Every Halloween we try to come up with a costume that will work for Ivan. In Ivan’s case, this means something that will incorporate his wheelchair and something that won’t add any unnecessary sensory issues (in other words, no hats, no masks, no tight or itchy fabrics and definitely no makeup). Ivan also likes to get lots of compliments, so the costume has to be an attention-grabber. Yes, I have my work cut out for me!
This year we’re going with a Jellyfish Wheelchair Costume! Ivan loves to have things hanging around him that he can reach out and touch (like in a little room or sensory activity center) plus the lights will look really cool at night when we’re trick-or-treating. Ivan may not have light perception, but the neighborhood kids do and Ivan enjoys getting the kids excited with his costumes!
Do you want to create a jellyfish costume too? Here’s how…
What You’ll Need
- Clear bubble umbrella
- LED string lights
- Bubble wrap
- Tube ribbon
- Other types of textured ribbons
- Clear packing tape
- Tentacle skirt (just for fun)
Making Your Jellyfish Costume
- Begin by attaching the battery pack for your LED lights to the stretcher of your umbrella (need help with identifying the parts of your umbrella? Find out here). I used two LED string lights (10 feet each) and found that one rubber band easily attached the battery pack to the stretcher.
- Criss cross the light strings through the ribs under the canopy of the umbrella. You may want to use twisty ties, thread or small amounts of clear tape to keep the lights in place.
- Next, cut out small panels of bubble wrap and tape to the inside of the umbrella until you’ve covered the entire surface (do make sure you can still access the battery packs so you can turn the lights off and on). This gives the umbrella a bit more texture and makes it look more like a jellyfish body than an umbrella.
- Now the inside of your jellyfish is good to go! At this point you may want to attach the umbrella to your wheelchair or stroller. How to do that will depend on the type of wheelchair you have, but for us it was pretty easy to just tie the shaft of the umbrella to the handlebars of Ivan’s stroller.
- With the umbrella upright, it’s time to add the tentacles! This is the fun part and where you can get really creative. Look for ribbons (or other hanging items) with different colors or textures to make your tentacles. I think tube ribbons are a must because they do kind of look like jellyfish tentacles. We also added strips of bubble wrap, beaded ribbons and pom pom ribbons to our jellyfish.
- And that’s it! Ivan himself does not like to wear a costume, so my plan was that he would just sit under the jellyfish canopy, but on a recent trip to Target I found a cute tentacle skirt that Ivan actually really loved, so we’ve added that to our costume too!
Ivan was ecstatic when he first sat in his jellyfish costume. All the hanging ribbons were right within reach and there was so much to touch! What kind of special considerations do you have to make when picking out a Halloween costume for your child? We’d love to hear about your costume plans in the comments!