Day 366: The End? Dress

This is my final post of my year-long project (it’s a leap year y’all).   :)

I don’t form emotional attachments with clothing.  Clothes are fun, but ultimately they’re merely things.  Objects have never held much value for me.  I instead value experiences.   That’s one of the reasons why giving away everything I’ve made this year hasn’t been particularly hard for me.

But then there’s this dress.

Wipe that smile of your face, girlie. It doesn’t end up happening for you.

You’re looking at what would have been my wedding dress…except that didn’t happen.  This was what I would have worn on a day that would have changed my life forever…except that didn’t happen.  This was the dress that would have said, “See…I’m fully capable of maintaining an adult relationship for the long haul.”…except that didn’t happen.  :/

I kept the dress.  I didn’t know what to do with it.  It went from being something I loved to something I hated – relegated to a garbage bag stuffed in the back of my closet.  I kicked it on occasion.  This one garment had the power of making me feel like I had failed…that I would never be in a long-term relationship, that I would most certainly never be married, and that I was going to spend the rest of my life alone.

I had to do something with this dress.  People suggested giving it away, but I couldn’t.  It had permeated into my psyche to such a degree that parting with it was impossible.

As the months after the breakup stretched on, things happened.  I realized I was stronger than I had ever imagined.  I spent more time with my friends…who made it clear that single or no, I most certainly would never be alone.  I ate healthier.  I made bolder decisions.  I laughed more.  In short, I’m doing just fine.  :)

That dress, and its power over me had to go…in a different direction.

I filled a tub with hot water.

A tub within a tub!

I added a full bottle of Wine dye, salt, vinegar, and a dress with a past.

Wine not? It’s my dress.

I carefully stirred the dress in its dye bath for a bit over an hour.  I was worried about the bodice, as I could tell that some spot cleaning had been done and that this slight discoloration could end up looking really weird when dyed.  I decided to chance it.

After the dye bath was one, my dress got a good and thorough rinse.  Then, I laid it over my shower rod to dry.

I wasn’t done.

I put it my dress form, and chopped off a few layers.

This was the scary part.

This meant I also had to cut off some of the lining and give it a new hem.


The perfect thread for the task at hand!


I’ve lost some weight in the past few months, so some taking-in of the bodice was in order as well.

Hot Darting Action!

The original dress already had a few holes that needed to be taken care of, but I decided to wait until I had dyed it so I knew what color of thread to use.

Holey Moley!

Don’t worry. I’ve got this!  Let the hand-stitching commence!

After a good press…I was done!

From walking down the aisle to sauntering onto the dance floor! :)

You can see how the bodice did indeed end up looking quite uneven, but I really like it!  :)  This happy accident is one of my favorite things about my new dress!

Happy for a year well-lived! :)

My fave refash to date! :)

My new dress was perfect for a party with my closest friends to celebrate making it through this year and my ridiculous self-imposed challenge!  :)

Love these ladies! :)

I know some pretty awesome people!

So lucky to have such amazing people in my life!

Even my dress form got a cute new dress from the scraps! :)

In this year, I haven’t just been refashioning clothing.  I’ve been refashioning my life, and how I think about the world around me.  A year ago I thought I had to be married by the time I was 30 in order to be a proper grownup and happy.  I’ve since learned that being happy has nothing to do with being a proper grownup (which might, paradoxically, be the most grownup revelation I’ve made this year).  :)

I want to give my sincerest thanks to the friends, family, and fans who made this year possible (that includes you, dear reader).  There are simply far to many of you to name here!  I could not have done any of this without you.  :)

Many of you have been asking what my plans are, now that I’m done with the year.

I’m.  Not.  Stopping.  Here.

My work here is far from done folks.  Stay tuned in the next couple of days for news of my plans for Year 3!


Day 365: Kitschy Dress

Today’s piece is a fun & kitschy handmade house dress.  :)

The fun is there, I promise! :)

Okay…I’m not a fan of the brown & white print (too tablecloth-y!) and this is obviously too big for me.  Let’s see what we can do about all that, shall we?

First, I threw the dress into a dye bath with my good friend, Scarlet.  :)

Frankly my dear, I DO give a damn!

