A lot has changed with Disney traditions since I was little. I don't remember kids dressing up like the princesses to visit the parks. Discovering that little tidbit last year was total news to me. The Peanut is very much NOT into the princesses--Buzz Lightyear, Nemo, Peter Pan and every last pirate is more her speed. So the thought of dressing her up in something itchy and frilly seemed utterly ridiculous for us.
However, I still wanted the girls to feel special in their outfits for our park visits. It ended up being trickier than I thought. I'm not a huge fan of having big character t-shirts. Mostly because I feel the designs are missing the mark. The only girl styles have Minnie & the princesses coated in pink & glitter. The boy versions are all too dark and black & navy & grungy looking to me for my little girl. There doesn't seem to be an in-between for my active, adventurous Peanut.
Red & White Disney-inspired clothes:
So I decided to get creative. I was giddy with excitement when Gymboree launched their ladybug line last year. Those big fat white polka dots on the Disney red background were perfect! They remind me so much of Micky & Minnie without being too frilly or girly for the Peanut. The accessories all matched that same style. I got sunglasses & sun hats and we used them all summer long last year.
If you like that look, you're in luck: Gymboree Outlet stores carry last year's designs and I spoke with a saleswoman over the weekend who mentioned this line is likely to hit stores in the next 2 weeks or so. (No guarantees!) So if you're looking for cute & Disney-ish clothes for your girls, this is the perfect opportunity to snag the look from the photo above.
If you do want to dress your little girl in a princess outfit, have you seen the Disney event over on Zulily this week? This Snow White dress is the first thing I'd snag if my daughters were so inclined. Adorable!
My recommendation in picking a princess dress is to look for something as itch-free as possible, short in length, with short sleeves so your little peanut doesn't roast in the crowds! Or be prepared with a back-up outfit if they want to change into something comfier after your photo ops are done.
Handmade from Etsy:
Another great spot for Minnie mouse inspired outfits is Lil Bug Clothing. I found her via Etsy but she has her own shop.
We went with the halter & shorts outfits for the girls but she has several styles. If the mouse silhouette is important to you for photos, I recommend gravitating towards the styles that have it on the chest vs. the ones that have it closer to the hem line. We had both styles and the chest one worked much better for photos.
The halter style was super cute in the back because the girls had big fat bows there. The straps are nice and wide which makes for an adorable tie.
The red fabric was very soft t-shirt material and the polka dots were more like quilting cottons. Very light and breathable with comfy elastic waists.
I had the cutest plain white sandals all picked out for the girls and I got seriously yelled at by Tim. He was terrified their tiny toes would be run over in the park craziness. He insisted they wear closed-toe shoes.
In the end, he was probably right. They wore socks and the silver glitter sneakers you see in that photo above every day. We didn't have any problems with blisters because they rode on the stroller as much as they could. You can read more about the stroller we loved here.
I did still pack the sandals for our time outside of the parks and for at the hotel. It was definitely nice to have both options.
If you're looking for sandals, I highly recommend these. They come in a ton of color options and can just be rinsed down when dirty but look nice with a dress or nicer outfit.
If you're looking for closed toe tennis shoes, I think these are adorable options:
Silver sparklers | Red & White mary janes | Red and white tennis shoes| Silver mary janes
At the end of the day, we loved putting our exhausted peanuts to bed in some Disney jammies I bought ahead of the trip. While I may be a little picky about what they're wearing during the daytime, at night it was a no-holds-barred character fest. Little Pea adored her Tinkerbell jammies & the Peanut rocked her Mickey Mouse ones (from the boy section--Disney, PLEASE make girl sized Mickey jammies!!)
I found our jammies at the Disney Outlet for a great price, but I also noticed Zulily frequently has them. Check out their Princess themed ones here for a great example.
Please Note: Zulily is an awesome daily deals site. If you missed the Disney event, they will notify you the next time they feature products in that category. You just have to sign up for an account and select them as one of your favorite brands.
Don't forget mom! I love these adorable red and white polka dotted choices for ladies. How cute would these be with a Minnie Mouse headband? Check out the full collection here.