Monday, June 17, 2013

Anna Plays Nurse: Kids Nurse Costume

One of Anna's favourite books at the moment is a Golden Book I picked up at a thrift store last year, called Pepper Plays Nurse. It's an old one, published in the early seventies, about a little girl called Pepper who decides to set up an animal nursing home at her house.

Anna begged me for weeks to make her a costume to match Pepper. I finally relented!


I bet some of you are thinking "I don't remember Pepper but I do remember the Nurse Nancy books!". You are in for a treat - Suz from Sewpony has also made her daughter a nurses costume, based on Nurse Nancy. We were chatting about the coincidence, and how great old Golden Books are, and decided to put our nurses costume posts up together today so you can get two lots of vintage book costume inspiration! You can check out her Nurse Nancy costume here.


Anna has been taking her "amb-lee-ence" around the house and backyard for a while, with an ever changing group of plush animals having her special treatment each day. I have caught her several times trying to coax our dog into her 'ambulance' but she's had no luck so far!




Now to the sewing - this is a SUPER EASY project. I thought Pepper's swingy little outfit in the book illustration was a perfect match for a cross over pinafore, so I used the Imagine Gnats Roly Poly Pinafore, which you might remember from when I pattern tested it and made this one for Lucy.

I cut a size 4 and didn't add the front pleat in the pattern, but I forgot to fold the pattern in to omit the extra fabric for the pleat on the front piece. No matter - in some ways to has been good to have a bit more room in the pinny as it has been freezing weather here and Anna wears her costume over several layers of clothes.


I used a white cotton drill, then cut two strips of red homespun cotton and applied them with heat n bond into the cross shape. I then stitched around the cross just with a straight stitch.


For the nurse's hat, I drew a template on a piece of paper and cut two pieces of fabric. To stiffen it, I ironed a piece of heavy weight interfacing to one of the fabric pieces. To make the cross, I used the same method as I used on the pinafore, then I put the pieces right sides together with elastic in the middle. I stitched around the outside leaving a small gap, turned it right sides out and topstitched around the edge of the hat to finish it and close the opening.

It's come out really well and she wears it almost daily at the moment. I've found store bought kids costumes to be really flimsy and made with very poor quality fabric so I'm sure I'll make more.

Did you have Pepper Plays Nurse or Nurse Nancy in your bookshelf? 

12 comments:

  1. Very cute Ros!! Our outfits are very different, but both true to our books I think!

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  2. Oh that's so cute, okay I am cutting her an ambulance sign out of vinyl if you can send me the measurements of the back rectangle of the "ambulance". The pattern is perfect I have a few little costumes (not a nurse for Max) I have to make within the month and was going to try and free hand it, but this is much better :)

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  3. You are sooooo clever. That looks fantastic. I relented and bought a $9 (on sale!) outfit on Friday for my Miss 4. Yours is way cuter!

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  4. What a smart idea to use a pinnafore pattern to make a nurse costume. Excellent job! Anna looks very cute in it by the way.

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  5. I love it!!! Great work on the hat too. You'll have to do a tute ;-)

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  6. Oh, that's just gorgeous Ros. You're probably lucky you don't have Foxtel because there's a show on there called "Doc McStuffins" who does the same thing. I see Target have the stuffed toys of the Doc and two of her patients. My kids enjoy that show but I'm kinda glad they've outgrown the toys, I hope. I'm just avoiding Target like the plague! LOL

    Anne xx

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  7. Well done Ros it looks fantastic and I just love the amb-lee-ence - too cute!! :)

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  8. SO cute!! i love the pinafore-as-costume :)

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  9. Great idea to use the pinafore pattern as the nurse's costume, Ros. Looks great and I'm sure it will get lots of use.

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  10. Very sweet! One of my boys used to pronounce ambulance as am-bee-lamps. It was so cute I left him until he was 8!

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  11. I love this so much! Its too cute. LOL Poor puppy dog hehehe.
    I think Elijah would love a doctors coat, then they could play together! haha

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  12. This is so adorable! I agree with you those store bought costumes just fall apart! I need to get to sewing my 3 year old some costumes, he would love it :)
    Heidi @ handmadefrenzy.blogspot.com

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