"Winnie: Why was I cursed with such idiot sisters?
Sarah: Just lucky I guess."
- Sarah Sanderson, Hocus Pocus
While I might not have always loved Halloween when growing up (I'm REALLY not into all the spooky stuff), now I look forward to it now every year. It is a time when all my children let me make something for them because they know that "Mama made" is more fun, durable, and personalised than any costume we could buy at the store.
Last year, I tested my sewing skills and creativity by making my daughter a Cruella "Dumpster Dress" costume. I found new uses for horsehair braid and fabric paint, and I even made my first bustle skirt with handmade button loops. Ellie and I had so much fun playing with wigs, make-up, nail polish, and fancy fabrics that we don't typically use. But if you want to know more, you can read about the behind-the-scenes of this outfit on the Wild Seeds Patterns Blog.
This year, I knew that I wanted to make another special costume for my daughter. And with the new Hocus Pocus 2 movie being released, I thought it would be fun to team up with my friends and fellow designers at Wild Seeds Patterns to create the Sanderson sisters' costumes.
Ellie was immediately drawn to Sarah Sanderson because pink and purple are two of her favorite colors. I looked in my The Art of Disney Costuming book (which I highly recommend to anyone that loves Disney fashion) for a more detailed picture of the dress and was absolutely thrilled to see that the bodice was decorated with a beaded floral embroidery design (in case you didn't already know, I kinda LOVE embroidery).
Whenever I create a new dress, my first step is always to sketch out the design. I choose my colors, my fabric types, and the patterns I will use or modify to get the look I want.
This dress mostly used the Camellia dress pattern because the v-waist bodice has a perfect corset look. For the beading, I chose to sew together the front bodice pieces before adding any embroidery in order to make sure the designs wouldn't get caught in the sewing machine (and possibly break a needle in the process). This stretch velvet was a bit tricky to embroider on because if the threads are too loose, the design doesn't look good. But if you pull the threads too tight, it puckers the fabric. You can watch a short time lapse video of how I did the embroidery and beading on my Instagram stories @southernmagnolia.design.
As far as modifications go, I added some width to the shoulder straps and gathered the areas where it would be attached to the dress. Then I punched in some metal grommets for the tie-up corset. If using a stretch fabric like mine, it is especially important to use iron on stabilizer to the back of the fabric where the holes will be. Otherwise the grommets will just fall out when the fabric stretches.
The lining of the skirt is the midi length option from the pattern in purple linen. On top, I used the side ruffles from the Magnolia dress pattern and a layer of purple and mustard organza for the back and sides of the skirt, as well as a red lace panel to the front.
For the undershirt, I used that same red lace and the Iris Top pattern in the cropped length with the long sleeves and low back options. Then Ellie wore the shirt backward (so the lower neckline was in the front) with the dress over it.
The cape and bloomers were self-drafted because I wanted Ellie's outfit to be as close to the movie as I could. And I absolutely love how it all turned out!
Be sure to check out the Wild Seeds blog for the behind the scenes of Winifred and Mary Sanderson, made by the talented Angie and Estienne!