Do you love Anne of Green Gables? My granddaughter asked me to make an Anne of Green Gables costume for her after reading the books. I did a bit of research on the character Anne with an E. I loved the books and series myself. Do you?
I knew I could make a Halloween costume or purchase one. I really weighed out the options but, what sold me on making mine was the fabrics I spotted from the Riley Blake line. And the fact that she really had her heart set on a homemade costume made me, plus she could use this for a prairie days costume. This really made me want to sew it for her.
Looking for other costumes to make? See all our costume ideas and Halloween ideas.
Anne of Green Gables Costume
The pricing was about the same as purchasing a costume pre-made. That is, for my favorites for Anne of Avonlea.
- My favorite made to order in Girl sizes 2- 14 is this Custom Girl’s Anne’s Dress and Pinafore Set (This is great for prairie days or Halloween)
- My favorite made to order in Women’s sizes 6-20 is this Anne’s Dress Set (This costume is awesome for a costume party, Halloween or Cosplay)
Below covers I how to make the costume and the sewing patterns I used for the dress and for the apron. I also included tips for fabrics, the layout of materials… Plus, also have picked and shared more patterns I spotted where you don’t have to alter anything. And a few more pre-made Anne of Green Gable – Prairie Costumes. I hope this helps you make (or buy) an Anne of Green Gables Costume to use for Halloween, Cosplay or Prairie Day, or Pioneer Day. (Our local Pioneer Days in Paso Robles, CA.)
The sewing skills you will need to make your own Anne of Green Gables costume are
- Basic sewing machine skills
- Basic hand sewing skills
- How to use patterns
- How to adjust the fitting size or pick a pattern for the exact fit
- Straight sewing skills
- How to make a casing
- There are no zippers in the costume and no buttons for making this!
With basic sewing skills, this is a pretty easy Halloween costume to make! Bonus, you can use this for a prairie costume too. If it seems too hard for you to make, scroll to the end of the post for other costumes to make.
Intermediate to the advanced sewer? You might like this Little House on the Prairie Costume we made for her a few years back.
- Little House on the Prairie Costume Part 1 & Tips
- Little House on The Prairie Costume Part 2 & Sewing Tips for Patterns
How To Make an Anne of Green Gables Costume
How to sew the Anne of Green Gables Costume
I laid out and sewed the costume according to the sewing pattern. (view A)
- NOTE: Read tips by pattern info. below, before getting your pattern!
- Pattern information, sizing tips and tips later in the post.
The costume was almost finished being sewn, prior to bringing it to my granddaughter (5 hours away for the fitting) but it still needed to be fitted to her size. I also had to make the casing for the sleeves and gathering the sleeves. Pin the apron ties to her size… I had her mom measuring her, and giving me the needed information for pattern sizing over the phone to get the bulk of the costume sewn before taking it for finishing the details.
For the apron, it was adjusted from a small adults apron pattern by using the dress pattern laid over it to mark taking it in a bit. Instead of curving the neck/chest part of the apron I made it go straight across
This is the image of Anne of Green Gables, I based the costume design from.
I just used a ruler to mark it. The apron was pinned but, needed to be fitted to her size before hand-sewing the shoulder straps and ties to the apron. And the hem needed to be adjusted to her size, then hand finished.
I have pattern recommendations below, and you don’t have to pick a pattern that needs adjustments!
How to make the apron?
- Layout the pattern according to the pattern layout directions on the back of the pattern
- If making sizing adjustments alter as needed, marking alterations with a disappearing ink sewing marking pen
How did I alter the apron pattern?
To look more like the costume on the show.
- The slight adjustments I made to the pattern was to omit the pocket, make the straps thinner, tie straps thinner, and make the top of the apron straight vs. curved.
- I used a ruler and the marking pen to make the adjustments for straightening the top.
- The ties for the apron are sewed and then applied to the apron by pinning in place and hand or machine sewing.
- This is for both the back apron ties and front – arm ties. This allows for adjustments for the person who will wear it.
Back of apron and bow with ties ready to be sewn
Both the dress pattern and the apron pattern for Anne of Green Gables Costume used are below along with other patterns and recommendations.
Here she is in the costume ready to be pinned for adjusting and the final steps to finishing the costume. She was so excited to try it on! Little sis was more excited to see her grandma. 😉
We were making the hem and length of the dress shorter but, keeping much of the length to allow for growth and her being able to wear the costume again. Much like how Anne’s dress was adjusted to fit her growing size.
The final adjustments for the costume were
For the sleeves
- I pinned the sleeves at the wrist for making a casing. (how to make a sleeve casing)
Turn back raw edge on the sleeve 1/4 of an inch and press flat towards inside of the sleeve. Measure elastic, mark fabric that measurement plus 1/8th inch to 1/4 inch. Next fold over the hemmed edge leaving an opening wide enough for the elastic, by using those measurements. Then sew the casing leaving an opening for sliding in the elastic with a safety pin attached (1 pin to the elastic pinned to opening-fabric holding it in place, 1 pin to the elastic for threading it through the opening. Once ends meet at the opening, thread it though meet ends, overlap slightly and sew elastic together. Then remove pins, insert into the casing and sew seam opening shut. (how to thread elastic through a casing and stitch casing closed.)
