According to the rules of Disney Parks, no guest may dress in costume past the age of 14 so as not to interfere with the work of Cast Members and confuse younger guests, but that hasn’t stopped some of the biggest fans from working around the rules in order to pay respect and homage to some of their favorite characters.
Accidentally coined by blogger Leslie Kay in 2011 who runs the Tumblr Disneybound, the practice of Disneybounding is “a way to express your love of Disney through fashion”. Kay began putting together contemporary outfits based on Disney characters and after receiving a massive amount of positive feedback, made it the entire focus of her blog.
Unlike cosplay, which is more about emulating the character’s style or look exactly, Kay explains that Disneybounding is about using that as a jumping off point, without resorting to props or wigs to pull looks together. The result is tons of different, creative, and impressive looks that run the gamut from outrageous to minimalistic. These are just 25 that we’ve chosen for being exceptionally awesome, and, while you can definitely hoard some ideas for Halloween or a costume party, you could take a page from Kay and wear them every day!
24 This Chic Snow White
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs may have been released in the 1930s, but we’re getting major ‘50s vibes from this Disneybound look! Created by Disney superfan Allison Erland (who goes by Lady Damfino on her Instagram), this Snow White look is just one of her examples of putting a vintage, handmade twist on some of your favorite characters. From the hourglass silhouette to the coordinated hairband, belt, nails, lips, and cat-eye sunglasses, we’re swooning over this primary-colored look!
23 This Graceful Cinderella
We don’t know about you, but we’ve certainly never looked this elegant when we’re riding a bike! Bringing the Disney classic Princess Cinderella into the 21st century, we love that this Disneybounder kept the famous Cinderella hairstyle but brought a more modern (and less costume-y) twist to the outfit. The grey tulle skirt and layered tank tops are whimsical and ethereal, proving that you don’t need a fairy godmother to transform you into the princess of your dreams!
22 This Stylish Woody
Even if this Disneybounder hadn’t been standing next to a life-size Woody from Toy Story, her outfit is so on point that we’d have no doubt as to who she’s trying to be!
Meshing Woody’s trademark cowboy hat and his vibrant red scarf into a chic floppy red hat and finding cow printed socks to pay homage to his vest, we have to give props to this woman for really turning our favorite animated cowboy into something that is way more stylish than we ever thought possible! Giddy up!
21 This Magnificent Mouse Duo
Has there ever been a pair as elegant as these two? We don’t know if it’s the white gloves, the cat-eye sunnies, or the timeless pairing of black and red, but these ladies have certainly brought a chic spin to cartoon classics Mickey and Minnie Mouse!
Even if neither girl was donning those famous mouse ears, we think we’d know exactly who they were Disneybounding as, because they have nailed it to vintage, monochromatic perfection! A perfect Halloween costume for a pair of BFFs, don’t you think?
20 These Ultra-Glam Monsters
Mike Wazowski and James P. “Sully” Sullivan aren’t exactly the characters you think of when you think of glam, but we’ve been proven wrong by these two Disneybounding trendsetters! Thanks to the neon shades that characterize each Monsters, Inc. character, there’s no question about who these ladies are playing as. We especially love the furry stole in Sully’s fur pattern, the Monsters, Inc. purse, and the photo op itself where “Mike’s” face gets covered yet again!
19 These Swapped 'Alice In Wonderland' Characters
There’s nothing we love more than a solid gender-bending of beloved characters. To do so successfully requires a lot of creativity, skill, and resourcefulness, and these two Disney fans have absolutely nailed it.
Alongside their Disney Cast Member counterparts, these fans have used their characters’ color schemes and little details (check out the black band on Male Alice’s hat to echo Alice’s headband) to transform the tea party from Alice in Wonderland into something a little madder and a lot more fun!
18 This Sultry Scar
Allison Erland strikes again, this time using makeup to pay homage to one of Disney’s greatest villains, Scar from The Lion King.
We’ve seen some Disney fans go all out with the makeup, but recreating Scar’s famous disfigurement in a way that is both gorgeous and instantly recognizable requires a great deal of talent. Add to that a color-schemed outfit, some safari-themed jewelry (note that leopard print bangle on her wrist) and a little bit of wildness to the hair and we have a glamorous version of the evil lion.
17 This ‘50s Style Ariel
Fortunately for most people attempting to dress like their favorite Disney characters, most of them are so well known that some clever color-blocking will do the trick! This Disneybound fan saw that Ariel of The Little Mermaid had three colors that defined her – red, lilac, and green – and went for it with a pin-up silhouette that we could totally see Ariel herself rocking. We love that this fan didn’t try and get too nautical and risk entering costume territory, but still paid homage to Ariel’s sea roots with a purple starfish hairpin!
16 This Dapper Mickey
Not everyone can make a bowtie look good, but luckily for this Disney fan, he knows how to kill it!
Mickey Mouse has always been one of the more dapper Disney characters, thanks to his special occasion bowtie, ubiquitous white gloves, and button-front trousers, and it only takes a couple accessories to look like you’re totally at home in the House of Mouse. With a pair of red pants, a black dress shirt, and a bowtie (this Disney fan has forgone the gloves, unfortunately), we have a minimalist but totally handsome Disneybound look!
15 This Sophisticated Sleeping Beauty And Prince Philip
Some girls might like to dress up as Disney Princesses in their full royal regalia: we’re talking tiaras, ball gowns, and jewelry. Others, like this Disney fan, prefer their Princesses at the beginning of their stories – and when they look this good, who can blame them?
This gorgeous couple takes the classic ‘50s style of the animated film and modernizes it just a little bit. Plus, since no normal person can walk around dressed as Prince Phillip, we love the addition of a knotted sweater and waistcoat!
14 This Sassy Tweedle Dee And Tweedle Dum
Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum are more annoying than anything, and yet, if you didn’t grow up with siblings, dressing up as someone else can be considered a novelty or even fun! Case in point: These girls, dressed as the twins from Alice in Wonderland (the original, not the Tim Burton remake).
Color-blocking wins again here, but the real details that knock these looks out of the part are the tiny beanies, ruffled knee socks, and matching sneakers!
13 This 'Frozen' Trio
If you’ve got a few friends who are die-hard into Disney, then this is a look worth trying out! Like so many other Disneybound outfits, it’s all about the accessories with this Frozen trio. Standard colored dresses or skirt-and-shirt combos get dresses up with a purple scarf and braids for Anna, some black buttons or stickers and an orange scarf for Olaf, and a blue scarf and one long braid for Elsa! Budget-friendly and instantly recognizable, this is a Disneybound slam dunk!
12 This Super Cute Smee
We love seeing Disney fans pay homage to lesser-known or older characters, like Smee from Peter Pan. As Captain Hook’s right-hand man (pun totally intended), Smee usually got the short end of the stick when it came to serving his captain, but, fortunately for him, he at least found a fan in this Disneybounder, who brought an adorable twist to his striped shirt look! Add a red stocking cap or beanie and we have a crew member who also makes a super cute date night look!
11 This Genderbent Ariel And Prince Eric
We’ve already seen a vintage-style Ariel, but what about a male Ariel? And how about a female Eric to match? We love how simple and easy these looks are without sacrificing the spirit of their cartoon predecessors. And subbing in a red cap for Ariel’s iconic mane of fiery hair? Genius!
Couple costumes are a pretty popular choice on Halloween, but thinking outside of the box and swapping characters wins major points from us in the creativity and ingenuity department.
10 This Menswear-Inspired Cinderella
When we think of Disney Princesses, we often imagine them when they’re dressed to the nines. After all, this is when they become Princesses after they’ve found their Prince, gotten married, and had their happily ever after.
That’s why we’re so in love with this menswear-inspired take on Cinderella’s working outfit because it’s completely different! From the Oxford shoes to the waistcoat to the collared shirt and short hair, we adore this thoroughly reinvented take on an iconic – and underutilized – look.
9 This Vintage-Style Flit
If you’re not familiar with the name Flit, we suggest staging a rewatch of Pocahontas ASAP! This hummingbird sidekick finally gets to take center stage thanks to this Disney fan’s interpretation of his beautiful colors.
Flit gets a vintage upgrade thanks to high-waisted trousers and a shrunken cardigan in the colors of his feathers, with an extra spot of color in the bandana and sunglasses, whose shape makes for a very bird-esque look! This one might take some explaining to those who aren’t diehard fans, but we consider it a total win.
8 This Honey-Loving Winnie The Pooh
To be a successful Disneybounder, it’s all about the accessories. Take this Winnie the Pooh, for example. On the surface, it looks like a cute yellow dress and a red cardigan, but if you look a little closer, you notice that this Pooh fan is wearing a soft brown hat, similar to something our favorite honey-loving bear occasionally wears, a honey pot-shaped purse, and an appliqué of a honeypot on the hem of her skirt! Clearly, Tigger and Eeyore are thrilled with the newest addition to their crew!
7 This Feminine Peter Pan
Now, this Disneybounding fan could have gone the safe route and dressed up as Tinkerbell, which is definitely a Halloween and cosplay favorite, but instead, she challenged herself to interpret the titular Peter Pan himself!
The green fascinator with the ragged hem of the shirt and the skinny brown belt are on point for the Lost Boy, but it’s the pose for this photo that brings everything together. Also, is it just us, or do her features look a little elfin too?
6 This Color-Perfect Nick Wilde And Judy Hopps
A newer addition to the Disney canon, we have Nick Wilde and Judy Hopps from Zootopia! The first instance of Disneybounding couple Sarah Sterling and Leo Camacho to grace our list, these two prove that you don’t have to go over the top to emulate a character. Just take a look at Sterling’s nods to Judy, with her long pigtails for Judy’s ears and fascinator for her police cap! Check out her Instagram for more stellar examples of the couple’s Disney interpretations!
5 This Simple Anna
While we have a pint-sized and grinning Elsa in full Disney costume who looks absolutely adorable, what we’re really here to talk about is this simplistic Anna who, with a skirt, shirt, tank top, and braids manages to perfectly convey one of the newest Disney Princesses!
It doesn’t hurt that this Disneybounding fan has coloring similar to her animated counterpart, but we’re blown away by how perfectly this look came together with what appears to be minimal effort!
4 This Stunning Jasmine
Okay, but how gorgeous is this Jasmine? The animated version’s outfit has never been exactly wearable on a regular basis, thanks to its gigantic harem pants and tiny, off-the-shoulder crop top, but this dress is something we can totally get behind! Not only is the color absolutely stunning on this Disney fan, but the flowing shape perfectly captures the vibe of the animated Princess. The final touch? The necklace which is a dead ringer for Jasmine’s own jewelry!
3 This Dreamy Rapunzel
We know that Rapunzel is generally known for her long, golden hair, but it was also a sign of her imprisonment at the hands of Mother Gothel, who uses Rapunzel’s crowning glory to her own benefit. Because of that, we love this Disney fan’s version of the Princess – after her hair’s been cut!
With a crown of flowers and a dress dotted with florals, this fan encapsulates the motif that permeates much of the film (and Rapunzel’s artwork on the walls of her tower).
2 This Minimalist Moana
On the left, we have the Disney Cast Member Moana, with ankle decorations, sash, and (very obvious) wig. On the right, we have a much more wearable version of the newest boss lady to enter into the Disney canon. A shortened skirt and a smaller necklace make this Disneybounding outfit not only more flattering but also an excellent homage to the animated outfit! Plus, it looks like Moana could easily sail the seas with a skirt that allows for a little more leg flexibility!
1 This Unimpressed Belle And Smug Gaston
Our second and final instance of Disneybounding couple Sarah Sterling and Leo Camacho, we have this minimalist, pared down, and totally doable Belle and Gaston! Seriously, could this outfit be any easier to replicate? All you’d need for Belle is a pair of white shorts, a blue tank top, and a low side pony, while all Gaston requires is a red shirt, a yellow shirt, and a sense of smug entitlement. As a last-minute costume, this is a pretty killer (and creative) example to try out!