Sunday, August 13, 2017

dress hack

Imagine that moment when you realize the dress doesn't fit and the wedding is in 2 weeks.

My daughter is standing up in her friends wedding in August. When the dress came in after waiting 3 months, it did not fit.  It fit in the waist, but was about 3 inches of space between the zipper. It was not going to zip up.


The dress shop would not take fault and there was not another 3 months to wait for another.


The dress shop said, "There's some room in the zipper - just let it out." She called me frantic, and asked me to take a look. Once I figured out there was not 3 inches anywhere in the dress to be let out, we started reviewing our options.

A. Throw major hissy fit and cause a scene.
B. Look online for the exact same dress out of another dress shop.
C. Come up with creative solution.

It's really upsetting when you pay so much money for a dress and it doesn't even fit. The dress shop were idiots and made her feel bad, like it was her fault. That seriously pissed me off. They took her measurements and they ordered the dress.


After weighing our options, we decided to modify the dress converting the back into a corset style. We set out for our local Joann's and found some material to match. The picture lighting makes this look like a lighter color - but the fabric matched pretty well.


We didn't want the eyelets to stand out, so we found some nail polish and coated the eyelets so they were the same color as the dress.

Our shopping list was:

- 1/2 yard of fabric. This ended up being too much, 1/4 yard would have worked with plenty leftover.
- 3 yards of ribbon. We bought this ribbon because it was the only kind that matched. Again, this was way too much. We ended up cutting it in half.
- Eyelets
- Matching thread

Her total bill was $10.00, but we could have gotten away with just $5.00 of materials. Live and learn.


I started out by ripping the zipper out to the waist. Since the dress fit her to the waist, we kept the zipper and just shortened it.


I was even able to save the metal clip that keeps the zipper from coming off the teeth and reapplied it the top of the shortened zipper. Next, we put in a hem to secure the area where the zipper was.


I measured a square about 6x6 of the extra fabric. I sewed the hem all the way around, leaving a small area to be able to turn the fabric inside out. The corners were clipped to lose some of the bulk.


We test fit it into the area we needed to cover.



Using my handy eyelet tool, I added the eyelets to each side. Then I sewed the insert making sure the eyelets were free on both side. You can see the thread line on the left outside the eyelets. 

Using the tool, scrapped some of the nail polish off, so we need to repair the color. I also screwed up one of the colored eyelets, and ended up putting in a silver one. All can be touched up before wearing.


And ta-da! A wearable dress that actually fits her body exactly for about $10.00 in materials.


I think it turned out nice.


Happy bridesmaid ... happy bride too. 

It was the best solution, it allowed her to keep the same dress as everyone else and now she can breathe.

That girl ... never keeps a straight face for a picture. :)

Saturday, August 5, 2017

detroit maker's faire

This year I had the pleasure of going to the Detroit Maker's Faire at the Henry Ford Museum with Saline Singularity - Team 5066, Ann Arbor District winners. This was my first time at a Makers Faire, and I think this one was the place to be.


FIRST Robotics arranged for local teams to do mock competitions all day for the visitors. The playing field was set up. This years theme was "SteamWorks".


We originally set up on the outside of the big tent. They made us take down our shade tent so the spectators could get a better view of the field.


The object of the game was to collect gears and fuel for your steam powered ship. The 2 ships are pictured here. Once you collect enough steam, you fly away with the ship by having your robot climb the attached rope.


We made the wise decision to move inside the tent so we were out of the sun for the rest of the day. The Saline Singularity club members attended to the robots every need and got it ready for a day of mock competitions.


The team next to us rallied for a group photo and I grabbed a shot. I wish I had also got a shot of their team number. I have no idea what team this is, but the kids were very nice. Professional graciousness.


Burke and Holly showed up so we wondered around a bit. I grabbed some photos. This guy was very cool!


There was a driving one man band.


A lot of pedal driven spectacles.


A remote controlled fake dude in a wheel car who spun around and around.


Teeny tiny bikes


Big bikes


And specialty bikes.



Tons of exhibits and fun things to do.


Makers and designers of all types. Some of the coolest fabric art.


This was a part of a sound contest they were having. Lots of different exhibits doing some cool things with sound. Thought this was cool - breakfast sounds. Loved the display. Breakfast of champions!


Lots of people walking through the vendor craft booths.


A robotic horse. Quite possibly nothing cooler.


Even saw a UFO who was very friendly.


One of the FIRST teams brought this, which was awesome. A robotic garage can - took the garage out for you. lol!

It was a perfect day for the Maker's Faire and a great way to expose the FIRST Robotic program to many, many spectators. The crowds were lined up outside the tent all day. Our kids had fun doing mock competitions all day and really got the crowd going.

I'm super proud of our club and I'm glad to be one of the mentors.