Franny announced back in July or August that she wanted an alligator costume for Halloween. I wasn't sure how we were going to pull that off, but when Atticus decided that sounded like a good idea to him as well, we decided to make it work.
They ended up going as Mr. and Mrs. Green, the characters from this wonderful little series by Keith Baker. They are adorable and smart stories about this little alligator couple who are always so excited about life and so nice and supportive of each other. Mr. Green always wears a necktie and Mrs. Green always wears a pearl necklace and watch.
This was the first year we went trick-or-treating with friends, and it was soooo much fun. The kids getting to be the perfect age to enjoy trick-or-treating. We did have to restrain Franny, who was totally working the "scoring tons of candy" strategies (i.e. taking an extra handful while the neighbor was talking to the other kids).
I made these costumes, and I do not sew at all or own a sewing machine, so they weren't anything fancy but they were fun. I wanted to post them because when I googled "homemade alligator costume" I couldn't really find anything close to what I was looking for (which was sort of surprising, considering it's the Internet and all).
The main part of the costume is exactly how you would make a ghost costume from a sheet: just a hole for their heads. I used some thick fabric that was on sale and didn't seem like it would need hemmed. The tail is stuffed with newspaper and has two straps, so it ties on like a belt. Then I cut a slit in the back of the costume to pull the tail through.
For the heads, I cut a piece of a cereal box and duct-taped it to a baseball cap (fancy, huh?), then covered it with the fabric. I used a needle and thread to tack it to the inside of the hat (glue probably would have worked too). The teeth and the eyes are felt. I put straps on the hats that tied under the kids' chins so they would stay on.
I realized once we were trick-or-treating that these costumes break every Halloween costume rule in the book. They were walking choking hazards, long enough that the kids might have tripped, probably obstructed their vision, and were dark at night (not covered in that reflective tape they used to pass out to us in elementary school). Alas, we all made it home in one piece.