DIY A Cocktail Dress

Leandra Medine | December 27, 2010

Here’s the funny thing about this DIY: While yes, you will be making a cocktail dress, there will be no cock in your proximity. There will, however be loads o’tail. Let’s continue.

Last May when Joy Bryant wore a Marchesa gown to the CFDA awards, I eloquently proclaimed, “puff sleeves make the peen go down.” This school of thought still holds true.

 image via WWD

Ultimately, I blame Giambattista Valli and Marchesa for bringing back the 80s sleeve but in today’s installment of Do It Yourself Fashions, we look to the budget conscious weener fenders at H&M.; 
Behold: Forty nine dollars and fifty cents of glory.

image via Handheld Device

I saw the sleeves, I saw the sequins, and in an excited slur I thought, “holy man repeller, I have to have you.” So much so, I didn’t even have time to properly take off my jeans. I tweeted this photo about two months ago and in that moment, I was going to meet a man friend. He texted me and said “I saw your tweet, please tell me that’s not what you’re wearing. If it is, I’m canceling dinner tonight.”

I wasn’t wearing it and so he was relieved…but then I showed up wearing this!

tee: Topshop, skirt: Zara, shoes: YSL

Add a military jacket and watch an Amish flair meet the Jew within. Sorry, sucka. Joke was on you.

Back to the DIY. Yes sure, the dress is a Man Repeller as it is, “a cry for attention,” if you will. Even so though, the body is tight and that shit is mini. So I ask you this: why bare your legs and risk the potential of attracting a man when you can turn the little party dress into celibacy inducing formal wear? All you’ll need is a few layers of black chiffon (and a sewing machine.)

And then…voila!

rings by YSL and TOMTOM, shoes by Valentino, all photos by Chuck Grant

Like I always say, just add birth control glasses.
…and a leopard print bench. You know, for dramatic effect.

I conclude saying this: it’s possible to get cocktail ready without compromising your inherent affinity for deterring the c-word, I couldn’t say it again, I just couldn’t, so get a little fancy this New Years Eve.

Happy man-hunting! 


  • the style crusader

    This is amazing. Love the last photo of you lounging on the leopard with the geeky glasses. Very Dynasty meets Steve Urkel. xx

  • tes yeux

    lady, mans is stupid if they is not wanting yo' booty all up in their faces. all the time. because you're bleeding stylish with sexy to boot.

    this all just makes me very sad. in a laughing kind of way. oh dear.

  • The Fashion Cloud

    You have the ability to make fashion hilarious :) Your posts always crack me up and this is one great DIY


  • A. Grey

    Want. The. Shoes. I'll take the dress and glasses too though, just in case any men venture my way…

  • Sketch42

    That picture of Joy Bryant is why I think Marchesa sucks as a designer. She makes everyone look like an ice skater crossed with a cupcake.

    Also, if Rachel Zoe styled her, then yes, she has indeed lost her luster.

  • jamee dyches.

    I'm so glad I came across your blog. It is the most brilliant thing I've ever read. Keep it coming!

  • Yevgeniya Yelkina

    that dress is gorgeous i am obsessed

  • Fashion Agony

    You're hilarious! 😀

  • Kristin Eichenberg

    The zara skirt is amazing.
    Made a post about maxi skirts yesterday..
    check it ouuuut:

  • Sabina

    I do believe this is the most repellent ensemble yet! I don't know how you're going to top it!

  • Elettra

    Ahah, you're just so funny! ..And you say the pure truth! I bless the day I discovered this blog! 😀


    Thanks for shamelessly posting mirror photos featuring a handheld camera device. You look great in those sleeves!


  • Maria Luisa

    AHhHAHAHA!!! I am an Italian journalist, and you are officially my favourite blogger of the moment!!!


  • sachalouise

    budget conscious weener fenders. glory.

  • Nancy

    haha my god, I love you

  • Cate

    omg, i am DEAD! puff sleeves make the peen go down. lmfao.
    i love this blog more than i can say. :)

  • Betty Draper Complex

    I lol'ed so hard at the first sentence. And I love the look of cocktail dresses with glasses. I don't know why people think that dressing up=contact lenses?

  • Anonymous

    You have gross freckles on your chest. Makes you look like Quasimodo…

  • Fabienne Jach

    You're cracking me up over here! It makes me want to bust out some man repelling outfits of my own. My hubby got me a faux fur vest for Xmas and I think he likes it because I can wear it, sans blouson, for him. Every other guy in the office made fun of the fact that I look like a badger. I considered this FTW. Fashion + Fun = Awesome!

  • Jessica

    Oh my goodness – I just found your blog and I adore you to no end! Man repelled or not, that outfit is fab.


    oh beautiful! i can't wait to repel this nye.

  • filthy g

    hahahah! i looooove the outfit you wound up wearing to meet him!


    Wow! The guy was stalking you on Twitter before your date and he thought your outfit was going to be the problem? That's one questionable boy. I don't like dating boys who are on twitter it just makes life more awkward. In the mean time I want to see a DIY on the Tom Ford wooly mammoth dress pretty please?

  • Charly Suggett

    loving how your jeans are still round your ankles in the h&m; dress shot.

    maybe we should all start wearing your jeans round our ankles and try to attempt a run, similar to running in high heels…but with your ankles bound together by jeans…yeahhh…interesting…

    fan me up

  • molly

    i love your date look SO much! and also the dress.
    youre so funny! i love this blog!

  • Villedela

    Okay so usually I get freaked out by longer-ish dresses because I'm a towering 5'0, but I loved the added fabric on this one. Just brilliant. +glasses + leopard bench = epic.

  • Melissa

    You are a genius writer! Love your posts, so funny! And agreeable :) Loved how you DIY this dress too! Epic blog!
    Following you xxx

  • napt11

    HAHAHHA … no really i laughed out loud
    I am so gald I came upon your blog.
    You've got a new follower :)
    This made my day that much better

  • Emily

    Wow, your blog is absolutely hilarious.
    I read it, I sent it to my mom to read it, I sent it to all of my friends to read it.
    I mean, I always joke about wearing my "maneater" shoes, but you've taken it to a whole new level. I love love love the "birth control glasses."
    Best. Blog. Ever.


    Scarlet Letter Style

  • Deanne

    god i love you. you make me laugh till i cry.

  • Anonymous

    You are freaking hilarious!!!
    LOVE LOVE LOVE your blog! It really help us girls feel better about our sartorial decisions. .
    It happens to me a lot that the clothes I wear are not only man but people repeller, a loooot of girls do not get the whole fashion thing either.
    It is great that you share all these with us so we can laugh about it, knowing that out there there are more like us hahaha

  • African Television

    Amazing outfit,
    African TV Stations

  • seo los angeles

    This is a really great idea, but how do I put the dress together with the chiffon if I don't have a sewing machine – not that I could use it anyway. Lightbulb over my head – Safety Pins!!!! Those bigger ones- and with space between the hem of the dress and the chiffon, so you can see a little leg. PLEASE do this! I am a genius…lol.

  • Wan Sitohang

    dress is very pretty, with an attractive design

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