When I see heavily shoulder-padded, lapelled, double-breasted ’80s dresses like the one I’m about to show you, I try not to judge.
Fashion has a history that mirrors what was going on in society at the time.
In the ’80s, women were at a place where they had been active in the workforce for a while. But now they were finally beginning to reach upper-management and C-Suite roles.
To visually reflect that they deserved respect for the power they had achieved to their colleagues, they wore sharply defined silhouettes…think power suits and shoulder pads. Women’s work clothes were more angular then.
Sidebar: My book prop in the above photo was written by Brian’s Dad (Hey Jeff!)! Yep, I have super smart in-laws. 🙂
Anywho…while I understand the rationale for this type of design, it doesn’t really fit with my muuuuuch more casual lifestyle.
Things I loved about this dress: The color, the brass buttons, that fabulous shoulder pleating, the fact that it actually fits me okay (no need to take it in/out).
Things that bugged me about this dress: The shoulder pads, awkward length, lapels, and quantity of buttons (too many!).
I started removing what I didn’t like, starting with these monstrously large things:
If you’re wondering what to do with removed shoulder pads, here’s an old post (with terrible photos) I wrote about that very thing.
I removed the non-functional row of buttons from the front of the dress, as well as from the sleeves.
Next, I tucked the collar and lapels in, and got to work removing some of that length.
I stitched down my new neckline, and then removed the extra lapel fabric with pinking shears. It may not look pretty on the inside, but that’s my lil secret.
A new hem quickly followed!
I quickly stitched the bottom scrap into a sash for a little extra waist definition, and was ready for an afternoon with friends!
I styled my new dress with a black cami (necessary), black tights, an owlie brooch (#bringingbroochesback), and some animal print lace-up flats!
I brought over a super fun game called Don’t Get Got, and shenanigans ensued.
Don’t Get Got is a secret mission party game that happens in the background of the party. Everyone is given a wallet with different tasks they must execute, BUT if someone asks them, “Is this part of the game?”, they fail. :'(
I can’t say much more without spoiling the game.
I was terrible at the game, but still had fun. 🙂