Months ago I bought Grace an old stained dress for $2 at at local thrift store. I brought it home, gave it a serious bleach bath, and hung it in the closet where it stayed until yesterday when I pulled it out and continued to freshen it up a bit.
This is what we ended up with.
Luckily the dress was darling to begin with so the changes I made were minor.
I started by embroidering the word "Beloved" on her sleeve.
Embroidering was easy (but that may be because I don't know what I'm doing). All I did was practice writting the word how I wanted it to look and then wrote it on the sleeve itself lightly with a pencil.
Then I traced over the writing with my embroidery thread.
(I really like how it turned out.)
The dress came with a 6 inch boarder of eyelet around the bottom. I love it. (I love eyelet---I think it stems from the curtains that hung in my bedroom windows long ago. Anyway...) I didn't want to mess too much with the eyelet but wanted to add a little color so I randomly edged some of the existing design with my embroidery floss.
My last change to the dress had to do with the actual fit. This dress was apparently made when the big boxy dresses were all the rage. There's nothing wrong with that but that is not the style of dress I was looking for for Grace.
My first thought to fix the wideness issue was to pop open the side seams and add a wide ribbon to pull it tighter and into a bow in the back. But then I changed my mind.
What I did instead was take a piece of elastic and sew it into the gathered seam in the back of the dress. I figured how much I wanted the dress to cinch up in the back and then cut the elastic to do the job. I tacked the elastic down in the middle and then stretched it as I sewed to reach the two marks I made.
When I was finished the dress cinched right up in the back and fit Grace much better.
The dress was a success---at least Grace thought so. She especially liked the holes in the eyelet.
And she enjoyed the wearing it on out on the porch while waiting for her dad to come home from work.
Unfortunately he had to stop at the store on the way home...and so it took him longer than we had planned. (But don't worry, she didn't have to wait too long. Her dad came home right after this picture was taken.)
I liked the embroidery and I really liked the embroidery on the eyelet---now I have all these ideas I want to try along those lines. Now, if I only had the time...