Sunday, February 8, 2009


Took my husband to the airport Thursday morning (he was a teller at the Timpanogas Storytelling Conference this weekend).
On the way he mentioned that it was supposed to start raining again. We looked out at the warm sunshine bathing the view and laughed. “I don’t think so,” I said. So of course by the time his plane took off the gray clouds had rolled in, and by the time he got to Utah the rain was coming down outside my window. As a weather prophet I get no points at all. And the weather gets no points for furthering my yard sale career. Didn’t even go out to a couple of sales that promised to be there rain or shine. I fell for that a couple of weeks ago. Fool me twice…

In keeping with my resolution to use my garaging finds, I remodeled this skirt and blouse I picked up last summer for a buck and a half.

They’re by Ulla Popken, and judging from her website would have been about $70 each retail. Rayon with embroidery and some tasteful sequins. The tag said dry clean.

I don’t dry clean.

I don’t like the smell of the chemicals, don’t think they’re healthy to be around, and I don’t like the cost. My frugal self can't quite see buying something for less than a dollar and then spending to dry clean it over and over. So any yard sale clothing that says dry clean, I hand wash. Almost never has this backfired, and the item or two that shrank just got donated. They weren’t ruined, just smaller!

The top on this set shrank just a little, and kind of selectively. After I washed it and dried it on the line, it was a little snug, especially the sleeves. Heck, I thought, but then I started considering the skirt. I have short legs, so lots of skirts hit the tops of my shoes if I don’t shorten them or hike them up under my armpits. This skirt was quite long, but has a ruffled tier on the bottom, so not a candidate for shortening at the hem. However, skirts can easily be shortened from the top. So Saturday morning I picked open the elastic waist on the skirt, cut off about 5”, sewed a new casing, reinserted elastic and voila, the skirt was a length I like. Then I picked open the side and underarm seams on the blouse and inserted the cut-off skirt material. I admit picking out seams is boring, but I did it while watching a movie so it didn’t drive me mad. Since the fabric is black, I fancy the addition is barely noticeable. And if anyone ever comments on it I'll just say yes, I did add in some fabric, aren’t you clever to have noticed.

So now I have this comfy and (I think) spiffy dress to wear.
I used the same technique a while back on this Jones New York silk skirt. It was a couple of sizes too small, but cut on the bias and too long, so when I shortened it at the waist it was perfect.

Now that the weekend is nearly over and it's almost time to go back to the airport to pick up my husband, the sun has come out. Can't deny we need the rain, but I'd rather have it on a weekday if you please!

When I finished my sewing on Saturday I went out in the back yard with the dogs between showers. A couple of daffodils had been knocked over by the rain, so I brought them in and put them in one of my yard sale vases. Hmmm, rain plus sunshine equals daffodils. That seems okay by me.


  1. Cute outfit! I'd wear it!
    Funny..looking at your photo was like looking in a mirror..body-typewise.:-)

  2. Windy, sunny and 50's here in Michigan yesterday.

    Perfect day to leave the house!

    LOVE the dress!

  3. Your outfit is adorable! You did a great job "customizing" it for a perfect fit. Our weather is warming a bit here in North Carolina, but I miss California sunshine. I hope we get our daffodils soon.

  4. Well done on the makeover. I've had a couple of loved outfits in the past that I donated when they shrunk and now wish I'd kept them and made over.

    LOL, I don't do dry clean either.

    Its freezing here in the UK. The snow has just melted and all I can hear is the drip, drip, drip of water from the roof.

    Roll on Summer!

  5. I've hiked Mt. Timpanogas! It's absolutely beautiful! Too bad you couldn't go with him to this event. Have you ever been? I wish I had mad sewing skills like you! I'd have more money from all that I saved on clothing that doesn't fit for one reason or another.

  6. You and your blog are such inspirations! I can't wait until after each Saturday for the new post. Went to the conference website and it had pictures of all the storytellers - pray tell - which one is your husband? What a fun job! Love all your thrifty makeovers.


I really love your comments. Thanks for coming along on my thrifty adventures!

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