Princess Belle’s Dress Reveal – A Couture Beauty and the Beast Inspired 1st Birthday Dress

Hey guys and gals!

I’ve been busy working on a custom order for a 1st birthday dress. The inspiration? Belle’s gorgeous gown from Beauty and the Beast. Beauty and the Beast just so happens to be one of my favorite Disney movies EVER and if you’re around my age or have kids, it’s probably one of yours too! This movie brings back so many beautiful childhood memories whenever I hear “Tale as old as time…”

Do you recall the ballroom scene when Belle dances with the Beast? The way her dress sways with each move… isn’t it just perfect? The ballroom, the dress… the storyline… everything!?! This movie is unforgettable and the design of Princess Belle’s gown is spectacular to say the least! I was so excited to have an opportunity to design my version of it.

Design Considerations – Movie vs. Real Life

When thinking up the design for my Belle inspired dress, I knew I wanted it to exude elegance. It had to be fitting for a young child though so I didn’t want it sweeping the floor or being difficult to move around in. Instead of a floor-length gown, I made my Belle dress knee-length. And instead of an off-the-shoulder neckline, I opted to add shoulder straps with draping on the arms – to resemble the original design a bit, but also to provide comfort and functionality for the little one wearing it.

Fabric Color, Drape, & Trims

I ordered the fabrics months in advance to make sure it was the exact shade of yellow/gold that I needed and that it had just the perfect amount of drape. Luckily, I found a pretty trim and a gorgeous floral brocade to elevate the design a bit too. The trim and brocade fabric complimented each other beautifully… and I thanked God for that because I ordered everything online – without purchasing any swatches! Talk about living life on the wild side…

I purchased these fabrics from fabric.com

And these from Mood Fabrics:

Princess Belle’s Dress Reveal – a couture design by LOVEMADE HANDMADE
Floral Brocade and Trim for Belle’s Dress

Preparing the Fabrics

I washed the satins in a bucket of luke warm water with a tiny bit of Woolite – making sure to practice as much care as possible while handling the fabrics during washing. I didn’t want it to get snagged anywhere by anything – even by a finger nail!

Hand-washing fabrics for Princess Belle’s Dress – a couture design by LOVEMADE HANDMADE

After I rinsed out all the detergent from the fabric, I carefully towel dried them to soak up the excess water. I then tumble dried both on low – making sure not to over-dry it. I neatly rolled up the satin after it was dry – making sure to prevent creasing as I rolled. The fabrics were kept rolled up and stored away from sunlight until I was ready to cut out my pattern pieces.

Designing the Dress

Bodice:

I decided to use the floral brocade for the bodice’s center front and bodice back. I used the yellow slipper satin for the bodice sides and for the bottom skirt of the dress. For the shoulder straps, armhole draping, and the decorative trim along the neckline, I used the gold satin. The decorative trim was hand stitched onto the diagonal seam lines on center front of the dress.

Princess Belle's Dress Reveal - couture design by Karina Moran @ LOVEMADE HANDMADE
Bodice

Back:

I added an invisible zipper to the back that extended pass the waistline. This zipper in the back made it easy to get into and out of the dress – which is a must for dressing 1 year olds. I would’ve loved to go all out and add covered buttons to the back, but this is for a baby, after all… so I talked myself out of it.

Princess Belle's Dress Reveal - couture design by Karina Moran @ LOVEMADE HANDMADE
Invisible zipper on Back

Lining:

This dress is also fully lined and even has a tulle petticoat!!! I love tulle and I loooove petticoats.

Tulle Petticoat - Princess Belle's Dress Reveal - a couture design by Karina Moran @ LOVEMADE HANDMADE
Tulle Petticoat

Hem:

The hem of the dress was one of my favorite touches – though it was a time guzzler! I machine stitched to encase the raw edges and then created a decorative hemline that could only be created with hand stitching. Lots of hand stitching!

Couture Princess Belle Dress Reveal - Hem by Karina Moran @ Lovemade Handmade
Hand-stitched Hem

Hand-stitched Details:

The textured gold trim on the neckline had to be hand stitched in place as well – along with the covered button.

Princess Belle's Dress Reveal - Couture Bodice Design by Karina Moran - Lovemade Handmade
Textured Gold Trim & Covered Button

You won’t hear me complaining about the hand-sewing though… I thoroughly enjoy hand sewing!

