Restyling Your Wardrobe

Restyling your clothing is always a fun adventure and a fabulous way to turn your clothes into something you will love. We want to share some of our recent restyles to inspire you to reimagine your clothing! 

We worked with our awesome client Penny on a few of her garments these last few weeks. Penny has so much fun with her clothing and has such a unique style. The restyles we did for her clothing are a great example of how you can transform, restyle, or upcycle your clothing! 

Penny brought us a fuzzy pink sweater from Target’s girls clothing line and a jean jacket to restyle. For her jean jacket, we added this amazing tiger fabric to the back, with some fun ball fringe across the top. A great way to add something uniquely YOU to a simple jean jacket. For the pink sweater, we split it straight down the middle and turned it into a cool jacket for Penny to wear. This is a wonderful idea for anyone looking to upcycle sweaters to give them a new fashionable look.

There are infinite possibilities when it comes to restyling your clothing! Get creative, find that spark that is uniquely you, and most importantly have fun reimagining and redesigning your favorite garments! What are your favorite ways to restyle clothing? Comment below!

For restyling and upcycling needs please get in touch with us. We love jazzing up our clients’ garments! Send an email to

Upcycling 101

Though there has been an undercurrent over the last few years of thrifting, shopping vintage, or upcycling by younger generations, these trends haven’t seemed to stick in the larger Fashion Industry until recently. In response to global climate change and a pandemic, fashion leaders have recognized the necessary changes that need to occur around fashion. Big name brands like Levi, Miu Miu and Maison Margiela have created secondhand initiatives for their clothing brands. And Patagonia has been running their Worn Wear initiative since 2017. The future of fashion is green.

At the atelier, we are passionate about sustainability and doing our part to help create a more sustainable Fashion Industry. We want your clothes to live a well-worn and long life! That is why we wanted to share a bit more about what upcycling is and how you can upcycle your clothing so that every garment can be used for much longer!

So what exactly is upcycling anyway? Well, upcycling is simply reusing clothing and turning the items into something of higher quality than before. It is not that you have to go reinvent the wheel, but it is taking something that you may otherwise not wear or keep and changing it so the garment can feel stylish and new and can continue to be worn. Upcycling is a great way to make the most out of your clothing. It is also a great way to spice up some hidden gems found at secondhand or vintage store! Check out some of our ideas on how to upcycle your clothes:

Ways to upcycle:

  • Change the style of your clothing – turn long sleeve to short leave, turn a button-down shirt into an off the shoulder blouse, turn your worn out jeans into shorts or a denim skirt, create a crop top out of a ripped shirt
  • Add fabric – add a velvet stripe down the side seam of your pants, fill any holes with patches of your favorite fabric or lace, add a breast pocket to your favorite shirt
  • Embroidery – there are so many clever ways to embroider your clothing, you can keep it simple or you can embroider an entire work of art
  • Beading – this is another fun one to add something extra to clothes that just need a little sparkle
  • Combine two garments into one – use another piece of clothing to add sleeves to a tank, or to turn your shirt into a dress
  • Be creative! – there is no right way to upcycle, let your imagination wander as you discover clever ways to jazz up your clothing

There are infinite ways to upcycle! Have fun exploring new ways to continue to reuse your clothes. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with us if you need some assistance in creating your upcycled vision. We are here to help upcycle, restyle, or alter any vintage or worn clothing you have! For any alteration or restyling needs on clothing, send us an email at Happy upcycling and restyling!! 


All About Bustles: Ballroom Bustle Part II

A few weeks ago we shared a bit about what bustles are and a specific type of bustle called The Ballroom Bustle. A Ballroom Bustle is when you take the train of the dress and you bring it up on the inside of the dress. It is the perfect solution if you don’t want to have the look of bustle folds and pleats on the outside of your gown. This is Part II of the Ballroom Bustle but featuring a simple and elegant style gown. 

When your wedding gown has a Ballgown or A-line silhouette the Ballroom Bustle is a nice solution to accentuate the silhouette. It keeps the focus on the silhouette rather than on the bustle. When you have a sheath silhouette with a train, the Ballroom Bustle is another perfect choice for the simple, elegant essence of this dress. It helps maintain the length and clean appearance of your gown.

