Monday, June 3, 2013

An Easy DIY Drummer Boy Costume

In lieu of a kindergarten graduation ceremony, my son's school is putting on a circus instead for parents and the entire school. My son was chosen to be a drummer boy in the marching band and costumes were required. I'm so glad he didn't choose to be a clown or an animal! I love to sew but being given a one week notice does not allow for a busy mom to do anything too complicated! So I stopped at Walmart and picked up a $3 t-shirt and that's about it. The black pants were in the donate pile because I wasn't too crazy about the fit or the thin material- it was something bought while at Grandma's house. They were perfect for this project though, so why not?

For the details on the shirt and pants, I used off white and yellow fleece. They don't ravel and they're easy to sew and I had a couple yards of each in my stash.
The first step is to make a template of the chest straps to go on the front of the shirt. I simply traced a two-inch circle and the width of a ruler on a folded sheet of paper. My straps were about 8" long so a folded sheet of 8.5x11 paper worked easily without needing to measure the width. Cut as many as you need from your fabric. I used three on my shirt because four would've been too crowded.

Sew the straps on using a running stitch then on to the epaulets!

For the epaulets on the shoulders, I traced a 5.5" diameter circle directly onto the fabric, doubled it up, and then cut two circles at once. Next, separate your circles, fold one in half and cut 1" strips all around it. Repeat with the second piece. Then I cut about 1.5" off one end of the circle so that it looks like the sun rising out of the horizon. The straight end will be aligned to the neck opening when you're ready to pin and sew.

I cut out a letter "C" for my son's school name and sewed that onto the back of the shirt. 

Now for the side stripes on the pants. I laid my pants down flat with the outside seam visible and measured the length of it. Mine was 23" and with a 1" seam allowance to one end, I would need to cut a strip that was 24". So I cut two 2"x 24" strips from the white fleece and pinned over 1" of the fabric at the bottom hem and sewed that down to anchor them in place. I then flipped the pants to the waistband side and sewed down from there. The reason for that is because the waist of the pants can be unzipped and opened wider to make sewing the strip of fabric easier. Repeat on the other leg and your pants are set!

The hat is so quick to make! I used an oatmeal canister and cut into it at an angle to form the "duck bill." Then I cut the original lip off as this was now in the way. With some glue, colored paper, and buttons, you've got yourself a neat little hat. To anchor it to my son's head, I hole punched each side of the hat and tied on some elastic that I normally use for sewing loop fasteners for buttons.

And voila~ a drummer boy in less than two hours! 

Isn't he too darling? He was so excited to have his costume ready to go as they've been practicing for the circus during the last few days at school. Now I can't wait to see him and all his classmates that I've come to know during volunteer time in class and field trips. It'll definitely be a circus to remember and a great way to end kindergarten!  


  1. Oh my gosh! This is so adorable! It's so easy and so fun! Thanks for such an awesome tutorial!

    1. Aw, thanks, Heather. My son enjoyed being the best dressed drummer boy in the marching band. =)

  2. Great idea! Thanks!


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