Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Historically Accurate Ariel

Last year, I started a new long-term project. This one is something of a passion for me. Some time ago, I saw a number of artwork costume designs, blending Disney and historical fashions. Given my love of Disney, of course there were ones that I wanted to recreate. However, the re-enactor in me just couldn't do it without the correct amount of accuracy.

Ariel has always been one of my favourite Disney princesses. I grew up loving her and her red hair. Is it any wonder that she was the first princess that I cosplayed? At any rate, I wanted to do her justice and put together my own historical design. My research tells me that the story of the Little Mermaid was first published in 1837, which to be honest you can see some element of the design in the fashion of the movie (Prince Eric's outfit is very much Victorian). 

But the love for this project and my hopes for the design, mean bringing together a whole project from the inside out. Like I said - it's a long term project. So, first up, I started on some of the undergarments:

I started with Drawers. These are altered from the Laughing Moon Victorian Undergarments pattern to make them a little more 1830s. Thankfully by this period, drawers were in fashion and some had even come into style sewn to a single waistband (previously they were separate legs). They're made out of white cotton and feature a shaped waistband and are decorated with pin tucks and lace at the hem. I did my best to make them pretty, but after all is said and done, they are just drawers. 

Then came the Chemise. I butchered one of my regency period chemise patterns to make up this design which I based on original chemises of the period. It has a gathered sleeve to help add puff and foundation to the outer sleeve. And the front fold-down flap tucks over the front of the corset so that it won't be seen through the dress. And I decided to add a smidge of embroidery similar to many period chemises - only I used colour rather than white. 

The next thing that I put together were my 1830s stays. But that's a post for another time. Because throughout this process, I have been trying to take a number of photos so that I can put together some photo tutorials. And yep, there's one for my stays. So hold onto your horses, it's coming...


  1. Historically correct Disney princesses? Count me in! What a cool idea! I'm looking forward to seeing your stays work in progress...

    1. There's so many that I would love to tackle, but my obsession with Ariel and 1830s fashion seemed a great place to start.