Belle was such a huge hit at my last two volunteer events that I decided to make more Disney Princess dresses. I thought it would be loads of fun for volunteering, and I can also branch out into birthday parties once I have the full line up. I spent hours poring over fabric websites and ordered fabric for both Cinderella and Jasmine, and then spent a weekend in Vancouver where I got to FINALLY visit Dressew. I ended up coming home with fabric for Ariel (mermaid version as I’ve already started her pink dinner gown), Sleeping Beauty, Snow White, Rapunzel, and some amazing fabric to make a cloak for Merida. I lucked into the perfect fabric for her at Fabricland, and the dress is already finished. Just waiting for the wig to arrive so I can post about it!
My fabric arrived on June 28th, and I finished the dress on the morning of July 6th.
I started by drafting a corset pattern that was a combination of a few different corset styles I’ve used before. I hadn’t decided if I wanted to have straps for the poof sleeves or just the organza like on the recent re-design of Cinderella, so I drafted with straps just in case.
Once I’d sewn the charmeuse for the outside of the corset, I knew I wanted to embellish it. I just had to decide how. I pinned a strand of beads on the center seam to see how it looked, and after hand beading the center seam I decided to do the two on either side as well.
Here I’d sewn together the skirt panels; there are 5 for a total hem width of about 6.5 metres. The waistband was gathered and pinned onto the lining so I could figure out how I wanted the white skirt poofs to sit.
At this point I stopped taking photos; I was incredibly pressed for time and got caught up in my work. I finished all the major sewing on the dress by 2am on July 6th, and when I woke up I finished the last few hand-sewing things. That was sewing the lining of the corset into the waist of the skirt, and adding hooks and eyes above the skirt zipper and at the back of the hip poofs.
The white overskirt was two ovals cut on a fold, and one layer of organza on top of it. I kept them folded but with the right side out, and basted across the curved side. I then hand gathered the curved side and stitched it into the seam of the blue skirt, which left the straight edge as the one along the bottom. It added a bit of extra volume this way and it looked lovely.
The back of the corset is laced with grommets. I usually do loops and lacing like on a wedding gown but with the time crunch, grommets would be faster. I’m not entirely happy with the cord I used as it’s slippery, but it was the only one in the right colour that I could get on short notice. I’ll be getting different cord later. Once the grommets were in all I had to do was stitch the corset and skirt together, and then hem. I put my shoes on and had best friend K check the various lengths, and then put the dress back on the dress form to trim the skirt, serge it and blind stitch it with the machine.
It turned out absolutely amazing, and I am so thrilled with it! I conveniently already had a blonde wig with bangs that I wasn’t using, so it was fairly easy to style it into an up-do and pin it to my own hair beneath the wig for stability. The gloves were purchased, the choker is black velvet ribbon with a snap, and the headband was purchased white and covered with the blue charmeuse.
Husband was coming with me to volunteer on Saturday, and while he already had the white jacket from his last deployment, it needed some accessorizing. I picked up some dark gold satin, fringe and braided cord and turned it into shoulderboards and braids. It took about an hour and I did it just before we left on Saturday.
Without further waiting, the pictures!