What is THIS all about?

Thanks for coming to my Blog! I am a Daughter of a King, Daughter, Sister, Wife, Mother of five, MomInLaw of two, and Gram of three. Designing and creating feeds something inside of me! This blog will be sharing about my faith, my family, my life, my creations and collections. I am on a journey to learn balance and will be sharing about that as well. Enjoy!

Monday, October 28, 2013

Ahhhh...Senior Year Homecoming Dance...... Nightmare Dress...or Dream Come True?

Daughter*4, our youngest, is in her last year of high school.
Just like every girl, she wants to be asked to the Homecoming Dance, 
especially her Senior year of High School.

Since she has chosen to Not pair off with one boy and single date, as the time of a formal dance 
at school approaches and is in everyones' conversations, she is wondering......

"Is someone going to ask me to the dance?
What dress will I wear?
Will I be HAPPY he asked me to the dance? 
When am I going to be asked!???!!
I HOPE I am going to be asked to the dance..(sadness creeping in...)"

Two weeks before the dance, one of her good friends asked her to be his date.
She was so excited! Of course, she told him 
"Yes! I would LOVE to be your date!"
eBay dress...$50!!!
We knew we had to work fast to find a dress. 
She has borrowed dresses for past formal dances, and she is shaped differently
 than her older sisters, so she couldn't use any of their dresses. And she really wanted 
a dress of her own. So, she started looking online. And this is the dress she found.

The picture isn't very clear, but it looks online like it is a beige dress with a 
brown empire waisted area with bling and beads. The shoulders had too much beading.
Seven rows of beads that are very low quality...not nearly as pretty as the 
other strings of beads that hang just below them. 
The color in the eBay description said "Gray", and we hoped gray would 
look just as nice as the picture did. Isn't it a lovely dress?.....well.....

Her date's Mother brought over ties so we could see if he already owned one that might go well.
He owned two that went well!

if you don't have to alter anything...Which we always have to do. . .
I do sew, but we were headed to another state to take her brother to college for the weekend,
 just a few days after the dress arrived. I knew I had only a short time to find 
and purchase fabric that would either match (ha,ha,ha) the fabric or blend with (maybe) or
contrast well, similar to the fabric used on the high waist area (not a chance!).

                                            The dress was from China. . . Anyone know how I take care of this dress?!!!
We checked a fabric store on our trip and I picked up a piece of fabric and a scarf 
that looked like they  might do the trick, but I had a sneaking suspicion that it 
would end up being more complicated than that. 
Doesn't it always?
I worked almost every day on her dress so it would be ready for her.

Her dress needed to have sleeves added, which is a fairly regular thing I have 
done to most of the dresses we purchased for dances.  
My girls are short waisted and I always have to take about 2 inches out of the shoulders. 
On this dress I also had to raise the waist up about 3/4 of an inch.  
It improved the fit so much, on the top and through her hips,
I knew I HAD to make that adjustment so "The Princess" could look her best in her dress.
The shoulder bling, I wish I had a "Before" picture, was so much 
my hubby said in a quiet voice, "She looks like she is wearing a Marching Band Uniform!
She is a petite girl and really, the shoulders were so blingy, you were drawn to 
look at them instead of at her beautiful face!!!
She loved the dress as it was, so I just did that Mom thing and didn't say much.
So first things first. Take apart the dress.... YIKES! SCARY Lookin'!

We went once again to a fabric store in our area, hoping to find something that would match better...
and we DID find it! She did, I was looking for lining and she found a match that
was just a little lighter in color, but you wouldn't know it
if I hadn't told you!

I was in a Van Huesen store and look what I found! The Perfect tie for the dress.
Since we had to take 2 inches off the shoulders, we had to remove some 
of that bling. It was great because when fitting the dress to her shoulders,
 readily agreed that it looked better with less bling on the shoulders. 

The dress was fully lined with a lined lining! Do you know how many seems that 
is to take out and re-stitch and rip and take out again, if you make a mistake? 
Too Many! But I did them all and did many of them AGAIN!

Since the waist band was raised, you see that I also had to adjust........you got it...the loops...on BOTH sides
.Hmmm, maybe this was not such a great idea.
In altering the back, I was working with five layers of fabric on the right side, including 
the loops and the stay strip, and seven layers on the left side, including the lined piece 
that fits in to cover her back underneath the lacing.
It may have been easier to sew this dress from the pattern and fabric up, but
it would have taken me longer than the time I had, I think. 

