To be honest, I had hoped that J, our foster son, would forget the promise to create a Bowser costume. I had no idea how to even start and with limited time in trying to take care of two little ones plus befriend/mentor their very young mother, building a costume seemed impossible. Plus, I was struggling on how to translate the literal image of Bowser into fabric and felt.

As often happens, the deadlock was broken with a simple reminder. One of my quilting friends saw my blog post and dropped a quick email of ideas and advice. “Remember,” she wrote, “imagination can fill in a lot.”

ll you parents out there may be shaking your heads by now, but for me, it was a revelation. Duh. I’d seen J use a vacum attachment as a sword. And in our home, where we did not allow toy guns or even the word “gun”, J had quickly figured out how to build fancy “machines” out of legos which shot out ice bombs or fire bombs. Imagination….of course.

Armed with that conviction, I sewed and cursed and sewed and finally cobbled together a semblance of a costume. My goal was his birthday in March and with several very late nights plus some hand sewing done in the office on conference calls (shhh), the costume was mostly done.

Unfortunately, between the mother, the grandmother and me, we can’t find any pictures of J in his costume, but even if I had them, I couldn’t publish them anyway. So without further ado, the components of the Bowser costume:

The front + the adorable gloves


Me in the hood :-)

It is hard to describe what it feels like when you *make* something and a newly five-year old boy’s  eyes light up with joy. When he throws down his current toy, and immediately shucks off his clothes (that’s not too hard to imagine if you know little boys), struggles into the costume then runs off, tail swinging behind him, with a shout that he’s “GONNA GO SHOW CHRIS!!!!” 

My heart exploded into a million pieces that even now, with the kids happily back with their mother, is not fully put back together.

Pattern:  Simplicity 1765  

Materials:  Lots of fleece, felt, fiberfill, and zipper. 

Missing:  Arm bands and shield