From my Hart: Creating the Costumes

The votes are in! There was a resounding amount of votes for….. Popeye and Olive Oyl! I am so excited because this was my favorite costume pair and now, I am going to share with you how I made the outfits for us!



My boyfriend’s suggestion was to just wear jeans, while my initial idea was blue scrubs, which are super cheap at Walmart. After telling this to my boyfriend, he threw a big- hell no- in my direction, stating he didn’t wanna be Popeye the nurse, and he would probably freeze.

He found bright blue work pants from Amazon, which was the perfect solution! For around [$10], and extra warmth, I was so excited for him.


I grabbed a black t-shirt, [$2.97] from Walmart, and some gold felt, at 23 cents a square! I cut the felt into three yellow circles to act as buttons. With the help of some fabric glue, I secured the buttons down the front of the shirt.

To create the red design around the collar, I initially was going to use a bandana. However, I didn’t like the white designs; they just didn’t match the cartoon images of Popeye. So, I grabbed some red felt [four squares at .23 cents each], and cut it to create a swoop around the neck and back, and glued them to the collar.

Next, I used black puffy paint [.97 cents], and added the single black line, that goes around the entire red bit. I added some bright blue ribbon [$1.97] around each cuff of the t-shirt sleeves to complete the top.


For his props, my boyfriend purchased a sailors hat and corn cob pipe set from Amazon [$], and I added an anchor to his forearm with some liquid eyeliner.

IMG_5409My boyfriend did not want to carry around a can of spinach all night, and I did not blame him! While I was studying Popeye’s outfit, I found a koozie that was made to look like spinach! My boyfriend and I fell in love and I decided to recreate it.

I have a bunch of Koozies, so I painted one green and I used white paint to create the leaves and a green sharpie for the word spinach. This is not exactly how Popeye’s can looks in the cartoon, but it definitely helped bring this costume to another level, and is super functional!

Olive Oyl

If I am being completely honest, I had no idea her name was not Olive Oil, but thanks to my research, it is in fact Oyl. I already have dark brown hair, and red lip stick, so all that was left for me was to make her skirt and top!


IMG_5129As you may have guessed, I grabbed a red long sleeve shirt from… Walmart, and some white ribbon [$1.97]. I used the fabric glue [$5.96] to glue the ribbon around the cuffs of each sleeve, about 2 inches up from the end. I did two layers of white ribbon because the glue bled through.

Next, I took white felt and cut the scalloped design out, and glued it onto the shirt around the neck. I did this in three sections.


Olive Oyl’s skirt in the cartoon is longer, it almost comes down to her ankles. I was able to find one at Goodwill for [$4]. I swapped out the fabric glue, for sewing. I just added a few “x’s” along the middle of the ribbon to hold it to the dress., and added the same gold ribbon from Popeye’s Belt, [$1.97] to the bottom of the skirt, about 2 inches from the hem.


Finished Product & Costs:

To create this costume, and the props, it took about two hours, not including dry times. Altogether, I was able to create this costume for both of us for around [$30]!


I would swap out the fabric glue for iron-on adhesive. Aside from the obvious benefits, less messy and no drying time, iron-on adhesive also would (I hope) eliminate the seepage I encountered. The glue seeped into the ribbon and you could see the glue marks.

One more thing I would change is for Olive Oyl’s shirt: I would align the scalloped collar so that the seems line up at the shoulders instead of in the middle of the front and back. I was able to cover the seam in the front with my hair… once I noticed it!

Happy Halloween!

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