The plan is set, the rules are clear, the outfit ideas are noted down. Time for the next big step: The hunt. If you want to catch up on Part I first, click here!
A brief disclaimer: I am aware that having an extra budget of 100 Pounds to dress like made up characters for a very expensive holiday is an extremely privileged position to be in. Also, the clothing industry is one of the least sustainable or fair industries in the world.
By using a lot of what I already own, borrowing items from friends and purchasing the rest second hand, I kept this endeavour as sustainable as I could. Since this adventure will increase the number of clothes in my wardrobe, I shall declutter it after the holiday is over and donate the excess pieces to charity.
The first piece
Hunting the pieces down and coming up with ideas was great fun.
What I found more challenging was making the first few purchases because that meant that I had committed to an idea and that I now had to build the rest of the outfit around that item. With my rules for the challenge, I felt there is little room for mispurchases and mistakes. But, as we know already, there are no mistakes in Disneybounding. So I relaxed a little and grabbed the first item.
The very first piece that I bought was a colourful dress with lots of purples and blues and yellows in it for my Kevin outfit. I was planning to combine it with a dark blue top and yellow leggings. I found the skirt second hand and the woman I bought it from told me that she is decluttering her wardrobe and selling everything in order to save up for her wedding. That is the beauty in buying second hand – the pieces have a backstory and you get in touch with the people that owned them. So I, too, started telling people what I was doing and why I was seeking particular pieces.
That increased the fun ten-fold. People were curious about Disneybounding itself and started to share my enthusiasm for the upcoming trip. Some people even asked where they could see their sold items again and if they could follow me somewhere on the internet. It was also a great help for negotiating the prices of the items as many people were supportive and wanted to help me pull together the outfit for as little money as I possibly could.
It made the experience so much more personal and fun. And when second-hand items are kept in the cycle instead of discarding them, chances are that there is always someone looking for exactly the thing that you wanted to get rid of and both parties benefit from finding each other. Like the woman with the colourful dress. She gets to be a bride, I get to be Kevin. Win-win.
Parallel to the second-hand shops, I started asking family and friends if I could borrow some of their clothing. I was hoping that I wouldn’t have to buy the pieces that were a little less niche, like a green t-shirt, a brown belt or a pink top. And indeed: Friends and family came through and handed over their belts, tops, accessories. Some of them were more invested in what I was doing than others and no doubt some of them raised an eyebrow or two when they went to get whatever I had asked them for.
Planning for departure
As outfits were beginning to take shape, the holiday itself came closer and closer. Planning a trip to Disney requires a diploma. There are all sorts of bookings and reservations that one has to make way, way before the trip. Needless to say, I watched what felt like every youtube video ever produced on that topic. There were times where that stressed me out a little – it is a once in a lifetime trip and they really make you believe if you don’t do all the preparing you are going to miss out. But in general, it added to the build-up for the journey.
So, I kept turning over second-hand shops for clothes that I felt could work, changed the outfit ideas a lot and scrapped some of the characters all together. I always reminded myself that this was supposed to be fun and not an extra chore that needed to be done before Disney.
Can I ride a coaster in this?
Another realization that I had further into the process that I care to admit was about the practicality of the items. Now, in my normal life, I usually don’t wear anything that is impractical or that I don’t feel comfortable in. I don’t own many formal clothes and I don’t wear heels. But for Disney, I realized (yes, whilst watching the countless youtube videos), there is even more to factor in. In my normal life, I don’t ride coasters in the unpredictable Florida weather whilst managing insane crowds and being on the go without the comforts and options of my own home. I might have fallen pray here to all the lists on the internet like “10 things you need to bring to Disney” or “20 mistakes Disney newbies make”. If I were to follow this list, I would probably need a small shopping cart to haul all the things around the park that are considered essential.
Not long now
Anyway, I guess I will learn as I go along and find out which Disney character was the most or the least practical to dress like in the parks. Regardless of how it’ll all work out, so far it has been so much fun and it has hyped me up even more for a trip I thought I couldn’t possibly be any more excited about.
Two weeks to go now and I cannot wait to see the Disney Magic for myself!
Have you ever been to one of the Disney Parks? Which one and what did you wear in order to be dressed practically for the occasion?