While my girls love dressing up, and look forward to our annual All Saints’ Day party, I tend to leave costume-planning to the last minute. The day before the party, you’ll find me scrambling for flowers for St. Rose or searching Pinterest for “how to make a monstrance” for St. Clare. If you’re a little bit last minute and lazy like me, then here are some fun and easy girls’ saint costumes!
(And if you want to be more prepared than me, I’ve also included some affiliate links so you can order your daughter’s costume now instead of chopping up bed sheets the day before the party…)
The Princess Saint Costume
As the mom of four girls, I often resort to the princess saint costume. There are plenty of princess saints, so your daughter can choose her favourite era or country. It’s easy to customize any princess costume so your little saint is ready to party (or play). Here’s Sunshine and Lily in their very first All Saints’ costumes, ready to go to Sunshine’s preschool party:
Sunshine actually wore that dress again a few years later (I made it a bit big) as St. Margaret of Scotland. This time, we added a white pillow case tucked under her crown and dress, to create more of a medieval headpiece. Looks like I should have her choose some fancier, more princess-like jewelry as well…
Here are some princess saints for your daughter to chose from:
- Saint Margaret Queen of Scotland (c. 1050)
- Saint Clothilde Queen of France (c. 450)
- Saint Elizabeth Queen of Hungary (c. 1200)
- Saint Elizabeth Queen of Portugal (c. 1300)
- Saint Hedwig Queen of Poland (c. 1350)
If your daughters are huge fans of Disney princesses, Meg has a list of saints similar to their favourite princess.
Angels and Archangel Costumes
Lily dressed up as her guardian angel one year. For this costume, we found a white blouse / dress at a thrift store. She wore it over a white shirt and white leggings. I made her a halo from gold pipe cleaners and glued coffee filters to cardboard wings.
For St. Raphael, add fish (cut out from cardboard and cover with tinfoil). For St. Michael, add a sword (cardboard and tinfoil) or a suit of armour. I know that archangel costumes are usually picked by boys, but angels are technically neither male nor female.
Nuns and Religious Sisters
Of course, many of the saints were religious sisters. These girls’ saint costumes can be pretty easy to create, as most habits were black, brown or white. For the girls’ costumes one year, I bought a metre each of cheap brown and black cotton and just draped it around them.
Lily, who was St. Rose of Lima, wore the white blouse from her guardian angel costume of the previous year. I cut her metre of black fabric into a cape and a smaller piece to create her head covering.
We added a wreath of roses from the dollar store and our little St. Rose was ready to party!
Ironically, at that party, one of Lily’s friends showed up as St. Rose of Lima as well. Her mom had done her head covering slightly differently, and she also carried a crucifix. Otherwise, the girls were nearly identical!
Sunshine went as St. Clare of Assisi to the All Saints’ Party that year. For her costume, I had her wear a simple brown knit dress and brown leggings. Then we draped her brown fabric over her shoulders. She used a piece of Lily’s black fabric for her head covering, with bobby pins to keep it in place. The hardest part of her costume was creating the monstrance for her to carry. We used sparkly gold poster board, a toilet paper tube, and a circle of white cardstock for the host.
Jade chose to be Blessed Immelda Lambertini last year. We reused the white guardian angel blouse for her costume and pinned a white pillow case over her head. I probably could have had her carry Sunshine’s monstrance from the year before, but it had likely ended up in the recyle bin by then… instead, Jade’s favourite little doll ended up at the All Saints’ Party with her. Well, Blessed Immelda was only 9 when she joined the order.
These girls’ saint costumes were inspired by the girls’ favourite Glory Stories.
Early Christian Martyrs
Last year, Lily dressed up as St. Agnes of Rome. This costume idea was inspired by our second year of Connecting with History. One of the projects for our unit on Rome was to create a woman’s stola. I repurposed an old white sheet, pinned at the shoulders and tied at the waist, for this. Lily carried a stuffed lamb with her to represent Agnes (whose name means lamb).
The white sheet actually drapes quite nicely and is easy to adjust for a child of any size. This costume idea would also work for Saints Perpetua and Felicity, who were martyred around the same time.
Mother Mary Costumes
The Virgin Mary is also fairly easy to to dress up as. While Sunshine and Lily were religious sisters, Jade went as Mary. She wore her favourite blue dress and we added a drape of blue cotton over her head and shoulders. She took her favourite doll with her as baby Jesus.
Modern Girls’ Saint Costumes
And when all other ideas for girls’ saint costumes falls through, go with some modern saints. This is also a great way to talk to your daughters about the fact that saints didn’t just live hundreds of years ago! There are some amazing saints who lived and died in the twentieth century, such as:
- Saint Maria Goretti (she was only 12 in 1902 when she was brutally murdered, so use discretion in sharing her story with your daughters)
- Saint Gemma Galgani (an Italian girl who died the year after St. Maria; she was a mystic who received the stigmata)
- Saint Gianna Beretta Molla (a mom of four and a doctor who died in 1962—this is also an easy costume for Mom, if you want to dress up for the party! I used the girls’ doctor kit to dress up as St. Gianna when I was expecting Pearl.)
There you have all the girls’ saint costumes we’ve tried over the last few years. As you may have noticed, I tend to dig into dress up materials and craft supplies we have readily on hand. We’ve reused some costumes and costume pieces several times over the years! Keep a well-stocked dress-up bin year-round to inspire your kids’ imaginative play… it will also help when October rolls around with its parties!
What are the girls dressing up as this year? Um, let me get back to you in a couple weeks about that…
What girls’ saint costumes have your daughters picked? Where do you find ideas for costumes? What tips would you share for putting together last minute (or not-so-last-minute) costumes?