Snowy owls are black beaked white owls native to the northern regions of North America, Europe and Asia. These distinct owls start life with black plumage marking their otherwise ghost-like appearance, but grow whiter as they age. In addition to their status as the only living creature in its genus, snowy owls play a part in a number of popular culture works, notably the character of Hedwig in the Harry Potter series. Emulate this majestic bird for Halloween or costume parties by creating a true-to-appearance snowy owl costume with materials available at most craft stores.
Things You'll Need
- Hooded sweatshirt
- Feather boa
- Measuring tape
- A friend
Use a white hooded pullover sweatshirt and sweatpants as the base for the costume.
Measure the circumference of the opening of the sweatshirt's hood.
Cut a length of boa equal in length of the circumference of the sweatshirt's hood opening.
Thread a needle with white cotton-coated polyester thread or all-purpose thread.
Whip stitch the boa to the edge of the hood. To form a whip stitch, push the needle through the fabric on the inside of the hood, piercing through the outside of the hood. Bring the thread over the boa and over the edge of the hood. Push the needle up through the fabric on the inside of the hood again and continue “whipping” the thread over the boa and edge of the hood.
Measure the circumference of the opening of the sweatshirt's sleeves and the sweatpants's legs.
Cut four lengths of feather boa. Two should be equal in length to the circumference of the shirt's sleeves and two should be equal in length to the circumference of the pants's leg openings.
Whip stitch the lengths of boa around the sleeve and leg openings, one to each opening.
Paint a black stripe on the nose of a theatrical mask to simulate the beak of a snowy owl. Allow the paint to dry.
Flip the mask over so the inside is facing you. Glue white feathers around the interior edge of the mask, so they extend outward past the perimeter of the mask.
Stand with your arms outstretched. Measure the length from your outstretched arms to your waist. Measure across the back of your outstretched arms from wrist to wrist. It helps to have a friend do the measuring for you in order to get accurate measurements.
Cut a rectangle from white polar fleece. One side of the rectangle should be equal to the length of your arms. The other side needs to be equal in length to the measurement from your outstretched arms to your waist.
Stitch the white polar fleece to the sweatshirt. Use a running stitch to attach the fleece across the back of the sweatshirt and the top edge of the sleeves. Create a running stitch by poking the needle through the back of the fabric, moving it to the front. Push the needle down through the front of the fabric. Push back up again.
Cut 1-inch-wide strips at the bottom of the fabric, about 6 inches in length. This simulates the wings of the snowy owl.
Glue or stitch feathers to the fabric. Cover as much of the fabric as possible.
Wear the completed ensemble with a white feather boa wrapped around your neck.
- National Georaphic: Snowy Owls
- University of Michigan Museum of Zoology: ADW: Nyctea: Classification
- "New Complete Guide to Sewing"; Reader's Digest; 2002
- "Sewing for Dummies"; Jan Saunders Maresh; 2010
- The Nature Conservancy: Migratory Birds Program: Harry Potter - Hedwig - Owl
- Photo Credit snowy owl image by Tom Curtis from Fotolia.com