17 different women, 36 crazy children, 0 babies in utero
Adventures, Advice and Questions from a group of Mormon women who met in Queens, NY and have now scattered all over the place.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Princess Alternatives

For those of us who have daughters, we know the affect that the Disney Princesses can have on their and OUR lives. Don't get me wrong, I love the whole Disney Princess thing, especially the LIVE ones at the Theme Parks, but I remember all too well that overwhelming feeling when Pukey first started becoming obsessed.

I could not BELIEVE how many products there were out there, branded with Disney Princess. Umbrellas, jewelry boxes, socks, tea sets, raincoats, pajamas, clothes, underwear (actually the underwear helped with potty training), pens, markers, coloring books, the list goes on and on. I feel like I have perhaps posted or commented on the likes of this before, sorry if it's redundant.

Anyway, I was at this LARGE toy store in NYC called FAO Schwarz yesterday, and it got me thinking about alternatives to the DISNEY Princesses. Honestly, my daughters do not discriminate...they pretty much love ANYTHING princess. Carrie and my mother in law were the first brave souls to present the girls with Princess, but not DISNEY princess stuff, by way of books. So, I have just compiled a short list of NON-Disney Princess but AWESOME and TOTALLY WORTHY Princess stuff, all the same...here:

Princess and the Pizza
Paper Bag Princess
Princess Knight
Do Princesses where hiking boots, kiss frogs, scrape knees?
My new favorite: The Princess and the Pea

Chapter Books:
Ella Enchanted
Tale of Despereaux
I'm SURE there are more....

I am a BIG fan of the Faerie Tale Theatre series from the 80's for all things Fairy Tales.
My favorites in the series:
Dancing Princesses
Frog Prince
Sleeping Beauty

Princess Bride
, also a book
Princess Diaries, also a book.
Princess and the Pauper (the only worth Barbie DVD)
And I have heard Anastasia is good, but I have never seen it.

Topsy Turvy Dolls. These dolls feature a different princess on each side. Cinderella/Belle, Cinderella before and after, etc.

Pamela Drake's Wooden Toys. This collection comes with fabric for your daughter to design a princess dress. Basically they just sort of fold it under the wooden cut out....

After a quick google search, I found a few other products that intrigued me:
Princess Puzzle
Groovy Girls Princess
Princess Elise Magnetic Dress Up
Princess Hand Puppet
Little People Lil Kingdom

Ideas for Princess Play
Make your own Topsy Turvy doll---if you are a sewing type
Also, make your own dress up
Make up a story and either act it out, puppet it out, or draw it out. You can even laminate and bind it at kinkos.

So, there you go. De-Disney yourself, and get a few of these great items.


  • This comment has been removed by the author.
    posted by Blogger Kadee at 4/12/2007 05:56:00 AM  

  • I have a princess crazed 3 year old and grateful for your post, we'll be going to the library this afternoon to check out some princess books. One of my favorites is the Paperbag Princess, another one I like is Cinder Edna.
    On another note, I've been lurking on this blog almost from the get-go and I've always enjoyed the post and comments, keep up the good work ladies!
    posted by Blogger Kadee at 4/12/2007 06:04:00 AM  

  • My girls (almost 3 and 5) love princesses, but are pretty easy to please. They will take towels or blankets and make beautiful princess dresses - and a nice sisterinlaw went christmas shopping right after halloween and they got a whole bucket of costumes for dressup. My other favorite (for the older princess) is the series of enchanted forest books by Patricia C Wrede - in the first one a princess runs away to work for a dragon...
    posted by Blogger Lucy at 4/12/2007 06:37:00 AM  

  • Thanks for the list. Princesses are loved in this house too and the non-Disney stuff makes me go less crazy. Thanks for the list. We just got our first Woodkin dress up doll from a friend, and Princess loves it. I can't imagine how thrilled she would be with the princess version.

