26 Book Week Costumes for Book Week 2023: Read, Grow, Inspire

Another Book Week is almost here! Ready to put your creative muscles to use?

Commemorated each year since 1945, Children’s Book Week aims to promote the importance of reading. The theme for Book Week 2023 is Read, Grow, Inspire.

And what better way to inspire a love of reading for kiddos of all ages than to dress up as their favourite book characters? Costumes can be as simple or elaborate as you want. That’s the beauty of Book Week, you don’t have to go all out to participate! The goal is to have fun and celebrate books together.

Book Week is all about celebrating the love of books and characters, so any costume, whether elaborate or last-minute, with be perfectly fine! Your child can dress up as pretty much ANYTHING they want – it’s bound to be in a book somewhere.

So don’t stress. Here are some costume ideas pulled from stories of growth and inspiration.

Book Week Costumes: Book Week 2023 Ideas for Read, Grow, Inspire

Grow Theme

If you really want to stick to the Book Week 2023 theme, then a book about ‘growth’ is a winner! Below are a few classic characters and stories that feature this theme.

1. The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle

Book Week 2023 - Book Week Costume Ideas - Hungry Catepillar
Source: Ariel Loves

What a fun and colourful way to represent this year’s Book Week theme! Who better than our friendly, Very Hungry Caterpillar to exemplify growth while inspiring kiddos to learn to count and eat healthy?

2. The Lorax by Dr. Seuss

The Lorax Book week 2023 costume
Source: The Mom Creative


Prepare to spark your little one’s imagination with the help of this unique little orange character, the Lorax. A source of inspiration and growth, the Lorax urges us to fight for the environment and any other cause that can benefit others.

3. Daisy-Head Mayzie by Dr. Seuss

Dr Seuss Book Week 2023 costumes
Source: Kiki Burleigh

With a flower literally growing from her head, this inspirational story about overcoming the unexpected is a great opportunity to dress up as a unique character. Daisy-Head Mayzie is sure to be a fun costume for this year’s Book Week.

4. Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi

book week 2018
Image: Facebook
Book Week 2023 costume ideas
Source: A Beautiful Mess

What better story to inspire growth and transformation than our beloved Pinocchio!? With so many fun, colourful characters to choose from, you can have fun all through Book Week!

5. Jack and the Beanstalk by Joseph Jacobs

Jack and the Beanstalk Book Week costume
Source: TODAY

Fee-fi-fo-fum!! Your kiddo will have great fun dressing as brave little Jack who defied the great giant in this classic tale. Plus, he grows a giant beanstalk!

6. Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

Alice in Wonderland costumes
Source: Facebook

Unleash your creativity with any of the many cooky, fun characters found in this wonderful children’s story. Alice’s growth, literally, as she journeys through Wonderland, is perfect for this year’s Book Week theme.

7. The Hulk (and She-Hulk) by Stan Lee

Book Week 2023 costumes. The Hulk
Source: Blue Susan Makes and Pinterest

Talk about growing! The Hulk and She-Hulk, make great Book Week costumes your kiddo is sure to have fun with.

8. Violet Beauregard from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl

Book Week costume ideas
Source: Pinterest and Costume-Works

How great is this one? With so many variations on this character, it’s easy to find some fun inspiration about a girl who grows and grows because of her naughty defiance.

Inspire Theme – Inspirational Figures

What we love about the Book Week 2023 theme of Read, Grow, Inspire, is that you can basically use any book or any character that inspires you. Heroes, antagonists, even real-life heroes.

9. Miss Frizzle from The Magic School Bus by Joanna Cole

Book week costumes
Source: Housewife Eclectic

She’s a science-loving teacher who has inspired thousands of kids to nurture their love of science and exploration. An inspiration indeed – and a fun costume to put together too.

10. Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum

book week 2018 wizard of oz
Image via Facebook

She’s the girl who has inspired a world of great Book Week costumes and a love of ruby slippers.

11. Matilda from Matilda by Roald Dahl 

Matilda book week idea
Source: Megan Neilsen and Pinterest

Adorable Matilda is the embodiment of this year’s Book Week. This charming young girl is certain to ignite a passion for reading and inspire a determination to thrive despite any challenges. The easy costume is a nice bonus!

12. The Matildas (or any other sports hero)

Soccer costume
Source: Pinterest and Vibe

What could be more inspiring for Book Week than a soccer player, especially during World Cup fever. Dress up your kiddo in the Matildas colours for some national pride! #TilItsDone.

Of course, you don’t have to stick to soccer – let them pick any inspirational sports star they’d like.

13. Barbie 

Barbie Costume. Book Week
Source: Pinterest

Barbie is everything, especially right now and this year is the perfect year to let them live out their Barbie girl dreams at the Book Week parade. Because Barbie can literally BE anything, you really can’t go wrong with this costume.

14. A Doctor

Book Week costume ideas
Source: Pinterest and Pinterest

Help your little one show appreciation for one of the most selfless professions. Inspire them to reach for the stars with a do-it-yourself doctor costume.

15. Frida Kahlo

book week costumes frida kahlo
Source: Facebook

The incredibly creative Mexican painter, Frida Kahlo, is a perfect historical figure for this year’s Book Week. Her colourful paintings and amazing journey are sure to inspire your little one’s artistic side.

16. Audrey Hepburn

Book week costumes
Source: Costume Works

The epitome of elegance – and what a fun reason to dress up like a modern-day princess for the day!

17. Freddie Mercury

Book Week ideas - Freddie Mercury
Source: Reddit and Pinterest

This talented singer and songwriter is an inspiration for all to follow their dreams no matter the obstacles in our way. Your little one will have loads of fun dressing up as Queen’s lead singer for Book Week.

18. Jane Goodall

Jane Goodall costume
Source: Cool Mom Picks and

Jane Goodall’s dedication to chimpanzee conservation is unparalleled. She’s an animal rights advocate and a true inspiration for kiddos all over the world.

A few more of our favourite book week costumes

Check out a few of our faves from previous years including Book Week classic characters from Dr. Seuss, Mem Fox and so much more. They may not specifically match the Read, Grow, Inspire theme, but we still think they are pretty darned inspirational!

19. Fox in Socks by Dr. Seuss

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20. Oh,  the Places You’ll Go by Dr. Seuss

book week costumes 2018
Image via Facebook

21. The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt and Oliver Jeffers 

Book week costumes crayons
Image via Facebook

22. Where is the Green Sheep by Mem Fox

book week costumes 2018
Image via Facebook

23. The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson

book week costumes
Image via Facebook

24. Dogman by Dav Pilkey

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Image source: Facebook

25. Paddington Bear by Michael Bond

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Image source: Facebook

26. Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

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Image source: Facebook
Alice in Wonderland book week costumes
Source: Facebook

More Book Week Costume ideas

Avatar of Gloria Ramirez

Gloria Ruby Ramirez is a writer, mother, and lover of coffee, twinkle lights, and rain who believes in the magical power of words. She is passionate about parenting, mental health, and the environment. She is a former agricultural microbiologist/plant pathologist with a Bachelor of Science in Microbiology from Arizona State University. Born in the desert of northern Mexico, she is mum to her beautifully energetic son and Shih Tzu, Gerty. When not writing, Gloria can be found spending time with her son and family, reading, or embroidering.

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