Sunday, June 1, 2014

Upcycle - Gap Dress via Goodwill

So we did another upcycle.  This one was for Olivia.  Let me explain how this came about.  A year ago, when I was on the chair mission that involved every Goodwill and Thrift Shop within a 50 mile radius, I could hardly avoid having a child along every once in awhile.  Insert Olivia.  Olivia hates to shop.  With a passion.  I have been given a glimmer of hope this year, but for the sake of the story we will stick with her overall attitude towards my hobby.  So, one day I am making a a swing through the Goodwill furniture section and I realize she is not standing right under my feet.  Just a few moments of panic later and I found her digging in the kid's clothes.  She was having fun.  Correct me if I am wrong, but people who generally don't care for shopping should not enjoy the "hunt" of a Goodwill.  Oh, but she was.  She came out with this little blue dress from the Gap.  Once in the fitting room, I tried my best to send it back but she was not having it.  It needed work.  Too much work.  Five minutes later we owned it.  A year later I have pulled it from the stack hoping it might fit better.  It did not.  So here ya go.

There were two main issues that we had to address.  One was the fact that the dress was cut too low in the front.  That was the part I had hoped would fix itself with a year's worth of growth.  Second was the fact that there were two sewn in belt loops and no belt.  I pulled out all of the fabrics I had (another free upcycle plus the cost of the $2 dress).  I gave her several ideas to choose from, but she knew exactly what she wanted.  It was not my first choice but I was reminded that my job was to sew.  In the nicest, most polite way of course.  She wanted an apron dress.  In the truest, most raw form.  

The apron dresses that I am used to seeing have the "apron" sewn into the dress, not as a detachable piece.  She declared that idea was not an apron dress since she wouldn't be able to remove it.  So, I made a gathered apron with the fabrics she chose.  Fully detachable, of course.

Once the apron was constructed and put on I felt like something was still missing.  So, I went on the world's longest search for yellow buttons.  Apparently yellow is the color for summer.  It is not my color so I was quite shocked that it took more than one store to find such a simple item.  But, I was glad I kept on it because they are my favorite part.

To address the low cut front I carefully cut the straps in the back at the place they joined the dress.  I made a button hole on the back of the dress and attached a button on the strap.  I did not cut the strap down to size and here is why.  As she grows we will be able to place another button on the strap to allow for growth if needed.  Or, just move the button.  Since I have two other girls, we would opt for adding buttons.  

The last touch was the handmade headband.  I have quite a few plastic headbands that have unraveled over the years.  I finally decided to re-wrap one and use for this project.  This is not an easy task.  I then made two fabric rosettes and layered them using hot glue.

 Another happy customer.  I am two for two in the upcycle department....simply because my most demanding customer is still waiting in the wings.  ;)  

--------The Mama

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