My Little Mermaid

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Sometimes I ask myself, “Why did I agree to do this?” But this time I can’t ask myself that question because it was basically my idea and I volunteered for it. It wasn’t too bad and was actually mostly fun.

A few months ago my sister and I stumbled onto an old beat up prom dress that was probably never going to be worn to a prom again. It was teal and beaded, and very pretty at one time. I mentioned to my sister that it looked like a mermaid tail and that is where the idea was born. My niece would be a mermaid for halloween. We tossed around some ideas about the construction of it but dropped the ball for a little while.

Time went on, Halloween was quickly approaching, and that meant it was back to the mermaid drawing board. The biggest dilemma was what to make a shell bra out of, but we found a solution. On a girl’s day visit to our favorite dollar store we stumbled upon a mermaid toy. In the pack was a mermaid, hair trinket thing, star fish, and a clam that opened like a compact. You know, it was one of those little junkie toys that kids beg for and then they loose all the pieces that day. The clam was the key! It was basically perfect size for a 2 year old bra top. (I don’t know why it feels so weird to say a 2 year old bra. haha)

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Here are what the shells looked like after I broke them apart. It wasn’t very difficult. I just cut them with regular scissors.

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The base of this costume is a nude leotard and I knew just glue wouldn’t hold the shells on because they are hollow in the middle. I used a nail to poke holes near the edges of the shell so I could sew them on to the leotard.

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Now it’s time to decorate the shells. I covered them with mod podge and then sprinkled glitter all over them. When they dried, tons of the glitter was falling off so I repeated this step to ensure that even if glitter was lost they would still be covered.

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Sparkly shells will make the perfect Ariel bra top. They are gorgeous, but I might be finding glitter in my house 10 years from now. You know you can never get rid of it. It’s a curse!

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I had my little Tater-Tot try on the leotard and marked where the shells needed to go. I then sewed them into place. (We ordered this leotard from Amazon. It is made by Eurotard.)

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I then turned to some of my dance costume making supplies to finish the bra top. I used E6000 to glue crystal ab rhinestones to the shell and in-between to hook the 2 shells together. I also used some purple beads, and purple ribbon to finish off the bra. I’m starting to think this looks more like a “Dancing With The Stars” costume than a little girl’s Halloween costume.

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Here is the prom dress I used for the bottom. You can see that there are tons of beads missing. What you don’t see is how someone has washed it incorrectly and the lining is messed up. It’s good that these things don’t matter for this project.

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I cut out the shape of the skirt and began to sew it together. I was cursing myself at this point. This part sucked majorly, and the sad part is I kind of knew that before I started. I broke 4 needles working on this, and I was being what I thought was extremely careful. There are probably some tips on how to sew beaded fabric, but I didn’t look any up, and I never want to sew beaded fabric ever again!

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I used 4 colors of tulle to make the little ruffle around the waist and the tutu on the bottom. I then used elastic in the back of the skirt to hold it up and on the inside of the bottom to synch it together for the mermaid effect. I couldn’t make it too tight. I wanted her to be able to walk.

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Here it is! I finished late on the night before her 1st Halloween party at her dance class. I was crossing my fingers and hoping it fit perfectly. My sister did have to add a safety pin to the waist. The skirt is pretty heavy and the elastic was not quite tight enough, but no one really knew about that part.

As much as we thought it would be hilarious to put her in a red Ariel wig, we knew she wouldn’t keep it on. My sister said she wasn’t wasting money on that part. I made her a hair clip out of the star fish that came in the stupid mermaid toy. I covered it in glitter the same way I did the bra top, added stones, and a clip to the back. This kid refuses to wear a hair bow, but left the starfish in the whole time. I think she really loved her costume (even though 2 days before she said she was going to be Anna, and then she said she wanted to be a girl…2 year old logic?)

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Look at that model. So proud of her costume.

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There is my beautiful girl!

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Her mom bough her some Ariel high heels from the Disney store. I realized that even though she liked her costume, it was these shoes that were her favorite part. This kid might turn into one of those girls that can do anything in heels. She can already run and jump in them. We might be in trouble.

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This is her demonstrating how she can jump and run.

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This is her picking out her poses for pictures.

Yoga anyone?

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And now she is showing off her needle. Not a good outfit for this particular move. It’s not slowing her down at all.

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This is where she posed when we told her not to go up the stairs. She’s a smart girl!

I love this little mermaid more than anything. She does drive me quite crazy at moments. I know 2 year olds love to exercise their opinions because it’s like they’ve just realized they have one. Sometimes I think she just wants to have a different opinion from me and sometimes I think she might be bossier than her mom, but she is sweet, loving, caring, and full of life and excitement. I think Ariel was the perfect costume for her personality! Just a little bit spunky, sassy, and stubborn…Just like her!

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1st Birthday Princess

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Little girls can be lots of things. They can be messy, bossy, silly, funny, pretty, playful, rambunctious, creative, happy, etc…. And, little girls can be princesses! What better day to be a princess than on your birthday?

This particular post is about a princess on her first birthday. Well, it’s mostly about what she wore for her first birthday. This little girl is a bright eyed doll with a mommy who loves to dress her up. She is so stinking cute. I would want to dress her up too.

The mom wanted something special for her to wear for her birthday, so she approached me with some ideas.

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This was the first image she sent me. It’s cute.

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But she wanted the sleeves to be more like theses.

When I first saw it, I thought that is pretty stinking cute, but then I had a problem with it. Sequins can itch and even hurt some kids. As a dance teacher I am fully aware of how they can cut up sensitive skin. I knew that I didn’t want sequins against her sweet baby skin. That meant I would have to make a few adjustments to the design so that she wouldn’t get all scratched up.

I hit the fabric store and found the sweetest pink material. It was soft and I knew it would feel good to wear. I couldn’t find any gold or sequin that I liked. Then it hit me. I had some gorgeous gold/champagne sequin left over from last Christmas. It would be perfect for this project because it would help this romper look less like a dance costume and more like a dressy outfit.

I got to work. The shape is almost identical to the shape of the romper I made for my niece’s 1st birthday and almost the exact same size, so I used the pattern I made for that. I started piecing it together and came up with a plan so the sequins wouldn’t touch her. I trimmed around the edges of the legs and the top with pink so she wouldn’t get cut.

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From the front.

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I love these sequins.

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Criss-cross straps that hook in the back .

I think it turned out pretty great! I love the pink and gold together. It looks very special and very princess like. The little girl’s aunt made her a crown to wear and her mom adorned her with jewelry and the cutest gold shoes. Here are a few pictures from her photo shoot. She looked beautiful! Plus, the photos are awesome since her dad in the photographer.

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I think she makes a great princess. What about you?