Whenever I think of hand sewing, I picture women in olden times sewing or mending garments for their family while sitting near a fireplace or sitting in a room illuminated by candlelight. I surely don’t sit near a candle while sewing (that’s a scary thought) or own a home with a fireplace just yet, but whenever I anticipate starting a project with hand sewing involved, a sense of calm and relaxation envelops me and I feel at peace just at the thought. Do you feel like this too? Or is it just me? Maybe its just me…

Any who, I am so proud of this dress, guys… and I can’t wait to make another! It looks just like I imagined it would… and fit my friend’s little princess perfectly!

Princess Belle’s Dress Reveal

A couture Princess Belle Dress designed by Karina Moran @ LOVEMADE HANDMADE
Belle’s Dress
A couture Princess Belle Dress Reveal by LOVEMADE HANDMADE
Belle’s Dress

Would you like to know how to make your very own Princess Belle dress?

From pattern-drafting to dress construction? Let me know if that is something you would be interested in by leaving a comment below…

Happy Sewing,

Karina

Logo for LOVEMADE HANDMADE

69 COMMENTS

  1. Amanda Rosson | 28th Mar 17

    Oh wow, that dress is adorable and absolutely beautiful!! You are insanely talented!! I’m sure your friend’s daughter looked like the cutest little princess!!

  2. robin Rue | 28th Mar 17

    How cute is this for little girls? Now I wish I knew a little one to get this for because it’s so cute – it NEEDS to be worn.

  3. Ana John | 28th Mar 17

    The dress looks absolutely adorable. I can’t take my eyes off this beautiful dress. It looks elegant and amazing. You hard work surely paid off.

  4. Amber | 28th Mar 17

    Oh my gosh, I love this! You did such an amazing job. I would NOT know how to make this. I buy things from people who do know how on Etsy 😉

  5. GiGi | 28th Mar 17

    How cute is this little dress. My sister’s daughter would rock it as she went hunting for sticks in their back yard – LOL!

  6. Jessica Taylor | 28th Mar 17

    That is absolutely beautiful! You are so talented!

  7. Alexandra | 28th Mar 17

    OMG how cute is that! Such a pretty job- who doesn’t love Belle???

  8. Author Brandi Kennedy | 28th Mar 17

    This is so darned cute! I wish I could see it on to see how it really looks on the human form, but I am just amazed at how beautifully you stuck with Belle’s design while still making the dress more appropriate for a little one with the shoulder straps and the zipper. The skirt is really the star of the show though – wonderful job!

  9. Jessica Hughes | 28th Mar 17

    I too love Beauty and the Beast, it is one of my favorite Disney movies and Belle’s iconic dress is also a favorite of mine. The dress you made is so very beautiful and I would love to see my little girl in that dress! You have so much talent and your friend’s little princess will be so gorgeous in this dress!

  10. J. Shan'Trice - Fashionaire She | 28th Mar 17

    Now you did a very good job on this dress! It looks exactly like they dress on Beauty and the Beast! I will be back to this site because I need all the tips and tricks that I can get on sewing. Thanks for sharing!

    • lovemadehandmade@gmail.com | 28th Mar 17

      Thank you so much. Would love for you to come back and check out the full tutorial once it’s up… probably in the next few weeks.<3

  11. Brianne Patrice | 28th Mar 17

    Aww this is cute! And such a fun idea for a birthday party! Talented work there girly!

    • lovemadehandmade@gmail.com | 28th Mar 17

      Thank you so much, Brianne! <3

  12. Madelynn | 28th Mar 17

    Oh PLEASE post a tutorial! This is the cutest thing I have ever seen, and you actually make it seem do-able (even for those of us who are at least slightly terrified of sewing things). Did you buy or make the pattern yourself?

    • lovemadehandmade@gmail.com | 28th Mar 17

      Hey Madelynn! I would love to post a tutorial on this Belle dress. I didn’t purchase a pattern, but I can definitely try my best to show you how to make one. Stay on the lookout for it. 🙂

  13. OvenStruck | 28th Mar 17

    I’m at a loss of words for the talent you possess and super jealous at the same time lol This is absolutely ADORABLE! I wish my daughter was still a baby. I would love to put her in this dress!

