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Book Week Dress-Up Ideas for Kids & Teachers

Book Week Dress-Up Ideas for Kids & Teachers

Book Week is approaching, and it’s never too early to start planning your dress-ups! As book lovers, it’s one of our favourite times of the year, but as parents, it can be a bit stressful. We answer your book week questions and provide our favourite book week costume inspiration to get you thinking about ideas for dressing up your child as a book character, ready for Book Week 2023.


What is book week?

Book Week is an event to encourage a love of reading in our kids. Schools and libraries in Australia participate with activities, displays, and competitions that celebrate books and reading. Each year the Children’s Book Council of Australia (CBCA) provides a theme for Book Week. These themes are usually pretty broad so there are lots of ways for teachers and students to use the theme.

The CBCA also presents its Book of the Year Awards during Book Week.


What date is book week 2023?

In 2023 book week is running from August 19th to 25th


What is the theme for 2023 book week?

The theme for book week in 2023 is Read, Grow, Inspire.

The featured artist is author, illustrator, and composer, Matt Ottley. He won Picture Book of the Year in 2021 for How to Make a Bird. His artwork for the 2023 theme ‘Read, Grow, Inspire’ features a giant seahorse growing out of a pile of books. He has included an element or a theme in the artwork for every letter of the alphabet.

What is the meaning of book week Australia?

Book Week in Australia is about celebrating books and encouraging kids to read. By completing book-themed activities, the kids can really bring the stories to life. Dressing up as a character from their favourite book helps them immerse themselves in the book.


Is book week always in August?

Book Week is usually celebrated in August, however, in 2020 it was moved to October due to lockdowns. Some schools participated remotely, while others were able to hold their events at the school. While it was fun zooming in on our book week costumes, we’re so glad to have Book Week back in schools and libraries!


What are the best book week costumes?

Well, that really depends on what books your kids love! Harry Potter is always a big favourite with options to dress up in different Hogwarts House colours and as specific characters, like Harry, Hermione, Hagrid, Luna, or even Voldemort! Other popular book choices include The Bad Guys, Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan, The Wizard of Oz, Pig the Pug, Mary Poppins, Secret Garden, Little Red Riding Hood, and Roald Dahl characters such as Charlie, Willy Wonka or Fantastic Mr. Fox.


How do you get kids who don’t like reading involved in book week?

It can be tricky to get some kids excited about books, however, there are lots of books about all sorts of different interests. If your child is into football, find them books about playing football. There are also picture books and novels that may tie in with their favourite movies, like Disney, Minions, or Star Wars, and television shows like Bluey, My Little Pony, or Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Comic books are another great way to encourage kids to read. They can dress up as their favourite Marvel or DC Comics characters, like Spider-Man, Batman, Superman, and Iron Man!

It doesn’t even have to be a novel. If your child has a favourite non-fiction book about dinosaurs, it’s the perfect opportunity to get them dressed up and thinking about what it would be like to be a prehistoric animal. Historical characters make another great option, whether it’s a knight of the round table, a pirate, or a medieval princess.


Can they dress up from a movie for book week?

Some schools may have rules about this, but in most cases, if your child is reading about their favourite movie, tv, or game character, then they should be able to celebrate their love of reading! This may be a great way to get your kids to read more by buying or borrowing from the library a book about a movie they love.


Top Book Week Costume Ideas for Boys

Finding a book week dress-up for boys can be tricky! Here are some of our favourites:

How to Train Your Dragon

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

Fantastic Mr. Fox

The Bad Guys


Harry Potter


Star Wars

Alice in Wonderland

Comic Book Heroes





When I Grow Up


Top Book Week Costume Ideas for Girls

Girls can get a little spoilt for choice – they can safely pick from the boys' dress-up list or find something a little more girlie from the list below!


Alice in Wonderland 

Disney Princesses

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

Bluey and Bingo

Comic book heroes

Disney villains

Minnie Mouse

Fairy tales

Mythical creatures


Miraculous Ladybug



Top Book Week Costume Ideas for Teenagers

Bigger kids can sometimes struggle for the right costume for book week. Check out the options below for Tweens and Teens Book Week costumes.

Wizard of Oz

Harry Potter

DC Comics

Jurassic Park

Tinker Bell

Alice in Wonderland



Star Wars



Top Book Week Costume Ideas for Pre-schoolers

If your kinder or day-care is getting involved with book week, or if you have younger children who need to follow the lead of their older siblings, here are some of our best ideas for book week dress-up for preschool kids.

Thomas the Tank Engine

101 Dalmatians


Minnie Mouse

Bluey and Bingo

The Wiggles

Dumbo the Elephant

Harry Potter

The Wizard of Oz

Toy Story

Gabby’s Dollhouse




Top Book Week Costume Ideas for Teachers

Teachers! This is the perfect opportunity to dress up as your favourite book character and have some fun! Maybe someone evil to encourage the kids to behave? Or show your house pride in a Hogwarts Robe. Here are our top picks for teacher book week dress-ups.

Snow White

Alice in Wonderland

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

Peter Pan

Mary Poppins

Harry Potter



So, get your thinking caps on and start planning the best book week costume ever!


Book Week Tips

  • Start thinking about options early
  • Get your child involved in the process
  • Make sure you can get your hands on a copy of the book (your own copy, or from a library), as kids like to show the book they’re dressed from in photos and for the parade. Worst case you can print off or get your child to draw the book cover
  • Look at what you have at home – whether it’s in your costume chest or your kid’s wardrobe there are options everywhere. A few accessories, like a wand, glasses & Gryffindor tie can turn a regular uniform into a Harry Potter costume!
  • Basic makeup, like an eyeliner pencil can transform a look – drawing freckles, whiskers or a lightning scar will add details quickly and easily
  • If you’re on a budget, pick a costume that your child can wear again for Halloween, superhero day, or a princess party which gives you more bang for your buck
  • Try on the costume before the morning it is needed!
  • Have fun with it


Quick Links:

All Book Week Costumes

Book Week Costumes for Boys

Book Week Costumes for Girls

Book Week Costumes for Teens

Book Week Costumes for Babies & Toddlers

Book Week Costumes for Teachers

Book Week Costumes for Adults

 Explore Book Week Shoppable Catalogue

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