The Good Life Dress

Hi everybody!  I have fun fun FUN news for you all!

I’ve been hinting about a project I’ve been working on that I think you’ll all really love. Well…It’s HERE!  Here’s the dealio: One of our clients at my day job at Riggs Partners is Goodwill Industries of the Upstate/Midlands South Carolina. They’ve just rolled out something pretty special. :)

I hereby introduce you to the NEW Good Life Blog!

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We’re a community of bloggers that came together through a shared passion for DIY projects, Décor, Fashion, Sustainability, and (of course) Goodwill. This is a collaborative blog, a space for some of the most knowledgeable thrifting and DIY experts to showcase their projects, techniques, tricks, tips, and personal styles.

Be sure to check out my latest post, Everything You Wanted to Know About Dyeing, but Were Afraid to Ask!

I decided to celebrate the launch of this awesome new blog with a fun frock!

Lady in reeeeeed (houscoat)!

Lady in reeeeeed (houscoat)!

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One Dress, Three Ways III! Which is Your Fave?

Hello all.  Whew!  I have been one busy busy gal!  Starting my new job and lots of other fun things have kept me in a most exciting flurry of activity!  :)

Don’t worry!  It’s all calming down enough for me to blog a bit more regularly…at least for now!  :)

I feel like the last time we talked, I was near the end of a project.  Hmmmmnnn…what could that have been?


Oh yes! Now I remember!

Oh yes! Now I remember!


You can see the previous (no sew!) incarnations of this dress right here and here!

I thought it was time to whip out my machine for the final chapter in this thrilling saga!

Since I’ve already made a dress and a top, I decided to go for (as many of you guessed) a skirt!

I wisely held onto that bottom scrap from #2!


What's the plan, Stan?

What’s the plan, Stan?


To get started, I did a bit of cutting:


Don't wave Goodbye yet, little sleeve! I have a plan for you!

Don’t wave Goodbye yet, little sleeve! I have a plan for you!


I knew I wanted to go for a funky layered look for my new skirt, and that I wanted it to be fitted.

I took a dress that I really like the fit of, and cut my basic skirt template from that.  Pinnage followed.


Shaping up!

Shaping up!


You can see where I’m using the finished edges for my waistband so they don’t overstretch/so I don’t have to add elastic to the already-stretchy fabric.

I stitched the base of my skirt together.


Stitch those sides!

Stitch those sides!


Remember those sleeves?  I cut them off…


Owie Owie!

Owie Owie!


then I cut those guys apart like so:


Disection in Progress!

Disection in Progress!


I pinned my fun flappy leftovers around the wast…


Flappy Bits!

Flappy Bits!


Then, I stitched them down!


It's the stitch that Zigs!

It’s the stitch that Zigs!


Okay.  I THINK I may have solved this problem, but sewing the flappy bits on was a real struggle.  :/  My thread kept breaking off and doing this:


Over. And Over. And OVER AGAIN. :/

Over. And Over. And OVER AGAIN. :/


I THINK it was just that the thread guide behind the needle had somehow gotten too tight and was pulling the thread (Everything SEEMS to be okay now), but do any of you guys have any idea what could have been going wrong?

Despite a rather frustrating experience (with lots of internal screaming), I still somehow ended up with a fun & creative addition to my wardrobe!  :)


The Final Chapter!

The Final Chapter!


A lil sloppy, but still cute!

A lil sloppy, but still cute!


Le back!

Le back!  And YES I did a quick fold-over take-in.  :/  But it looks okay with my sweater over it…I guess.


I was honestly just happy to be done with this one, you guys.

But my new skirt sure had a fun time seeing Zoso (a really fun Led Zepplin cover band) that night!


Hi Zoso!

Hi Zoso!


Mark seemed to have an alright time too!


Yes. He's a full head taller than me.

Yes. He’s a full head taller than me.


But enough about my social life!  What I really want to know is…

Which version of this dress is your favorite?????


Leave your favorite in the comments!  The winner will be announced in my next post!



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 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!!!!  :)