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Book Week & Costume Tips

Children's Book Week

Children’s Book Week® is upon us! It’s that magical time of year when we come together to honour and revel in the wonders that literature, books, characters, and stories bring to the lives of our precious children.

From August 19 to 25, a delightful journey awaits as we embark on this year’s book week theme ‘Read, Grow, Inspire’. This theme opens up a world of imagination and ingenuity, inviting us to infuse our school’s book week parade with boundless inspiration and creativity.

But first, before we get carried away in a whirlwind of costumes, we like to make time for discovering the shortlist to learn about some of the enthralling new stories and incredible illustrations that complement them.

The 2023 shortlist offers a trove of literacy treasures across the categories. Among our top picks are two gems nestled in the early childhood class. First, ‘Market Day by Carrie Gallasch, is a heartwarming tale that follows a young girl’s journey through a bustling market, weaving themes of community, generosity, music’s enchanting power, kindness, and appreciation. Equally entertaining is ‘Snap! by Anna Walker Lawrence, a whimsical and laughter-filled escapade capturing a frog’s adventure through the jungle. Both stories, vibrant in their illustrations and engaging in their narratives, offer the promise of memorable storytime moments.

Now, for those of us who may not possess the homemaking prowess of Martha Stewart or the designer finesse of Coco Chanel, fear not! We’ve compiled some ideas to inspire your costume creativity. The best place to begin is often right at home – explore your wardrobe, rummage through the dress-up box, or unearth treasures from your craft supplies. As you level up on your quest, consider whether you’ll start with the book or the attire, and take cues from your child’s interest and comfort.

Once the ideas spark, here are 3 ideas for sourcing book week costumes while treading lightly on the planet.

Brisbane South Toy Library Costumes

Brisbane South Toy Library Costumes

1. Brisbane South Toy Library

Did you know you can borrow costumes for book week from a toy library? Even some local council libraries offer a small selection of costumes to borrow. We stopped by Brisbane South Toy Library earlier this year and encountered their amazing collection of toys, said to now be in excess of 1300 which so happens to include a rack abundant with costumes. Everything from Jurassic World to Buzz Lightyear to classic light pirates, medieval soldiers, mermaids and Cinderella. Check it out for yourself, this catalogue is sure to spark your imagination! The best part is you can join for as little as $50 which gives you six months of borrowing from the full range of toys, games, puzzles, musical instruments and costumes.

Find your nearest toy library here.

2. Local Op Shops

Why not combine the family’s sense of adventure with the quest for book week costumes. These hidden gems are a haven for both bargain hunters and seekers of pre-loved treasures. Depending on where you are, you’ll often stumble upon designer threads that whisper stories of their own. Lifeline, Salvos, Vinnes – these familiar charity stores promise a curious journey through racks and shelves, yielding finds that will level up to book week happy snap standards. A recent visit to Lifeline locked in our belief in this approach; they had a dedicated costume corner, including an abundance of superhero dress-ups that transformed our search into a matching pair of Iron Man ensembles, ensuring we kept siblings in ally status. These were a steal at just $4 each, so don’t hesitate to hit the op shops for a great find.

Facebook Marketplace

3. Facebook Marketplace

Always a great go-to for near new or excellent condition items is Facebook Marketplace! So many amazing finds for a fraction of the cost with prices from $5 up. At a quick glance, we came across Minecraft Creeper, Indian, Gryffindor Girl, Fantastic Mr Fox, Pirates, Unicorn, Dr Seuss, and all the usual superheroes. Don’t delay, login in with your child this weekend and see what you can find.

Book week is a delightful opportunity to inspire imagination and a lifelong love of storytelling. May these ideas lead you to wonderous discoveries without the frenzy of last-minute shopping or late-night glue-gun battles! In true SPARK POP fashion, may your Children’s Book Week celebrations be filled with joy and connection. Happy reading.

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