20 Fantastic Book Character Costumes

Whether you’re looking for Halloween costumes or ideas for Book Character Day at school, these fun and easy book character costumes for kids and teachers are sure to be a hit! 

There’s never going to be dressing up that I love more than a book character costume.

I went down an Internet rabbit hole looking at book character costume ideas, and there was no way I could resist sharing them here.

Seriously, every one of these is so good.

20 Book Character Costumes for Kids and Adults

Where the Wild Things Are Costume

I am obsessed with this little Max costume and it gets bonus points for being warm and snuggly if your Halloween night is chilly. And as if this wasn’t good enough, this is actually just part of a whole family set of Where the Wild Things Are costumes.

Costume Details at Tell Love and Party // Where the Wild Things Are book

Curious George Costume

What’s better than one children’s book character costume? TWO costumes. I love this Curious George and the Man with the Yellow Hat duo – it’s perfect for a pair of siblings and so instantly recognizable! 

Costume details at Merrick’s Art // Curious George book

Viola Swamp costume

Miss Nelson is Missing costume

Grab a friend or a sister to be the Viola Swamp to your Miss Nelson. I think this is one of the best teacher costumes for book character day, especially if you have co-teachers or a teacher’s aide in the classroom. 

Costume details here // Miss Nelson is Missing book

princess bride costume

The Princess Bride Costume

Frankly, we’re all probably more familiar with the Princess Bride movie than the book, but rest assured there is a book and there aren’t many better couples costumes than Wesley and Buttercup. Add a tiny ROUS and you’re good to go with a baby in tow!

Costume details at Friday We’re in Love // The Princess Bride book

wizard of oz costumes

The Wizard of Oz costumes

If you want to do book character costumes for a whole family, The Wizard of Oz is a perfect choice since there are so many iconic characters, from Dorothy and the Tinman to the Wicked Witch of the West and the Cowardly Lion.

Costume details at Live Free Creative Co // The Wizard of Oz book 

book character costumes for girls

Madeline Costume

I love Madeline and book character costumes for girls don’t come much better than the little French schoolgirl. It’s a simple costume to put together and so recognizable. Now I’m wondering if I could convince my four little girls to all dress up in Madeline costumes and I can be one of the nuns.

Costume details at Alexa Marie Zurcher // Madeline book

teacher costumes for book character day

Olivia Costume

I mean, how good is this? As you know, I don’t love dressing up, but I would ABSOLUTELY dress up in an Olivia costume. I personally think a pig nose would be the perfect finishing touch to this book character costume.

Costume details at I Want to be a Super Teacher // Olivia book

peter pan costumes

Peter Pan Costumes

This is another set of book character costumes that’s perfect for a big group – from Captain Hook to Peter himself, plus Wendy, the Lost Boys, Tigerlily, the Crocodile and Nana, there is no end to the fun you can have with these costumes.

Costume details at Merrick’s Art // Peter Pan book

where's waldo costume

Where’s Waldo? costume

When it comes to easy book character costumes, Waldo is a clear winner. Super recognizable and not much more than a red striped shirt required.

Costume details at Repeat Crafter Me // Where’s Waldo? book

diy book character costumes

Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus Costume

Mo Willems never disappoints when it comes to books and it turns out the Pigeon makes for a great book character costume too! I bet the Pigeon would LOVE a piece of Halloween candy.

Costume details at Simply Radiant // Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus book 

princess costume

The Paper Bag Princess Costume

Forget the Disney princess costumes and go old school with the Paper Bag Princess. A sibling could easily be the dragon too!

Costume Details at Mama Papa Bubba // The Paper Bag Princess book

book character costumes for boys

James and the Giant Peach Costume

When it comes to Roald Dahl book character costumes, I think Willy Wonka gets the majority of the love, but this James and the Giant Peach costume is super fun and more off-beat.

Costume details at Small Fry // James and the Giant Peach book

strega nona costume

Strega Nona Costume

Could this little girl BE any cuter? This no-sew costume makes for a super easy book character costume and I can’t help imagining a baby costume involving the pasta pot (like those lobster pot baby costumes).

Costume details at Seeker of Happiness // Strega Nona book

book character costumes for teachers

Matilda Costume

If you want easy book character costumes for teachers, Ms. Trunchbull from Matilda is hard to beat. Just be sure to bring chocolate cake for all your students.

Costume details from What Peggy Said // Matilda book

book character costumes for kids

The Day the Crayons Quit Costumes

Oh, this costume set is too good! And it’s a lot of visual impact for such easy to make book character costumes!

Costume details at The House that Lars Built // The Day the Crayons Quit book

Harry Potter costumes

Moaning Myrtle Costume

Most Harry Potter lovers go for Hermione or Harry costumes. Maybe Hagrid or Dumbledore if you want to think outside the box a little. But this Moaning Myrtle costume really takes it to the next level.

Costume details at Dearth Duo // Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets book

diy book character costumes

If You Give a Mouse a Cookie costume

If you have overalls and can make a set of mouse ear headbands, you’re golden for this simple costume! And the baby sibling as a cookie? Brilliant!

Costume details at Seeker of Happiness // If You Give a Mouse a Cookie book

easy book character costumes

Chrysanthemum Costume

I love a book character costume that is from a less-popular book and this one definitely falls into that category. And yet it’s so clever and fun!

Costume details at The House that Lars Built // Chrysanthemum book

book character costumes

The Giving Tree Costume

Now if only a member of the family was dressed up like a stump. . . .

Costume details at The House that Lars Built // The Giving Tree book

The Hungry Little Caterpillar costume

The Hungry Little Caterpillar costume

How cute is this little duo? I love how beautifully Eric Carle’s recognizable artwork translates to a costume (or two, in this case).

Costume details at My Crunchy Life // The Hungry Little Caterpillar book 

If you have other favorite book character costumes, I’d love to hear them! I could look at these all day long.

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  1. In Australia Halloween isn’t big (though it’s becoming more popular) but for cute costumes we have Children’s Book Week each August. Lots of schools do a book costume parade. It’s adorable. Kids all carry around their book with them. My eldest son’s Kindergarten participated this year and he went as the Goblin King from Nobody Likes a Goblin by Ben Hatke (we adore that book). We already had elf (now goblin) ears and pointy shoes in the dress up box, so just had to add a chain mail shirt made of newspaper and a $2 crown.

  2. The only problem is that people tend not to know what they are supposed to be. Last year my 3 year old was Mother Bruce and my 1 year old was one of his goslings (and they were adorable costumes), but the only person who got it was Grandma, who read the book at our house.

  3. Madeline is not an orphan! She’s at boarding school. The other girls see all the gifts “papa” sent to the hospital and that’s why they want their appendixes out, too! But, great list ?

  4. My second grader is very excited to be Geronimo Stilton this year! Green suit, red tie, glasses, mouse ears. Better go get those ears finished! 😉

  5. We did Goldilocks and the 3 bears a few years ago! My toddler was Goldilocks and then my husband and I and the baby all got brown bear suits! We stayed super warm too!

  6. My kids are Zita the Spacegirl and Mighty Jack this year. I expect I’ll have to tell almost everyone, but they were so excited!!

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