Break It Down: Dorothy

If we had just lopped a good eight inches off of Millie's hair and remembered to put in curlers when we got home on Hallowe'en Eve, she would have been perfect! ;) Everyone except one person knew who she was, though, so I guess trimming her glory wasn't necessary.

Toto was indisposed, so for these snapshots we used his understudy, a lovely young thing named Olivia de Havilland (more to come on her later).

And the chicken is Billina, of course, the stubborn and spunky companion to Dorothy in a few of the Oz books. We can't have a Mill-orothy without a chicken in tow!

I didn't think I could pull this costume off, because I'm pretty thick when it comes to garment construction, but while scouring the internet for someone to save me, I ran across this tutorial for a little girl Dorothy costume. Hurrah and THANK YOU! I made the bulk of the dress in one long night but nearly ruined it by chopping huge armholes that were more fit for a gnome king than Dorothy, which required lots of cross-my-fingers adjustments once Millie tried in on the next day. I also nearly ran out of fabric because, having never done it before, I hadn't realized how much cutting on the bias for the little details would gobble up fabric! I ended up making some small changes to the straps and sleeves to mimic the original, and Millie can tell you how astonished and relieved I was that it all worked out. I couldn't stop walking past the dress, staring bug-eyed at it, and jubilantly exclaiming, "Wow! I just can't believe it!" This was after she kept catching me muttering, "Please, please, please, please, please..." as I was sewing it. Ha! All's well that ends well.

Thanks to hand-me-down fabric and notions, including some blue checked fabric that my sister Becky gave me in the nick of time, Millie's costume cost of grand total of $0.00....

...a grand total of $0.00, that is, until I realized that my hand-me-down red sequin roll was only going to last for one and a quarter ruby slippers.  Dorothy needed two ruby slippers in order to get home, though, so I caved and bought more sequins. I used less than a dollar's worth.  (FYI: I have NINETY-THREE yards left of a 100-yard roll, so you know who to call when you need to get home again.)

Even after tromping through the mud trick-or-treating, they still sparkled the next day, so I, Ebenezer Scrooge, have no regrets.


Rebecca said...

I know you described the dress as being almost in total ruin at one point- but it can be so hard to believe looking at the end product!

The sleeves and neck have RicRac for goodness' sake! (I at first typed Riff Raff- which didn't seem quite right.... That's hilarious.)

And the SHOES! They are incredible. Maybe you could use the remaining 99 yards of red sparkle to make your Smee costume stripes!? ;-)

Abigail said...

I found it hard to believe, myself! Amazement would be the right word, I think.

Riff-raff. We've got that, too!

Or maybe just wrap it around my entire body and go as a roll of red sequins....there's enough of it. :)