80 Best Book Character Costumes

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Best Book Character Costumes

Dress up as your favorite book character for Halloween and have a Happy Bookish Halloween (or World Book Day)! How about one of these book character costume ideas from the favorite children’s picture books, chapter books, middle grade books, and some YA books?

Bring a favorite book character to life with easy book character costumes that you buy — or make. I even have book character costume ideas for adults and for teachers!

What are some of the best book character costume choices?

You could go with a classic book character like Alice in Wonderland, Madeline, or Max of Where the Wild Things Are.

Or, you could select more contemporary favorite book character costumes like Elephant and Piggie, Ada Twist, or Luna Lovegood!

Whatever costume idea you pick, it’s a celebration of reading and books, right?

And that’s something to celebrate!

Whether for Book Week, World Book Day, Read Across America Day, or Halloween, you’ll find inspirational children’s book character costume ideas on this list.

book character costumes for children

I’ve linked to many costumes you can buy (because if you’re like me, you want something easy) and some costumes that you can make yourself for those of you who are better than me with DIY projects or shopping at thrift stores.

In very few cases, if I couldn’t find a homemade costume or store option, I’ve linked to the book. Look through the illustrations and descriptions to make your own costume with clothes you have around the house or that you buy.

Hopefully, this list will inspire you to find a fun book costume that works for you! And if you need a last-minute easy book character costume, this list will help!

book character costumes

Also, if you’re looking for group costume ideas, use a book series with many characters and go as the characters from that book.

These costumes are characters from board books, picture books, and chapter books; there are so many costume ideas here. I think you’ll find one that you can’t resist.

Book Character Costumes: A to E

Ready for the A to E book character costume list?

Start with favorite characters that begin with the letter A like Ada Twist, Alice in Wonderland, and Amelia Bedelia, then continue on to Captain Underpants, Clifford, the Cat in the Hat, and Dog Man…

book character costumes for kids

Ada Twist polk a dot dress and scientist costume

Alice in Wonderland & Characters: Cheshire Cat, Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum, The Mad Hatter girl child style 1 or child style 2, boy child size, Queen of Hearts (female teen), White Rabbit

Amelia Bedelia DIY directions

Angelina Ballerina

American Girl Doll Characters


Bad Kitty 

Book Fairy DIY

Boss Baby

Captain Underpants (this full body book character costume is fantastic!)

Cat in the Hat (see more Dr. Seuss below)

Charlie Brown 

Clark the Shark

Clifford the Big Red Dog (toddler-size unisex) — talk about adorable!!

Comic Book Character

Cow (Click Clack Moo, Cows that Type) baby, child, adult

Crayon (The Day the Crayons Quit) / DIY Crayon Costume

Curious George & the Man in the Yellow Hat

Diary of an 8-Bit Warrior

Diary of a 6th Grade Ninja

Diary of a Wimpy Kid DIY

Dog Man (DIY)

Dragon (Dragons Love Tacos, Puff the Magic Dragon, How to Train Your Dragon, Eragon)

Dr. Seuss Characters: Horton Hears A Who, The Lorax, Thing 1 and Thing 2, The Cat in the Hat child / Cat in the Hat adult, Sam I Am accessories

Elephant and Piggie (I love this cute onesie, don’t you?)


Enola Holmes

Book Character Costumes: F to R

Think of all the characters in fairy tale stories…There are so many good heores and villains. But, anyone from Harry Potter is also a great costume choice. Or what about spiderman Miles Morales?

book character costumes for kids and adults
photo credit: Mikhail Nilov

Since kids love to dress up as their favorite book characters from the most popular book series of all time, Harry Potter, there are lots of fun costume options for bookworms who love this beloved series. See all the ideas below.


Fairy Tales: 

Sleeping Beauty / Prince Philip

Beauty and the Beast


Goldilocks & the Three Bears

Little Red Riding Hood


Snow White

Fancy Nancy (add sunglasses, a feather boa to the dress)

Fly Guy



Harold and the Purple Crayon

Harriet the Spy

luna lovegood's glasses

Harry Potter: Hermione, Ron, Luna Lovegood , Newt Scamander, Death Eater *adult size, Dobby *mask, Dolores Umbridge (this pink suit outfit is killer — I might wear this costume next Halloween!), Voldemort adult, Dumbledore

Hello Kitty

The Hobbit / Lord of the Rings




Arwen (don’t forget the elf ears, too!)

book character costumes ASTRID

How to Train Your Dragon Toothless, Hiccup, Astrid

Hunger Games


Effie Trinket

Junie B. Jones

Knight toddlerchild (King Arthur, The Knight and the Dragon, St. George & the Dragon)

bumblebee boy book character costume

Ladybug Girl & Bumblebee Boy

Legends of Zita (Zita)

Little Critter

Little House on the Prairie / pioneer girl


Magic Tree House Jack and Annie

book character costumes MAX Where the Wild Things Are

Max (Where the Wild Things Are)
*This might be my favorite book character costume on the list. How cute is this?


Miles Morales SpiderMan
(Miles is both a comic book character and a prose book character!)

Miss Nelson (Is Missing)

book character costumes Miss Frizzle

Miss Frizzle from The Magic School Bus

narhwal costume


Nursery Rhymes: Mother Goose, Little Bo Peep, Humpty Dumpty


The One and Only Ivan

Paddington DIY

Percy Jackson: Camp Half-Blood t-shirt   Gladiator  Knight  Athena

book character costumes Pete the Cat

Pete the Cat

Peter Pan, Captain Hook, Tinker Bell, Peter’s Escaped Shadow

Pigeon mask, Pigeon costume mask


Pippi Longstocking

Prince Caspian

book character costumes

Raggedy Ann


Rainbow Fairies

Redwall: Martin the Warrior

Roald Dahl books: Fantastic Mr. Fox, Matilda, The Trenchbull (a favorite book character villain,) Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’s Willy Wonka, Augustus Gloop, Violet Beauregarde.

Best Book Character Costumes: S to Z

The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Winnie the Pooh are two favorite book character costume ideas for babies and toddlers — talk about cute!

book character costumes

Shakespeare adult costume

Sherlock Holmes

Skippyjon Jones

Splat the Cat

Strange Case of the Origami Yoda

Strega Nona

Tacky the Penguin

Three Musketeers

The Stinky Cheese Man

book character costumes The very Hungry Caterpillar

The Very Hungry Caterpillar child, baby

Uglies: Tally

Warriors (CATS!) 

Where’s Waldo adultkid

book character costumes -- The Wild Robot

The Wild Robot

Winnie The Pooh: Piglet, Eeyore, Tigger, Roo Costume

Witch*see all the books about witches here

Wizard of Oz: Dorothy, Lion, Tin Man, Scarecrow, Wicked Witch, Glinda the Good, Munchkin

Vampire Academy

Viola Swamp mask, tights, witch dress

Zoey and Sassafras

What other book character costume ideas do you have?

Dress up as your favorite book character for Halloween and have a Happy Bookish Halloween (or World Book Day)! How about one of these book character costume ideas from the favorite children's picture and chapter books?

Bring a favorite book character to life with easy book character costumes that you buy -- or make. I even have book character costume ideas for adults and for teachers!

originally published in 2009, updated each year


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  1. These costumes are so, so great! I only wish I had young children (or even grandchildren) I could make some fun costumes for! I’ll have to save this page for when the grandkids start to arrive.