Christmas Belle: My New Sewing Project

After finishing Snow White, I’ve jumped right into my next project. I’ve been working on this one for slightly under the last week now. You might think, considering that I just posted a list of my dream cosplays that I might actually work on a cosplay from that list. You would be wrong. In an effort to keep costs low and work down my mum’s fabric stash, I went with a costume we already had the fabric for.

Fun side note, in high school I was supposed to help costume a production of Beauty and the Beast. After months of research, designing, and buying fabric, it fell through for various reasons. The point of this story is that we have all the fabric needed to make versions of all of Belle’s dresses. Which of course meant I chose to make the one dress we hadn’t bought fabric specifically for (because it’s not from Beauty and the Beast but FROM THE SEQUEL). However, in a testament to how large the fabric stash is, we had the perfect fabric anyway. The dress in question is this lovely dress from Beauty and the Beast: The Enchanted Christmas (which is a pretty quality sequel, meh animation aside).

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Going into this, I had some immediate changes I wanted to make to the design. I decided to move the waistline up to my natural waist to be more in line with the costumes from the original film, to be more historically accurate (well as accurate as these films are to the mid-late 1700s), and to help eliminate the awkward shape of the front panel where it meets up with the skirt (at least to my eye, the fact that the front panel of the bodice is much wider than the front panel of the skirt looks odd somehow).

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And here’s what the dress looks like in the Disney parks:

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Like the parks dress, I’m using a cranberry/ wine colored stretch velvet for the majority of the dress, but then for cream colored pieces, I’m using a fabric we originally bought for my redesign of Belle’s pink dress that has little roses all over it. Jemma Jinx was eager to help, as usual.

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Even Harry Potter got in on the action, although he wasn’t as willing to pose as his little sister. What a cutie. It’s funny how differently the color of this fabric photographs. It’s closer in the above photo than in this one.

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And here was the bodice last night, needing to have the sleeves finished and attached.

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I actually finished the bodice tonight, but didn’t love the pictures we took. Besides, it looks odd on without the skirt.You can already see from the picture above some of the design changes I’ve made, like raising the waistline and changing the shape of the sleeve ruffles based on a historical pattern I found.

This dress has been a big challenge so far, so much so that this dress is much more a collaboration between myself and my mum than strictly a dress I’ve made, but I don’t mind – I’m learning so much! My goal is to finish this dress before our Christmas tree needs to come down so I can get some pictures in it next to the tree.

Stay magical readers!

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