Okay, so this costume has been on our collective Halloween bucket lists since, like, 4th grade. We don’t just love Penny Marshall’s 1992 flick about girls playing baseball for all the great quotes — it’s the incredible 1940’s costuming, hair, and makeup that put this film on our all-star style list as well. Ever since we were kids we’ve wanted to be real Rockford Peaches and this year our sandlot dreams are coming true. Our baseball dresses aren’t exactly the same as the ones in the movie, but we’re proud to say they’re pretty darn close. We wanted to make a DIY that was ambitious (yes, it involves some sewing) but still totally do-able. While we know there’s no crying in baseball, there are definitely tears involved with sewing projects that are way out of our league. Happily, we found a few shortcuts that make this DIY a game you can actually finish:
The first secret to our uniform is that the “dress” is actually two pieces: a store bought top and a homemade circle skirt. Finding something that would look right for the top was the biggest challenge, and I totally lucked out when I came across these tan nurses’ scrub tops for $12 a piece. I then bought two $1 pieces of red felt to make the numbers. First, I downloaded this free Athletic font from dafont.com and printed out two large numbers from our office printer. I cut the number shapes out of the paper and then traced around the paper cutouts on the felt. Once I had cut my felt numbers, I was able to pin them to the back of the shirts and (carefully) use the sewing machine to run a straight stitch around the edge of the numbers.
Next, I needed to find fabric that matched the tops to create the skirts. It took two trips to two different fabric stores before I found an acceptable match, but once I did I was ready to set up the sewing machine. I found a handy tutorial on how to make a circle skirt here on A Pair and A Spare. We decided to make our skirts a relatively modest 14.5″ long, to stay true to the movie. I used a 1.5″ wide elastic band for the waist of the skirts to help create a flattering waistline. With help from our amazing intern Morgan, I was able to knock out both skirts in two afternoons.
Now, for the patches! I came across an incredible Etsy shop called Little Divas Creations that sells both the Peaches patches and the “R” caps. I was able to purchase both for around $30 a set. I hand-stitched the Peaches patches onto the nurses’ scrub tops. Next I found these Louisville Slugger socks-and-belt sets for about $5 a piece from Epic Sports — score. Oh, and I couldn’t forget the shorts! I picked up two pairs of classic Soffe shorts in red (about $8 each) for the girls to wear underneath their skirts. Chanel and Camille paired their uniforms with old Converse sneakers for a real 1940s look. My dear friends Todd and Christie loaned us the wooden baseball bat and leather glove for period-authentic props. Camille and Chanel sported chewing gum, red lipstick, and soft curls to complete the look.
Turns out there’s no crying in DIYing, after all. Play ball, ladies!
photographed by jessica attie