In a previous article I discussed what re-purposing means. This article carries it a bit further with a demonstration of the first phase of gaining a new purpose or a new life. Destruction. Whenever something old is to be made new again it must first be taken apart, torn down and all the old and broken things removed in order to make way for the new growth that is coming. The attached series of images documents a part of that process.
The first step in the destruction was slicing the dress open on either side. the idea is to have the dress be smaller than the wear so that when it is drawn closed the colorful under blouse will peek through. So the sides are cut open and some of the fabric removed to make the dress smaller.
Next came the dying process. This was an experiment in and of itself. First I tried using coffee to stain it. Because the fabric is synthetic it did serve to make the color a bit dirty but did not hold as well as I liked. After the coffee came tea. An entire box of black tea in a hot tub full of water with all sorts of kitchen wear weighing it down into the water.
The tea had the desired effect and the dress looks yellowed and grungy and because the dress was cut before being soaked repeatedly the lace over layer has become even more tattered. Which is perfect for the beaten up Steampunk look that will eventually evolve from the project.
Using several layers of mod podge a wide section all down the cut edges of the dress was stiffened in preparation for being pierced. Soon grommets will be added and the dress will lace up either side like a corset.