How to Make Homemade Scales


Children love to dress up in fantastical costumes. Whether for Halloween, pretend play, a theatrical production, or just for fun, making your costume by hand will allow you to be as creative as you want when designing your costume. If your child wants to dress up like a fish or a mermaid, you can add handcrafted, shimmering scales that will make the costume stand out.

Things You'll Need

  • Iridescent fabric
  • Scissors
  • Glitter glue
  • Needle
  • Thread
  • Shirt
  • Cut two inch circles out of iridescent fabric with scissors.

  • Squeeze a line of glitter glue around the perimeter of each circle. Allow the glue to dry completely. Each circle outlined in glitter glue will be one scale.

  • Lay a shirt onto a flat surface, and place a thin piece of cardboard in between the layers of the shirt.

  • Place a row of scales across the bottom of the shirt, and sew across the tops using a needle and thread.

  • Place another row of scales across the shirt, allowing them to overlap the first row by 1/4 to 1/2 inch. Sew across the scales using a needle and thread.

  • Continue adding rows of scales in this manner until you have created a shirt of scales. You can use this method for adding scales to a mermaid tail, to imitation medieval armor, or to a fish costume.

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  • Photo Credit fish image by Gina Smith from
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