Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Princesses from Scratch...

My family and I just got back from an amazing vacation – our first as a family of four – to Walt Disney World.  Just like most girls ages 2-10, my girls are both OBSESSED with Disney Princesses.  I mean, it looks like the Princesses threw up all over their room and then added a little extra pink just for fun.  We have a drawer full of costumes and dress up stuff in various sizes.  When we first started really planning this trip in earnest, I knew that between character meet and greets and a fancy dinner at Cinderella’s Royal Table (yes, the most expensive chicken nugget meal EVER that still did not get finished, but still shockingly worth it), the girls would probably want to be tooling around in their fancy finest.  But we’re talking Florida heat and most of their store-bought costumes are polyester mixes.  No thank you.

I went online to search for cotton princess dresses and found an adorable shop that makes the most gorgeous stuff, but the price was pretty far out of my budget.  Could I try to make these on my own and save some money?  I figured that it didn’t hurt to try and found this e-pattern that could be altered to come close to some princess gear with the added bonus of breathable cotton fabrics and seams that didn’t rip at the slightest action (Imagine my Seth Meyer imitation voice here:  I mean really, Disney?  Really?  Do your costumes have to immediately rip and disintegrate 5 minutes after purchase?  Really?)

So for my first attempt, I settled on Briar Rose (Princess Aurora’s peasant alter-ego for you Disney-challenged readers).  It seemed pretty easy and it was immediately worn and played in with no ripping or tearing.  Yay!

Next I tried Rapunzel and got even fancier by using Michael Miller Fairy Frost fabrics which have a slight metallic sheen.  Success!  

My youngest is head over heads for Ariel, the Little Mermaid.  Most of the costumes out there are cute, but I wanted something that really looked straight out of the movie with her typical purple seashell bra and plain green mermaid tail.  I cut the hem so that it curved up at the center in the front and back to resemble the curves of a fin. I added a fleshly pink strip for the belly and straps and yes, I even embroidered a little belly button.
Side note:  I found that perfect green fabric at a local quilt store  and immediately thought that looked just like fish scales.  While the owner was cutting it, I told him what it was for.  He was shocked and said that was a “new interpretation.” When I asked what it was usually used for (honestly, what else besides fish scales does it look like?), he said it was supposed to be roof shingles.  Huh. 

 Older sister loves Belle so we got a couple yards of gold fairy frost to whip up a dress worthy of a twirl around the dance floor from the Beast.  I finished it up a week before we left…and it never got worn!  But I know that it’s going to be played in a lot, so no worries. 

My oldest already had a store bought Cinderella dress that she wanted to wear, but the little one wanted to be Cinderella too when we were going to the Castle!  I’ve always loved the pink dress that the mice make her – before it’s ripped to shreds of course.  I was even able to find a cute bow headband and make her a string of turquoise beads. 

The “real” Cinderella made quite a fuss over little sister’s pink dress and asked if her mice friends collected all the beads themselves.  And the “real” Ariel even noticed her little belly button and thought it was too cute! 

I’m all Princess dress-ed out, so I think I’ll stick to regular old quilting for a while until I go back to it again.  Or until one of them makes a new request...which will probably be tomorrow.  Back to the real world! 


  1. Oh those are some seriously cute princess dresses. When my daughter was 3 her favorite princess was Ariel too. Now at 5 she loves them all.

    Your kids are so adorable too.

  2. You are the best Mom ever!!! So glad your trip was a success;-) What wonderful memories!!!

  3. Love the dresses! Very well done! :-)