One of my goals made during Fashion Revolution week was to give more ugly 80s and 90s thrift store items new life. Since many of them are hideous, it requires creative upcycling in order for them to avoid the landfill. "Upcycling" doesn't mean just "reused;" it means making an item more valuable than it was before. I think this definitely applies to this project!
It all started with a search for shoulder pads. When bought new, they are about $8 in my local sewing store, and that is ridiculous to me! Why on earth would I pay $8 for new shoulder pads when there are millions of hideous 80s, shoulder-padded dresses in thrift stores for pennies?! I went to the cheapest charity shop in town and found this "Golden Girls"-worthy beauty:
I originally planned to make a dropped-waist 1940s style dress that utilized the pleated part of the skirt (huzzah for modern chemically-set pleats that don't need to be re-ironed!). However, when I got the dress home I realized that while it is sort of a two piece dress.... the lining is attached at the neckline to the outer fabric, and the pleated fabric doesn't go up very far on the bottom layer. So.... it wouldn't be long enough for a 40s skirt. New plan!
Today I styled it for the 20s, but I'll show you a more 30s aesthetic in a future post. To get the 20s look, I rolled with the baggier silhouette and threw on a cloche and some dolly lips. It's a super easy outfit and I'm proud to say it's the first 20s-style dress I've made that I actually like! I always have problems trying to balance out my hips and create a longer-looking silhouette, but I think this one works!
cloche: made by me
dress: made by me, upcycled
lipstick: Kat Von D "Outlaw" lip stain