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The Dress

January 4, 2011

A few years ago I was at a flea market in San Francisco. We had seen our fill and the market was closing down, so we were on our way out. A pile of clothes in a nearby booth caught my eye, however, and I rummaged through them and pulled out this dress. There was no room to try it on, but when I held it up the woman packing up the booth said, “I’ll take $1 for that one.” For $1 I figured I could take a chance, so I paid her (no need to haggle), and went home with my prize. When I tried it on it fit me nearly perfectly, but there was just one problem: I had nowhere to wear it. So it sat it my closet, waiting for its moment of glory.

Now I think I have just the occasion: I want to wear this as my wedding dress. Yes, I know it’s not traditional because it’s not all-white. But I’m not traditional. The bigger problem is that it needs some work because of discoloration at the top. My plans for it are as follows:

Add white gathered tulle and/or lace on the bodice to cover up the discoloration and tone down the color
Replace the waist ribbon
It has a navy blue velvet ribbon that goes around the neck, halter-style. I need to replace it with a longer one because my torso is longer than the original owner’s
Maybe add a bright tulle petticoat or underlayer

Am I crazy for wanting to restyle this into my wedding dress? Should I just find a new (or vintage) one? With the money I save on the dress I plan to buy an outrageous pair of wedding shoes that I can wear beyond the big day. Is it ridiculous that I want to be able to say that I bought my dress for $1? (Probably.)

Any advice or ideas?

4 Comments leave one →
  1. January 8, 2011 1:00 am

    Oh, that’s discoloration?!
    I thought it was intentional and I loved it!
    But in real life, is the color slightly harder to pull off?

    I think you totally should wear this as a wedding dress! Are you aspiring for tea-length? You could add longer tulle layers to make it more “couture” and formal. Or add delicate clasps over the zipper or instead of the zipper. ^_^

    what were you imagining?

  2. February 20, 2011 12:26 pm

    You’re not crazy at all! I love this idea. Have you considered dying it? I saw in Martha Stewart that you can dye dark colors to light pretty easily. I’m not sure how comfy the dress is, but it would be so rad to line it in silk so it’s ever so soft and lovely on your skin!

    • February 20, 2011 1:25 pm

      Rachel, I hadn’t considered dyeing it because I didn’t think I could dye a dark color to a lighter one! Would you happen to know where I could find Martha’s instructions? I’m looking on her site but not seeing them there. Thanks for the ideas–a silk lining sounds lovely, too!

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