Me, 16 Years Old And Rejecting My Parents
I don't know about you, but when I turned 16, I rejected a social life with my parents.
Up until 16, I had a good run with them...I looked to them for comfort, guidance and love and fun!
Then something happened...I just wanted to fit in. And I loved them, but I was so embarrassed. I was so embarrassed I even stopped going on vacations with them...flat out protested. I mean, what could they do...drag my body into the car?
What Was It That Was So Embarrassing?
So might be wondering what was so embarrassing about my parents? It was simple, they were just too young. My mother was 20 and my father 22 years old when they had me. By the time I was 16, my mother was 36 and my father 38.
Now, please don't judge me at 16---you know that my frontal cortex was obviously not developed. And I am doing my very best not to lose my sh!t with my own 16 year old now, who really seems not to like me. But I am not a 'young' parent, so why is my own daughter mortally embarrassed by me? I'm cool, and understanding and I dress chic...so what gives/
All my other friends at that time had older parents--and I thought older meant I would be able to get away with more shenanigans. So ridiculous! I know!
my parents at a party...Mom (36) and Dad (38)
I Did Not Get To Go Out Much, But My Parents Went Out a Heck of A Lot!
My parents just loved me so much and were super protective over me. So yes, I couldn't go out very much...growing up in San Francisco proper might have had something to do with it. And they were right, and I turned out just fine--no adulthood therapy needed.
But THEY went out A LOT! because they were young!
Restaurants and clubs! It was the 80's! Some of their local haunts included MUM’S, Alexis, Iron Horse, Old Poodle in places like North Beach, Union Street and the SF financial district. They even frequented the IBeam in the Haight/Ashbury, which later become more of punk bar.
They embraced disco and later, the Miami Vice vibe.
In common colloquial, they partied their a$$es off.
And They Never Stopped Partying...
I think one of the reasons my parents are still going strong is that they always remained social and physically active. They are 68 & 70 now.
my parents--living life to the fullest!...Mom (68) and Dad (70)
They've always invited Bill, my husband and I out, but many a times we've declined because we were just too exhausted from raising young children. Anyway, isn't going out for NYE amateurish??
But this year, the floor dropped out from under us--our daughters 18 & 16, did not want to spend New Year's with us? Shocking!
Rewind to before Christmas, my parents once again invited us out for 2020 NYE. My parents were sweet to suggest there was not pressure or guilt involved. And reminded us again on Xmas Eve.
With all of Bill's recent work travel and my hibernation mode after spending all summer toiling in the garden, Bill and I privately discussed how our comfortable couch appealed to us, and how much we love to sink under our newest of furry blankets (think Wildlings from Game of Thrones), and had Netflix binging on the mind...finishing Vikings was our priority. (Vikings is the one series that outbinged us! I mean come on, 20 episodes a season???)
My mother told me, if we changed our minds, we could.
Then that feeling came across me...not guilt, but sadness...well maybe guilt too...I guess guilt doesn't have to be always associated with bad feelings.
My parents are getting older. How many more of these invitations will come from my parents who zest for life and experiences? Recently, my parents are making the funeral circuit, with about 40% of their friends having already passed. The realization that my parents will be gone one day, breaks my heart.
I discussed these feelings with my husband who has already experienced the loss of his father, and we both agreed that our couch will be there for many more years to come, but these party animals won't be.
We accepted my parents invitation.
But Now I Need A 2020 NYE Dress!
I was in San Francisco with Bill staying at the palace hotel for the night for my his holiday party when the idea for my Upcycled Party Dress came to me.
My husband was working that day, and I had some leisure time. So instead of my annual 2 hour walk through Union Square, Chinatown to Coit Tower in North Beach and then back up Lombard to walk a very crooked street, around Russian HIll, to the top of Nob HIll and back down to Market Street, I opted to relax in the lobby of the Palace Hotel. Why would I not want to? The decor in this hotel is magical and just the inspiration I needed to figure out what dress I was going to make for NYE.
me, in the lobby of the Palace Hotel in San Francisco
I started to look at the Zara, H&M and J. Crew websites, remembering seeing cute holiday dresses last year. Nothing spoke to me this year. Zara in particular had these cute sequined skirts with asymmetrical detailing that was both vintage and modern in the same time--I hoped the style might be around another year...but no luck.
The I went over to Anthropolgie--wow! a bunch of options!...but the price tags were in the $150-$300 range---yeah, no necessario. I just can't plunk down that kind of change for a once-only dress.
However, this cute, wrong colored tiered tunic dress came across my screen and then-
a flash of brilliance!
the $150 Estelle Tiered Tunic inspiration dress...
I had recently bought a Gold Tiered Skirt at a thrift store for $5.99. Originally I thought it would lovely as a skirt.
I bought it a while back thinking it be cute for Christmas with a black long sleeve mock turtleneck. I love vintage fashion and love 3/4 length skirts.
Buuuuuutttt....how about as a dress?? for NYE??
Then I did something I have never done before...
I put it on Social Media! to see what other people thought...
The below image garnered, not surprisingly, much support for the dress idea, and my confidence sky-rocketed.
I got to work.
First step was cutting down a waistband to make a neckband....while simultaneously creating shoulder seams...
Fabric pinned along the dress form...
Finished neck and shoulder seams...
By shrinking the size of the waistline to neckline, fabric had to be brought up and a new neckline needed to be created...this is me seam ripping....(boring technical tedious stuff)
Better picture of what i needed to do...
Reattached the neck to the new shape of the top of the dress...
Next I cut seams in top skirt tier to make arm holes...girl will need to be able to eat and drink on NYE ; ) ...
Sewing with 4-way stretchy fabric can yield some wavy edges if not stabilized correctly...I use cheap disposable paper towels...(thank you Pinterest for this idea!)
So easy to remove paper towel from stitching...
Me doing a wellness check on my dress...progressing!
The dress kinda looked boring...one way I thought I could elevate the appeal of the dress was added a chiffon sash to the neck band as a tie/bow...
and the finished dress!...doesn't look too impressive on a mannequin, but with a little hair and make-up plus some cute accessories, I had a party dress!
I was super excited to put on my dress...
I was extremely pleased with how it turned out...not exactly like the Anthropologie dress, but in my opinion, even better!
and it was the scarf that made all the difference!
Got my purse and ready to go!
Originally I had my heart set on strappy black heels, but I had to be practical for once--
I was going to be dancing my butt off!
so I opted for more reasonable suede black heels with gold piping...and nothing like adding some thrifted 80's accessories! I love the lacquer black with gold filigree earrings and the two sided suede and leather purse with gold handle...very simple styling...
Bill and I---bad quality picture I know...things got a little crazy at the party...
You know what, I am very blessed to have young parents...because it's an amazing experience to be able to grow old with my parents...Bill and I look forward to more hangovers with them! Has that movie come out yet?
Thankfully there's no evidence---video or pictures---of us partying, because it was a wild and crazy night with my party animal parents!
What happens with my parents, stays with my parents!