A Cinderella Story: The Real Life Disney Princess

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Kelly with her team of princesses. Image via www.mylittleprincessparties.co.uk
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Kelly with her team of princesses. Image via www.mylittleprincessparties.co.uk

Many mothers these days recoil from the simple question, 'do you want to build a snowman?' or internally scream when a child belts out the words to the iconic Idina Menzel tune 'Let it Go', while twirling in a well worn Elsa dress, that was purchased in a furious bidding war on eBay.

However, there are Mums out there who just can't get enough of everything Disney and princess related, and even go so far as to dress up as the iconic characters kids know and love from the movies. 
Kelly as Tinkerbell, her favourite character to dress up as
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Kelly as Tinkerbell, her favourite character to dress up as

Kelly, the face and owner of My Little Princess Parties, talks about her experiences as a children's entertainer, her daughter Tabatha's reaction to her line of work, being recognised as Elsa in the gym and why she loves nothing more than to get dressed up as her favourite fairy tale characters. 

When it comes to princess parties, the magic created for the little ones is what makes Kelly's job really special and she shared her favourite moment from one of the events she attended: 
Kelly as Tinkerbell, her favourite character to dress up as.
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Kelly as Tinkerbell, her favourite character to dress up as.

"As entertainers we arrive prior to the parties, get set up first and then go and change in the toilets ready to begin." Kelly explained. "Whenever we hear little ones coming in to use the toilet we have to dart in a cubicle and hide, especially if we aren't fully ready in our costumes yet.

"This little girl in particular came in, so I darted into a loo cubicle and locked the door. She did what she had to do then whispered under my door, 'Tinkerbell, I know you're hiding in there. You don't need to be a scared fairy, I won't tell anyone. Come out when you are ready'. Sweetest moment ever!" 
Kelly in costume as Sleeping Beauty, playing a party game with the children
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Kelly in costume as Sleeping Beauty, playing a party game with the children

James and Kelly's little girl, Tabatha Beaux, is also just starting to understand what Mum does for a living, "Tabatha Beaux is 22 months, so nearly two years." Kelly said.

"I often have to come home on a Saturday after running two parties still in my costume, the most popular at the moment being Queen Elsa, and Tabatha is starting to realise Mummy is everywhere in all shops! So often we are out and she shouts, 'It's Mummy!' when pointing to a DVD of Frozen or any Frozen merchandise."
James and Kelly with their daughter Tabatha Beaux. Image via www.mylittleprincessparties.co.uk
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James and Kelly with their daughter Tabatha Beaux. Image via www.mylittleprincessparties.co.uk

Starting up in 2008, Kelly and her husband James are a team when it comes to running My Little Princess Parties, with Kelly entertaining and whizzing around the South of England to get to events, while James manages the marketing. Since then the duo have taken on 25 beautiful princesses, who entertain throughout the South of England, with the hope to one day expand the brand throughout the UK. 

"We founded the company in Salisbury, where we were living at the time, because the only party packages available were traditional face painting and magicians." Kelly, a trained dancer and former TV presenter, said. "We took the essence of traditional games such as parachute games and musical statues but with the princess character and acting twist on it.

"He [James] doesn't dress up but runs the advertising side of things. So I think he's very happy [because] it's paid our bills for the past eight years!"  


Kelly in costume as Cinderella
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Kelly in costume as Cinderella

"Too many years ago!" is how Kelly replies, when asked if she remembers the first time she put on a costume for a party. "I do remember being Cinderella ," she added, "She was my first character role. I was extremely nervous, hoping the children would believe in me and I could win their hearts!" These days however, Kelly says she doesn't get nervous at all when dressing up in costume, "I see it as my work uniform! We have two dress makers that we work with on a full time basis [now]. "

Kelly in costume as Rapunzel from Tangled, with the birthday girl from one of her parties
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Kelly in costume as Rapunzel from Tangled, with the birthday girl from one of her parties

"I recruit entertainers based on their looks and hair colour." Kelly said, when considering how the business runs. "So, being blonde myself, I play five roles: Tinkerbell, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Elsa and Rapunzel. Tink, however, has always been my favourite - she's a bit cheeky!"

The company offers a huge variety of princesses, so no little girl (or boy) misses out on a visit from their idol, children can currently choose from Elsa and Anna, Rapunzel, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Tinkerbell, Barbie, Belle, Snow White, Fairy, Mermaid and even a Cheerleader.
Princesses Sophie and Dani in costume, as sisters Elsa and Anna. Image via www.mylittleprincessparties.co.uk
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Princesses Sophie and Dani in costume, as sisters Elsa and Anna. Image via www.mylittleprincessparties.co.uk
A clip from the Frozen Ball held by the company in 2014
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A clip from the Frozen Ball held by the company in 2014

So what happens at a princess party exactly? Is it all just singing and dancing? "Some of us do [sing]" Kelly said, "but only the professional singers out of us all! Those entertainers come equipped with their own microphone and PA system and backing tracks." 

The princesses also play traditional party games and of course simply spend time with the children. However, the entertainers must stay completely in character to ensure the magic of their appearance is not ruined, by say a mobile phone ringing or using their normal voice.

Kelly in costume as one of the most popular requests, Queen Elsa
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Kelly in costume as one of the most popular requests, Queen Elsa

However, people do recognise Kelly while out and about in her local area now "...in funny normal adult situations, such as [at] my gym! Often I'll come out of a gym dance class in my gear, red faced and sweaty and a mummy from one of my parties may twig and whisper, 'Hi Elsa!'" 
Kelly and James with their princesses. Image via www.mylittleprincessparties.co.uk
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Kelly and James with their princesses. Image via www.mylittleprincessparties.co.uk

As Disney continues to capture the hearts of children everywhere, bringing out new and interesting princesses to fall in love with, Kelly and her princesses should always be able to find work, entertaining little ones and making their dreams come true, with a visit to their party.

On top of this promise, she and James are attempting to franchise the brand throughout the country, in a bid to bring a little magic to birthday parties, further than the South of England. The future is definitely a dream come true for the couple, as they continue to do what they love and  My Little Princess Parties continues to take on multiple bookings each month, for those excited children who wish to share their birthday with their idols.
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