Over 25 yards of fabric went into this little gown. There are layers underneath, including a petticoat and crinoline, in addition to what’s easily viewable. The bodice of this little gown is lightly boned not for constriction, but to help it with shaping. Otherwise the basque, that point in the front, would stick out as she moves. The seams are film-correct. The top is embellished with point d’esprit, two types of Venice lace, a dozen satin ribbon rosettes with Swarovski crystals, and shimmery tulle flutter sleeves. It hooks and eyes up the back. The original film gown zipped up, but I really didn’t want to use a zipper on this gown. The original gown’s trim also went further gown the bodice, but since a pint-sized princess’s body proportions are different than an adult’s, wider lace looked too heavy.
The skirt has the same shimmery tulle over it as the sleeves. Before bustling, the train was over eight feet from the waist. The bottom two rose sprays were made to match the film’s from location to color. The bottom one does have the same ribbon and lace, though I used a narrower ribbon. Again, a wider one just looked too heavy for a child’s proportions. The top spray is different from the film’s. Instead of two small tails with roses much smaller than used anywhere else on the gown, I decided to use three larger roses with a ribbon tie. I decided against the band of gathered tulle at the edge of the gown. The original used a hoop skirt, which I didn’t use. Charlotte hadn’t had much practice in one yet, so I decided to skip it. An adult version of this gown would include a hoop. Without one, you’ll get a bustle that looks later period, as this gown shows. At the front is a pink rose with ribbon on a pin. I did this, rather than sewing it directly onto the bodice, so that the front of the skirt can be hitched up, as shown in some of the photos. For a little one who wants to run, this makes it easier for her to do so without tripping.
Plus it shows off the petticoat! The bottom of the bright pink petticoat is pleated all around. It took a few yards cut into strips to make enough to go around! This petticoat has a sweep train. The crinoline only covers the sides and back to keep the front relatively smooth.
The necklace is genuine pink pearl, cultured, not freshwater, and AB Swarovski crystal with a sterling silver toggle clasp in the shape of a flower and curved stem. I made that too. Her tiara was a gift from a sweetheart named Lisa, and her gloves were from a shop here in town, though the fingers were too long and had to be altered down. She wore white pearl earring and silver glittered shoes.
These photos were taken at the Portland Art Museum. She was ridiculously excited to see the ancient Greek statues on special exhibit.
More photos are in this Facebook album.