one of the few family traditions we seem to be able to maintain is the family halloween costume. this was year #4 and it was a hyper-doozy.
but here in the aftermath on november 1st (with next halloween a full 364 days away), with all the supplies put away, pictures taken, and candy pilfered from the children and into our bellies, i can say that it was worth it...and that year 5 will probably occur, after all--contrary to what i was vowing last night as we tried to finish these monsters and get the kids ready.
it gets a little tricky finding the feng shui between kid preferences, originality, craftability, and character-to-family compatibility. this year was tough and i was blanking on ideas until a few weeks ago. but it ended up hitting on all levels.
i give you 2013's Dukes Family Group Costume (yes i am grandstanding), WALL-E Fam:
axiom passenger, wall-e, eve, and the captain.
if youre not intimately acquainted with this movie like we are, you might not recognize any/all of the characters, so here is a little side by side action to help you zero in on how hard we CRUSHED these costumes (re:: SO HARD):
obviously, we LOVE this movie. i actually saw wall-e in theaters the day it came out, well before we had kids. i adore pixar and this movie is the most insightful and original to me.
there is nothing new about being wall-e for halloween or even the wall-e + eve combo (because it's freaking adorable for a girl/boy sibling idea). there are store bought costumes for both and lots of amazing homemade versions too. but i had yet to see the human characters of the movie (of whom there are few) being represented in the costume department, and thought that would be perfect for jesse and me. it would fit the group theme but the kids could also stand alone in their costumes AND mommy and daddy could be comfy and warm.
we did this for fairly cheap, though it did take longer than any of our previous years' DIY undertakings. the only things we bought were layla's trashcan, the boot, the fake plant, the little naval costume and the cockroach and they totaled $12.
we made wall-e out of a diaper box, extra cardboard, used cans, paint and duct tape.
the little props that go with wall-e are for the hard core fans and include wall-e's little cockroach buddy (the only life form to survive the catastrophic pollution of earth), the cooler that wall-e takes to work and collects treasures in daily (which judah used as his candy bucket), and the boot with a plant growing in it.
i made his eyes out of paper towel rolls, cardboard and duct tape and then attached them to some swim goggles.
the wall-e hands are just cut out and painted cardboard taped to his mittens.
one thing i meant to do but run out of time on was to rig up one of our phones to be blaring the song from "hello dolly" that wall-e plays constantly in the movie so it would be a soundtrack walking around with judah (put on your sunday clothes there's lots of world out there....).
wall-e: always concerned for EVE
after spending a few hours on judah's costume thursday night i BEGGED jesse to handle EVE all by himself because i was so over it. we had gone to SEVEN different stores that night (with both kids...kill me now) looking for a cylindrical white trashcan in layla's size with a spinning lid that we could make into the helmet, but never found one and just settled for a clear-ish white one with no lid.
so going against every instinct in my DNA and giving in to exhaustion, i turned over all creative planning for EVE to jesse. and boy did he take that costume behind the woodshed.
her head is a black skateboarder helmet with eyes painted on and fabric pinned around. the body is the trashcan with PERFECT EVE arms cut (which provided layla's real arms access to the world) and the bottom also cut out. the shoulder straps are inflatable packing material that we had from an amazon order. we spray painted it all glossy white.
we also added the little plant indicator light that EVE has when she finds the plant and added a green glowstick bracelet to it for realism.
layla was utterly terrified of the costume at first and got her little digital panties in a wad at us for putting her in a trashcan. poor, sweet, futuristic robo-nug.
but she cheered up and was SUCH a trooper when she got some snuggles from her LuLu and the privilege of holding her own treat bag:
jesse's costume was a cinch after i found a child's naval costume on ebay for $6. the rest was just white clothes with red electical tape accents and a Buy N' Large logo sticker printed at home. plus about 50 extra fake pounds from quickly sewn fat suit (poly fil stuffing between two t-shirts sewn together).
the captain at the helm. (with a sept-u-a-centennial cupcake in a cup)
my costume we the exact same but in red and with my requisite axiom passenger's big gulp cup.
out of our hoverchairs and ready to recolonize earth! (i will have no trouble repopulating with the man!) check out the EVE-eyes in the background! layla was in-flight i guess.
with the cousins (minus winter elf bella) who won for "best trunk" with their north pole theme. cuties.
the associate pastor at the church where the event was held is brittish. his trunk was decorated to be like the english throne and the kids had to approach and be dubbed by his royal lightsaber to receive their candy.
judah was a little wary of approaching an armed despot with only a lil' playmate cooler to defend himself with.
i was being extra happy so judah wouldnt be scared as he got knighted
and then the king dubbed judah's, "the most creative costume in all the kingdom," and, judging by the freakish smile that is visible on the back of my head, and my surging carotid artery, i might have overreacted. i'll own that. but yall, i worked so hard on that thing and a fake regent with a lightsaber basically said, "keight, you win,' which of course are the 3 most beautiful things a person can say to me and my cold, black, competition-obsessed heart.
i cant choose a favorite from the 4 group costumes over the years because i love them all violently. but i do know that this year was a creative benchmark for us in terms of making these beasts, and that wall-e fam deserves a spot among the sushi, volley, and george legends of the past. okay fine, i think this one is my favorite.
happy wall-e days!!!
back to work...
here are the past family ensembles for posterity: