Make your own Southern Belle Costume

The epitome of femininity, the idea of a Southern Belle originated in pre–Civil war high society. These lovely and privileged young ladies were the daughters of rich land owners and were stereotypically known for sitting on the veranda sipping lemonade in full gowns which male suitors came a calling. Perhaps the most iconic Southern Belle of all time is a fictional character named Scarlet O’Hara. This heroine from “Gone With the Wind” typifies the beauty, grace and true grit found in the ladies of this time period. The term Southern Belle also applies to modern day women who feature these sample characteristics.

Items needed to make your Southern Belle Costume

Items Needed:
Full ball gown
Hoop skirt
Sausage curl wig
Picture hat
White gloves
Paper Fan
Pearl necklace


Step 1: You’ll look like the pride of the South in a beautiful Southern Belle costume. You can find a great, full ball gown that looks like it just walked out of Dixieland if you shopped in a resale shop (it seems like prom dresses in the early 80s were reminiscent of Southern Belle costumes!). Look for something very feminine and frilly without being sexy or revealing. Make sure the skirt of your dress is “poofed” out properly with a hoop skirt or crinolines.

Step 2: Scarlet O’Hara had the best Southern Belle hair; dark, thick and full of sausage–shaped curl – almost like a living doll! If you have long hair, you can roll and set it to achieve this look or simply don a Southern Belle wig.

Step 3: A Southern girl knows to accessorize, accessorize, accessorize. A big, floppy picture hat tied with a silk ribbon under your chin will keep the damaging sun off your porcelain skin. White gloves and a pearl necklace will lend a charm–school air and a paper fan will keep you cool on those balmy summer afternoons.

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