruler
  • Green pants
  • Green top

What to do: 

  • Assemble your mask using the method detailed above.
  • Dress in the green pants and green top.
    • Note: If you don't have any green clothes in the old wardrobe, we've seen a particularly cute The Very Hungry Caterpillar costume floating around at a certain 'Big' department store.

 

Matilda

Matilda by Roald Dahl sitting on a side table.

Who better to dress up as for book week than the book-loving Matilda?

With just a few basics, you’ll have the Matilda costume of your dreams – including, of course, plenty of books.

What you’ll need:

  • Blue dress
  • Red ribbon
  • Books, including Matilda (of course!)
  • Wagon, book bag or backpack for carrying books

What to do:

  • Put on the blue dress.
  • Tie the red ribbon around your head like a headband, preferably with a bow on top.
  • Because Matilda loves reading, the goal is to bring as many books as possible. Load them into a wagon, or stuff your book bag/backpack full to the brim with your favourite books. Bonus points for including Matilda.

 

Willa (and Woof)

A collection of Willa and Woof books stacked up on a side-table, with book number one facing towards the camera.

Does your little one love dogs? If so, they’ll love dressing up as Will from Jacqueline Harvey’s Willa and Woof series.

On top of being easy to throw together, this costume is also 100% play-friendly, meaning kids will enjoy running around in it all day long.

What you’ll need:

  • Overalls
  • Yellow shirt
  • Red sneakers
  • Toy dog

What to do:

  • This outfit is easy! Simply dress up in the yellow shirt, overalls, and red sneakers.
  • If your hair is long enough, style it in two plaits.
  • Carry the toy dog around with you in one hand, and your copy of Willa and Woof in the other.

 

Alice-Miranda

Alice-Miranda At School book sitting on a chair, which has a blanked draped over it.

Another iconic Jacqueline Harvey character that suits book week perfectly! Alice-Miranda is sassy, precocious and, best of all, kind – plus, this costume is easy to construct from everyday items you might find in your wardrobe.

What you’ll need:

  • School uniform or a tartan skirt and blazer
  • A pink headband
  • A pink tie
  • Knee high socks and black shoes

What to do: 

  • Wear your hair loose if allowed, otherwise wear a plait or ponytail with the pink headband as well.
  • Draw on freckles and apply rosy blush.
  • Carry your favourite Alice-Miranda book with you.
  • Now, go forth and be kind to others in true Alice-Miranda fashion!

 

Percy Jackson

Percy Jackson book 1 against a cloth background.

If your child is a fan of Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson series, then you can’t go wrong with a Percy-inspired book week costume.

Despite being a demigod, Percy – thankfully – wears average pre-teen garb, making this costume an easy one to replicate.

What you’ll need:

  • Orange T-shirt
  • Printable iron-on transfer paper (optional)
  • Jeans
  • Sneakers

What to do:

  • If using iron-on transfer paper, print a ‘Camp Half-Blood Logo’ onto your iron-on paper.
    • You can find several options by Googling ‘Camp Half-Blood logo’.
    • You can also design your own Camp Half Blood logo on a free design tool, such as Canva.
  • Following the iron-on transfer paper instructions, apply the logo to the front of your orange T-shirt.
  • On the day of the book parade, wear your shirt, jeans, sneakers and carry a copy of your favourite Percy Jackson

 

Friday Barnes

Friday Barnes book 10 against a corkboard background.

If your child is a fan of R.A. Spratt’s famous girl detective, Friday Barnes, then this costume should be your go-to.

Using clothes you might already have at home, this costume is simple to pull together with a few extra accessories.

What you’ll need:

  • Tan sweater or jacket
  • Striped shirt
  • Jeans
  • Sneakers
  • Fedora
  • Magnifying glass

What to do:

  • Dress up in your Friday Barnes outfit.
  • If your hair is long enough, wear it in two pigtails, and finish the look with a fedora.
  • Carry your magnifying glass in one hand and your favourite Friday Barnes book in the other.
  • Now you’re ready to solve some mysteries with Friday!

 

Will Treaty

Ranger's Apprentice book one, sitting on a chair draped with a brown knitted blanket.

Enter the fantastical world of Ranger's Apprentice by choosing a Will Treaty costume this book week! Perfect for older kids in grades 4 to 6 and beyond, this costume from John Flanagan's long running book series looks incredible with very little work required. 

What you’ll need:

  • Light-coloured pants
  • Long-sleeved top
  • Tunic (any oversized, short-sleeved top will do)
  • Belt
  • Hooded cloak (ideally brown or green – find out how to make your own here)
  • Toy bow 
  • Toy or cardboard sword

What to do:

  • If making your cloak from scratch, start with that.
  • Once you have your cloak ready, it’s time to get dressed.
  • This costume requires layering, so start with the long pants and long-sleeved top.
  • Add the tunic and fasten around the waist with the belt.
  • Slide the toy/cardboard sword into the side of the belt.
  • Add your cloak to complete the look.
  • Carry your bow in one hand and your favourite Ranger’s Apprentice book in the other.

 

Want more bookish fun? Check out more activities here

This post was originally published in August 2017 and has since been updated. 

Featured Titles

Bluey: Perfect
Based on the hit ABC KIDS TV show!
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