Monday, July 20, 2015

Alice 150 - Alice in Wonderland Costumes

Maybe you didn't know, but July 2015 marks the 150th anniversary of the publication of Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.  In celebration, Alice fans all over the globe are participating in tea parties, museum exhibits, lectures, book readings and many more fun events!

I am a member of the Lewis Carroll Society of North America (LCSNA) and a really big Alice fan!

I thought it would be fun and super-interesting to look at all the Alice in Wonderland-related sewing patterns that have been produced over the years.  There's many more than you would think!

Won't you follow me down the rabbit hole to Wonderland?

"Twinkle, twinkle, little bat..."

Image via Vintage Pattern Wiki

What have we here?  McCall's 1643 from 1951, celebrating the release of Disney's version of the story.  These adorable March Hare and Mad Hatter costumes are suitable for any mad tea party and just plain really cute.  RARE RARE RARE too.. if you have one of these, treasure it!!  Note that it is copyrighted by Disney, as is the below Alice pattern.

Image courtesy of Pink Blackbird

McCall's 8626, seen here, actually is labeled "Alice in Wonderland."  To be used as a costume or as every day wear, I especially adore the little bunny jacket!  This is a very rare pattern.  It was also featured with the March Hare and Hatter costume in McCall's own advertising.

Image via Vintage Pattern Wiki

This beautiful pattern, Simplicity 2240, features an Alice doll and her clothes.  I think this pattern was produced for several years but it's really hard to find!  A lot of reproduction and PDF copies are out there drifting around, but finding an original that's also in good shape is easier said than done.  Still, a must for any Alice collector and I wish I had one!

(Team member Rose Corners has one in stock, though!)

Picture via Vintage Pattern Wiki

While I think it's not specifically branded as an Alice costume, I think it's pretty safe to say that's what inspired Simplicity 3701 from 1951!  (McCall's apparently got the rights from Disney while Simplicity did not.)

Pattern picture courtesy of Historically Patterns
Here is 3702, which is I think is the number for only the toddler sized version of 3701.

Picture from Vintage Pattern Wiki
Vogue 2454 definitely is also Alice-influenced.  The blue dress is a dead give away! Realllllly cute!  The "Alice band" in the hair is another hint.  A type of headwear so firmly connected to Alice that it's named after her!  I also assume this came out about the same time as the Disney movie.

Picture via Vintage Pattern Wiki

In case you weren't sure if this 1970s dress and pinafore were supposed to be Alice themed, the illustrator has helpfully added a tiny white rabbit to the drawing.

From team member All's Fairy Vintage's shop comes this 1960s Woman's Day.  It featured cute Alice-themed toys!

Image via Ebay via Pattern-Vault, in a wonderful article about Alice sewing!
This INCREDIBLY RARE circa 1930s/40s Alice pattern featured a flamingo as well!  I have only seen one... maybe two of these for sale in my lifetime.  Does anyone else out there have one?  Do you want to sell it? :)

These rare-as-hen's teeth Alice patterns from Weldon's (a British pattern company) were found in a catalog, I've only ever seen the Alice one for sale.  Circa early 1930s and very rare!

Image courtesy of Marcialois.

Here is a picture of the actual pattern.  Like I said, I have only ever seen the Alice pattern for sale.  If anyone else out there has seen the Hatter or Hare for sale (or in a personal collection) I would be very interested in seeing the pattern.  


Okay, so that's a look at Alice patterns from the past!  If anyone knows of any others... please let me know!  I want to have the most comprehensive list of them possible.

Let's look at some newer ones now, shall we? :)

Images via

There are really way too many for me to do a feature on each of them individually!  If you want to be an Alice character these days, you have plenty of patterns to chose from. :)

Image via

These costumes based on the Tim Burton Alice movie are reallly nice.  When they came out, I bought them right away for my collection.  Good luck finding the Alice-print fabric shown in the picture though... I couldn't find it anywhere.

Images from

Still more mostly-recent patterns.

Simplicity 9947, image via Ebay.

Images via and

OH WOW, there are so many.  I'm exhausted just looking for them all.  And I'm sure I haven't even scratched the surface of what's out there.  As you can see, Alice is very popular!  I'm sure there are many more patterns that are Alice-themed and I would love if you would share if you know of more. :)

But, you can make an Alice costume without an "ALICE" pattern.  Almost any dress with a pinafore apron can be an Alice costume!  Any snazzy suit in a loud checker print can be a Mad Hatter.  How about these ideas from the Pattern Patter Team?

Images courtesy of the Pattern Patter Team

Any of these patterns would make a very cute Alice costume!

Images courtesy of the Pattern Patter Team

Or how about these wonderful patterns for your Alice costume?

Images courtesy of the Pattern Patter Team

Still more patterns that could easily be adapted to make a pretty Alice costume!


Don't you think you could make a cute costume?

I hope you enjoyed this look at Alice costumes.  If you know of any more, please let me know in the comments!  Do you have any tales of Alice that you would like to share? :)

Also, please be sure to visit all the great shops of the Pattern Patter Team!


  1. Wonderful article, while I wasn't a fan until later in life, I did love the patterns from the time I started purchasing my own and have actually own a couple of these. Great research and I had no idea about
    Lewis Carroll Society of North America (LCSNA)!

  2. I especially love all the older patterns you managed to dig up! I've sold a couple of those in the past, but there are many I've never seen. Nice job!

  3. Love the vintage patterns! Great article!

  4. Love, love love Alice. The first "poem" my boys ever memorized was Jabberwocky.

  5. Forwarding to a friend that loves the OLDER Alice in Wonderland artwork!

  6. The older Alice patterns are so lovely - there were some I've never seen before. Thank you for educating me!

  7. So interesting! I love all of the patterns posted reminiscent of Alice and her adorable dress.

  8. The Cheshire Cat always freaked me out.....but I love the Alice frocks !
    Fantastic Blog !
    I know I will be dreaming about Rabbits in a rush tonight !

  9. Loved Alice and as a child I fantasized about her adventures.However my conversations
    with the characters were always different from the things Alice said.

    Gotta hand it to Alice--she sure has had staying power over the years.
    I have a copy of yet another dress pattern--this one

  10. Love this post...that Alice doll with flamingo is amazing!

  11. Informative, wow, so much pattern history on just one little blue dress and apron. There is a colour called Alice Blue, just like the Alice head band attributed to Alice in Wonderland.

  12. Loved seeing how far back the Alice in Wonderland costumes went, great article!