What are some of the must-haves for a pretend clothes stash? Here are a few of my preschoolers favorite imagination stimulating items. What are your kids favorite pretend play items? I’d love to add to our collection!
These are so easy to create and make terrific gifts! Basically, take a rectangle of fabric, finish off its edges, then gather the top and sew a band around the top. Viola! You have a cape! I’ve even made them with no-sew stripping. The kids have used these capes as well, capes, but also as aprons, a puppet stage to hide behind and covers to the entrance of their “caves”.
Having something silly on their head is just addictive for them! We have gone through phases with cowboy hats, whimsically decorated hats, ball caps, fussy wigs, princess crowns, even putting all the ribbons and bows we own in their hair at one time (we got several comments grocery shopping that day). My youngest is the one most enthralled with hats right now, she’s even put pants on her head as a makeshift hat. I think she loves how the pant legs bobble on her back. One of the favorites is an easy to make “braid hat”. This was made before I began blogging, but you can easily replicate it with yarn. Make braids or stringy hair and glue it to a hat. Lots of fun!
We have several different types of vests in our collection, a few handed down from ring-bearers of weddings past, a few itchy ones, but by far the kids favorite vests are a pair of old swimming lifejackets. They have been consistently favorite items for nearly two years of pretend play! They have worn them in the bathtub (filled and empty) pretending they are “at the lake”. They have used them in reenacting “westerns” and horse-back riding. Currently, the life-jackets are coveted as props for playing “Diego and Alyssa” animal rescuers.
If you have girls these are a staple! My girls will wear their flouncy dresses/skirts 24/7 if I let them!
We have a big box of old shoes (waiting to be handed down to the next Quirky Kid) it also includes a few bigger sizes that are hand-me-downs from their cousins and some old high heels, Daddy’s old boots, etc. The kids absolutely love playing with this big box. They wear the shoes, but have also used them to create a “shoe road” and used them as a stand and homes for their animals/dolls. We’ve even used them to create letters and of course to practice matching! Interesting shoes are so much fun!
Sheet or boxes
A sheet is great for pretend play. It can become a tent, a turban, a dress, a swimming pool, the dog kennel, my youngest especially enjoys using it to play hide-n-seek and hiding wherever, just under the sheet.