Parents who struggle coming up with a cute idea for their baby’s Halloween costume might get a little bit intimidated by Jessica Chavkin.
The Manhattan mom of 4-month-old Noah is dressing her infant son in a different costume for every day of October. She posts the pictures, taken with her iPhone, on Instagram, where her following has grown by the thousands since her story went viral this week.
Chavkin, a life-long Halloween lover, says she usually starts thinking about costume ideas for herself and her husband Peter as soon as summer ends. With the arrival of Noah came the joy of realizing she gets to dress him up, too.
“But there were so many baby costumes to pick from and I couldn’t decide. So I thought, ‘Why don’t we count down to Halloween?’” she says.
Chavkin mapped out costume ideas for the whole month and creates them herself, using a mix of items Noah already has, along with accessories she makes and occasional props she buys.
For example, in the "Les Miserables"-inspired Jean Valjean costume on Day 2, she put Noah in striped pajamas he already owned and used fabric scraps to create the French flag. She did, however, buy the bread from a nearby French bakery. “I ate it for lunch,” Chavkin says.
For the Tarzan costume on Day 15, the monkey Noah holds was a gift from his grandma while the loin cloth was made of scraps from a blanket. “Being a fabric hoarder has paid off,” she jokes.
The darling “Where’s Waldo” costume had Noah in his own striped pajama top and jeans. The cane was made from a wire clothes hanger wrapped with brown fabric. Chavkin bought the glasses, hat and poster. She says all purchasing, as well as photo editing, is done on her phone during nursing sessions.
A former corporate attorney who is starting an online baby clothing company, Teeny Tiny Couture, Chavkin has used some of her future inventory for the project, too, such as Noah's tuxedo onesie that was part of the Monopoly Man costume.
So far, Noah has happily obliged with all the costumes and if he ever fusses about a prop, Chavkin will turn to back-up ideas. “I’ve been dressing up since the day he was born,” she says. “We have a song and routine when we change clothes, so he thinks it’s a game and smiles at me.”
And how is Chavkin going to top this next Halloween, when Noah is 1? Not to worry, she says. “There are several costumes that I wanted to do but he has to be standing. So I have plenty of ideas for next year.”