Day 245. 120 days and $120 left to go.

Before we start, I’m going to actually go there and say that this may be my crowning moment so far.  You’ll have to let me know your thoughts though…

Today’s special?

Day 245 - Before

Day 245 - Before

I mean, are you kidding me?!  I look like I’m straight outta the cast of Dynasty just sans the big, teased hair and the blue eyeshadow.

Insert my head above Linda Evans!

Insert my head above Linda Evans!

The dress was killer and I was obsessed with the beading.  But, check it out a little closer up…

Day 245 - Close up beadwork!

Day 245 - Close up beadwork!

It was unraveling, falling off and pretty disheveled but I was confident I was going to figure it out.  Sewing the beads back on, yeah, that wasn’t going to happen, so I went to plan B.


Hot glue in the summertime!

Hot glue in the summertime!

I began gluing down all the bits that had come undone.  Most of the beading was still there, albeit hanging off by the strands, but I had some goods to work with.  By the end of my hot glue fest, it was looking pretty stellar!  I’m still pulling off those leftover hot glue stringy strands (for those of you hot gluers, you know what I’m talking about!).

All finished!

All finished!

Now that the beading was on track, I had to handle the rest of the piece.  I was playing around with the dress, seeing how it would look wearing the back in front and if I were to deepen the neck, but nothing was really clicking.  Nothing until I thought about turning the dress upside down.  As soon as I did that, the wheels started turning and the vision of my new top was narrowing down.

I took my scissors and started cutting.  I cut a straight line right below the arms.

Cutting the top of the dress off!

Cutting the top of the dress off!

The leftover sleeve part included these ridiculously large shoulder pads that were seriously the size of my face.  They could be throw pillows, that’s how big these were!!

I mean...

I mean...

The next step was taking the long drapey bit of fabric that hung from below the beading (check out the before pic for a refresher) and pinning it to the back of the piece, as this was going to become a strap.  The solo strap, if you will, of my new top.

Pinning the drapey fabric into a sleeve!

Pinning the drapey fabric into a sleeve!

After the strap pinning, I also pinned the areas that I needed to take in.  A bit from the back (to cinch around the waist) as well from my chestal area to keep the boobs in place.

More pins=more cinch!

More pins=more cinch!

Now that pins were in place, the sewing machine was turned on and everything got fixed!!

Sew time!

Sew time!

It was beginning to get there…things were getting fitted from their original slouched and ruched state and I was almost ready to put the piece on!

Almost done!

Almost done!

The perfect top to wear to celebrate RS’s birthday!

Day 245 - After

Day 245 - After

Literally OMG.  I still can’t believe how awesome this turned out!!  I paired it with some jeans (however with some opaque tights and some bike shorts for discretion, this could be a fun mini!)

Day 245 - After (From the back!)

Day 245 - After (From the back!)

You can see the strap I sewed into place as well as the bit of cinching that I made at the waist and then the new seam up the back for tightening purposes.

To start off the birthday celebration, JS, JS, myself, and LS grabbed a few glasses of wine (Menage á Trois vineyard in Napa) and caught up while the fire pit was roaring on the patio.

Group shot!

Group shot!

JS created the sickest birthday cake for the night – top layer Cocoa Krispies, mint chocolate chip ice cream beneath that,  followed by a layer of fudge, on top of more ice cream and another Cocoa Krispie layer at the bottom.  I have the ultimate sweet tooth (no joke, I had a dinner of Skittles and Baked Lays on Tuesday night due to a late, late lunch) so you could imagine my excitement when I saw this glorious concoction.



I nearly passed out.

It tastes so good when it hits your lips!

It tastes so good when it hits your lips!

And no matter how far from your early 20s you are, these never get old.

Jell-o Shots!!

Jell-O Shot partner-in-crime MW!!

I was told that my top looked like a figure skating outfit, so clearly I had to channel my inner Johnny Weir in the kitch.  There was spillage on the floor, so my turns were actually rather good.  Judges scored a solid 5.65.

Pre-triple axel!

Pre-triple axel!

We enjoyed some shenanigans including keg stands (not me, I acted as documentarian and took the photographic evidence shots) and vocal renditions of Hall and Oates’ “I Can’t Go For That,” as we looked off into the lights of the city from the deck.

Winding down the evening on the patio overlooking the city...

Winding down the evening overlooking the city...

Rockin’ party, rockin’ outfit, rockin’ friends.  Best kind of Saturday night if you ask me!


46 responses to “Day 245. 120 days and $120 left to go.

  1. Wow, definitely one of the best. People would pay big money for a fancy little number like that!

  2. You can take a hairdryer on a low heat setting and just go around the area with hot glue, it will melt the little stringies and they will disappear! Love you work by the way…this is a stellar top!

  3. This is really awesome, I love it, totally my cup of tea…I’m exited. Turning it upside down was genius and I would wear it in a heartbeat. Any ideas yet what will happen to the blog after you tackled the last 120 pieces of clothing?

