Hey guys! If you’ve been following me for any time at all, you know I like to go all out for All Saints’ Day. But just to prove that’s not required, today we’ll be making twenty simple saint costumes . . . out of t-shirts!

For many years, creating awesome costumes with my kids for our annual All Saints’ Day Pageant has been a whole family affair. We’ve had a homemade suit of armor for St. Joan of Arc, and arrows for St. Sebastian. We’ve had nuns, and princesses, and peasants, and viking kings. My all time favorites have been two takes on headless saints: Saint John the Baptist’s head on a platter, and St. Denis, carrying his own head.

I love coming up with costumes that can do double duty for Halloween and All Saints’ Day, sometimes as the saint, sometimes with a few tweaks to become something different. Check out the MANY saint costume posts on the blog for more ideas . . .

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I love making complicated All Saints’ Day costumes. I always like say that my motto is: Anything worth doing is worth overdoing. But I also like to say that you don’t have to overdo things to bring the Catholic faith into your home and family life. So today I’d like to show you how to create simple, fun, recognizable saint costumes for little kids out of t-shirts. All you have to do is find a familiar image of the saint from art or a photograph or a holy card. Keep in mind that saints, just like all of us, had varied lives. Feel free to represent your saint from whichever era of his life will be easiest. And don’t forget props! Saints have traditional attributes that are usually found in representations of them. Having a prop can really make the costume. So, look at your image, grab a few t-shirts in the right colors, make a few snips with scissors where necessary, use safety pins and rubber bands if needed, add a prop or two to represent the saints’ attributes, and you’re done! 

The shirts I used are mostly adult extra large t-shirt from a craft store, and that’s also where most of the props came from. You can also use shirts from the thrift store or old shirts from around the house. Just turn anything with graphics inside out. The costumes you’ll see here, buying new t-shirts and some props, and using some things we had around the house, cost an average of fifteen dollars each.

Let’s get to it! Here’s the video version:

And here are the details:

1. Saint Elizabeth of Hungary

  • White t-shirt tunic
  • White t-shirt veil
  • Red t-shirt over-dress
  • Metallic gold (or regular) duct tape circlet and belt
  • Optional accessories/attributes: bread, roses

Cuts & taping: on the red shirt, cut the sleeves off with a scalloped edge to make the over-dress. Tear a 2 foot piece of duct tape. Fold it in half lengthwise to create a thin doubled 2 foot piece for the circlet.

Assembly: put on white tunic, put on red over-dress, use a long strip of tape to belt the over-dress above the waist. Add veil. Wrap the doubled tape around the forehead and secure with a piece of tape in the back. Add accessories.

2. Saint Patrick

  • White t-shirt tunic
  • Green t-shirt cape
  • Optional accessories/attributes: green pipe cleaner shamrock, staff, toy snakes, green bishop’s mitre (can be made from cardstock, a craft foam sheet, or poster board)

Cuts: on the green shirt, make a trapezoid-shaped cut from the front (leaving the collar band intact) to make his cape

Assembly: put on white tunic, add green cape. Add accessories.

3. Saint Brigid

  • Green t-shirt tunic
  • White t-shirt toque (head covering)
  • Black t-shirt veil
  • Optional accessories/attributes: green pipe cleaner reed cross, staff

Assembly: put on green tunic, add white toque. The face should look out the head hole. Fold up the bottom of the white and gather most of it to the back, add the black veil on top. Fold the pipe cleaners into a St. Brigid Cross. Add accessories.

4. St. John the Baptist

  • Brown t-shirt tunic
  • Green t-shirt wrap
  • Optional accessories/attributes: head on a platter, honey, crickets, shell

Cuts: On the brown shirt, make jagged cuts on the bottom & sleeve edges. On the green shirt, cut 1 foot off of the bottom (shorter than the brown shirt.) Cut off left sleeve with a straight cut about 2 feet long. Cut off right sleeve and collar with a diagonal cut.

Assembly: put on brown tunic, add green wrap, add accessories

5. Saint Mary Magdalene

  • Off-white t-shirt tunic
  • Red t-shirt cape
  • Burgundy t-shirt veil
  • Optional accessories/attributes: jar, egg

Cuts: on the red shirt, make a trapezoid-shaped cut from the front (leaving the collar band intact) to make her cape

Assembly: put on off-white shirt, add red cape, add burgundy veil. Add accessories.

6. Saint Mother Teresa of Calcutta

  • 3 white t-shirts (tunic, wrap, & veil)
  • 1” wide blue painter’s tape 
  • Optional attributes/accessories: Rosary, crucifix, safety pins

CUTS & TAPING: On shirt 1 (tunic) add tape all around the bottom edge. On shirt 2 (wrap), cut off left sleeve with a straight cut about 2 feet long. Cut off right sleeve and collar with a diagonal cut. Cut about 1 foot off of the bottom. Add a stripe of tape to the newly cut edges. Shirt 3 is the veil. (Add tape to that one later.)

