A story. In pictures.

on June 2, 2011 in Ze Bloggy Goodness with 9 comments by

No better way to ease back into the beautiful world of blogging that you tell you an amazing story using photographs.

Just so you know, all these pictures are reenactments. At the time of the event, all parties involved were far too panicked to realize that this would be an amazing blog post and that people would laugh heartily for years to come.

We’ll call this story: When Haley’s Dress Was Taken Hostage


When Haley’s Dress Was Taken Hostage

Story by Annie Downs

Photography by Annie Downs


My best friend Haley was in a wedding. The bridesmaid dress needed some slight alterations thanks in part to the die-hard P90X workouts that Haley was doing. So Haley took the dress to our local seamstress, Helen. Helen said to pick the dress up on Thursday.

Haley went to pick the dress up on Friday instead. And this was what happened.

The door was locked. And there was a sign on the door.

At this point, I just happen to call Haley, which I do on fairly regular basis. Haley, my calm friend, was panicked. Beyond panicked. Poor Helen and her surgery- seriously. We were concerned about her health.

But in the moment? A bridesmaid dress was all that was on our minds.

So I turned my car around and headed straight to the scene of the hostage dress.

Helen’s shop is right below some other business, so out of pure desperation and hopeful wishing, we went upstairs to see if they had a key.

Low and behold, they did. What. Are. The. Chances?!? So the kind woman took us downstairs, walked us around to the back door, and let us in. [Again, a reenactment photo. Trust me, neither Haley nor I was smiling at this point in the adventure.]

The upstairs lady understood the panic of the situation of course. And she is good friends with Helen. So it wasn’t like we were breaking laws or anything.


So then came the “find a navy blue dress in the dark recesses of an alterations shop that has existed since the 60s” game. Which, as many of you probably know, is a really fun game.

See back there where it gets really dark? Yeah. We were in there. [It’s big. The picture doesn’t do it justice. But trust me- there were multiple racks of clothes. And it was dark dark dark.]

All three of us were pawing through Mrs. Helen’s collection of clothes-to-be-alterned when SHAZAAM! Haley found her dress.

Then she said, “Well, do you think it’s been altered?”

And I stared at her. Blankly. Then I said, “Haley. It doesn’t exactly matter.” Because GOOD GRACIOUS THAT DRESS WAS IN A HOSTAGE SITUATION JUST MINUTES BEFORE AND NOW WE HAVE IT!

She agreed.

Haley was very very glad to be holding that dress. As you can imagine.

We photographed our joy. We also photographed a mouse carcass laying in the parking lot to show you the kind of neighborhood in which we were hanging, but upon review, it’s really gross.

I also would like to insert that when Haley’s 4 year old son Jarrett saw me, he asked that I please not wear my hair like that ever again. So….. that was cool.


. . . . . . . . . .

That was a suspenseful story, huh? I know. I lived it. Scary stuff.

And here is the question Haley and I keep asking ourselves:

What would she have done if we couldn’t get the dress?


  1. Erin
    posted on Jun 02, 2011 at 6:37 AM  |  reply

    So did it fit?!

  2. Susan
    posted on Jun 02, 2011 at 7:43 AM  |  reply

    You two crack me up. You manage to take life and make it a scream no matter what you’re doing. Miss having you closer, Annie! Safe travels to Scotland.

  3. posted on Jun 02, 2011 at 8:34 AM  |  reply

    A nail biter, for sure. An unaltered dress is better than no dress at all. But I’m assuming since Helen told her it would be ready on Thursday that it was good to go.

  4. posted on Jun 02, 2011 at 8:58 AM  |  reply

    Oh Wow. My sister had a bridesmaid dress catastrophe this weekend too! Jordan was an honorary bridesmaid – read: There weren’t enough groomsmen. So she got to wear the dress, take pictures, help out, then sit in the audience. Bless. She’s lost some weight since she bought the dress, thanks to WeightWatchers, and was able to slip the dress on without even unzipping it. Another bridesmaid.. umm… well… it seemed as though she ordered her dress 1 or 2 sizes too small. Because as soon as she got it on and zipped up, the zipper promptly ripped out – all.the.way.down. So begins the panic of trying to find a craft store open in this podunk down that carried a bright turquoise zipper. While 2 bridesmaids scoured the city, my sister realized that she and this bridesmaid had the same size dress. So, In a last-minute-stroke-of-genius they pulled out the sewing machine, let Jordan’s dress out to accommodate aforementioned bridesmaid, and sewed up the zipper-less dress, which Jordan was able to simply slip over her head, thanks to WeightWatchers. Crisis averted. And she actually got a dress that fit better out of the deal.

    I doubt my story would’ve been better with pictures. Hahaha… But it’s hilarious you thought to take any at all! Love it!

  5. posted on Jun 02, 2011 at 9:54 AM  |  reply

    Um……this same thing happened to my mother when she got re-married. She went to pick up her wedding dress (which was simple since it was a re-marriage) and the seamstress had went out of town. OUT. OF. TOWN. Doors were locked and there were signs on the door. We searched surrounding businesses for a key as well but nobody had one. She finally had to just find another dress to wear. It was a huge crisis…..and a story we will never quit telling!!!!

  6. posted on Jun 02, 2011 at 12:06 PM  |  reply

    You crack me up! I am thankful you got the dress, but did it fit?

  7. Haley
    posted on Jun 02, 2011 at 12:22 PM  |  reply

    It did fit and it fit beautifully. Helen does good work…when she doesn’t skip out and lock up your dress. Very thankful to have Annie to share in Dress Extravaganza 2011.

  8. Tay
    posted on Jun 02, 2011 at 9:24 PM  |  reply

    Hey, I just want you to know that I love your blog. Reading your blog posts always make my day! Love you!

    Every time I think of you I thank God for you. (Phil. 1:3)

  9. Kim
    posted on Jun 17, 2011 at 12:05 PM  |  reply

    Hilarious! Every time I read your blog I want to live in Nashville so bad! How sweet of the neighbor to let you in. (I was in major suspense!)

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