1980's Dress Upcycle Into High-Low Ruffle Skirt

Updated: Jul 11, 2020

Prologue:

If you want to skip the blah, blah, blah and get to the Upcycle/Refashion pictures, hop on the South-Bound Scrolling Train! ...you'll get there I promise!

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How Did I Get Here?


In the relatively short time I have been in Quarantine, my life has Eva-lved yet once again.



My Many Eva-lutions over 35 Years :

(In Bold is me, as a Mom going foward to today)

Biology Major/Journalism Minor

Journalist San Francisco Newspapers

Event Coordinator

Marketing/Communications Manager

Pharmaceuticals Sales and Management

Mom

Inventor x's 2 Children's Products

Copy Editor Inventor's Magazine

Costume Designer

Costume Rental Business Owner

Upcycler/Refashioner...

...Blogger...

...Blogging Collaboration...



Me, age 35, on local news for my inventions

Following Me--The Pong Ball


Yep, many hats over the years. I can kind of see the line between all my professional phases--it's supposed to be an average line on the graphs right?


I see my following themes:


2x's Science, 2x's Event Planning, 5x's Writing, 5x's Innovation,

and 1x's very long Mothering : )


Aside from Mothering, which trumps all my life-time occupations, innovation and writing rise to the top. Interesting, because that's not what I went to college for...I was supposed to in the medical field.


Why am I not in the medical field? Suffice it to say, undiagnosed ADDH...a detriment to the rigors of intense studies in medical school, but a well-fueled rocket ship to creativity.

Me, 27 years old, working in the Pharmaceutical Industry


Please forgive that I will be omitting the many details of during and in between each of my etapes.


If I diverge, we'll be here a very long time and I will never get to May 30th 2020 and my most recent endeavor: blogging collaborations. But if you follow my posts, you will see my unveiling over time, as I have already started in my blog posts before this.


The purpose of presenting my Curriculum Vitae is more about self-observations as a thought bubble...that our lives can meander professionally into different tributaries bringing you to where you are really meant to be.


And quarantine was the rock in the river that bent water for me to pursue blogging wholeheartedly.



Quarantine--A Pole Vault


Quarantine pole-vaulted my blogging, specifically about upcycling and refashioning clothing.


I say specifically because I was already 'turtle-pace' blogging about DIY costuming, albeit not frequently because I was busy and exhausted with the mechanics of a costume rental business.


My 7-days a week business rigors included a precarious balancing act of emails, inventory, deliveries, pick-up's, laundry, new costume production, repairs, finances, social media marketing, and much more, All Day Long.

Racks and racks of costumes being delivered

So give the costume lady some time to rest, and think....and recover her dry, cracked and scabbed finger tips from incessant sewing, from a frantic pace of meeting growing demand.


Three weeks of forced Quarantine? she's out in the garden to freshen the mind and loosen up knots of cranial stress--her kind of sanatorium.


Convalescing with a 'Zen' prescription to pull stubborn weeds, she realized that it was time to push out of her crysallis to reinvent herself yet once again, into a Upcycler/Refashioner.

Me, altering my own clothes


She blogs about her creations, reaching out to many other style/fashion bloggers, which leads to a network of even more bloggers, until she lands herself an invitation to a group of mid-life women who are looking for member #7 for their blog series Match Made in Seven.


And number 7 was her! or me, or she?!.......'twilight zone'-ish



Trolling


Well maybe not trolling...


I have been following midlife women's fashion blogs for quite some time now--4 years maybe 5 years? I subscribed to so many blogs because I was just interested in seeing mid-life women enjoying their lives, notwithstanding, through the filters of a blog.


Their stories gave me promise that there was something out there for me at a time when I was 45, 46, 47 and now 48 year old woman, into the future...........that at 50, it won't just stop, if I am lucky health-wise...........that there's something amazing to look forward to....complete freedom of restraints of a younger self, who was inexplicable conscious of herself in a world of judgement.


Of note, a particular, warm and inviting group of women have ushered me into the world of blogging, shepherding me through the first self-doubts of a seemingly daunting work genre.


One woman who gave me the confidence to pursue this new passion of mine, was Nancy Baten, of Nancy's Fashion Style, a 50+ Dutch personal style blogger with a passion for fashion. And when she says fashion, she means fun and stylish and spirit and color and life! Click on her link below and learn more about her:

Although Nancy stands alone in her own personal blogging, she has shown me how valuable it is to collaborate not just for financial reasons--most these women do their blogging as an artistic release, as do I--but for a sense of community. Because being a content creator can be lonely and we can fall prey to blogging ruts.

One collaboration Nancy and 5 other women are part of is called Match Made in Seven. The concept is simple, but encourages thinking outside one's own personal styling rhythm. It's not competitive, just a fun new way to look at one's closet.


Every month one of the members suggests a fashion theme for the following month. During that month prior, each woman curates a fashion style to celebrate that theme.


So much fun!


Only issue, MMIS was missing their 7th member...I knew of the vacancy and applied--and they accepted me!.


Before I tell you about my 1st month MMIS challenge, let me introduce the 6 other brilliant, lovely ladies I get to create with.


Introducing the ladies:

From Left to Right, Top to Bottom:

Darlene of Aqua Marina Style

Debbie of Debbie Styles Life

Emma of Style-Splash

Me, Eva of Style My Thrift

Nancy of Nancys Fashion Style

Bettye of Fashion Schlub

Anna of Mutton Style

"Steel Magnolias"


For my 1st month as member #7, Debbie of of Debbie Styles Life suggested the book, movie, play "Steel Magnolias"


That's when I panicked. Yep, panicked.


Debbie would not release her thoughts on this, as she reminded me this is about our own interpretation--no explanations needed.


These ladies are cut-throat!


no training wheels, or ski poles, or Cliff-notes,

or sneaky googling for answers


Ok...


This challenge makes me think more like the Food Network show "Chopped"..........you know, the show where they give you the mystery ingredient like clams for a dessert or Captain Crunch cereal for a chicken dish.


Thankfully nothing that dear to me, besides my reputation as a textile Upcycler, is on the line for these challenges.


FYI: although the other women in my group are not Upcyclers, the theme can still be equally challenging as they look into their existing wardrobes to create a look.

WWED? What Would Eva Do?


Just like my meandering presentation of my Ciriculum Vitae earlier on this post, just try to follow my logic on how I chose this dress below to Upcycle.


Hmmmm

I know, I know...


What was I thinking?


Without waxing poetic here, because you know I can, let's get the Elephant out of the room.


Whoah, what a douzy of a dress! I call this one:


Franken-style!


I wonder if Franken-Style will ever become the hottest Pinterest trend. I doubt it. But because of the lack of hanger appeal, and even less so on the body, I scored this dress for about $2.19.


No, no one was fighting with me at the thrift store to claim this lucky find, because no one had Beer-Googles on like me to see past the rigidly structured, lopsided, armor-like shoulder pads, sappy drop sash, and drop-waist pleated skirt.


Truth is, I don't drink beer, but I do know lovely silk fabric when I feel it. Plus the mint green and white paisley print was really pretty--something so similar I saw on a Pinterest 'it girl'.


The dress had been hanging on my To-Upcycle rack for quite some time. I just did not know what to do with it until a little inspiration via Debbie of the MMIS.


When Debbie of of Debbie Styles Life, chose 'Steel Magnolias' as the styling theme for June, I actually had a different upcycle in mind. I wanted to upcycle a puff-sleeved Scott McClintock Dress.