Thursday, April 21, 2011

My Not-So-Extreme Makeovers

When I was in the sixth and seventh grade, one of my favorite pastimes was to do "makeovers" on myself and my friends. Now, don't get me wrong, my friends were already quite beautiful, but our "makeovers" consisted of the heavy application of the leftover make-up (usually something garish, like blue eyeshadow) donated to me by Mom or my aunts to play with. Then we'd put on our most stylin' outfits and pose for pictures. It was tons of fun.

Anyway, fast-forward (*swallow hard*) twenty years, and I've been doing some little makeovers -- though no blue eyeshadow is involved, and we can all be quite thankful for that! No, these makeovers are of the clothing nature and come from reading books like Radical and The Hole in Our Gospel, then taking a good hard look at what I really need, versus what I just (greedily) want. I'm also challenged by certain bloggers who are trying to not buy anything new for (at least) a year. I'm happy to say that I hadn't bought anything new for several months, but I did cave a couple weeks ago and buy a few new items now that 1) summer is practically upon us already here in Florida, and I need some particular warm weather pieces, and 2) my belly is about to start a big growth spurt that my current wardrobe isn't prepared to accomodate. (What I bought was what I like to call "Works-for-maternity-but-not-necessarily-so" -- but more on that later! And, it was from the clearance rack of Old Navy, so I didn't spend much.)

My sewing machine has been sitting on its table quite forlornly, but I fought off my nausea and fatigue and finally paid some attention to it for these little projects. They really didn't take much effort, I'm happy to say, and gave me almost-instant gratification.

The rule for makeovers is that you have to take really appalling "Before" pictures. Bad lighting and in my case, an untidy house in the background, due to the fact that I'm so exhausted all the time. I think in some of the before pictures you can even see the bag of stuff I was preparing to take the donation center. Really lovely, no?

OK, so first here's this skirt that you might remember from last spring. The before picture is on this post. Really, though, it was kind of cuter than that when paired with a better top and shoes. But I just felt like it could be better. For one thing, I like skirts that hit just below the knee and I looooove eyelet. So this is what I did.

It should be pretty clear what I did -- chopped off several inches, then added a little bit of eyelet I bought at Joann. And I'm definitely happier. Plus, this is something I'll be able to wear even as my tummy gets bigger.

Not so with the next project. But anyway. I bought these at the Gap Outlet last summer and thought they were a newer, better version of my favorite jeans. However, they were just way too long. Maybe this is what they call "heel length" but let's face it, folks, I NEVER wear heels. So they just looked frumpy and sloppy. This picture doesn't really do justice for how frumpy and sloppy they looked, but anyway.

I really wanted a pair of capris, then I thought, Hey, those are too long anyway! Why don't I...? Here's my inspiration, and here's what I came up with.

Unfortunately, this picture was taken a couple weeks ago, and these capris cannot be worn comfortably any more. It's not that they're really too small -- when I'm standing up. But when I'm sitting, the button digs in exactly where my little baby bump is growing. So they're put away. Hopefully "just for the time being." :-)

Then there was this dress, purchased at Target a couple years ago.

Sure, it was a great maternity dress, but I just never felt like it looked good when I put it on. I'd worn it maybe three times since I bought it. Since I like the look of those peasant skirts that are in stores these days, and I didn't want to get rid of it because I love the feel of the fabric, I chopped, stitched and inserted elastic, and voila!

And finally, here are some pajama pants that were just a very wrong length. So I guess if I woke to my house suddenly having three inches of water on the floor, I could be thankful that at least my pants wouldn't get wet. But... yuck!! I couldn't even sleep in them knowing they were such a dorky length.

So again, I chopped and stitched and came up with these.

Sorry that this is such a terrible "After" picture, but it became clear to me today that I wouldn't get a good shot since these were my pajamas, thrown on at the end of the day and then slept in and accessorized with bedhead and bags under my eyes. I'm just not going to put them on when I have make-up on and my hair looks nice. That's too fake-y for me.

Anyway, as an aside, you may notice that my hair is not as dark as it used to be. I got highlights for my new pregnancy 'do. I'm still not sure what I think about the look, but the kids like it. They say, "You have yellow AND brown hair now, Mom! You look like all of us!!" :-)

Hopefully I'll grab the chance to blog again this weekend, but if not... Happy Easter!!!

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