I was talking to my 83 year old drinking buddy the other day about sunglasses. I told him about how I wear Dad’s old shades from the late 80s and laughingly added that it was because I was too cheap to buy new ones. My friend informed me that in years gone by, folk would have called me thrifty and that said thriftiness would have been an attractive quality.

Funny how the world changes, isn’t it?

Somewhat inspired by the thought of my Yorkshire blood and Scottish upbringing yeilding something other than an obscure accent, I began to apply serious thought to the two weddings I’ll be attending in June. The bridesmaid dress for one has already been delivered – a gorgeous chocolate brown offering from Styleshake, designed by myself and M-‘s sister – however the other is something of a challenge.

M-'s bridesmaid dress

This wedding – in which I am best man – takes place on Skye, with highland greens and purples as the colour theme. I bought some fabric a while back for a sash, with the intention of slinging it around a store bought grey dress. Since then, however, it has become apparent that Charlie Micra will need a service and MOT, and has just been road taxed. The Groom – one of my many J-s – would understand my sacrificing clothes and neatness on his big day for the sake of my car, but I still don’t want to let his lovely bride down.

So I decided to take drastic action. I raided my sewing box.

I have two half-finished dresses to choose from. One is grey and was made from pre-cut sections of wool.  It is also 10 inches too big for my waist.

The second dress is one I drew free-hand on some cheap green cloth from John Lewis. I reckon with a little work, and absolutely no change in weight, this one might be perfect. Still, when I put it away last time, it was because I couldn’t decide how to fashion the straps and I’m still at a bit of a loss. The waist is incredibly tight fitting – and looks gorgeous – so I need something I can pull on over my head. I’m thinking pinafore, but with thin ribbons in heather purple instead of buttons. I’m not trying to be clever and arty by suggesting this, I might add. Button holes are the devil.

This is the closest I could get to the shape of the dress I've made

This is the closest I could get to the shape of the dress I've made - it's done in 4 full length panels though, not as a top and skirt

I’ve already got some of this fabric to use for a sash:

Superbuzzy Purple Tea Rose

so I could, hypothetically, either cover some buttons with it, or snip some into ribbons…

I plan on wearing both dresses with white tights and a pair of brown Mary-Jane shoes – only one set of accessories to carry! I’ll get some gold-coloured costume jewellery from a charity shop to go with the greeny purple frock, and some pretty pink beads to go with the bridesmaids dress. The brown dress also needs a sash and an underskirt, but I’m tempted to just get some nice cotton, some netting and some pink dye and go to town….

Thrifty? I hope so… Not counting the money I spent initially on the shoes:

Brown Mary-Janes

Brown Mary-Janes

and the fabric for the green dress, I reckon I only need to spend just over a tenner on some opaque white tights…

Now it’s out with the sewing machine to see what can be done about those straps…

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