  14. Melissa | 28th Mar 17

    Oh wow this is extravagant! I loved every detail. I’m a new reader by the way, and I must say, your blog is wonderful!

  15. Cristina | 28th Mar 17

    What a beauty <3

  16. Angela Tolsma | 28th Mar 17

    Oh gosh this is so beautiful! I am not much of a sewer and I couldn’t imagine working with these types of fabrics but you make it look and sound so effortless!

  17. Marcie | 28th Mar 17

    OMG! Is it weird that I’m jealous and totally want you to make ME a Belle dress? I have a birthday coming up…

  18. Terri | 28th Mar 17

    I want to see someone in it! It is so pretty. I actually enjoyed hearing about the process. Thanks for including it.

  19. Sondra Barker | 28th Mar 17

    This dress is adorable! There’s nothing like a custom dress, that little girl is going to be the belle of the ball.

  20. Chelsea | 28th Mar 17

    Beautifully done! I’m way too impatient for those kinds of projects, ha ha.

  21. CourtneyLynne | 28th Mar 17

    Omg what a beautiful dress!!! Beauty and the beast is definitely one of my favorite Disney movies!!!!!

  22. Reesa | 29th Mar 17

    I adore Belle’s dress!!!!! This is gorgeous! I would let no one wear it LOL so it never got ruined!!!

  23. Valerie | 29th Mar 17

    Who wouldn’t love a Belle dress. It is too cute. I know someone who could make it.

  24. Jasmine | 29th Mar 17

    such detail! I love it, you did an awesome job!

  25. Quirky Engineer | 29th Mar 17

    Wow! This dress is absolutely gorgeous! And it’s so perfect for little girls. Great job with the pattern too!

  26. Esse D | 29th Mar 17

    Omg… this is soooo cute. I’m so excited about it and I don’t even have a little girl. Your work is amazing!

  27. Tasheena @ SimplyTasheena.com | 29th Mar 17

    You are so talented. This dress is so beautiful. The little princess that this dress is for is going to have the ultimate first birthday dress.

  28. Elizabeth O. | 29th Mar 17

    Wow! This is a stunning creation. I think you did a lovely job making this dress.

  29. Carol Cassara | 29th Mar 17

    It’s a great movie and it brought back so much memories. I think this dress is beautiful. I’m sure the celebrant will look so adorable and pretty in it.

  30. Alicia Nicole @ Melanated Beautiful | 29th Mar 17

    What a magical dress. That little girl is going to feel like royalty! Such amazing talent you have. 🙂

  31. Blair villanueva | 29th Mar 17

    In my experience in sewing, it is tough to sew a small dress, however you nailed it! And its beautiful 🙂

  32. David Elliott | 29th Mar 17

    This dress does look amazing. I wish I could find something like that to give my daughter. She would love something like that.

  33. Journa Ramirez | 29th Mar 17

    Beauty and the Beast is one of our family’s favorite movies and my daughters can’t get enough of it. I’m sure they would love to have their own dresses like Belle’s. You’re talented!

  34. Tereza | 29th Mar 17

    Can’t believe you made this – your’s so freaking talented!! It’s so so so stunning, I wish you could make one for me too haha x

  35. Anna nuttall | 29th Mar 17

    Wow that is stunning. How frickin adorable! My niece would adore this. xx

  36. Charlotte | 29th Mar 17

    wow this is stunning and very apt with the movie being released! How creative, it turned out fantastic!

  37. Ana | 29th Mar 17

    I can’t believe you did everything yourself it looks incredible especially the brocade bodice and straps. It looks very Belle and I love how you altered it to fit a toddlers needs/height ect x

  38. Amanda Love | 29th Mar 17

    It is wonderfully made! I love the little details like the pattern in front that goes to the back. It’s really beautiful to look at.

  39. Jeanine | 29th Mar 17

    WOW. This is absolutely stunning. My girls are all about Belle right now, and would love something like this if not to wear but to display in their room. this turned out stunning.

  40. Fatima Torres of MTME | 29th Mar 17

    What a lovely dress! I really liked the embellishments in the front. So pretty!

