Everyone likes to get dressed up at Carnival, Mardi Gras, and Halloween. But throughout the year, children enjoy slipping into different roles, putting on costumes and make-up, and allowing their imagination to run wild. And adults can really be children again when they get dressed up along with the little ones.
Dressing up in Fun Costumes – not just during Carnival
Costume parties in the children's room – great fun at any time of year
Mardi Gras, Carnival, or Halloween are, of course, appropriate occasions to get dressed up – a child's birthday party is another. But why just at these times? Rainy fall days and gloomy winter days are also ideal for getting the costume chest out again and rummaging around in it. When it is too wet or uncomfortable to play outside, children can quickly get real "cabin fever," and boredom sets in. Then out of "pure boredom," they can hardly let themselves be inspired to do anything. At such times, a costume chest is like a gateway to the realm of the imagination. And when you open it, ever-changing play scenarios develop by themselves: a soft rustling, a short, suppressed laughter – you turn around and suddenly in front of you is a terrifyingly grim-looking bandit who was anticipating a very special haul: the cookie jar in the kitchen. Faced with this droll look, who wouldn't voluntarily fork over the cookies right off the bat?
Boys usually like to be cowboys, action heroes, or strong characters with authority like a knight or pirate captain. Girls, on the other hand, frequently adore cute princesses, enchanting fairies, or sassy witches. However, occupations such as doctors, police officers, or construction workers are also part of the usual costume repertoire of many children. And for good reason, because children create a kind of alternative world with children's costumes and role-playing accessories. They put themselves in the role of adults and thus develop an understanding for the behavior of grown-ups. And as a police officer, witch, pirate, or superhero, children who can sometimes feel small in their everyday lives, are able to feel quite strong through play.
Often, the little ones especially enjoy turning into an "evil character" such as a vampire. With costumes appropriate for children such as the Vampire Draculino costume set; these characters don't have anything intrinsically threatening for little disguise artists but rather something creepy and beautiful. And anyone who turns himself into a dangerous little vampire will also no longer be afraid of nasty dream monsters lurking under the bed in the children's room. Children thus test themselves with disguises and slowly form their self-worth and empathy. This is essential for their development.
One costume – a thousand ideas
A well-filled costume chest that leaves nothing to be desired, from a flower fairy to a fearless pirate – is the dream of every child. But unfortunately ever-changing costume requests are very expensive in the long run – although you don't have to go buy everything new for every role-play. Many costumes can be used with slight modifications for different disguises and roles. What yesterday was the jacket of the feared pirate Captain Charlie might tomorrow be the coat of a noble musketeer. The fantastically beautiful dress of princess Rosalina tomorrow can be the gown of a flower fairy or sorceress. The only things necessary for this are a little imagination and everything that mom and dad can spare from their wardrobes.
Our tip for you: don't simply throw old, worn out clothing into the used clothing collection box or the trash. An aunt's hat combined with a feather – the perfect headgear for a dangerous bandit. A large strip of an old curtain results in the veil and train of a fairy princess. A remainder of fabric, an old shirt, and gloves … almost everything that is winnowed out from the parental wardrobe is suitable for new disguises. And who would have thought that striped pajamas, a little makeup, and Captain Charlie's Ball-n-Chain could in an instant make a dangerous convict out of your little sunshine with his rascal's smile and freckles?
As you can see, it's often the creative little ideas that bring even greater variety into costumed role-plays. The only other thing that children need for these, besides a few sophisticated costumes and props, is a lot of imagination … of which, as we know, they have plenty!