Monday, May 21, 2012

Keep Calm and Wear a Tutu: Zoe Enabled Alterations

There are so many things to love about my friend, Zoe. She is funny, charmingly irreverent, warm, silly, creative, unapologetically herself, and, it must be said, INCREDIBLY well-dressed at all times. The dress she wore to my birthday party was a paragon of crinolined awesome.

Zoe is my suburban adventure buddy and knows all the best thrift stores. She is a co-lover of all things Lesley Kinzel and went with me to her book signing where we got into a heated discussion about whether or not people who are not actually fat can participate in fat acceptance, and she SCHOOLED me. She is always up for dessert, whether it be ice cream or milkshakes or waffles, and she is a flexitarian after my own heart. She is one of my favorite people in the world, and I am so glad she is my friend.

Now, to heap on top of ALL THAT AWESOME, she bought me pretty much the coolest and most generous birthday gift ever: a brand new sewing machine. I believe I carried the box around the birthday party for a hot 10 minutes with tears in my eyes so that everyone could see its beauty.

Please note, the sewing machine box matches my pink crinoline.
In addition, Zoe gave me a trash bag full (literally) of clothes that she had picked up for me at various thrift stores AND the pink crinoline featured in most of the party pictures, which she had purchased for her Halloween costume last October.

Zoe and our friend Maribel bought me those socks too. They have HAMBURGERS on them.
Not all the thrifted pieces worked so I had to rethrift a few, but my favorite by far was this silver number with the black flower brocade at the bottom. There was only one problem. It was inordinately long on me, and, for all it's cuteness, looked pretty dowdy.

Please ignore my super messy room. Please don't ignore my awesome bedhead.
As my mom and I were reviewing how to use the sewing machine the Monday after my birthday, I was shocked at how much I remembered, since, according to my shoddy memory, the last time I had really sewed anything was in my clothing class my sophomore year of high school. Then I remembered that my old voice teacher at the University of Redlands had enlisted my and a friend's help in sewing many of the costumes for our department's production of Oklahoma!. While sewing with Dr. Tosh I learned how to make button holes, install a zipper, install an elastic waist, and make ruffles.

Then there is how effortless all this crafty stuff seems to me. Heathersies says I am the idiot savant of crocheting, but I think this might be true for all things crafty. I don't feel confident about many of my skills, but for some reason this sewing and crocheting thing has just come so easy and is so fun and so rewarding.

So I decided to shorten this skirt. I didn't want to hem it as I didn't want to lose the brocade pattern, so I took apart the waist line/elastic, cut off 7 inches of fabric, reinstalled the waist line/elastic and voila!

The Perfect Length for my short self!
I feel so proud this turned out, and now feel EVEN MORE excited for making my own clothes from scratch so soon.

Skirt: Thrifted and Gifted by Zoe, and altered by ME!
Sweater: Good Will
Cami: Lane Bryant
Shoes: Torrid 
(circa 2002--these are the first pair of high heels I ever bought)
Fascinator: Gift from my dear roomie, Steph

Fascinator Close-Up
 I can't wait to share more crafty projects with you guys!!

Also, I am going to, for the first time, end this blog with a question. 

What's your crafting dream? Sewing, Crocheting, Knitting or Macrame, what piece do you dream of making for yourself? Let me know in the comments section!

Happy Crafting!


  1. You look oh soooo beautiful with your new gorgeous outfit. What a talented gal you are! <3

  2. What a Deb-tastic outfit!!! I love it! I would love to be good at sewing!