If you haven't got a collection of dress up clothes in a box it is worth putting one together. Give kids a boxful of dress up items and they will be occupied for hours and that's got to be a good thing! Kids love costumes, changing clothes, pretending and becoming different characters. Gathering the clothes, accessories and costumes is all part of the fun especially if you involve your children in the process. To get started clean out closets, ask grandparents or check out your local op shop.
To store the dress up items think creatively ... an old suitcase, plastic lidded box with a mirror nearby, or a little set of drawers or shelf in a corner.
Here are some ideas to help you fill your kids dress up box.
1. Skirts and Dresses. Go for elastic waisted skirts that are easy for you to adjust to child's size and to make it easy for them to put on. The shinier and glittery and brighter the colour the better!
2. Costume Jewellery. Always a huge hit and easy to get hold of at op shops. Things like clip on earrings, chunky necklaces, bracelets, old sunglasses and brooches are perfect.
3. Clothes from other Countries. Include some items from different cultures such as saris, kilts, grass skirts, cowboy hat or vest.
4. Clothes from Different Jobs. Include in their dress up box some clothes to represent different occupations such as work mans overalls or vest, ballerina tutu, nurses outfit, sailors jacket. These sort of clothes will have their imaginations soaring!
5. Hats. Pop into your local op shop and you are sure to find a fine selection of unusual hats. Bowler hats, sunhats, builders hard hat, baseball hats, berets, tiaras, chefs hats, pirates hats, men's hats are all fantastic.
6. Pieces of Material. Include some lengths of brightly coloured or unusually textured material. This will let your kids put together what ever outfit they choose. You will find them draping a length of black satin material around their shoulders and becoming a magician or super hero. Or draping a piece of silk around their backs as a shawl or using it as a head scarf.
7. Props. Purses and old handbags, builders tool belt, pretend sword or shield, toy first aid kits with some bandages, shoes, aprons, police badge, runners sweat bands, aprons, sports shirts will all be put to good use.