    Here are a few book additions:

    (not a chapter book, but better for a 4+ year old.
    Cindy Ellen: A Wild Western Cinderella

    And here is a great no-sew tutu tutorial for the princess dress-up box

    The princess stories on StoryNory are pretty popular around here too.
    posted by Blogger TftCarrie at 4/12/2007 07:28:00 AM  

  • Some more princess-ish chapter books:

    "The Enchanted Forest Chronicles" by Patricia C. Wrede. In order:
    "Dealing with Dragons"
    "Searching for Dragons"
    "Calling on Dragons"
    "Talking to Dragons"

    "The Ordinary Princess" by Kaye, M. M. (Mary Margaret).

    All of these are still favorites of mine. :)
    posted by Anonymous Proud Daughter of Eve at 4/12/2007 09:18:00 AM  

  • I have three girls and The Paper Bag Princess is a huge favorite.
    Also, I loved Princess Academy by Shannon Hale (a bit more for the young adult reader rather than my kids)
    We also have a CD of music from the Nutcracker, Swan Lake and Sleeping Beauty ballets. A little tulle from the fabric store and a dollar store tiara and you are good to go with your own homemade ballet!
    We love the Disney princesses too, but I've found that my girls take their inspiration from those stories and then just go to town making the story their own.
    posted by Blogger normal mom at 4/12/2007 02:22:00 PM  

  • Oh- I almost forgot our new favorite book- Falling For Rapunzel by Leah Wilcox. Very clever picture book and fun to read outloud.
    posted by Blogger normal mom at 4/12/2007 02:24:00 PM  

  • My girls love the Barbie Princess movies - Princess and the Pauper and 12 Dancing Princesses...

    My kindergartner enjoys the Tiara Club books - beginning chapter books with plenty of pictures.
    posted by Anonymous Sue at 4/12/2007 05:34:00 PM  

  • Sadly, the princess obsession doesn't always fade out in the teen years. My roommates and I all openly admit to taking the disney dvd princess quiz this past semester to find out which princess we were most like.
    posted by Anonymous Maria Tortilla at 4/12/2007 07:06:00 PM  

  • I'm all about generic. I was so proud to make my little one a pretty pink sparkly princess dress one Halloween that had nothing to do with Disney. I just don't like being an advertisement or feeling like I have to get THEIR stuff. But nonetheless, it's fun to surprise Abby with a Disney princess thing now and then because she does love them. Thanks for the list--that was a great idea! It will be used!
    posted by Blogger Katie at 4/13/2007 07:27:00 AM  

  • We have a few books that my 5 year old adores that are about girls who loves sparkley, pretty things, but that don't mention PRINCESS.

    Fancy Nancy--about a little girl who loves to be fancy, but is cursed with a plain family. The illustrations are beautiful, and the writing is fun, fun, fun. We just saw a new one at the library this week. Fancy Nancy and the Posh Puppy.

    Lilly and the Purple Plastic Purse: by Kevin Henkes. Lilly is a mouse who wears red cowboy boots. In this book, she cannot control her urge to talk about her new purple plastic purse at school, and ends up getting in trouble by her teacher Mr. Slinger. There is also a newish one of the Lilly books too called Lilly's Big Day where her teacher Mr. Slinger is getting married, and Lilly is desperate to be a flower girl in the wedding.

    And then, there are the Angelina Ballerina books. There is a whole series of them. There are a couple of these that are about Angelina visiting and dancing for princesses.

    For younger kids, Olivia the pig books are fun, and there are quite a few of those.
    posted by Blogger Michelle at 4/13/2007 11:41:00 AM  

  • Love the list. My baby girl is 1 so I'm sure we will be getting into the princess thing real soon! An alternative to disney will be nice.
    posted by Blogger Bubbles at 4/13/2007 02:26:00 PM  

  • We're not to the princess stage yet, but we're already dreading it. Thanks for the suggestions!
    posted by Blogger sunny at 4/13/2007 04:14:00 PM  

  • Hi all!

    What about the "Eloise" series by Kay Thompson? She's not a princess, but she lives in the Plaza Hotel in NYC with her Nanny, a turtle named Skiperdee, and a pug named Weinee. She's about 7 years old and loves to get into all sorts of mischief. They're the cutest!
    posted by Anonymous Anonymous at 4/15/2007 02:17:00 PM  

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