- I pinned the sleeves at the wrist for making a casing. (how to make a sleeve casing)
- Made the casing on the sewing machine leaving an opening for the elastic.
- Threaded the elastic through and sewed it together.
For the apron
- I adjusted the straps, and the ties and hand sewed them into place.
For the hem
- We raised the length up just a little (allowing her room to grow and use it again)
- Pinned it in place.
- Then I hand sewed the hem.
Sewing patterns for an Anne of Green Gables Costume
- Butterick Pattern 4913 sizes 7 to 10 (This is the pattern I used the largest size of this sewing pattern) NOTE: If your child is over the age of 9/10 or bigger boned, I would use the next pattern. (see backs of pattern for exact measurements or read descriptions on patterns)
- Simplicity Pattern 1722 sizes 7-14 (The only difference and alteration is laying the longer sleeves vs shorter sleeves onto dress pattern)
- Simplicity Pattern 8230 sizes xs-xl women’s (This is the pattern I used for the pinafore) I laid the dress pattern right over the pinafore pattern and marked sizing adjustments right onto the fabric; by folding excess out of the way. Then marking the fabric. Making all adjustments prior to cutting by using her (the person’s) measurements. (easy peasy!)
- OR try using this pattern with a pinafore that comes in girls sizes 2-10.
- Then I just found this adult pinafore sewing pattern. Which might help you, not have to alter the straps just shorten the length as needed.
- For toddler costumes, I would just use this easy pillowcase dress and bag pattern with the pretty fabrics below. And have them wear boots, and a long sleeve shirt under the dress. (Easy P-easy! way to have a toddler girl be Anne of Green Gables)
McCalls also has a Woman’s Prairie Dress and Apron Pattern – McCall’s Costumes M7220 in (Small) ( Medium) (Large) and M7230 pattern is more of a historical pioneer and pilgrim costume. It’s available in three sizes too. These would be great if you wanted to make a Marilla Cuthbert costume.
NOTE: I couldn’t fit pattern to size her in person (they live 5 hours from us) but, I had her exact measurements. Another thing I did for the pinafore was to make the straps thinner and more true to the look of the costume. I used view A with no pockets and squared the neckline vs. curved. I just used my ruler. (fabric for dress and pinafore below)
What types of fabrics for making a costume/dress like this?
- Cotton fabrics and cotton blends are the best and easiest to work with.
Anne of Green Gables Fabrics
Fabric for Making an Anne of Green Gables Dress
The fabric I picked for the dress was out of the same line as these. I believe the fabric I used is sold out. But, here are current picks from the same line of fabrics.
- Cotton Vintage Girls Anne of Green Gables Book Scene (fabric by the yard)
- Riley Blake Kindred Spirits (fabric by the yard. ( I love this fabric by the yard. It would be great for the dress with a white or cream pinafore)
- Kindred Spirits Quotes (fabric by the yard) Pretty pink print or the same in a Light green print.
- Kindred Spirits Bouquet Aqua (fabric by the yard) would be easy to use and has a now directional pattern.
- Winter Snow Anne of Green Gables (fabric by the yard)
Any of these above fabrics would be awesome for the dress with a white or cream pinafore (apron) made to go with it. You can also search (here) for current Anne of Green Gables Fabrics.
The fabric for the pinafore was a cotton muslin. See the options for muslin fabric by the yard.
Any of these fabrics would be awesome for the dress with a white or cream pinafore made to go with it. You can also search (here) for current Anne of Green Gables Fabrics.
- Tips for picking out the fabric amount for the pattern. Get a little extra fabric if you have one direction fabrics. The layout may not accommodate for the print pattern.
- Also, be careful with your layout of the fabric. You want the top of the dress and bottom, and sleeves all to be going in the proper direction. Double-check your layout before cutting. I barely had enough. So I was glad I got a half yard extra. The remnants will be used for a small bag.
- Using the layout instructions on the pattern will help but, if you come up short on fabric for the reasons above the extra will make layout easier.
Lastly, she used these props for her costume
I can’t wait to update this with a photo of her in her costume with her hat and props.
You can see the series Anne with an E on Netflix. And if you or your children haven’t read the books, they are a must-read! These beloved books ( Anne of Green Gable books)
The story is about Anne’s life during the turn of the century. How she gets adopted by Marilla and Matthew and begins a new life on the farm. There are many twists and turns, exciting and sad that make these books classics everyone should read. This endearing character has so many lessons with life, growing up, being flawed, being yourself and accepting yourself. Not to mention life on a farm during the good and bad times. See the stories unfold by reading the book.
All the girls in my family have loved the books from the series. And all my kids loved hearing the stories read to them. It’s been so much fun making costumes to go with the books she has been reading.
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