10 Inspired Dress Up Ideas for World Book Day

We’ve taken the hard work out of World Book Day with a guide to ten failsafe characters and outfits that children of all ages will love, from dreamy dragons and cute bunnies to perfect princesses. Happy World Book Day!

World Book Day has become increasingly popular in recent years with kids and parents eager to celebrate their love of books.

These days there are many World Book Day favourites out there from Alice in Wonderland to Matilda and The Very Hungry Caterpillar, but we have rounded-up some quick and easy wins using Meri Meri fancy dress.

We’ve also included a few of the best books that our staff are currently reading with their children. We hope you find it inspiring!

1. Puppy Dog

Many children adore puppies and dogs, and as such there are a wealth of stories featuring these furry friends. Our favourites currently include classics such as Hairy Maclary from Donaldson’s Dairy by Lynley Dodd and Where’s Spot by Eric Hall, and more recent novels like Emma Chichester Clark’s Love Is My Favourite Thing make us feel warm and fuzzy. Our adorable puppy outfit, featuring a hat and waistcoat made from sherpa fleece material, is perfect for little dog-lovers and is one that everyone will smile at!


2. Bunny

A bunny costume is an easy, last-minute outfit choice that pays homage to many classic children’s books and will delight younger kids. Beatrix Potter’s The Tale of Peter Rabbit is a story that many young children adore, and Margaret Wise Brown’s The Runaway Bunny is a loving tale centred around familial ties. Our charming bunny outfit, which includes plush bunny ears and tail, will become a childhood favourite that can be used over and over again, for springtime celebrations and more!


3. Wizard

Whilst the iconic world of the Harry Potter series has secured wizards as one of the most favoured World Book Day outfit choices, there’s a plethora of other wizard-themed books for children of all ages. Some of our favourites? The Wizard of Once by Cressida Cowell and Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones. Our luxurious velvet wizard cape and plush hat combo, both adorned with shimmering stars, will conjure magic and enchant your little ones for years to come.

'I'm currently enjoying reading The Last Bear by Hannah Gold with William, nearly seven. It’s an evocative story about a girl, a polar bear, friendship and belonging, set on a desolate Arctic island. He loves it and so do I!'

Maggie Westhead, Senior Content Editor


4. Pirate

Ahoy there! Pirates have been inspiring writers for as long as stories have been published, and younger kids continue to fall for their dark charm. These days, there are numerous books featuring pirates from Julia Donaldson’s The Highway Rat to Molly Rogers, Pirate Girl by Cornelia Funke and Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic novel Treasure Island. We love this round-up of pirate-themed books. Luckily, a pirate outfit is fairly easy to fashion from things you may have around the house but our lavish take on the pirate outfit will last way beyond World Book Day. A dressing-up box favourite.


5. Flamingo

Dressing up as this exotic pink plumed bird will ensure your child stands out at the school gates. Flora and the Flamingo by Molly Idle and Fabulous Frankie by Simon James Green are fun books based on these quirky birds. Our elegant flamingo outfit features a striking headpiece crafted from velvet, cotton, and glitter and wings made from pink tulle and ruffles, plus glittery wristbands. Sure to become an heirloom piece.

‘I’m currently enjoying Charlie and the Chocolate Factory with my two-year old son Theo. I have a fond memory of being read Roald Dahl as a child, so we have been working through the books. I think so far Theo is enjoying it the most because it’s mentioning chocolate a lot!’

George Woodley, Web Manager


6. Dinosaurs

Most children go through a phase of being fascinated by these unique reptiles, extinct for the past 65.5 million years. Whether they are a Tyrannosaurus, Triceratops or Pterodactyl fan, there’s an array of fun books and films about dinosaurs to keep them entertained. This guide to dinosaur books by Penguin, for example, is a roarsome read. For younger children, we currently dig Tiny T. Rex and the Impossible Hug by Jonathan Stutzman and Ten Minutes to Bed Little Dinosaur by Rhiannon Fielding (good for the night time routine). Our shiny red dinosaur outfit with spikes on the back is perfect for little palaeontologists this World Book Day!


7. Dragons

Dragons are fearsome, wonderful creatures of myth that date back centuries and have inspired many classic novels – for example, The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien is a widely cherished tale for parents and children alike, that features the mighty dragon Smaug which hoards gold under a mountain. Some of our current dragon-tale favourites at Meri Meri include The Boy Who Grew Dragons by Andy Shepherd and Eragon by Christopher Paolini, and lest we forget friendly Zog, the modern classic by Julia Donaldson. Our striking emerald-green dragon outfit is sure to turn heads at the school gates.


8. Princess

A classic World Book Day choice, princesses feature in many beloved fairy tales and children’s novels. The original Grimm’s Fairy Tales, which includes household classics such as Snow White, Cinderella and Rapunzel, is a renowned source of World Book Day characters. The figure of the princess has also appeared in more recent books, such as Julia Donaldson’s The Princess and the Wizard, and Jane Yolen’s Not All Princesses Dress in Pink. Transform into a beautiful royal with our lovely tulle princess costume!


9. Lions

From Rachel Bright’s The Lion Inside to Ed Vere’s How to be a Lion and C.S. Lewis’ treasured The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, the lion is literary classic. And it’s a cuddly choice for World Book Day, sure to raise smiles especially on younger kids. Our charming cape costume features a swishy tail and sewn-in paws, plus a striking headdress for roaring good fun!


10. Superheroes

Pow! Zap! Boom! There’s nothing like a superhero outfit to get your kids in the mood for fun. Whether they are a Superwoman, Batman or Captain Underpants kind of kid, our suits-all metallic blue and red cape with mask and cuffs will thrill them. Happily, there are plenty of superhero books and graphic novels that make it a legitimate choice for World Book Day. We love this round-up of modern superhero books for younger children.

‘We are working our way through a bundle of Elmer the Elephant books by David McKee. One of Mollie's favourites is Elmer and the Rainbow, which is where a Rainbow has lost its colours and Elmer decides to give it his colours with the help of all his animal friends.

I love that Elmer and his friends show kindness. The moral of the story is that sometimes you can give to others without losing anything yourself – what a wonderful message!’

Victoria Newman, Executive Assistant


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