If you are planning to put on a Christmas play, telling the Christmas nativity story in a Christmas pageant or
nativity play, one of the biggest challenges you will face is finding a way to dress the characters in biblical
In earlier times, most stay at home moms would be happy to help out with their dressmaking skills, sewing machines
and free time. These days, the economics of dressmaking at home have changed. The cost of imported and mass produced
clothing, as well as the ravages of brand promotions on the expectations of children, have greatly reduced home
dressmaking as a craft. Many homes today lack the home crafts skills and sewing equipment that was commonplace a
couple of decades ago.
Another factor has been the the free time available for home craft activity, with many moms now going out to work or
having other priorities for their time.
Fortunately a market for Christmas costumes has filled the gap, and it is now possible to purchase ready made
theatrical costumes representing the various characters in the nativity play story for a very reasonable price.
There may need to be some costume adjustments for players of varying sizes, but most church or community groups
putting on a Christmas pageant are able to find the few key people with the necessary skills that they need for this
role. Costume adjustments require much less work than making costumes from scratch.
The main characters for which you will need biblical costumes are Mary, Joseph, some shepherds, a few angels and the
Three Wise Men. If your story goes into more detail, you will need an innkeeper costume, and perhaps a range of Roman
soldier costumes, and perhaps more if your story extends beyond the classic nativity scene. If your cast is large,
either to encourage participation of to assemble a choir on stage, you may need to add a range of biblical costumes
that simply reflect the style of clothing of the era.