Character Costumes for World Book Week: Little Red Riding Hood

It’s World Book Day Week on our blog and each day we will be bringing you another brilliant costume to make thanks to our fantastic parent bloggers. Today Liz from Me and My Shadow shows you how to make this vibrant and snuggly Little Red Riding Hood cape.


Little Red Riding Hood Cape Tutorial

World Book Day is coming – whoooo-hooo!

That means one thing – the chance to dress up and play out our favourite stories.  We’ve recently been spending lots of time in the woods in our role as Forestry Commission Bloggers, and coincidentally, their theme this year is ‘Fairy Tales’, so you see, it all fits in perfectly because our favourite story is Little Red Riding Hood.

We have lots of copies and different versions at home, from the traditional Brothers Grimm version (too nightmare-inducing at the moment) to modern, more amusing versions.

It’s a story we often re-tell when walking in the forest.  Our dog becomes the big bad wolf, and of course I get lumbered with playing Grandma.  But now I’ve made a cape to add to the mix, I know we’re going to have even more fun.

I kept the cape simple to make – I’m no seamstress!  There’s no pattern, I just did it by eye, measuring it up against my daughter as I went.

You will need:

  • 75-100cm of red fabric (depending on the length of cape you want, my daughter is 5yrs and we used 75cm).  This fabric is 150cm wide. Velvet; fleece or faux fur is ideal.  Check out markets and Asian stores for good value fabrics.
  • same amount of poly-satin for the lining – if your fabric is non-fray and has a nice reverse, you can skip this step
  • Matching red cotton
  • 150 cm of red satin or velvet ribbon

Begin by laying both fabrics together, back to back so the good sides are facing outwards. Pin together to keep in place. If you are not lining your cape, skip this part.

Fold the fabric in half (along the long length).  Then, cutting through all 4 layers together (or just the 2 layers if you’re not lining) cut a nice curved shape off one of the corners.  This will mean when the cape hangs from the shoulders, you wont have ugly square corners.

Open out the fabric and turn over the edges twice, rolling in the edge of the lining and secure with pins.  Hand stitch all the way around.

Next, place the cape over the child’s head (the long straight edge is your top, the curved shorter edge, the bottom).  Gather by hand around the shoulders, and shape into place to make the hood.  Carefully mark the points where the two edges meet under the chin and at the back of the neck.  Mark with tailors chalk and then lift off over the head.

Your fabric will then naturally be folded in half, with the points marked like so:

Open your fabric out flat, and on the inside mark a sweeping curved line joining the points up.  This will be the base of the hood.

Take some double thickness cotton, tie a secure knot in one end then stitch a wide running stitch all the way along that curved line.

Now hold on to both ends of the thread and pull to gather.  Arrange the gathers and folds as you like, checking for fit as you go.  Now it’s beginning to look like a cape.

Open out flat again, careful to keep it gathered as you want, and lay your ribbon over the lining where your running stitch is.  Be sure you have even lengths left for the tie at the ends.  Pin into place holding the gathers in situ.

Machine zigzag the ribbon in place, securing the gathers.  Remove pins and you’re done!  For younger children, if you are not comfortable with a ribbon tie round the neck for safety reasons, cut the ribbon back close to the cape edge and stitch some velcro or press studs on instead.

Now you’re ready for skipping through the forest.

What’s your favourite character for World Book Day?  Do you love traditional fairy stories, or do you prefer more contemporary books?


Find loads more dressing up and costume ideas for World Book Day over on Netmums and when you’ve made/found your children’s costumes we would love to see them so be sure to add them to our Costume Gallery. Each day this week we will be bringing you another great costume to make so check back each day. Huge thanks to the wonderful bloggers all from our Parent Bloggers Network for their time, help and brilliance.

About The Netmums Blog

The Netmums Blog brings you a behind the scenes look at Netmums, as well as some fabulous guest bloggers and an up to date look at what's new on our Parent Bloggers Network.
This entry was posted in Authors, bloggers, Books and reading, Dressing up ideas, World Book Day and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Character Costumes for World Book Week: Little Red Riding Hood

  1. EEK! That is a bit gorgeous! I’m wondering if I can adapt it a bit as my boy wants to be Harry P this year!

  2. Liz Burton says:

    Thanks for having me!

    Loving the sound of a Harry Potter cape Chris x

  3. This looks fabulous! My daughter is insistent on being a fairy this year but I will definitely be trying something similar to this when she’s older!

  4. This looks gorgeous and could be used for things other than dressing up. Lovely. Harry Potter, or a glam wizard, sound cool too.

  5. 1978rebecca says:

    Oh that is gorgeous. I have some red material which would work perfectly.

    It would be good for superheroes too – Thor perhaps?!

  6. Pingback: Easy World Book Day Costumes

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