As a fan of Disney movies and runDisney races, a DIY Vanellope von Schweetz Costume was bound to happen eventually. Here’s how I pulled my Vanellope von Schweetz costume together, inspired by an interview with Mark Henn, the Disney animator behind so many of the Disney Princesses! And as we all know, Vanellope absolutely is a Disney Princess. Here’s how Mark taught us to draw Vanellope and how you can turn yourself into Vanellope for your next costume needs. (Affiliate Links are included in this post).
During the Ralph Breaks the Internet Event, we were treated to so many incredible moments. This entire magical Disney-nerd dream experience was all thanks to a partnership with Disney Studios who hosted me for the trip in November.
You can catch up on the other Ralph Breaks the Internet Event posts through the list at the bottom of this post. Don’t forget to check them out!
Why am I bringing all this up again now? Because Ralph is going to break the internet again when you bring him home to your family!
The Blu-ray of Ralph Breaks the Internet comes out on February 26th, but you can download the digital release TODAY on Amazon and iTunes.
Learning to Draw Vanellope With Mark Henn
One of my favorite sessions during the Ralph Breaks the Internet event was hanging out with “The Princess Guy,” legendary Disney animator Mark Henn. He taught us how to draw Vanellope and shared a little about his history with Walt Disney Animation Studios.
We had to know: did he really think that he could teach anyone and everyone how to draw?
Not to point fingers, but there were a few of us in the room who were a little skeptical of the whole idea!
Okay, I was one of them. I’ve never had much of an artistic eye when it came to creating things, so I was just not expecting much to happen on my end.
Mark explained that he saw art and his own journey as a little like Larry Bird vs Magic Johnson. Bird had talent, sure, but he also worked his butt off to get to the level of play that he achieved.
I think having a natural talent certainly helps, but I’ve seen that other people through dilligence and hard work can get to a certain level! -Mark Henn, Disney Animator
We started off easy with some straight lines and circles. Vanellope’s proportions are similar to many classic animated characters, like Mickey.
At this stage, I was still skeptical. I mean, how do a few sticks and a circle turn into the adorableness that is Princess Vanellope von Schweetz?
OH- and guess what? There were no erasers on our pencils! GULP.
But have no fear, Mark Henn knows what he’s doing. And he was able to get us where we needed to go. -ish, anyway.
As Mark continued to draw, even I could pick up where we were going with this fun character.
Adding in the facial features helped seal the deal for me immensely.
He also pointed out as we drew the eyes that one of the things CGI (computer-generated imagery) knows is just how thick a character’s eyes are supposed to be.
Even though it’s simulated, with CG you are dealing with the light refracting off the back of the eye- which makes it looks much more real!
Vanellope’s hair is kinda like a Hershey’s Kiss, on top of her head, and then the pony-tail goes out of the point where the licorice ties are located.
At this point, I kept looking around at everyone else’s drawings hoping mine was at least recognizable.
Mark kept cheering us on and telling us that our drawings looked pretty good!
AKA, that time Mark Henn lied to us. Ha!
What do you think? I’d say my version was not near the best, but not the worst, Vanellope in the room.
This was one of those “pinch me is it real life?” moments that happen when you get to work with Disney. I mean, I was just taught how to draw by THE Mark Henn! This ranks right up there with the time Aladdin animator Eric Goldberg drew me my very own Genie.
So very, very, VERY cool.
While my drawing skills need a little more work, at least I know my Disneybounding/costume creating skills are on point. And Vanellope has been one of my most favorite costumes to put together yet!
Here’s how you can make your own Vanellope von Schweetz Costume.
Vanellope Von Schweetz Costume
So I’m known to be a little “extra” when it comes to my love of runDisney.
It’s never a question of if I’m wearing a costume to the races, but just a matter of which one I’m going to show up in.
Because for me, that’s part of the fun.
This year I chose one of the most underrated Princesses EVER for my Wine and Dine 5K running costume. And she is perfect for a Halloween costume as well.
Multitasking: it’s what I do!
Here’s how I made my Wreck-It Ralph Vanellope costume for the race (and a little Halloween fun!).
How To Make a Vanellope Von Schweetz Costume
DisNerd Confession: I didn’t even watch Wreck-It Ralph when it was in the theaters. I knew who the characters were and the basic plotline, but I just never sat down to watch the movie.
That all changed after I saw the preview sneak peek of Wreck-It Ralph 2: Ralph Breaks the Internet at the 2017 D23 Expo.
This was also the moment that I knew I’d run a Disney race in a DIY Vanellope von Schweetz Costume.
Here’s how I pulled my Vanellope von Schweetz Halloween costume together.