I used a sleeve pattern from a shirt pattern I have, it is the same pattern piece I have used on ALL the dresses I've altered for the girls. I adjust it to fit the armhole on each dress a little differently. 
But it works, so I keep using it! Someday I would like to learn how to fit sleeves 
and make somewhat professional alterations. I have sewn
for my girls for a long time, but I don't think I am finished sewing for them.

We found the perfect shoes, with the cheap looking bling and EVERYTHING! LOL!!!
She even had white polish with glitter bling on her toes. It was so cute!

While making her corsage and boutonniere, I remembered I had this
vintage clutch I bought years ago at a antique store for $12.
It is in immaculate condition and was still in
it's original box. She was thrilled with it.
Her hair was done in a "Downton Abbey" loose bun,
and she made a braided hair ribbon out of
the tiny braid I used in her wrist corsage.

Don't they just look like good friends? I told her she would have to be on a chair so 
they could talk while they dance! 

Our beautiful sweet princess was so tired when she got home, but she said she didn't want
to take the dress off because she felt so pretty in it. 
She is pretty. She is kind, intelligent, fun, musical, witty, friendly,
and she laughs and works and sings and cries with me. 

(In the background of my typing I hear her complaining to her father about the cost of something....
"They charge me six kidneys per pack......and I don't even HAVE SIX KIDNEYS!")

She warms my heart every day. Even on the days 
I shake my head or want to spank her. . . she is so much fun!
What a blessing she is in my life.

Hope you enjoyed my CRAZINESS, or over confidence, whatever you want to call it. 
It was a successful craziness, and isn't that what life is all about?

Betsy Hugs and Bloggy Love to you all!


PS ~ My First Blog-iversary is tomorrow!! I cannot believe it! Can anyone hear me saying "Blog Giveaway?"

Linking this girl and her gorgeous Grey Dress

Thanks for the party, Michelle!


  1. Hi Betsy,
    what a lovely dress and what a wonderful daughter you have! Such a nice Lady ::O) I guess it was really exciting!:O)
    Oh, Blog Birthday...... well, I thought, I heared you say : Giveaway ...:O))))
    Happy week to you,
    sending Love and hugs,

  2. Beautiful dress, and you did all those alterations, you are a hero to your daughter. She is lovely! Di

  3. How beautiful - both your daughter and the dress. I can't believe you got it all put back together! I stitch, but often find it's easier to just make a thing rather than fix another thing because just what you said - How Many Layers? Wow. Nicely done.

  4. Hi Betsy,

    You absolutely are a HERO, fixing that dress soooo beautifully. The courage to start a project like this !!!! And it lookes so great !!
    Your daughter is beautiful !! I can imagine that she feels pretty in the dress ! I love the wristcorsage, and the clutch is very nice !
    It's so good to hear you telling about your mother-daughter relationship. Touching !

    Thank you so much for your lovely comments on my posts, you are a dear friend.
    My "Fair affairs" are very time consuming. How are doing with your Christmas presents ?
    Hope to mail you soon.

    Hugs and Blessings,

  5. Hello Betsy
    What a great Mum!!!
    The dress is gorgeous and your daughter looked so beautiful!
    I remember the angst in our house too as my daughter wondered who would ask her to her first ball!!
    She now has three gorgeous little girls of her own!
    Lovely to meet you

  6. Oh Betsy,
    I just love this post about your beautiful daughter. She looks so lovely and pretty and seems like such a sweet dear girl. The dress is gorgeous and you are so very talented with the alterations. I only have one daughter (soon to be 20) but two older sons. It was sooo much fun helping my daughter prepare for her graduation. You have made me smile today! Thank you so much for visiting me. Have a wonderful weekend. Karen

  7. Hello Betsy, WOW what a transformation work you did on this dress. You are a master in sewing indeed. The dress turned out incredibly beautiful and your daughter definitely looks like a princess in it. Such a wonderful couple together.. Very Lovely story indeed. Hugs Judy

  8. Your post brings back memories of the many dresses and gowns I have constructed and altered over the years. Everything from costumes, social and prom dresses to my two girls' wedding gowns(which it took me months to construct). I have gone over every sequin and pearl of purchased overlay with needle and thread to make certain that everything would stay in place, in case one of their daughters should be wearing the dresses on their wedding days in the future. My fingers would be sore from pin and needle pricks.

    Your daughter and her gown are beautiful and both look like they stepped out of Downton Abbey, which is my favorite of the British shows. I can hardly wait for its fourth season to start here in the U.S.

    It was great to read your post and take a trip down my own Memory Lane. Sewing for our children and grandchildren is truly special. Thanks for sharing your "labor of love."

    Have a wonderful weekend!


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