Note: cut lengths of tape into 4 very thin strips lengthwise and add two thin stripes with each thick stripe for a more realistic look, but a more challenging project.

Assembly: put on white tunic, add veil, add wrap, pinning if necessary to keep it on the shoulder. Add a stripe of tape to the veil around the forehead. Add accessories.

7. Saint Pope John Paul II

  • White t-shirt tunic
  • White t-shirt pellegrina, fascia, and zucchetto
  • Red t-shirt cape
  • Optional accessories/attributes: crucifix, rosary, red shoes

Cuts: On 1 white shirt, make a rounded cut, shortening it to about 1 foot long from the collar and cutting off the sleeves. Make a trapezoid-shaped cut from the front (leaving collar band intact) to make the small cape. Cut a 3 inch band from the bottom of the shirt and cut one edge to make a long strip for the fascia (sash belt). Not pictured in the video: Cut off one sleeve. Turn it inside out and gather the cut edge, use a small rubber band to secure it. Turn it right side out. This is your zucchetto (skullcap).

Assembly: put on white tunic, add fascia, wrapping it around the upper waist, feeding one long end through the waist loop and laying it down flat. Add pellegrina, add zucchetto, add red cape. Add accessories.

8. Saint Joan of Arc

  • Gray long sleeve t-shirt tunic
  • White t-shirt overlay
  • Red tape cross
  • Silver duct tape helmet, cuffs, and belt
  • Optional accessories/attributes: sword & shield

Cuts & taping: Cut straight down each side of the white t-shirt, cutting off the sleeve and going to the bottom. Leave the collar intact. Cut a scalloped edge across the bottom. Add a red tape cross or fleur di lis to the front and back center. Tear off a 2 foot piece of duct tape, fold it in half to create a 1 foot doubled piece.  

Assembly: put on gray shirt tunic, leaving it over the head as a covering. The face should look out the head hole. Place a piece of duct tape around the head on top of the shirt to keep it up. Use tape to secure the doubled piece of tape across the forehead as a visor. Use duct tape to make wrist guards (and keep the sleeves up). Gather the shirt at each side of the neck and secure with a 3 inch piece of tape on each side. Place the overlay over the tunic. Add tape belt, add accessories.

9. Saint George

  • Gray long sleeve t-shirt tunic
  • White t-shirt overshirt
  • Red tape
  • Silver tape
  • Optional accessories/attributes: sword & shield, dragon 

Cuts & taping: Cut straight down each side of the white t-shirt, cutting off sleeve and opening the sides to waist-length. Leave the bottom sides intact. Add a red tape cross to the front and back center. Tear off a 2 foot piece of duct tape, fold it in half to create a 1 foot doubled piece. This will be the visor of his armor.

Assembly: put on gray shirt tunic, leaving it over the head as a covering. The face should look out the head hole. Place a piece of duct tape around the head on top of the shirt to keep it up. Use tape to secure the doubled piece of tape across the forehead as a visor. Use tape to make wrist guards (and keep the sleeves up). Gather the shirt at each side of the neck and secure with a 3 inch piece of tape on each side. Place the overlay over the tunic. Add accessories.

10. Saint Joseph

  • Brown t-shirt tunic
  • Green t-shirt cape
  • White t-shirt head covering
  • Optional accessories/attributes: lilies (usually white), staff, hammer, carpenter’s square, dragon

Cuts & taping: On the green shirt, make a trapezoid-shaped cut from the front (leaving the collar band intact) to make his cape. Tape lilies to the end of the staff.

Assembly: put on brown tunic, add green cape, add white head covering, tie the sleeves in the back. Add accessories.

11. Mary (Our Lady of Grace)

  • White t-shirt tunic
  • Blue t-shirt cape & belt
  • White t-shirt veil

Cuts: On the blue shirt, cut a 2 inch strip from the bottom and cut one edge to create a belt. Make a trapezoid-shaped cut from the front (leaving the collar band intact) to make her cape.

Assembly: put on white shirt, add blue belt, add blue cape, add white veil

12. Saint Nicholas

  • Red t-shirt tunic
  • Off-white t-shirt pallium 
  • Black tape

Optional accessories: beard, fancy book, money bag, three gold balls, three little boys in a barrel (if you happen to have little triplets about . . . Rebecca Gorzynska).

CUTS: On off-white shirt, cut a thick curved capital Y shape pallium, keeping the top of the Y connected at the shoulders. Add black tape crosses to the pallium.

Assembly: put on white tunic, add pallium. Add accessories. 

13. Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini

  • 3 black t-shirts (capelet & bow, veil, tunic)
  • Optional accessories/attributes: cross, pocketwatch

CUTS: 

On shirt 1, cut the capelet by making a rounded cut 1 foot away from the collar and cutting off the sleeves. On the same shirt, cut a 3 inch band from the bottom and cut one edge to make a long strip. (Or use wide black ribbon for this.)

Assembly: put on black tunic, add black capelet, tie a large bow with the shirt-strip around the neck, add black veil. Add accessories.

