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A Daffodil should have a wreath of daffodils in her hair, and carry a big bunch in her hand. A Wild Violet wears a border of wee blue and white violets to her frock and a wreath in her hair.
A Boy's Dress
An April Fool would be a splendid fancy dress for an impish boy to accompany his May Queen sister and her little train of flowers.
This dress, to harmonise with hers, should be carried out entirely in green and yellow, the materials employed being either satin or a good make of sateen.
It consists of a pair of straight-legged breeches, one leg being green, the other yellow. These breeches are cut rather wide, and reach to about three inches below the knee, where they are cut into three or four sharp points, to each of which a tiny brass bell is hung.
The upper part consists of close-fitting under-sleeves, one green, one yellow, that reach to the wrists, mounted on to a separate lining waistcoat. Over this is a parti-coloured surcoat, the bottom of which is cut into pointed tabs, with wide, bell-shaped sleeves cut into a long, pointed cock's-comb from the elbows, each point adorned with bells.
The head-dress consists of a close-fitting green and yellow cap, with a cock's-comb along its top. Long ears, adorned with bells, are on either side. From this cap hangs a pointed cape, cut with bell-bedecked pointed tabs ; or, if preferred, it can be made a separate garment. The surcoat is belted with a belt of russet leather to match the square-cut brass buckled shoes. A green stocking is worn on one leg, and a yellow one on the other.
In his hand the April Fool carries a jester's doll on a stick, dressed in a bell-bedecked garment of the same colours as his own.
Such a dress naturally carries with it the privilege of playing jests on one's fellow-guests unrebuked during the evening.
For a Tiny Child
The Chocolate Soldier is well suited to a very tiny person indeed, either a boy or a girl, who should be dressed to look as much like a, chocolate figure from a Christmas cake as possible.
The little uniform is carried out in thin chocolate brown cloth or sateen, braided in brown, or silver, with a cap of the same material, or of brown velveteen.
The pipings and epaulettes should be of silver cord and silver paper. The medals are rounds of chocolate - taken from a sixpenny box of choco- lates - tied with coloured-ribbons, and fastened on the tunic with safety-pins.
Brown shoes and socks and silver buttons, to look as much like the silver balls used on wedding- cakes as possible, complete the dress.
The Doll is dressed in stiff pink muslin, with a ruche at the hem and a sash of thin shiny pink satin ribbon. Underneath her dress, she wears several stiff book muslin petticoats, and her feet and ankles are wound with pink satin ribbon. In her hair she wears a ruche of pink satin ribbon, with a Christmas star sewn on the front.
Fastened in front of her frock might be a big label, with " 4 1/2d." printed upon it in large black letters, or the label might be even more realistically fastened to the back of the skirt.
The Water Nymph, or Undine, if that character is preferred, wears a long, very simple frock of soft transparent muslin over a soft white cambric petticoat. Her feet are bare, or, for dancing purposes, they might be thrust into flat-soled green sandal shoes.
In her hair she wears a wreath of tiny white flowered water weeds, and she carries a bunch of bulrushes or a trail of water lilies. A necklace of dull green beads may be worn, if liked.
A Nursery Hero wears a tin breastplate and leathern belt and bandolier. A chocolate medal is fastened to the front of his breast-plate. He carries a Union Jack in one hand and a tin trumpet in the other. A cocked hat made of paper might well adorn his head.
This dress would be specially suitable for an impromptu fancy-dress tea-party, as the component parts could be abstracted from almost any toy cupboard.
The Small, Early Victorian Damsel, or Dickens Child, makes the quaintest and most lovable figure imagin -able, with her demure yet roguish air. She wears a short full skirt of dull green merino gathered on to a plain, tightly fitting bodice, with long, tight sleeves. Over this is a pelerine of the same stuff, edged with fringe, which crosses over to hang in two long, rounded ends behind, in place of a sash. A tiny embroidered muslin collar is arranged at the neck.
Under the little frock, which makes a sweet little indoor dress for a child when it has done duty for a fancy dress party, come a pair of long white pantaloons of finest nainsook muslin, cut rather full, with frills edged with fine broderie anglaise. White socks and black sandal shoes with cross-over elastics are worn, and a skipping rope or hobby horse should be carried.