Hiding the existence of a bustle, the Ballroom Bustle is the ultimate 2-in-1 solution for your wedding dress. It allows you to flaunt your gorgeous gown with train and all, and then like a new gown, you can delicately pin the train inside to create a dress that is ready to dance the night away.

We recently worked with a bride on Maui, Erica, on her beautiful sheath silhouette wedding gown. There are 29 bustle points that hold up this bustle. You can see in this picture how we fold it inside and create bustle points to support the train. For this exquisite gown it is the perfect solution to secure the train while maintaining the elegance of the gown.  

When choosing your wedding gown, it can be very useful to see how different silhouettes work with different bustles. It helps give you a better idea of what styles you are drawn to. Stay tuned for more bustles from JOA to help you dream-up the perfect wedding gown!


Finding the Right Alteration Specialist for your Gown

Finding your dream wedding gown is such an exciting moment! There is joy, relief, enthusiasm, and more. Though it feels like you can check the wedding gown off your list, it is very likely that you will need to have a few alterations done on your dress to ensure it fits just right. Sometimes these can be simple fixes, but often wedding gowns are more complex than your average dress and will require a specialist with years of experience working with wedding dresses. So how do you go about selecting the right Alteration Specialist to work on your wedding gown?

  • Find a Professional Dressmaker – Working with a professional Dressmaker is the best way to ensure your wedding gown gets handled with the utmost care and precision. The wonderful thing about working with a Dressmaker is that they understand how to construct a gown so they are very skilled at reverse engineering some of the more complex alterations. Plus, if you want to modify the design of your dress, they will know exactly how to help you transform your gown.
  • Find an Alteration Specialist with previous wedding dress experience – When it comes to altering a wedding dress, there are a significant number of factors to consider. Is your wedding dress a particular brand, has your Alteration Specialist had experience working with this brand? What type of fabrics are they familiar with? What types of bustles can they create? Can they add beading or any other extra embellishments? When you find an Alteration Specialist with years of experience working with wedding gowns, chances are they have a wealth of knowledge for each of these elements. This will only make your wedding dress experience more pleasant and stress-free when you can rest assured that your dress is in good hands.
  • Look through their work online (websites, social media, etc.) – Social media and online portfolios gives you a nice opportunity to see some of the previous work of your potential Alteration Specialist. You can see pictures, client testimonials, success stories, and maybe more details on what types of dresses they have previously worked with. Pictures are some of the best ways to get an idea of the type of work they have done.
  • Word of Mouth is always our favoriteIf you are still hesitant about choosing your Alteration Specialist for your beautiful wedding gown, then ask around! Word of mouth is our favorite way to meet new clients. Ask friends or family in your local community for their recommendations. Chances are they know someone they highly recommend.

We hope this helps you in finding the right Alteration Specialist for your wedding gown! If you are located on Maui and need assistance with your wedding dress, then we would love to help you. Visit our website or social media accounts to see some of our previous work. We hope we can help give your wedding dress those final touches to make it absolutely beautiful! Send us an email at to book your appointment. 

Designing Your Wedding Gown

Where do you start when dreaming up your wedding gown? Well, there are many different places to start, but the most important is defining the essence of your dress. Are you going for a classic look, vintage, bohemian, sexy, elegant, bold, alternative, minimal or flashy look? Ask yourself, what is your style and what essence do you want to emit with your dress? 

From here you can begin to shape the vision of your dress. Once you have defined the essence of your wedding dress, selecting the details becomes much more intentional and intuitive. Do some research and find different images of wedding gowns that fit the essence you want. Check out social media, wedding magazines, blogs, or designer websites. Gather a collection of images you are inspired by and that fit the essence of your dress. You can make a few sketches mixing and matching inspiration from the different images you gathered. Try to pull together your favorite elements of the dresses you are most drawn to.

