A few months ago I was asked to present at a Pecha Kucha.
What is a Pecha Kucha, you ask?
Here’s what Wikipedia has to say about it:
PechaKucha or Pecha Kucha (Japanese: ペチャクチャ, IPA: [petɕa ku͍̥tɕa], chit-chat) is a presentation style in which 20 slides are shown for 20 seconds each (6 minutes and 40 seconds in total). The format, which keeps presentations concise and fast-paced, powers multiple-speaker events called PechaKucha Nights (PKNs).
I’m a nervous public speaker, but I’m trying to get over it. And of course the best way to do that is to actually speak in public. As the day got closer and closer I got more and more nervous…
I needed a dress for the big night!
I started with this one:
It was 5am when I took this pic
This dress is actually made of terry cloth! It’s amazing! This fabric was really popular in the 70’s-early 80’s and I firmly believe it needs to make a comeback. I seriously feel like I’m wearing a bathrobe. And that’s pretty awesome.
You’ll have to forgive me, friends. The memory card that has the “during” pics for this one has gone totally kaputzky, so I can’t share them with you. :/
But I can tell you what I did! :) First, I removed the elastic from the waist. Then I raised the hem to daring new heights! I pretty much wanted a clone of this one cozy sweater dress I’ve been wearing a lot of this winter. That original snug waistline just wouldn’t do for an event where I knew I’d already be pretty uncomfortable.
And here’s how it turned out!
Sort of Mod, no?
This handsome (and rather tall) gentleman seemed to like it too. ;)
As my turn to present got closer and closer, I got more and more nervous!
I have the worst selfie faces.
But then I remembered why I was doing this. I love refashioning and I believe that I really can change the world by sharing this passion with others.
We can change the world. One dress at a time.
The awesome guys at PULL Brand Stories even recorded a video of it! It’s kind of dark (because the room was kind of dark), and you can’t see all of my slides, but I hope you like it. :)
I feel pretty good about this one. The audience was awesome, and I hope I get the chance to present at another Pecha Kucha soon!
I look like a smug little thing, don’t I? ;)
When a staffer at our local newspaper, The State contacted me and asked if I’d like to do an Ugly Christmas Sweater refashion for them to feature in their Life & Style section, I of course said yes.
What followed was some 40 or so emails where they wanted me to either make a tacky sweater normal or make a normal sweater tacky (How uninspired!) and me refusing to do that and instead insisting on making a ballgown out of a BUNCH of Christmas sweaters.
I’m very stubborn. :)
I don’t have a full tutorial of this refashion, but here are some behind-the scenes pics:
Using an old-worn out dress as a pattern for the bodice!
Bodice done! But what about the rest?
I drafted a pattern for the bottom based a gown I really like.
And here’s a video from The State where I explain my process (and yes, I know my voice is weird, okay?). :)
Everything got all nice & stitched together, and now….
Of course, I don’t just make dresses to not be seen! My fahhhhhbulous new frock enjoyed an Ugly Christmas Sweater Bar Crawl with some of my favorite people!
Love these guys!
Such handsome fellas!
These ladies are pretty swell too! :)
And look what I saw first thing this morning! :)
You can read the full article right here! :)
Big Mondo Major thanks to The State for letting me play. :) This is my absolute favorite project to date. I’m really proud of it, and I hope you guys like it too. :)
A few months ago, I showed you how to add a fantastic elastic waist to just about any dress!
A lot of you asked why I cut the thing in two and restitched it before adding the elastic. I thought it gave it a cleaner line, but heck! Let’s try it another way!
I started off with this coral-y bathing suit coverup-looking thing…
Having a blissful summer flashback!
I thought the hue of this frock was just a wee bit to light for fall/winter/whatever this cold thing is that we’re in, so….I reached for these!
After the dye bath, I still needed to deal with how shapeless this dress was. While I usually just add a belt or a sash (because it’s easy and I like ‘em), I want to make sure I show you guys other tips and tricks too.
Here we go! I turned my dress inside-out, then I used my tailor’s chalk to draw a line all the way around my dress where I wanted my new waistline.
Measure for measure!
I also made a mark at the center front and center back of my dress.
Front and center!
Next, I wrapped a section of elastic around my waist and pulled it to where it was snug, but not too snug. Then I cut it off.
You shall do nicely!
I stitched the two ends together.
Then I folded the elastic in half and used a fabric marking pencil to mark the ends of the folded bits. This meant I had a mark for every fourth of the elastic waistband. Don’t worry. It’ll make sense in a sec. :)
I then pinned each of the marked bits to the center front, center back, and each side seam. This makes it easier to evenly distribute the rest of the elastic.
Time to stitch it down! Just use a straight stitch, but make sure you pull the elastic a bit as you go to keep the fabric from getting bunchy. It’s finicky, but it’s not that hard!
And just like that, you have a dress with an elastic waist! I rolled the sleeves up a little, pressed them down, and was good to go!
If you look closely, you can see where I accidentally dribbled toothpaste on the front! :/
However, me being me, I couldn’t resist putting a belt on it! :D
Sticking with what I know!
*Happy Belt Dance Break*
Sadly, the building I work in is in a constant state of frrrrreeeeezing, so all my coworkers got to see was this:
C’est la vie!
OH WAIT! I almost forgot to mention this, but TOMORROW NIGHT I’ll be presenting at my first Pecha Kucha here in Columbia, SC! If you can make it, please come out! I’ll be talking about how I find the frocksome in the frumpy, and you’ll get to listen to some other really creative folks as well! I hope you can check it out! It all happens tomorrow, December 12 at 6pm!
Click me! Click me!