A Little Girl and Her Carriage

What do you do when the sweetest 6 year old you know wants to be Cinderella for Halloween? Well, you convert her wheelchair into a carriage of course! Complete with tiny white lights to illuminate her journey door to door, collecting her treats along the way.

Most people who know me, know that our youngest daughter Ruby was born with Spina Bifida. In short, that means she has wheels. She rolls these wheels to school every day. So, this year when she wanted to be a princess for Halloween, it seemed like a no-brainer. She would be transformed into Cinderella…

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And her wheels…a carriage.

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After a little bit of research on Pinterest, a trip to a local craft store and some inspiration from the talented ladies on the Studio Calico message boards, I was armed with the ideas I needed to make this Ruby’s best costume to date.
He dress was made using 6in rolls of tulle in varying blues, silver and whites, complete with tons of sparkle. Over a long sleeve dance leotard I ordered online. It’s cold in Chicago around Halloween and I wanted to give her an extra layer to prevent having to cover up her costume with a big heavy coat.

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The carriage consists of two hula hoops, a very sparkly piece of sheer fabric, and two different shades of orange tulle. I wanted the carriage to have a soft draped look and the fabric served to do just that. The only hula hoops I could find were hot pink and neon green. Those are definitely not princess colors, so I wrapped them with pre-wrap from Walgreens. What is pre-wrap? It’s a self adhering wrap about a step down from an ace wrap you use to wrap a sprained limb. I covered both the bright colors on the hula hoops and the purple on her very stylish wheelchair without the need for adhesive. I wasn’t very found of using anything that would be hard to remove from her chair later. It worked like a charm! I zip tied the hoops to her chair, weaved some tiny little battery operated white lights to the top, and laid the fabric over the top. The pre-wrap served a dual purpose as there was no need to adhere the fabric to the hoops, preserving it in one unaltered piece that I could use for a future dress or project. The texture kept the fabric in place. After a few strategically placed white safety pins, I was on to the wheels.
I really wanted to figure out how to incorporate the pumpkins, without actually using a a drawn or printed pumpkin. I wanted to keep with the softness of the look and didnt want it to look cartoonish. I agonized about this for a week and then it hit me. Tulle! It was perfect. I was using it for the dress and tulle pumpkins would tie it all together!
Using two different shades of orange, I was able to transform her wheels into pumpkins, without taking away from the look of the carriage. Can I just say, after this project I am a huge fan of tulle! I zip tied two zhu zhu pets (without the batteries) to the small wheels in front and her carriage was complete.

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She loved it! Everyone at school loved it, and she truly felt like a princess for the day. She led the Halloween parade at school, where of course I took a ton of photos.

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After school, we headed out with Daddy to trick or treat. As the sun went down and kids were going door to door in the dark, Ruby’s carriage lit her way.

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Overall, she had a wonderful day and I had even more fun making it for her. There were a few practical issues I hadn’t considered. Like the fact that she couldn’t operate her own breaks. Oops! But I will definitely keep those in mind for next year. So far she’s considering The Little Mermaid, or Bat Girl. I better start planning now, because transforming her wheelchair into the bat mobile could be complicated! Since Halloween was on a school night, we needed to break down the carriage aspect of her chair so she could go to school the next day. As I was breaking it down, I decided to take apart everything but the tulle pumpkins on the wheels. She went to school the next day telling everyone that at midnight her carriage had turned back into a pumpkin! It was adorable!
I hope you enjoyed reading my first blog post as much as I have enjoyed writing it. I’ll leave you with a few more random favorite photos of mine from Halloween. Ruby loves to pose for a picture!

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Thank you for stopping by!
Lara

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23 responses to “A Little Girl and Her Carriage

  1. Lara, I am an old elementary school friend of Jason’s and saw this on his Twitter feed. What a BRILLIANT Halloween costume for your sweet girl. You’re a wonderfully creative mom!

  2. That was the neatest thing I’ve seen in a long time. Ruby is lucky to have such a caring and talented father and you are lucky to have her beautiful smiles.

  3. Aww! She is absolutely beautiful! And that is absolutely the most awesome wheelchair/ princess carriage that the world has ever seen! You know, I bet you could market your ideas or share them with other parents who have little girls in wheelchairs. I’m even thinking along the lines of kids who go to Disney world with Make A Wish or similar- wouldn’t the princess carriage be great? Beyond that, I think you and Ruby are very lucky to have one another and it’s clear that you would do anything to help her make her dreams come true. You really brought a smile to my face today. Looking forward to seeing next year’s costume! The Little Mermaid and Bat Girl ideas both have a ton of potential πŸ™‚ and seriously, cutest pictures ever. Ruby is a great model and so cute! Love the photo where she has her gloved hands clasped.

    • Your kind words have made me teary. Thank you so much. Part of the reason I wrote this post was for other parents of kids in wheelchairs could do the same for their kids. Hopefully, it will get around and we will see lots of wheelchair carriages! Almost everything I see on Pinterest is for boys wheelchairs. I really had fun making it for her, but if you knew her you’d know that she definitely inspires the extra mile. Thank you again for your kind words. You definitely made me smile. πŸ™‚

  4. Awesome! I can imagine lots of kids wanting to ride in a carriage too for Halloween next year!

  5. she looks so very lovely…and i can tell how thoughtfully you created this for her. i know that your daughter will treasure this memory all her life. πŸ™‚

  6. well thats the most beautiful carriage i have ever seen with the most beautiful princess in it!! you are an inspiration lara truly. and it would be a wonderful thing if the world saw more beautiful girls in carriages like this πŸ™‚ what a blessing your daughter is to you to bring out the wonderful and a blessing you are to her. xx

  7. Wow! What an absolutely amazing costume! You are definitely a rockstar mom! Your little girl is just adorable and she must have been so excited for that costume!

  8. wow! this came out awesome! Love the lights, and the costume was beautiful. But of course, it helped that the little princess wearing it is beautiful! Great job!

  9. Excellent article. Keep posting such kind of info on your page.
    Im really impressed by it.
    Hi there, You have performed an incredible job.
    I’ll certainly digg it and in my opinion recommend
    to my friends. I am sure they’ll be benefited from this web site.

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