Now comes the fun! Selecting the details to truly define your wedding gown and create your vision. So I bet you are wondering, what exactly are all of the details to consider in a dress? Well, here are some of the main points to consider:

  • Silhouette Type – Mermaid, A-Line, Trumpet, Modified A-Line, Ballgown, Sheath, Tea length
  • Neckline – sweetheart, straight across, semi-sweetheart, v-neck, off-shoulders, Queen Anne, high neck, halter, bateau, jewel, illusion, square, asymmetric, cowl neck, scoop, grecian, and many more. 
  • Fabric – Silk shantung, taffeta, guipure lace, chiffon, point d’esprit, organza, satin, crepe, dupioni, batiste, brocade, charmeuse, damask, dotted Swiss, faille, gazar, georgette, mikado, moire, pique, tulle, velvet, voile
  • Train or No Train – Long train, medium-sized train, short train, no train
  • Bustle – French Bustle, Ballroom Bustle, English Bustle, American Bustle, Bow Bustle, Royal Bustle
  • Embellishments – lace appliques, beading, sequins, border trims, pearls, fringe, ribbon, crystals, edging, embroidery, gems, buttons

Before you know it, you will have a clear vision of your dream wedding gown! Now you can bring your wedding dress design to a dressmaker and truly bring your dream dress to life. Alternatively, if designing your dream dress seems daunting or intimidating, then consult your local dressmaker to help you dream up and design your wedding dress for you. If you work with a dressmaker they will collaborate with you every step of the way to ensure the details align perfectly with your vision. 

Master Dressmaker Jennifer Oberg is available for wedding gown design consultations and for creating custom wedding gowns. With over 20+ years of experience, Jennifer can help create the most complex, intricate gowns or the most classic, elegant gowns. Visit our gallery to see some samples or check out our social media accounts for past gowns. Email Jennifer at to book your appointment. Happy wedding gown designing! 

Sewing Lessons at JOA

At JOA we are passionate about sharing our love for sewing with the community. We believe there are so many wonderful benefits of sewing that can transfer to all areas of your life. Check out our previous blog aboutthe benefits of sewing here. The fun part about learning how to sew is that anyone can do it! As adults, we often lose the pleasure of learninga new skill or hobby. Sewing is the perfect solution to experience the feeling of learning something for the first time. It is so rewarding and satisfying!

One of the joys of teaching others how to sew is getting to see all of the beautiful things they create afterwards. Our past student, Meshay, created a whole collection of handsewn items as gifts for her family. Check them out below!

Words from Meshay about her experience with her sewing lessons:

My sewing classes with Jennifer were so much fun! I went into my first class not knowing much at all and in just a few weeks, I had completed the cutest twirling dress for my daughter. Jennifer was a fantastic teacher! She was encouraging and guided me through the entire process, answering any questions that I had. Since my classes, I’ve sewn many treasures for my family and friends. Hand made gifts are my favorite and I’m thrilled to be able to pour love into the gifts I give! Thank you, Jennifer, for being such an amazing instructor! “ – Meshay Christiansen , Sewing Student

Master Dressmaker, JenniferOberg, offers private sewing lessons at JOA for the beginner and intermediate level, ages 10-17 and 18+. If you are considering private sewing lessons, please get in touch with us. We would love to share our passion for sewing with you! Send us an email at or call (808) 757-5915 to book your sewing lesson appointment! Visit our Shopify to purchase your private lessons. Mahalo!

All About Bustles: Ballroom Bustle Part I

Good things come to those who bustle. If you aren’t familiar with bustles, we are here to tell you all about them and give you some examples of the many ways you can have your wedding gown bustled. In this first post about bustles, we will talk about what they are and we will share a ballroom bustle we created for a past bride.

What is a bustle?

You know the moment you watch the bride walk down the aisle at their wedding and you admire that beautiful train from the wedding gown trailing behind her? And then maybe some of you wonder, how on earth are you going to dance in that at the reception? And then the reception happens and perhaps you forget about that gorgeous, long train you were admiring earlier. 

Well, this is the beauty of a bustle. It transforms a wedding gown with a long train into a gown ready to take on the dance floor at the reception. The bustle brings up the train so it is completely off the floor. Bustles are both practical and fashionable. There are an infinite number of ways to bustle your gown. Every dress is very unique in regards to the bustle. Some dresses have just 1 bustle point and some can have 50 bustle points. The number of bustle points will depend on the length of the train and how complicated the train is. When you add a bustle to your gown, it is almost as if you have two different wedding gowns. Two for the price of one?! How lovely! 

