Wild Things (Max) Halloween Costume

We’re sharing a variety of quick and (relatively) easy Halloween costumes this season. See Sarah’s broken doll here and her crazy troll hair here. Today we’re sharing one for the kids, and if you like this, you may want to check out our strong man too!

I may be a bit biased, but I think we’ve found the cutest Max of them all!  Don’t know what I’m talking about? Pick up a copy of Where the Wild Things Are and get ready for a trip down memory lane.

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If you’re making this costume for a kid, they will get so much more enjoyment out of it if you’ve read the book together. Obvious, I know, but just a plug to get yourself to the library and enjoy an afternoon deep in the stacks with your wild ones.


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As with many costumes, I believe that your interpretation of the character doesn’t have to be exact. You just have to create enough of an impression, and spectators can fill in the gaps. We created a very simple and not very accurate costume that represents Max in Where the Wild Things Are, and everyone that’s ever seen it, knows immediately who Luc is. There are also many giggles and squeals because he’s just too cute. Be prepared.

When it comes to Max, here are the features that stick out to me: the white suit/PJs, the tail, and crown. Funnily enough, we added ears because they seemed “essential” to us, but I don’t think that he has any in the book!

The materials that I used for this costume are:

  • white tops and bottoms : It could be a white onsie (this one would work really well!). Or you could do a white long-sleeve and white pants. We always go for leggings because they are super easy to move around in and usually easy to find in a variety of basic colors. Check the Old Navy Toddler Girls’ section if you’re having trouble.
  • cat ears headband : Again, totally not necessary since he doesn’t have one, but this would work
  • faux fur : for the tail and optional ears. You will need less than a half yard. It’s easy to find at this time of year at Joann’s or other fabric stores.
  • grey felt :  I used it inside of the ears
  • glue gun & safety pin : both for the tail
  • crown : my mom had made the boys a gold birthday crown, so we used that because it was such a perfect fit. Ours is more ornate than the one in the book. You could easily make a simple felt crown, or even one out of poster board may be more accurate to the illustrations in the book.
  • scepter : There’s one illustration where Max is holding a scepter while the Wild Things are on parade. We didn’t include one, but something like a stick or dried wildflower works exceptionally well.

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When it comes to making the tail, see the photo below for a simple profile of ours. All I did was fold the felt in half and cut out a slight “J” shape on the fold. I glued the open side together, stopping about two inches from the top. I then squeezed the top of the tail together perpendicular to the fold, and safety-pinned that to the white pants. Does that make sense? I’ll answer any questions in the comments, but it’s a simple thing, so don’t overthink it.

For the ears, I just covered the cat ears that were on our headband with the faux fur on the outside and used a bit of felt as the ear lining.

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It’s so easy! And this is how I like toddler costumes. I want them to be comfortable and having fun, not overwhelmed by a bulky or awkward costume… it’s not to say that those costumes aren’t unbelievably cute too!

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Plus, the real joy from this costume comes months afterwards when you’re still letting your little one wear the tail around the house. I mean, come on! max6 max7

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