  41. eazynazy | 29th Mar 17

    Omg you are so talented….I can never imagine myself in your shoes…Loved loved loved that out fit

  42. Blythe | 29th Mar 17

    That dress is incredible and what a special treat for a birthday girl. I’m always so envious of anyone who create something so beautiful from scratch.

  43. Dilraz Kunnummal | 29th Mar 17

    So gorgeous! And so perfect. One look and you’ll know its Belle’s dress and so suited for a lil girl.
    I definitely would live to see you make a full length one too.
    Maybe for a mommy and her lil girl! 🙂 awesomeness.

  44. alexis | 29th Mar 17

    Can I just say I am at a loss for words, seriously this is amazing and you are so talented! I really love this so much.

  45. Aish Das-Padihari | 29th Mar 17

    That yellow is so vibrant and so beautiful. Thanks for sharing. Enjoyed reading your post.

  46. Heather | 29th Mar 17

    This is such a beautiful dress! My eight year old daughter had a stunning Belle dress when she was three years old and I’m so excited it now fits our two year old daughter. You did an amazing job on this!

  47. Janine Anne | 29th Mar 17

    Wooow that dress is stunning! I can’t believe you did this all yourself. Thank you for sharing this to us!

    xoxo

  48. Janice Zuniga | 30th Mar 17

    This dress is absolutely amazing. Even when I first saw it I said my lil Savannah would look silly beautiful in it… You can tell you took lots of thought and care into this dress… I love beauty and the beast too…

    • lovemadehandmade@gmail.com | 31st Mar 17

      Janice! Thank you soooo much… 🙂 And little Savannah would look gorgeous in just about anything! She’s such a doll! Really appreciate you taking the time to leave a comment. All my love to you and your beautiful family! xoxox

  49. Angela | 30th Mar 17

    I love that you kept in mind the fact that it was for a child and for that reason added the straps to keep it in place and the length of the dress is a great point as well.

  50. Wanderlust Vegans | 30th Mar 17

    That is definitely an adorable dress perfect for a 1st birthday. I’m sure that looking back on pictures of a birthday in this dress would please parents and the girl wearing it too. Very impressive seamstress work.

  51. Jalisa | 30th Mar 17

    That is beyond the cutest dress especially for the perfect little princess.

  52. Dani Brooks | 30th Mar 17

    My four year old says “Awww that is so adorable!”

  53. The Crispy Mama | 30th Mar 17

    This is gorgeous and incredible! You are so talented!

  54. Amrita | 30th Mar 17

    Perfect dress. Love the story you wove around it. This is obviously a labour of love!

  55. Emily young | 30th Mar 17

    Wow this is simply gorgeous!!!!! I can’t even!!

  56. Heather | 30th Mar 17

    Such a pretty dress! I love sewing, but haven’t made anything quite as fancy before. My mom used to make all of my clothes when I was little, so it is in my blood 🙂

  57. Meghna | 31st Mar 17

    Oh!! I love this dress. You are amazing. Love the details on the dress. Spot on. Kudos girl!

  58. Jessica | Salt & Life Blog | 31st Mar 17

    That dress is beautiful!!!!!!! You’re so talented! My daughter LOVES Beauty and the Beast and I just saw an adorable Belle dress at Target. Yours, though, is stunning!!! Thanks for the tutorial!

  59. Sharon | 31st Mar 17

    such a cute dress! i love it! xo, sharon

  60. Shaheen Khan | 31st Mar 17

    You are so talented. I would love to be able to make something like this for my daughter. I always have a perfect dress in my imagination but have trouble finding something like that in any kid’s store. I definitely want to learn the art of sewing a dress with all those cute frills and fancies.

  61. Kay | 31st Mar 17

    How adorable and your instructions made it feel super easy . I am not handy in that department at all lol this dress will always be a memory for that little girl.

  62. liz | 31st Mar 17

    We watched the movie on opening night and it was magical. This tutorial is absolutely wonderful!

  63. Sara | 1st Apr 17

    I can’t believe I still haven’t seen the movie yet. The final dress is beautiful and the details are intricate. You have a real talent!

  64. Ana Ojha | 4th Apr 17

    What a gorgeous dress for 1-year-old! I’m sure the birthday gal would have been looking pretty in this beautiful Belle’s gown!

  65. The Gifted Gabber | 4th Apr 17

    Wow! It’s gorgeous! That is going to be one stunning birthday princess!

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