The Ballroom Bustle

Below you can see some pictures of a ballroom bustle. Rather than creating the folds of a bustle on the outside, this bustle is created by bringing the train up completely on the inside of the dress. It is attached to the inside of the dress with hooks and eyes or ties and loops. The ballroom bustle is the most detailed bustle you can do on a big train because it takes dozens of bustle points to do it right.  I’ve done a ballroom bustle with up to 50 points on the inside. It is a wonderful option if you don’t want to have the look of bustle folds and pleats on the outside of your gown. 

The mother of the lovely bride pictured below, reached out to me and said the bustle worked perfectly during the reception. We were so happy! Stay tuned for future bustle posts where we will be sharing other styles and types of bustles. Happy Bustling!

5 Tips for Sustainable Fashion in 2021

In 2021, JOA has goals to promote more eco-conscious, sustainable, and green fashion. We want to start the year sharing some tips for greener fashion. We hope you join us in being more conscious about your fashion!

  1. Shop at secondhand stores – visit your local consignment or secondhand shops. There are so many hidden treasures, and lots of unique, vintage garments to be found. 
  2. Research the brands you are buying from – try to find out WHERE their clothes are coming from, and HOW they are being made. Look for ethical, sustainable, and eco-conscious brands. Try to avoid fast fashion when you can. It may be cheap immediately but the repercussions of  fast fashion outweigh that immediate great deal. Check out these 35 brands that are ethical + sustainable!
  3. Organize a clothing swap with friends – a perfect way to refresh your wardrobe! Get all of the clothes you are tired of wearing and have your friends do the same. Then organize a little event to swap clothes around between your friends. You will feel as if you just bought a whole new wardrobe but without the environmental harm of consuming more than needed.
  4. Upcycle your clothing – get crafty and restyle your clothing into something new. Add embroidery, beading, fabrics, new designs, etc. If you have a vision, but you need a specialist, get in touch with us. We would love to assist you in upcycling your clothing!
  5. Take care of your clothing – don’t over wash your clothing, hang dry when you can, use less detergent, and patch up any tears. Just simple care of your clothes can extend the life of your outfits to make sure they live a long life in your closet!

Join us in living more green this year! And please get in touch with us for any upcycling or clothing alteration needs. Send an email to us at Happy New Year all! We look forward to a greener future!

Q&A: featuring local clothing shops of Maui

2.0 – Jasmine Bustamente, Owner of ÂME Maui, Paris

Continuing our Q&A series highlighting some of our favorite boutiques of Makawao and Paia is Jasmine Bustamente, Owner of ÂME Maui. In this series, you will hear about the passions and inspirations behind these local shops, some words of encouragement for the future, and reflections/lessons on navigating a business during the pandemic. Read all about what Jasmine’s insights and reflections below…

Q: Tell us about your shop, your ethos and your inspiration for starting your boutique!

A: ÂME Maui, Paris was born from Bulletproof Aura (Callie Mahoney) + Jasmine Honey Jewelry (myself) brainstorming ways to bring our own product and designs together as a collective as well as other artists and designers that are less known or not available on Maui. From that idea ÂME was born, just an online boutique and pop-ups for the first year, then we moved into a showroom for another year and now we have expanded into a proper brick and mortar in Makawao town. 

Q: How are you navigating your way through COVID-19 times?

A: Navigating through the pandemic has been interesting to say the least. I was fortunate enough to acquire our current location because our friends, Holoholo Surf moved into a larger space, so I wasable to move into their previous space. I wasn’t sure what to expect opening our first brick and mortar mid pandemic, but friends, family and the community have been very supportive. 

Q: What is the biggest lesson you learned from the pandemic so far?

A: The biggest lesson from the pandemic is being flexible and ready for anything.

Q: What can you share about sustainability and fashion?