Bath Time! :)

After about 40 minutes in the dye and a rinse & dry, my new dress was ready to be taken in!




I decided some of that length had to go as well!


Now my new dress is ready for a fun supper with friends!


I have to admit, there is no way I could have made it through this year without a lot of help from my friends!  :)


Their support has meant the world to me.  :)

Remember Ava? She’s almost walking on her own now! :)

Gotta have friends! :)

Oh and check this out…my dress didn’t travel alone either!  :)

I heart vintage aprons! :)

Of course…this isn’t the end of my year of refashioning.  I was silly enough to start this challenge on a leap year, you see!  ;)

So…technically this is a 366 day project.

Do you wonder what I have in store?


Day 364: All Tied Up Top

Today’s piece isn’t exactly fashion-forward, but it has sparkles to spare!

Seriously. You want some sparkles? Because I’ve got plllleeeeenty!

Alright.  The only thing I like about this top is the subtle glittery print.  Time for some serious choppage!

Choppity Chop!

You can see how I’ve laid out one of my best-fitting tanks as a template for the shape of my future top.  Are you wondering why I’ve left so much room on the sides?  :)

Step 2!

I cut a bunch of 1″ish strips down each side, then tied them together!

All tied up!

This is an extremely easy no-sew solution for any of your boring tops that are made of a fray-proof fabric!  :)

It’s so easy! :)

Feelin’ the fringe! :)


Day 363: All the Angles Dress

When I found today’s dress at one of my fave $1 thrift stores,  I was stoked!  Check out the amazeballs print!  :)

The shoulder pads are slightly less than amazeballs,

You’re looking at a totally 80’s shoulderpadded number that desperately needs a facelift!  Time for a Nip/Tuck!

First, I made a big chop!


Then, I took in the whole thing about 2″ on each side.

Pin, then Sew! :)

After cutting off the excess material, I folded the top raw edge over twice and stitched it down, leaving about a 1″ gap.  This is where I’m going to insert some elastic.


After digging through my stash, I realized I was all out of elastic!  Ugh!  And I was soooo not in the mood to make a last-minute craft store run!  :/

Then I remembered this leftover scrap from Day 315!

You shall be sacrificed!

I cut off the elastic waistband…

Why didn’t I think of this before????

I threaded the elastic through the dress’ new casing…

Thread it!

Then, I stitched the two ends together, as well as the 1″ gap I left to insert the elastic through.

Closing up shop!

Now that dress is ready for a fun night of Karaoke with friends!   :)

From Sad to Sassy! :)

My shoes are pretty sweet, too! ;)

The PBR tall boy in her hair really ties the whole look together! ;)

Hey, LA! :)

I would love to say that my dress was the most stylish thing I saw tonight, but this simply wouldn’t be true.

This hat beats a cute dress any day! :)

It really completes my ensemble! :)

Squids are so hot right now!

The right accessories make a difference, y’all! :)


Day 362: Mairi Shrug

Today’s piece comes from a land down under!  And yes – You’d better run.  You’d better take cover!  :)

What the what?!?!

You haven’t even seen the best part yet!

because removing your bloomers to go to relieve yourself is such a hassle!

I pretty much died laughing when I opened Mairi’s package.  She certainly gave me quite a challenge!  :)

Alright…as I’m not into Victorian Cosplay, these unmentionables were going to require a complete overhaul!

First, I reached into my dye stash and pulled out this:

They call me Mellow Yellow!

Into a nice, hot bath of dye the bloomers went!

Things are looking brighter already! :)

After a rinse & dry, I realized that dyeing this in the machine had a negative consequence.  :/

I should have dyed these in the sink instead. :/

Thee good news was, not all of the lace was damaged, just the outer layer.  Not a terrible thing.  I went ahead and chopped it off from both legs.  I went ahead and snipped off those back ties while I was at it.


I took the waist band, doubled it over, and pinned it together inside-out.

Do you see where I’m going with this yet?

A quick bit of stitchery followed.


Now those weirdo bloomers are a fun & funky shrug!  :)

Perfect for a sweltering SC day! :)

Super Light & Comfy!

You’d never guess what this used to be! ;)

Thanks so much for sending this crazy thing my way, Mairi!!!!  :)