22 Thoughts Every Parent Has About World Book Day


Three words that strike fear into every parent’s heart….. WORLD BOOK DAY.

Let me begin by saying that anything that promotes books and reading is obviously brilliant. I’m all for bigging up books especially when we’re raising a generation of screen fans. But I can’t be the only one who is totally thrown into a panic by this annual event. Christmas Jumper Day suddenly seems so easy when you’re faced with the prospect of creating a book character costume out of thin air. Here’s what’s been running though my head this week…

  1. Oh God, when is World Book Day? Is it soon?
  2. Right. Costume. What does my child have in their dressing up box already?
  3. Hmm only some princess dresses and a slightly-too-small Halloween costume.
  4. I know, I’ll ask my child what she wants to go as.
  5. “No, you can’t go as Spider-Man. Spider-Man isn’t a book character.”
  6. “No, you can’t go as Elsa, either.”
  7. “Or Tinkerbell.”
  8. “No I know you have a Tinkerbell book, but… oh well, it’s not the right kind of book.”
  9. I wonder what the other parents at school are doing….
  10. Oh crap. Joshua’s mum is making his costume. Should I be making a costume?
  11. It’s official. I’m a terrible lazy mum, for wanting to just buy a costume or fashion something together at home, aren’t I?
  12. My child is going to be mocked at school for wearing an awful costume, isn’t she?
  13. OK, let’s sort something out. I’m going to go to the big supermarket to see what they have.
  14. Hmm, so I could send her to school as slutty Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz.
  15. What am I saying, that’s a FILM. Why is it so hard to think of actual books?
  16. Alice In Wonderland! That’s a book. Definitely a book. Lewis Carroll wrote it, right? Yes, I feel like a literary whizz.
  17. Damn, they don’t have an Alice dress in her size.
  18. I’ll order one online. WHY are they all sold out online. WHY did I leave this so late to organise?
  19. Maybe I’ll make a costume. I should just rise to the challenge and get creative.
  20. She could go as Mr Bump. Except she doesn’t have blue trousers, blue t-shirt and a blue hat. Making a costume is going to be too tricky.
  21. Ooh, she has a witch costume from Halloween. OK so it’s a bit tight but…. she can go as The Worst Witch! Yes. Sorted.
  22. Oh blimey, I’ve got six more years of this. Six more World Book Days. Six more stressful World Book Days.

What’s your child dressing up as?!

Top image of library: Shutterstock



  1. February 23, 2016 / 3:24 pm

    I’m currently on no 1 – I spotted World Book Day was coming up (again!) and my instant thought was, is her preschool doing something? Have I missed a note? (Well, my instant thought was ‘didn’t we just do that?’ My failsafe is a black cat outfit (Meg and Mog, if nothing else) which she still likes. I’m sticking with it as long as I can…

  2. February 23, 2016 / 6:44 pm

    My girls have always gone dressed up as either a princess or a witch! Hooray for the dressing up box. lol

  3. Sarah
    February 23, 2016 / 6:49 pm

    L. Frank Baum wrote The Wonderful Wizard of Oz in 1900

    • Alison Perry
      February 24, 2016 / 7:24 am

      I didn’t know that! Thanks for letting me know.

  4. February 23, 2016 / 6:55 pm

    I refuse to spend £ on costumes for my three (would rather spend £ on books which is kind of the point) so I am that terrible mother that sends her kids in superhero and princess costumes – H takes his batman comic, J takes his Spiderman book and H takes her Cinderella book. I remember my first World Book Day and I swore I would never do this but look at me now!

    Our school is changing it’s plans this year and kids are going in their PJs with their favourite bedtime story. PHEW

    • Sarah
      February 24, 2016 / 11:27 pm

      Our kids are either at the same school or have similarly kind teachers – we’re on pjs and bedtime stories too! Of course this is the one year where I was actually organised ahead of time and the kids knew what they wanted to go as (Willy Wonka and Charlotte from Charlotte’s Web) AND I sourced costumes. I say “sourced” – I mean “over the past year discovered a new friend is amazingly creative and loves nothing better than to make costumes from scratch and has kids that are taller than mine and have done WBD for longer and is now a top text message buddy in situations such as these”. She already had a Willy Wonka costume – of course. It is amazing. I got something right with the seven year old which is almost as improbable as remembering WBD ahead of time.

      I find Julia Donaldson books have been a great go to in previous years – The Rhyming Rabbit (bunny ears from the 99p shop Easter selection and a load of post it notes with rhyming words stuck to a t-shirt), What the Ladybird Heard (any farm animal or a red t-shirt with black spots drawn on plus fairy wings), Sharing a Shell (hairband with pink pipecleaners on and a purple shirt and leggings for Anemone, hair band with orange pipecleaner eyes and orange shirt and leggings for Crab). Failing that Angelina Ballerina – any ballet outfit plus white ears on a hairband.

      I can’t sew. It has to be able to be stuck to a hairband.

    • February 26, 2016 / 12:02 pm

      That is such a great idea … I know my daughter would love the idea of going to school in her PJ’s and saves on another costume to add to dressing up box too!

  5. February 23, 2016 / 8:31 pm

    Mine has asked to go as sophie from the BFG so I am sending her in PJS with a pair of glasses. I know that screams lazy Mum but that is honestly what she wanted to go as so I was more than happy to oblige 😉

  6. February 23, 2016 / 9:56 pm

    I’ve just started reading your blog recently, it’s very enjoyable I have to say.
    Reading this post though was not enjoyable at all! The words “world book day” sent me into a frenzy similar to your own. Firstly I checked the school weekly newsletter as I remember not bothering over half term.., yep there it is on Thursday March 3rd- shit !!!

    He could go as Peter Pan as we have that costume, or maybe a pirate? No way is he going as Harry Potter again as its been well and truly overdone. Spider-Man is a comic and I besides its a onesie, no good at all for school toilets.
    For gods sake I can’t be arsed sewing this late in the game . Hmm Asda online … But really? More flipping money ?!
    No, sod it I’ll ask him in the morning and we can plan something easy together … Harry Potter it is then 🙁

    • Alison Perry
      February 24, 2016 / 7:24 am

      Eek! Sorry 😉

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