A: It has always been important that everything is ethically sourced. I hand make all Jasmine Honey Jewelry pieces from start to finish so I understand the amount of work it takes. It’s important that the products at ÂME are ethically sourced and produced.  

Q: What is one product you are raving about right now in your shop?

A: The French vintage work bleus, popularized by French factory workers in the late 1800’s, they are highly coveted treasures hand selected by Callie in Paris.  We offer jumpsuits, overalls, trousers, and jackets, most pieces sell out almost immediately. 

Q: How can the community help your business and other local businesses impacted by COVID-19?

A: The biggest way people can help is shop local! Tell your friends and family to shop local, post your favorite places to shop on social media and there’s always the good ol’ coconut wireless. 

Q: What are you most looking forward to for the future of your shop and the community?

A: Pre pandemic we loved hosting pop-ups with lots of people & drinks flowing, we’re looking forward to the day we can do that again.


Thank you so much Jasmine for sharing more about your shop with us and how it has been navigating through the pandemic. We can’t wait to see what is next for your beautiful shop! As Jasmine mentioned, shop local to help your local businesses through these tough times. Check out ÂME in Makawao and support this amazing local business, or shop online through their website Thank you Jasmine and stay tuned for the next Q&A! 


10 Reasons Sewing Makes Your Life Better

There are so many great life skills to have or to learn. Learning to cook, to do your taxes, to ride a bike, to make your own bread, to iron, etc.. One valuable skill that often comes in handy is learning how to sew! A button falls off of your favorite shirt or your pants get caught on an edge and rip or maybe you just want to make your own clothing design from scratch. The possibilities are quite endless. Nonetheless, it is so practical and fulfilling to be able to sew.

Apart from being incredibly useful to be able to sew, it is also great for your health and wellbeing. Checkout the 10 reasons sewing can brighten up your life:

  1. Body, Mind, & Spirit Connection – Sewing is a fulfilling exercise of connectivity between your body, mind, and spirit. Satisfying creativity, using your hands, and staying focused on your sewing project. Plus, you feel great once you’ve completed your project, knowing it was created by your own two hands!
  2. Improves memory – By memorizing many different steps, patterns, and techniques you begin to improve your memory in a fun and engaging way.
  3. Presence + Focus – Sewing is very meditative and peaceful. It can allow you to truly be engaged in the present moment, simply focused on whatever you are sewing. This can be hard today in our busy, busy world.
  4. Creativity – Sewing allows you to find another medium of creativity and self-expression in the clothes or items you wish to sew. The styles, patterns, or techniques you use can bring out a whole new side to your creative expression. Perhaps you design a whole new wardrobe designed by you! 
  5. Environmentally-conscious – Being able to sew allows you to recycle clothes more easily and to keep clothes longer by fixing up any wears or tears. Much of the clothes available today are produced by fast fashion companies who produce clothing that is not made to last. 
  6. Ethical Thinking – Once you begin sewing your own clothes you start to become more aware of WHERE your clothes or other products come from. It truly helps you cultivate mindfulness about shopping in general, ensuring what you buy is ethically sourced.
  7. The Perfect Fit – When you can alter and hem your own clothes, you finally can begin to appreciate clothes being able to fit your body perfectly, because let’s face it, our bodies were never meant to only fit into 4 different sizes.
  8. Screentime Detox – It’s difficult to avoid our screens, especially now that so much of our lives have gone virtual. Sewing is the perfect way to take a break from your screen and reconnect with the present.
  9. Finger Dexterity – Develop improved finger dexterity and fine motor skills through the nuances of learning to sew. Sometimes we take this skill for granted but it is so important for musicians, dentists, surgeons, and in a number of other careers. Sewing is a great way to improve this skill.
  10. Patience – patience is becoming lost in our world centered around ‘instant gratification’. This is truly a skill to practice and exercise, and sewing requires patience and a willingness to learn–both wonderful skills to carry with you!

Just some of the ways sewing brightens up our life! We hope you can find the same joy in it as we do at JOA. We offer private sewing lessons at the Atelier in Makawao. We would love to share this wonderful life skill with you! Get in touch if you would like to schedule a lesson. Email Jennifer at Mahalo!