The small damsel's coiffure is an important point. The hair should either be rarted from back to front, and plaited in two braids to hang straight down on either shoulder, with a big green ribbon bow at the end of each one, or the plaits be twisted up just over each ear and tied in place there with long bows, as shown in the illustration.
Antony and Cleopatra are two excellent characters for a small brother and sister to portray.
Antony's tunic should be made of fine white nuns'-veiling, with a Greek key pattern in gold braid appliqued round the neck, sleeves, and hem. It is a good plan to use a transfer pattern for the key pattern, which otherwise entails much measuring to keep it straight.
A girdle, edged top and bottom with finely plaited gold cord ornamented at four-inch intervals with cameos set in gold, encircles the waist, and from it depend ten two-inch wide bands of material reaching to just above the key pattern round the hem of the tunic. Each band is bound with gold braid, and has a gold lion's bead sewn on to adorn it two inches from the bottom.
Five large decorated gold buttons, worked up with gold braid to resemble spikes, are fastened on to the front of the chest of the tunic, and the costume is completed by a small leopard's skin with a long dangling tail slung as a cloak from the shoulders.
If this is unobtainable, an excellent imitation may be made from a piece of leopard skin cloth.
Antony's boots may be contrived from a pair of soles with washleather uppers, adorned with gold braid, and made to lace up the front.
A fillet of wide gold braid is tied round his head. He might, if liked, carry a small round Roman shield.
Cleopatra is attired in an under-dress of scarab-blue satin or sateen, completely covered by an over-dress of indigo blue ninon, fringed with dull silver.
The over-dress is cut kimono fashion, the stuff being folded into pleats on the shoulders to give extra fulness back and front.
The waist is encircled with a brilliant flame-coloured sash of the thinnest Oriental silk gauze, the ends bordered with silver fringe.
Cleopatra's hair is plaited in two long plaits entwined with pearls, and from her circular silver crown - richly jewelled - a high, glittering ornament rises in front, from which a deep blue or flame-coloured jewel depends upon her forehead.
A Christmas-tree. This costume is of stiff dark green muslin over sateen. If necessary, crinkled paper could be substituted for muslin
There are characteristic Egyptian hanging side-pieces to the crown, formed of chains of jewels, ending in tassels and caught together by scarab ornaments at three-inch intervals. A necklace of scarabs or indigo-blue stones encircles her neck, and from it a big scarab hangs as a pendant from a chain.
Cleopatra's feet are encased in pointed sandal slippers of silver tissue, with jewelled bands down the front and round the tops.
A Christmas-tree makes a most successful fancy dress, the foundation of which consists of stiff and finely-pleated dark green muslin cut in deep flounces, one overlapping the other, mounted upon a princess foundation of sateen. Dark green crinkled paper, however, makes an excellent substitute for muslin.
The sleeves are frills, and the skirt is set out as widely as possible over several stiffly starched muslin petticoats.
A pointed cap bearing a Christmas-tree star is worn on the head, and the dress is completed by decorations consisting of quantities of the lightest Christmas-tree ornaments procurable, such as coloured glass balls and tinsel fringes. These are lightly tacked in place. Strings of very light crackers of brilliant hue may be included, and several gay penny toys, hung in conspicuous places where they will catch the eye of the beholder, are sewn through to the princess foundation, so that it may bear the weight.
Very dark green shoes and stockings may be worn, or gay red ones to represent the flower-pot.
A Chimney Sweep, This character represents Tom in the "Water Babies." He wears a shirt and knickerbockers of black calico, rather ragged, has bare legs, and his feet are thrust into old shoes. His hair is ruffled up on his head, his face smudged with soot, and in his hand he carries an ink-black sweep's broom. This can be made from several circles of stiff black paper or muslin, cut in a stiff fringe to make the brush part, and fastened to a half broomstick covered with black paper.
Robin Hood can easily be contrived from a dull green tunic nursery suit in thin cloth, with a narrow, turn-down collar of tan-coloured suede and a belt of tanned leather. A. little round green cap with a long pheasant's feather thrust through the side and brown shoes and stockings complete the suit, though, to be very correct, high boots, to draw on, not fasten, might be contrived from tan-coloured suede.