14. Saint John Vianney

  • Black t-shirt tunic and collar
  • White t-shirt cassock
  • Green t-shirt stole 
  • Accessories: crucifix, rosary

Cuts: On the black shirt, under the collar band, cut two rectangular flaps about 4” long On the green shirt, make a continuous cut from the bottom edge of the left front (lined up with the left side of the collar), over the left shoulder, across the back yoke just at the edge of the collar, and down the right side. Make a second cut 3-4 inches away from the first to create a 3-4 inch wide stole.

Assembly: put on black tunic, put white shirt over, pull the two rectangular collar pieces out and lay them on top of the white cassock. Place stole over shoulders. Add accessories.

15. Saint Bernadette

  • Burgundy t-shirt tunic
  • Blue t-shirt apron
  • Yellow t-shirt wrap
  • Off white t-shirt veil
  • Optional attributes/accessories: Rosary, safety pins

Cuts: On the yellow shirt, cut off the sleeves & straight down each side to the bottom. Make a straight cut from top to bottom. 

Assembly: put on burgundy shirt, layer the wrap on top of the tunic crossing the ends in front. Put the apron over and tie or pin it in the back. Add veil, add accessories.

16. Saint Benedict

  • Black t-shirt tunic
  • Black t-shirt hooded cape
  • White t-shirt beard
  • Optional accessories: staff, fancy book, crow, safety pins if needed

Cuts: On 1 black shirt, cut down the center front for the hooded cape(not pictured). On white shirt, leaving neck band intact cut a long wavy beard. 

Assembly: put on black shirt, placing neck band over the top of the head as a strap, put on t-shirt beard, drape hooded cape on top of head and over shoulders. Secure cape to tunic at shoulders with safety pins if needed. Add accessories.

17. Saint Thérèse of Lisieux

  • Brown t-shirt tunic
  • White t-shirt toque (head covering)
  • Off-white t-shirt cape
  • Black veil
  • Optional accessories/attributes: roses, crucifix

Cuts: On the cream shirt, make a trapezoid-shaped cut from the front (leaving the collar band intact) to make her cape

Assembly: put on brown tunic, add white toque. The face should look out the head hole. Fold up the bottom of the white and gather most of it to the back, add the black veil on top. Add accessories.

18. Saint Padre Pio of Pietrelcina

  • Brown t-shirt tunic
  • Brown t-shirt cowl
  • Rope belt
  • Optional accessories/attributes: 4 bandaids, one for each side of his hands, or black fingerless gloves, a twin (for bilocating Padre Pio)

Cuts: On 1 brown shirt, make a rounded cut, shortening it to 1 foot long from the collar and cutting off the sleeves to make his cowl. Cut a 6-8 foot length of rope. Tie three large knots 6 inches apart on one end.

Assembly: put on brown tunic, add cowl. Leaving the knotted end long, wrap the rope twice around the waist and tie. Add accessories.

19. Saint Francis of Assisi

  • Brown t-shirt tunic
  • Brown t-shirt cowl
  • Rope belt
  • Optional accessories/attributes: bird, tonsure

Cut: on 1 brown shirt, make a rounded cut, shortening it to about 1 foot long from the collar and cutting off the sleeves to make his cowl. Cut a 6-8 foot length of rope. Tie three large knots 6 inches apart on one end.

Assembly: put on brown tunic, add cowl. Leaving the knotted end long, wrap the rope twice around the waist and tie. Add accessories and, for maximum commitment . . . a haircut.

20. Saint Lucy

  • White t-shirt tunic
  • Red t-shirt cape & belt
  • Optional attributes/accessories: dish of eyes (table tennis balls + paint pens), palm (leftover from Palm Sunday), wreath of branches + candles

Cuts: On red shirt, cut 2 inch strip from the bottom & cut one edge to create a belt. Make a trapezoid-shaped cut from the front (leaving collar band intact) to make her cape

Assembly: put on white shirt, add red belt, add red cape, add accessories

That’s it!

I hope you’re inspired to try one of these costumes or come up with one of your own.

Stay tuned to the end of the YouTube video for this month’s 25% off book recommendations!

How Saints Die: 100 Stories of Hope

Saints: Becoming an Image of Christ Every Day of the Year

Catholic Saints for Children

Get 25% off these three books at Ignatius.com through November 2021 with the code CAY1121

📚 by @Ignatius_Press

🎥 by Elizabeth Mirzaei

CAY products featured in the video:

RIP Banner

Eternal Rest Candle

2022 Thirteen-Month Liturgical Year Wall Calendar

2022 DIY Patron Saints Poster

You can find out more about liturgical living in the home and throwing an All Saint’s Day pageant in the Catholic All Year Compendium

And find prayers and scripture readings for All Hallows’ Eve, All Saints’ Day, and All Souls Day in the Catholic All Year Prayer Companion

Get printable liturgical living resources for November with a Catholic All Year Membership

Get the Catholic All November prayer booklets here

Now Available! Limited Edition Advent Resources