So many little girls dream of taking a vacation to Disney World, dressing up like their favorite Disney princess, and then dancing in front of Cinderella Castle – just like on the TV commercials. And all that is possible. But it can also be expensive and a tad bit impractical.

Fortunately, there are options. Let’s take a look at the Disney-certified (and expensive) options first, and then look at some less expensive – and perhaps even more practical – alternatives

Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique

Disney knows that little girls love princesses. Starting back in 2006, Disney opened the first Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique to help bring that princess magic to the masses. The boutique is actually a salon for kids that provides princess makeovers.

Disney princess dresses can be fun - but also expensive.

Disney princess dresses can be fun – but also expensive.

The process is enough to take any girl over the top. And it has a price to match. Disney offers starting packages at less than $60 that include hairstyling, make up, and a sash and tote. But from there it goes up – including a top-of-the-line package that that adds nail polish, a complete princess costume, and photos of the event for a cool $190. That makes for a day to remember, but also a nasty credit card bill to pay later.

Princess Dress Up Alternatives

The boutique experience is sure to amaze, but there are alternatives that are less expensive, time consuming, and scratchy. Let’s take a look:

1 – Make Your Own Costume

One of the most expensive components of a princess makeover is the dress. And not only is it expensive, but it can be very hot – especially in the Orlando humidity. Simplicity, the dress pattern folks, offers many Disney princess patterns stating at just $10. Look for some fabric on sale, or use something you’ve already got, and you just might be able to create your own princess gown.

You don't have to spend a fortune to look like a princess.

You don’t have to spend a fortune to look like a princess.

2- Buy Your Costume At Home

You might be surprised that you can find literally hundreds of Disney princess gowns on Ebay for a fraction of the cost you would pay at the Disney parks. You can get the dress before your trip and save the time and expense of visiting the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique.

3 – Focus On Accessories

A few key accessories can provide the feel of being a princess without the expense and the heavy materials. Try a crown, sash, or scepter. These things are less expensive than a full outfit, and easy to stash in a locker or a stroller if they get to be a pain to carry around.

4- Deck Out The Shoes

All ladies like shoes, right? Why not spruce up an old pair of comfortable walking shoes with glitter and jewels? This will allow your princess to enjoy a little bling while still wearing sensible shoes across the miles of walking that Disney World requires.

What little princess wouldn't like some sparkly accessories?

What little princess wouldn’t like some sparkly accessories?

Do you allow your little girl to dress like a princess at Disney World?