  4. I would wear that

  5. Greetings from Nottingham, England!
    I came across your blog yesterday & have just finished looking through all your creations! What an fantasically cool idea, i’m sooooooo impressed & totally inspired by your fabulous creativity & sewing skills (my skills are still pretty basic)
    Keep up the good work, i look forward to seeing what you come up with next!!

  6. Amazing. I want to live in a city that has an endless supply of ridicuylous/awesome thrift store dresses!

  7. i love Menage a Trois wine! Tastey, and has a cool cork if you are making a cork board.

  8. Great mod on the dress. There’s a hot glue trick I want to share. Take your hairdryer on it’s hottest setting and aim it at the feathery strings and they’ll shrink right back into the rest of the glue. Works like a hot damn every time.

  9. Love it!!! It looks great on you

  10. Ha ha, even before I saw your comment I totally thought Dynasty in the head!! Great job – tres chic.

  11. Really, this one’s a keeper! Who would think to turn it upside down?! Fantastic..

  12. TOTALLY agree on this being your best. i want it!

  13. Your talent for transforming these wrecks is incredible! I love this top/mini-dress!!

  14. WOW~ One of your most impressive transformations yet!

  15. please tell us you’re going to do something fun with all those shoulder pads!

  16. I am totally flabbergasted by your amazingness!!


  17. Hi Marisa,

    you make miracles and magic! Amazing!
    I linked it in my blog!
    Cheers from Brasil! 😉


  18. OMG this is fabulous! Definitely one of my favorites that you’ve made!

  19. WOW. That is ah-mazing!!! Gorgeous periwinkle, ruching, snazzy beadwork. You are the McGyver of thrift shop clothing! 🙂

    -Sarah, faithful reader in Canada.

  20. Killer job…Killer top!!! I just love it!!!

    p.s. put vaseline on the tip of your glue gun to stop those nasty little strings =)

  21. Stunning! Yes, this one might just be the best. You should have a vote for the best one!

  22. YOWZA! Im really shocked! You are incredibly talented! xo

  23. Gorgeous! One of my favorites. I agree with the poster who said you are like MacGyver of thrift stores. And, who doesn’t love a hot glue gun?

  24. You are so creative….I LOVE THIS PIECE! I am so sad I missed the party. Looks like you ladies had fun.

  25. Uauuuuuuuuuuuuuu
    I want it for me !!!!
    Sell me ??????????

  26. No one else could pull off the refashion without looking like one of Tony Orlando’s back-up singers.
    You’re amazing!

  27. FAN TAS TIC.

    That’s awesome.

  28. Awesome dress!!

    (I’ll mis your everyday dresses when the year is over…)

  29. Love this.. I am feeling inspired !
    thanx for so many great outfits and Ideas…

  30. UAU!!!!
    upside down???
    amazing, really!

  31. You are an inspiration! I just love the fish necklace. I have shared your blog with my mother who loves to sew! Will check back often!

  32. hmm.. maybe it’s better if you post the before and after shots side by side/// for the readers and followers to see the BIG and AWESOME difference.. hmm just a thought and a suggestion…

    keep it up! 🙂

  33. WOW. Browsing thru your pics and this one hit me like a brick. Good job girlfriend! You really made this one rock. Especially since you put up the pic of the Dynasty cast. Cmon now, everyone had shoulder pads and silk back in the day, but you really made this piece work for TODAY.

  34. Just found your blog, and I LOVE IT!
    This is my favorite piece!!


  35. Oh I love it! This is my favorite one! 🙂 It’s nice to read through your blogs. You are very inspiring! Now I also wanna have something I want to do everyday!

  36. I love it! You really have a talent for fashion! Your page is great, totally bookmarked… Thanks for some inspiration!
    I think your journey here would make a cool tv show!

  37. Holy cow!!! that’s fabu!!! truly an awesome top. in AWE

  38. you are a goddess with these clothes! i wish i could do this, all of these outfits are great 😀

  39. this is AMAZING! i am about to move to LA. I’d love to get some recommendations on places to get good thrifts and stuf?


  40. I got to know about your hobby/passion through Yahoo! – and Imust say – this dress is absolutely GORGEOUS!!! I have absolute respect for your talent and I am now seriously thinking of learning how to sew ( I know how to knit and macramé but the problem i have with sewing is that once you cut something – you can’t undo it =( )


  41. DEFINITELY my favorite!!!
    I keep having to look back and forth at the before and after photos because I just can NOT believe how amazing it turned out.

  42. Do you sell the pieces you make? Cuz there are so many pieces I would totally buy, especially this one, I love it!!! I just found out about your site on Yahoo! and now I’ll definately get on everyday to see ur crazy mess to cute creation transformations! This is such a great idea and ur so good at it 🙂

  43. Wow, that is gorgeous! I wish I could replicate that! Too bad I stink at sewing, haha. You make me want to practice and get really good. You’re brilliant, and I love this whole idea!

  44. My daughter would think this really rocks as an ice skating costume!
    WOW~ too amazing.

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