Whether you are on your way to a costume ball or a Civil War reenactment, channel your inner Scarlett O'Hara with an authentic Southern belle dress. A traditional belle dress includes a tight bodice, short sleeves and, of course, a huge hoop skirt. The dress should be made of cotton, and may feature ruffles or bows as trim. To put together a realistic Southern belle outfit, you need some accessories, starting with a corset to give you the right shape for the dress. The dress does not stand out on its own, so you need a set of vintage hoops to wear under it. Finish off your outfit with gloves and a hat or bonnet. You are not likely to find this kind of dress in your average clothing store, but on eBay, you can find a huge inventory of Southern belle dresses. Search for one in the right size, or buy a pattern and boldly attempt to make your own. Whatever you choose, your authentic Southern belle dress is sure to turn heads and, like Scarlett O'Hara, make you the belle of the ball.
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