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Create Your Own Mary Poppins Costume

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A few years ago, I was working my way through college by nannying after school. I thought I was a pretty cool nanny, but as amazing as I was, I couldn’t hop through sidewalk sketches into imaginary worlds, my snapping fingers never cleaned up any bedrooms, and I couldn’t sing quite as beautifully as Mary Poppins could. But I could still pretend to be as practically perfect as Mary Poppins, at least on Halloween. I looked into my closet, which was embarrassingly full of thrifted ’70s clothes, and I surprisingly found pretty much everything I needed for a Mary Poppins costume- all that was missing was a hat. I put together the entire outfit using things I owned or found at the thrift store, and you can too! Check out my instructions in the slideshow below.

  • Create Your Own Mary Poppins Costume 1 of 8
    mary poppins costume

    It's easier than you think to be Mary Poppins for Halloween! I put together this costume using things found in my own closet and at my local thrift store. Here's everything you need to be practically perfect in every way this Halloween.

  • What You Need 2 of 8
    what-you-need

    Check your closets to see if you have any of these supplies, or check your local thrift store:

    • white silk daisies and little red flowers
    • black straw boater hat, or straw hat and black spray paint
    • red ribbon tied in a bow with a safety pin to attach it
    • white blouse- preferably with no fold-down collar
    • gray or black blazer- puffed sleeves are a bonus!
    • long black skirt
    • black tights
    • gray or black pumps- the more Victorian-styled the better!

    If you're missing any of these items, and can't find them from a friend or thrift store, check out the next slides to buy it online. And if you're an overachiever, you can add an umbrella with a bird's head handle and a carpet bag too!

  • Make Your Own Hat 3 of 8
    hat

    If you don't happen to have a Marry Poppins' style hat laying around your house (I didn't either, no worries), you can make your own! All you need is a straw boater hat, black spray paint, and some artificial flowers. I artfully arranged mine with a little hot glue. Quick and easy!

    Hat Available from eBay for $12.98

  • Embellish a White Blouse 4 of 8
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    I found a vintage white blouse similar to this one from Etsy (available for $14 here) at a thrift store. It only cost a few dollars, and I actually had worn it several times before being Mary Poppins. To make it more authentically Mary Poppins' style, I pinned on a red ribbon that I had tied in a bow.

  • Find a Victorian Style Blazer 5 of 8
    Gray-Long-Sleeves-Wool-Women-s-Suit-Jacket-35471-1

    Victorian and prairie style clothing were pretty popular in the '70s, so they're usually not difficult to find at thrift stores, at least where I live in Ohio. I found a pretty gray velvet blazer before deciding to be Mary Poppins for Halloween, but it was perfect for my costume! If you don't have a blazer that you think would work, and you can't find one at the thrift store, here's a blazer that would work for the costume and also be a great piece to add to your personal wardrobe.

    Available from Milanoo for $58.99

  • Find a Black Maxi Skirt 6 of 8
    Screen Shot 2013-10-08 at 9.52.17 PM

    The long black skirt was not part of my wardrobe before deciding on my costume. I found it for a few dollars at the thrift store, of course. I'm sure you're noticing a trend, here! The thrift store is your friend at Halloween (and other times of the year). I knew I probably wouldn't wear this skirt again, so I wasn't too picky about the fit or how much I liked it. These days, maxi skirts are at the height of fashion, so it's probably much easier to find a black maxi skirt that you would actually want to wear again, in case you don't plan on dressing up as Mary Poppins every day. Here's a great one available from Macy's for $68.

  • Add a Pair of Pumps 7 of 8
    Screen Shot 2013-10-08 at 9.59.43 PM

    Honestly, don't be too picky about your shoes. You'll want to be comfortable if you're trick-or-treating, or bar hopping, or whatever it is you'll be doing to celebrate Halloween. And if you're wearing a maxi skirt, your shoes won't be too noticeable anyway. I happened to have a pair of mid-height pumps that looked a bit Victorian, so I lucked out. But if you don't have anything that you think would work, and would like to add a nice pair of pumps to your wardrobe, I love these pumps from ModCloth available for $64.99

  • Pull It All Together 8 of 8
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    After assembling your outfit, you'll want to pull your hair up in a bun that sits right below the brim of your hat. I had thick bangs at this time, but I parted them in the middle and used a lot of hairspray and a few bobby pins to keep them in line.

    It's a lot of fun being Mary Poppins for a night! Be prepared to sing a lot of songs, because you will be asked. Trust me.

Check out more of Mandi’s writing at Making Nice in the Midwest.

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