I had a hard time finding the perfect Thrift Store Thursday Frock yesterday. I DID find a great Kenneth Cole frock for $2 that only needed a 6" hem (shown in blue) but I like to find dresses that need alterations that I've never shown you before. Just taking it in the sides and upping the hems isn't that ground breaking.
So after I hit the Sal Val and Community Aide I stopped at Gabriel Brothers. Now for those of you living on the West coast who haven't heard of them before, Gabriel Brothers isn't a thrift store but more of an outlet store where retailers sell their damaged, unsold or overstocked items. You can find a lot of good name brand labels like Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie, Ann Taylor, etc. They certainly aren't as cheap as a thrift store but all their inventory is brand new, often still with tags.
And I found this great Express Studio reddish orange party dress for.....drumroll.....$1! They were having an outdoor clearance sale and the zipper was broken so no one was going to touch this pretty piece.
So I bought it with the change in my minivan's ashtray and took it home. Now, as you can see it's strapless. It looks like that at some point it came with the option to add straps because it had the fabric hooks on the inside but somewhere along the way they were lost. So I went to JoAnn's and bought some adjustable straps and Rit fabric dye in red and orange to match the dress.
As you can see I think the straps came out pretty close to perfect. Now, I think this dress looks way better without straps but I'm being realistic. There's no way I'm lasting an entire evening with no straps and this bust.
If you have a strapless dress that you need straps for, try this trick. I also moved the hooks for the straps to under my armpits because it looks more modern.
I also replaced the zipper and now that YOU know how, you can snatch up all those unwanted sale dresses with broken zippers and have a fabulous wardrobe too!
Two years ago, Gabriel Brothers were selling last season's Ann Taylor dresses retailing for around $150-$200 for only $3-$7!!!! Because they all had broken zippers. I snatched like seven and still wear them this year!