About a year ago, we were heading for a vacation in Hawaii and Gabby's best friend was preparing to move to Hawaii. Needless to say, there was a lot of Hawaii talk in our house. Her friend slept over one night and I cooked up a way to make a hula skirt with the girls. That part was prepared in advance. From there, the whole outfit came about using things we already had and the girls' imaginations.
Here's Elizabeth modeling the finished product. I didn't get a good up close picture of the skirt but it was very easy to make. We used a hair elastic for the waist. The nice thick grown up ones fit nicely around the doll's waist with no measuring and sewing of elastic involved. We then took raffia and cut it twice as long as we wanted the skirt. We folded the length in half, placed the folded side behind the elastic and pulled the ends through around the front, looping it through tightly. No tying knots. You can somewhat see it in the picture below.
The girls made bracelets using elastic string, pony beads and some regular old cheapo silk flowers we bought a few years back for Gabby's room. I had taken them apart for that project so now we have a bunch of flower pieces with holes in the middles. They picked out the smaller ones and used those for the wristbands.
The hair clip is a small bobby pin with more of the silk flowers. I simply stacked some of the same colors, putting a leaf piece on the bottom and pushed the bobby pin through the middle hole.
For the ankles, it was more elastic string, beads, and leaf pieces from the silk flowers (when you take those things apart, you get tons of pieces to use!)
About 11pm that night the girls said, "What about the coconut bra?" How I could I forget the coconut bra?? I was so tired I couldn't come up with anything that I had on hand that didn't require power tools that would work. So I slept on it. In the morning, this is what I came up with. It's simple but they were happy. These are brown felt circles with brown ribbon pulled through them. That's it. Above is the front, below is the back. With more time/planning I possibly could have used walnut shells or something similar but this made the girls happy and was easy.
The leis were again made with the silk flowers, elastic thread and pony beads. Here's the two partial outfits on the dolls.
Here's where we put the hula dresses in to action. That's my kids ready for the luau in Hawaii. Felicity is wearing Kanani's outfit (a surprise for the trip), while Elizabeth is wearing the outfit we made.
Yes, when Daddy got caught holding the dolls, some woman was trying to hit on him. Who knew American Girl dolls and an adorable four year old boy could bring in the women?
Afterward we got some pictures with some of the dancers. All of the ladies made a huge fuss over Gabby and her dolls. They loved Kanani's outfit, of course, but were very impressed when Gabby said she made the other one. We still love our hula outfits and enjoyed Hawaii so much Gabby had a luau themed birthday party this year. I'll get to that post some day.