When you dress the queen{s}…


If you’ve followed my blog for a while, you know that I have made quite a few prom/homecoming/pageant dresses in my few years of sewing, and every. single. time., I tell my bff, “If you ever hear me say prom/pageant/homecoming dress again, SLAP ME!!”, and yet every time prom/pageant/homecoming comes around, she calls and says “Whatcha’ doin’???”  And I say, “Working on (insert whichever sister has roped me in’s name here)’s prom/pageant/homecoming dress.”  And she laughs and says, “oooooh, I thought you were never making another one???”  And I say, “Shut it”  lol  And I’ll tell you why this happens everytime.  It’s because every time the progression goes some thing like this….



Sister says in passing,  “So you going to make my pageant/prom/homecoming dress??”  Then, proceeds to describe or show me some fantastic dress, and I simply have to make  it!!  I can’t help myself.  It’s like a sickness, really.  Everything starts off great.  We look at pics of pretty dresses, shop for fabrics…this time around I even draped my own pattern for the very first time!  It was pretty fun…well, except for all the times I stabbed myself with pins…don’t worry…I didn’t get the queen! lol


Everything is fine.  And then, next thing I know it’s a few days before the pageant, and the fabric we ordered is just finally coming in, and then sister #2 decides, “oh, I think I’ll be in the pageant.  Can you take in this dress that is 4 sizes too big??”, and like some sort of moron, I say yes, and from there on my house turns into a one woman sweat shop!



I mean seriously!! Would you look at these knees!!!  Purty, ain’t they?? lol  No, seriously!   They don’t look that bad here, but THEY. WERE. RAW!!!


So first, I take in dress #1 to get it out of the way because I hate to do alterations!  I mean, I could make you a dress from scratch faster than I can alter a dress!  Especially when it is this big.  You have to take the whole thing apart move straps take it in and put it back together, and then guess what! Ends up she can’t wear a bra with it because the back is too low, and since the fabric is really thick (and my goodness, the girl is only 19!),  she really doesn’t need it…and that’s fine, but guess what…When I fitted her…she was wearing a bra…a padded one….like we’re talking one of those miraculous bras from Victoria’s Secret.  So now guess what…I HAVE TO TAKE IT IN AGAIN!  One day before the pageant.  And all I’ve done on dress #2 is make a pattern.  : )  Let the drinking commence!! lol Just kidding, but at this point pretty much all I want to do is see a set of blue mountains, if ya’ know what I mean, but I push forward.   And after 6 hrs of work, I have this:


Not too bad…Still more than 22 hrs until the pageant, and all I’ve got to do is add the feathers & zipper and finish the neckline and armholes with bias tape….Hahaha!  Yeah. right.  That was so funny.  LIKE THAT WOULD EVER HAPPEN!!! 

No, what actually happens is this:  She gets to my house and puts it on, and guess what!  The lace is waaaaay too stretchy!  The bustier part keeps falling down, and the more I take it up in the shoulders, the more it stretches to the point it wants to tear.  At this point, I just want to crawl up in a ball and cry!  It’s 8 pm.  The pageant is the next day, and I don’t really have any extra fabric.  So, after a mini meltdown, I pull myself together and furiously work on a second dress # 2.  Oh, btw, did I mention, the dress I have already altered twice still needs adjustments to the straps…yeah, that’s why I hate doing alterations.


And by the end of the day, most of my house looks like this, and I’ve got about 45 minutes to get dressed, and be at the pageant to help with hair/makeup/run to my sister’s car in high heels to grab her spanx, uh, I mean shoes…did I say spanx???…she totally doesn’t wear spanx…

So why do I do it over and over???  Because, in the end, it’s all worth it…

Dress #1  ~  The one I altered…ignore the shoes…they’re horrible…they’re lyrical shoes because she was about to do a dance number…but she looks pretty doesn’t she?!?

Dress #2 ~ The one I made…twice

And here they are together…

The theme was Mardi Gras, and they had to make Mardi Gras masks for the opening dance number.  They’re pageant coach made these for them.  Cute, huh!

Oh, btw:  Adriana (left) was giving up the title.  Kristen (right)  was running for it.  In case you were wondering.  : )

Opening number…

One last time in front of the judges….

Adriana’s last walk as Miss Rayne & farewell speech…

Yeah, I cried…

My mom cried too…

Dad didn’t…He was thinking, “Does this mean you are going to stop spending all my money???”  lol Just kidding!!

Kristen didn’t win, but she did win Miss Congeniality + they are sponsoring her for the International Rice Festival!

Brey-Brey in his huge cowboy boots.  That boy loves his boots!

Sophie with the newest queen in the family…

Queen’s in training…



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  1. Maribel Reyes says

    The dresses are beautiful and with the masks I thought of a masquerade ball.. I wish I had taken advantage of my grandmother wanting to teach me to sew. I do know how to put a button back on, hem some pants but that is it. 😀

  2. Leighann says

    GIRL…I swear, you are ah-mazzzz-ing! I’m so jealous…I did some pageants in h.s., but none of my dresses were that cool! (plus, it was the 90’s…shhhh!)

  3. jenny at dapperhouse says

    You are lucky (and so are your sisters) to have such an incredible talent!! They look amazing. I really love being able to see so many pictures in your post – it was almost like I was there :)
    LOVE you blog.

  4. Adrianne at Happy Hour says

    You are seriously SO. AMAZING. All the time, I say the same thing – never again, too much work and stress… but you must be so proud to see your work at such a special occasion!! Awesome job, April!!

  5. Heidi says

    WOW!! Amazing!! So you must be Wonder Woman then..?! I did hair in a salon for a few years before I had kids, and we always dreaded Prom season too! Although it always turned out to be a fun time with all the girls’ hair we did. I think it’s just the anticipation that leads up to that day is a little overwhelming! LOL You did a fabulous job on both dresses!! They are lucky to have you!!

  6. Mandi says

    So lovely! I can’t sew anything fancier than button and I’m blown away by your abilities! My daughter is 9 months…maybe by the time she’s in high school, I’ll be able to sew her prom dress?


  1. […] and techniques.Aaaand, she’s the nicest person AND sister ever!  She proved it when she made one dress and dramatically altered another for her sisters to compete in a pageant. […]

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