You will need:
- Mint green leggings
- Mint Green Hoodie or Hoodie Tank Top
- candy beads
- red pipe cleaners
- bobby pins
- white Acrylic paint
- 2 foam paintbrushes
- purple Acrylic paint
- hot pink shoelaces or paracord or yarn if you can’t find the other two!
- brown skater style skirt or Sparkle Athletic skirt
- black skate boot covers
Vanellope Von Schweets Hoodie
I lucked out here and fell in love with the feel, weight, and color of this mint green hoodie on Amazon.
I wanted to find a Vanellope von Schweetz costume tank top, in mint green, with a hoodie since this was for a run, but only had luck in the men’s versions. And they looked way too boxy on me so I sent them back.
I simply tied the end of my hot pink yarn laces to end of the drawstring that came with the hoodie. Then I pulled the pink through, removed the green, and voila! That part was easy.
I then cut small sections of the same yarn I was working with for the highlights on her shirt.
Yarn isn’t easy to thread through a needle unless you have a really big one, so I elected to go ahead and hot glue gun these down.
Honestly, this only needs to last for 2 events, and then I’m going to repurpose as a normal sweatshirt (because, see above, I LOVE IT SO MUCH!) so I didn’t worry about the placement of these parts becoming too permanent.
So the Wreck It Ralph Vanellope costume sweatshirt was done!
Now on to the leggings.
Wreck It Ralph Vanellope Von Schweets Costume DIY Leggings
First of all: if you don’t want to mess with all this (and yup, it’s a mess!) then go ahead and be smart. Skip the DIY and head over to Amazon and just buy these Vanellope leggings premade.
There were moments when I wished I had done just that!
Instead, I bought these mint green leggings and decided to make the DIY Vanellope leggings.
Initially, I tried to spray paint the lines. I YouTubed a few how-to videos and they made it look so easy!
Welp. It wasn’t. At least not for me.
The paint wasn’t showing up white enough and I was getting some spray on areas I didn’t want white! Plan B was needed, and thankfully I have a good friend who loves costumes that steered me right.
Check out Tania’s bus stop costumes if you want to see some fun DIY costume creations!
So I ended up hand painting my lines and it was so super easy to do.
First, I cut out cardboard legs and slipped them into the leggings. This made it easy to have a flat surface to paint onto and it kept the paint from running through the back.
I taped out my lines and taped it down to the cardboard.
Then I went to work with acrylic paint.
Then I used white acrylic paint and a foam paint brush to paint on my lines.
I did use two coats, but if you do it thick enough the first time it’s not needed!
This paint didn’t need to be “heat set” but some does, so make sure you read the instructions.
I was impatient so I used a blow dryer to help speed up the drying process.
Vanellope has diagonal stripes on one leg and horizontal stripes (with a purple pinstripe) on the other.
Make sure you look at a picture when you start your leggings so you get the right pattern on your Wreck-It Ralph Vanellope costume.
After the paint is dry, remove the tape and let set overnight.
I went ahead and removed the cardboard as well because I didn’t want the leggings to remain stretched overnight.
Now, you may have noted I only did one side.
Friends: real talk. That’s all I had time for! But you do you, Boo!
Go ahead and get an A++ in costume making by doing both sides of the leggings. Obviously, let one side dry completely before flipping over.
Vanellope Von Schweetz Costume Hair Accessories
I fully give credit for this super easy and genius idea to my pal Christie at Raising Whasians.
Her cute little family went to Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween party in Wreck-It Ralph costumes and killed it! She passed on the Vanellope von Schweetz Costume Hair Accessories idea to me.
Bobby pins and cute beads and BOOM you’re done with this part of the Wreck-It Ralph Vanellope costume.
I used 6 red pipe cleaners twisted up as the licorice piece in the back.
Could I use actual licorice? Sure. But I knew this would hold for a 5K and not give me any problems!
Wreck-It Ralph Vanellope Costume Skirt
The whole look is tied together with the brown skater skirt.
This is a simple circle skirt that I’m sure you could sew quickly if that’s in your wheelhouse.
It’s not in mine, so Amazon again. (Those guys love me!)
Not 100% necessary, but I already owned them so they are going to the runDisney race with me: skate boot covers. Vanellope wears black shoes in the movies; so my shoes will be too!
This Wreck-It Ralph Vanellope costume is fully runnable and also pretty comfortable. It was perfect for the 5K!
Look, y’all! I’m a racer!
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Patty Holliday is a Marvel loving, Disney obsessed wife, and mother of four. She’s a travel agent specializing in Disney & Universal vacations- and loves a candid confession. Find her in Virginia (or anywhere frequent flyer miles or her trusty minivan takes her.)