Monday, June 6, 2011

Day 6: Another Installment in the Chronicles of the Silver Dress

It started with a coupon. I found a 50% off coupon for A.C. Moore and I was determined to use it to find something fabulous to finish the dress with. Perhaps a beaded applique (they only had skulls), or a black daisy (they had every other color), or maybe something turquoise (they had robin's egg and sky, but no turquoise)... So I struck out on what I was looking for, but I found another product that held some promise. Fabric spray paint in an aerosol can. I figured this would work like regular spray paint and I could lightly mist the dress with some black paint, toning down the color just a smidge. Well... It didn't quite work that way.

I took this project outside on the back porch so as not to get paint all over the house. First removing the dress, I put a garbage bag over my dress form to protect it from the paint bleeding through and then once more dressed the form in the infamous silver dress. I didn't put anything underneath because I couldn't imagine having an overspray problem when the bottom of the dress was almost two feet away from the ground. I began this project after all the kids were in bed, so it was dark, and I had only the dim light of the porch to go by. When I pulled the trigger on the can, it became immediately apparent that aerosol fabric paint is indeed not just like spray paint: it's much thinner. The paint squirted out of the can in a fine mist and dripped off my dress onto the wooden floorboards of my porch. Trying not to curse, I quickly scrambled to find some newspapers to put underneath the skirt to prevent any further drippage... (Hopefully my husband will forgive me if I have painted a black circle in the middle of our porch.) I sprayed the entire dress, and in the dim light it seemed to be working pretty well. And then I got it a little thick, and it beaded up and began to run... So, once again I was running, this time for paper towels. I was able to even the paint out and re-spray, and it looked alright when I left the dress to dry on the back porch. I'm hoping the paint will properly dry, because the paint is designed for cotton fabric, not the weird synthetic/metallic fabric from which the dress was made. Using products contrary to their instructions qualifies as creative, right?

Below are before and after shots of this dress. The photos aren't really great (it was dark, as I've said), but it will give you an idea of what we are working with. As of this moment, the dress is still drying, which the can says will take 1 hour, but I am betting it will take longer.

It wasn't a drastic change, but I think it was an improvement... If the paint dries
properly and I am able to wear this dress. Keep your fingers crossed for me!

Update: The paint dried! I left the dress out on the back porch all night because, as predicted, it wasn't dry in an hour. I briefly inspected the dress and didn't see any splotches or drips. The paint is a little spotty textured when you look closely, probably due to the synthetic fabric, but I kinda like it. I think, although subtle, this was definitely an improvement. And although I have painted my porch, the paint is equally subtle on the floorboards, so all is well.

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