Amazon Prom Dress Transformation
This was for my Sister’s Graduation Gift.
Here is What We Started With.
I found it on Amazon for her. Pretty cheap, good reviews.
Here is the link: https://amzn.to/2Mh7TkN
Pros: Fit well, nice style for her shape, looked glam when the light hit it right, built in corset, cheap, good amount of layers, well made.
Cons: All white, beading was odd upon close inspection, strapless.
The biggest problem—it was nicer than we were hoping. Letting me try to fo a full dress coloring for the first time on a old thrift dress was one thing, but this one was nice... so it was harder to get our mom to hand it over.
Seriously. She didn’t want me to paint it.
…but before you give her too hard of a time for not trusting her artistic daughter, note this. I had already stated that if I am to do a coloring for her it has to be full color. I had never done a full color before. I get carried away when it's family, and go a bit crazy... my mom has lived with me and raised me and knows I go art CRAZY.
Back to the dress. My sister Madi said she wanted gold and purple but other than that I can do what I want. FREEDOM!!!
Metallics were still relatively new for me so I was excited for the opportunity to try different application methods with this "test" dress. Thus the experimentation began!
Correction by Mother: This was not a test dress, this was a nice prom dress I paid good money for. Not to destroy or experiment with.
Attempt 1, Test 1, ugh I mean phase 1?
I started with brushing on Pearl Ex Powder. The results right away were soft, gold, ombre, and awesome. So sending these photos to Mom and Madi, no problem. Yet, there was a problem. Pear Ex needs a binder to make it stick to the fabric, meaning it will end up off the dress and on everything else. Although, it had the benefit I could catch any guy that got too close "gold" handed. Muahhahhahhahah.
I tried an air-setting spray, but there was a problem.
One I knew from the moment I saw this dress.
The only reason they looked nice was because the beads reflected the light so well. As soon as anything interrupts that reflection of light, they were going to go from glam to gross. A dye behind them would have added a bit of color, but would not look gold.
Another problem I faced was between the beads and the tulle, there was no visible solid surface. Metallic colors on tulle just look glittery since there is not enough surface area to reflect the light all over. Meaning no matter how much gold paint I use, it was not going to look gold enough.
As a second “phase”, I tried a gold dip on the lining. I assumed this would not work but you don't really know until you try!
If you’re an artist, the best bit of advice I can give is to experiment. The more you fail the better your success will be.
Hey, it at least looks awesome.
So now I am 0 for 2
I needed to take some time to think about my next step for the tulle and beads, so I went on to the lining and again tried a much different approach than I usually do. The goal here was to see if I could get an organic color shift by mixing directly on the dress.
Remember she wanted GOLD and PURPLE.
So I sent Madi and Mom these pictures.
Mom's response was she no longer would like to see the process.
I also think this is where I scared my sister...or maybe it was the video of me beating the dress with a paint brush to get the gold to fade. Who knows.
I should note here I do not experiment with peoples wedding dresses, this is my little sisters dress, it's different.
The result? Well, see for yourself.
Purple wise, I was happy. This plan was a complete mess, but worked. That light orange tone I got from the gold wash was not bright enough for me, so I went over that with my own special mix of Gold fabric paint. This color was perfect and the shine unreal. I was obsessed, but once again there was a problem.
4 layers of tulle would be hiding this amazing gold.
So began the long process of convincing my mom and sister to let me remove the beads.
Sadly at this point, I had lost most trust. Maybe I took the experimentation a bit too far...
I continued to finish painting the tulle meanwhile pleading with my sister and mother to let me tear off those beads. Madi finally gave in and said something along the line of "Okay, I guess."
Before she had the chance to change her mind I had the scissors in hand and half of the beading removed.
Mom: (Still not convinced) "What about the fabric, will it be damaged?"
Me: "It's perfect" & sent this to her.
Needless to say, my mom came around to agree with the decision I took and the dress finally had that solid gold statement it needed.
I continued to remove the beads, paint the bodice, then spray all the remaining tulle gold, and finally add a few overlays of different glitters for a big sparkle.
Oh and we added tulle off the shoulder sleeves.
NOW the MOMENT you have been waiting for!!!!
Madi’s Princess Prom dress. A Disney looking mix of Belle and the Floating Lantern scene from Tangled.
As for her prom, she had a blast and shined like no other.
I wish you could see how much it sparkled!!!
The final outcome looked like Belle from beauty and the beast mixed with Rapunzel’s lantern scene. Very fitting, since my sister loves Disney, like to an extreme level.
Exhibit A: Her Birthday Gift/DisneyBound Outfit/Swing Dress I made her.
This dress transformation is only the start of something bigger. I'll let you in on a little secret, I have been collecting used/old/sample wedding dresses and starting transformations on them. Meaning you might see someday, pop up sales of painted and altered one-of-a-kind wedding dresses. 😉
PS: This dress (Size 6-8, removable tulle sleeves) will most likely be for sale once I get it back and do a few touch-ups. If you’re interested, comment below and I will email you when it's available.