As any salesperson at my local Anthropologie could probably tell you, I visit frequently, but never actually buy anything. Anthropologie stores are just so….freaking pretty.
Their clothes are what an aspirational version of me would wear every day. While there, I imagine myself as this fictitious wildly wealthy me who thinks nothing about dropping $60+ on a shirt. A single shirt.
Needless to say, that is not me. While Parallel Dimension Jillian enjoys her Anthro shopping sprees, I’m relegated to the unloved & unwanted castoffs at my decidedly less well-merchandised local thrift stores.
Before you start worrying that we’re trapped in some consumerist version of Jordan Peele’s US (wherein I am the sad jumpsuited doppelganger that’s about to knock off Rich Jillian with my sewing shears), relax. I love thrifting & upcycling, and hate spending $$$ on clothes that could go to better use (like wine!).
Which brings us to this $1 thrifted dress:
This appears to be some sort of dowdy Easter dress, but it has a lot going for it (more on that in just a sec).
However, it has a few problems. Most of which are these awkwardly-placed flowers all over the top of the dress and at the bottom of the sleeves. But I’m also not a fan of the stark whiteness of it, as this lack of color doesn’t do much for its really nice embroidery and shoulder details or my pallid skin.
Boob flowers and whiteness aside, there’s a lot to like. The fabric is light and comfy and that cool cut-out embroidery and shoulder netting are pretty awesome. Those blouson sleeves are on-trend right now as well!
Time to get to work!
First, I went to town removing all of those flowers.
Now that the deflowering was complete (WHAT???!!!), I went to my refash stash and grabbed these:
I decided to employ a little dye mixology here, as I knew I wanted a nice clay hue for my final product.
Now, since buying my now not-so-new house, I’ve had one major bane of contention. I DON’T HAVE A TOP LOADING WASHING MACHINE. Instead, the previous owner purchased a nice energy-efficient front loader which is great for such pedestrian things as say, laundry, but USELESS for dying clothes as it doesn’t fill with enough water and it doesn’t have an agitator. :'(
That means that until it breaks and I replace it with a top loader, I’m stuck dyeing everything in a big stockpot in my huge kitchen sink.
After 30 minutes in its bath, I transferred the dress to my washing machine for a good rinse. I just let it run through the delicate cycle sans detergent.
After drying it, I saw there were a lot of uneven spots towards the bottom of the dress.
This was no big deal, as I was planning on turning this dress into a top anyways!
You can see where I was able to make my cut riiiight above an uneven spot.
I then pinned the bottom for a small hem.
I styled my new top with dark high-waisted jeans, woven flat mules, a favorite vintage leather handbag, and this sweet necklace:
Necklace Story: Back in May, Brian and I traveled with friends to visit Ischia (an island off the coast of Naples, Italy). Yes, it was amazing. While walking along the beach, we discovered all of these tile shards that had washed up on the beach whose edges had been worn down over time. We brought some of them home with us (I put mine in my houseplant pots). Our friend Aaron turned his shards into charms and wove each one of us a necklace to commemorate our wonderful adventure. 🙂 Yes, I have amazing friends.
I think my top looks even nicer than this $68 Anthropologie one:
We had a scrumptious meal consisting of lobster pot pie, pork schnitzel with duck egg (for him), rabbit cannelloni (for me), and an espresso martini for dessert.
Who says only Rich Parallel Dimension Jillian can have nice things?