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Our Top 10 | World Book Day Costume Ideas – Homemade & Shop-Bought

11th April 2019

‘Twas the night before World Book Day,

when all through the house.

Not a creature was stirring,

not even a mouse’

And then you realise you need three literary-themed costumes by 8am tomorrow… Hobbycraft is closed. You’re gonna have to raid the cupboards – cardboard, paint, glitter, and old bed sheet, And wine. Helps with the creativity.

Sound familiar? Well, we have got you covered. Here is your reminder that World Book Day is happening very soon – Thursday the 7th of March to be precise. Put it in your calendar, update your WhatsApp group, make a Facebook event – Do Not Forget.

Now, onto the costumes. If you are struggling with what to go as this World Book Day, we have compiled our top ten favourite costume ideas. For those that are into a bit of DIY, we have five really quick and easy costumes that you can make at home and then brag about for months. If the thought of handmade fancy dress makes you want to die inside, no fear – we’ve also got five great World Book Day costumes you can buy in the shop.


Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe – C. S. Lewis

Never one to do anything by halves, when I was asked to create a World Book Day costume for this feature I decided on a book that is a real family favourite in our house. I also agreed to film the process so you too can make this at home. Right at the end, I list what you’ll need – and it’s likely you’ll have most of it in your craft cupboard already.



Dear Zoo – Rod Campbell

World Book Day Costume Ideas

How cute is this costume?! All you need for this is cardboard, paint and some fluffy fabric. It really is that simple! And, let’s face it – there are loads of kids book with lions in so this is a really versatile idea.


How To Hide A Lion From Grandma – Helen Stephens

World Book Day Costume Ideas

Another lion-themed book… But this time it’s the grandma who is the star of the show! Find an old headscarf (charity shops are perfect for this), pop the lenses out those 3D cinema glasses you’ve chucked in the back of a kitchen drawer, throw on a cardigan and some woolly tights and get creative with this incredible hair. All you need for this hairdo is an old headband, some strong glue, and some cotton wool balls. Again, you are bound to have read a book with a grandma in. If Gangsta Granny is more your style, simply swap the glasses for a mask.


The Rainbow Fish – Marcus Pfister

World Book Day Costume Ideas

For this absolute classic book, you will need a variety of different coloured fabric cut into scales. Simply layer them up and stitch them on to an old t-shirt – Emma used an apron here for extra length.

To make these amazing face scales, you will need some mesh (Emma used a mesh satsuma bag!) and some sparkly coloured eyeshadow. Simply place over the face and dab it on.

World Book Day Costume Idea


Cereal Superfan – Julia Donaldson

World Book Day Costume Ideas

We’ll admit it, this one is a little more niche but Sarah was really proud of this costume – and rightly so! You may need to be a little more arty for this one, but the only materials you will need are cardboard, paint, and a steady hand. Add hats for extra cuteness.


Charlie & The Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl

World Book Day Costume Ideas

At just £10 from Asda, this golden ticket costume is an absolute steal. With a bit of cardboard and gold paint, it’d also be pretty easy to recreate at home. For more info, click here.


Charlie & The Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl

World Book Day Costume Ideas

This Violet Beauregarde costume is just incredible. Click here to buy it from Amazon for £14.85. The costume includes the top, trousers, Golden Ticket & bubblegum.


The Cat in The Hat – Dr. Seuss

World Book Day Costume Ideas

This Cat in the Hat fancy dress costume comes with a cat onesie with soft fluffy front, a detachable tail and big red bow, and of course, the iconic oversized hat. Buy it from Asda for £14 here.


Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll

World Book Day Ideas

This Alice in Wonderland dress and bow headband from Sainsbury’s starts at £15. You can order it here. This would also be pretty easy to recreate at home – all you need is a blue dress and a white apron and a bow.


Mr Stink – David Walliams

World Book Day Costume Ideas

Another one from Sainsbury’s, this Mr Stink costume comes with a Mr Stink ‘suit’ top, black trousers, beard, hat and glasses. Buy it here from £15 or see if your local charity shop has any similar items for you to recreate even cheaper.

Let us know what you’re going as this World Book Day! We’d love to see your costume ideas.



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