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Costumes are handed down from older sister to younger, to underline both the family's poverty and the connections between sisters. Jo's red plaid dress worn to the ball where she meets Laurie is worn the following Christmas by Beth when she comes down the stairs after being ill; Jo and Beth are close to each other, as Meg and Amy are close to each other. Meg's blue striped dress that she doesn't end up wearing to Belle Gardiner's debut ball is worn years later by Amy in the scene where she announces she's going to Europe with Aunt March.