Our cute paper doll costume can hold its own against Halloween ghouls, ghosts, and goblins.
Clothing and accessories: Measure your child, then on poster board, draw a shirt, skirt with bloomers, and accessories to fit. (Download our free purse and bow templates, and shirt and skirt diagrams.)
Cut out the pieces and cut several 2- by 4-inch tabs from the scraps. Paint the pieces and let them dry.
Use black marker to outline the tabs with dotted lines and to add details to the clothing and accessories. Attach the tabs to the pieces and the bow to a headband with duct tape.
Reinforcements: Strengthen the shirt by attaching a roughly 7- by 8-inch piece of foam core to its back with hot glue (an adult's job). Cut a strip of foam core to fit the skirt waist and hot-glue it on as well.
If the bottom of the skirt seems unstable when worn, add a strip of foam core along each leg.
Straps: Have your child hold the bottom of the shirt in front of her, then cut two lengths of wide elastic that can each reach from the top of the shirt, across your child's back, and to the bottom of the opposite side of the shirt.
For strength, staple a rectangular scrap of poster board to both ends of each strap, then tape one end of each to the top of the shirt (the foam core, not the poster board).
Horizontally attach two strips of adhesive-backed Velcro at the bottom of the shirt and the matching strips to the foam core on the free end of each strap.
Use the same method to attach a single horizontal strap at the skirt waist.