Tenesa – Honorary Art Gown

Were you ever challenged to model an Honorary Art Gown?

No, well then maybe you don’t know Georgian Carlson from Rethinking Life?

You see, I did a post on my Graffiti blog about how an artist named Tensoe spray painted a gown for me. Georgian said you should model it! I said I was too, old to do that.

I expressed how bad I felt about aging, and didn’t want my picture taken, anymore.

One thing lead to another, and now I am challenging my own perception. It is an idea that has been marketed to me my entire life, and brainwashed me to believe.

I didn’t think I could go through with it, but I’m glad I did. I thought about Photoshop airbrushing, but decided to be honest, and just pick the best photos.

⭐ ⭐ Presenting: Tenesa – Honorary Art Gown ⭐ ⭐

Although she’s my idea, I did not make Tenesa. I’ve made all of the other Art Gowns by hand, sewing, painting decorating, but not Tenesa. Yet, Tenesa is so marvelous, I say she’s an “Honorary Art Gown”.

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However, Tenesa wasn’t always this beautiful. She started out as an ordinary custom made De$igner wedding gown who found her way into the alley, one day.

Here she met Tensoe, an artist with many cans of spray paint. He fell in love with her, and spent all of his paint on her.

Artist: Tensoe

Go Tensoe! I love you forever for doing this!

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I was breath taken when I saw her. We named her Tenesa, and I took her home to live with the Art Gowns.

I figured, as she was an alley rescue, she wouldn’t be as spoiled as the other gowns and pull her weight around the apartment. Not… she’s already swooping around with the other gowns, planning her first dinner party, not cooking, not doing dishes nor vacuuming.

It’s amazing how fast Art Gowns catch on.

Anyway, I decked up in Tenesa, checked in the mirror and head out to the fire escape.

Resa Outtakes

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© Pics taken by Resa McConaghy – April 16, 21 & 27, 2017

© Pics of Resa taken by Norman Orenstein – June 1, 2017

Toronto, Canada

Gown Artist: Tensoe ⭐ ❤ ⭐

Want to see more of Tenesa in the alley with graffiti? Click on the pic below and fly to “Redemption Wall Fairy”

Thank you, Georgiann!

115 thoughts on “Tenesa – Honorary Art Gown

    1. Thank you dear Carolyn! You’re teary eyed, and so am I. ❤ I'm so thrilled that Georgiann challenged me to model the gown. Much love to you! xoxoxo
      (It's almost like I have a hangover today, LOL)

  1. God you’re gorgeous and you bring that gown to stunning life making the visuals three times more amazing! Georgian’s idea was pure genius. It is terrible the way women at all stages of life take the media and sexist men’s BS about how we look to heart. It is just another way to try and control us. You look divine in this gorgeous creation! Many thanks to Gorgian for the idea!

    1. Thank you, dear Cindy! 😀 I never realized just how affected I was/am by all of the beauty marketing I’ve been inundated with my entire life. I always thought I was beyond all of that. I thought age was just a number, and that true beauty came from inside and that healthy was the main requirement.
      Although I was shocked, almost horrified by Georgiann’s suggestion that I model the gown, I’m thankful to her. Turns out another ingredient in the recipe for beauty is strength. Strong women are beautiful! TY GiGi!

  2. They should make it so you can press “love” instead of just “like.” This is more wonderful then I could have hoped for, Resa. You look fantastic and the post is a true work of art, street and otherwise. You’re gorgeous and the dress is just perfect for you. I’m SOOOOOOO happy you did it. congratulations on a wonderful moment in time. ❤ ❤

    1. Yes, it is/was a wonderful moment in time. I actually feel like I went to the ball last night. Lol! 😀
      Thank you for the challenge! I was actually panicky and almost horrified when you suggested I model it. I have blind spots, too. ❤ ❤
      A love button sounds great, and not just for blogs. Love buttons should replace guns. I dream!

  3. Reblogged this on Rethinking Life and commented:
    This is one fantastic post. Resa modeling a Vera Wang wedding dress painted by street artist, Tensoe. She is beautiful and the dress is perfect. This who entire project is to prove that a woman doesn’t have to be eighteen to be gorgeous. Great job Resa…and YAY!

  4. Pingback: Tenesa – Honorary Art Gown…not sure why the reblog did not include my comment or a larger photo, so I am doing it again…don’t miss this…it’s fabulous | Rethinking Life

  5. Timothy Price

    First of all, that is one fantastic gown. Second, and more important, you are beautiful in it. I’m always saddened by how women feel they aren’t pretty, and that they lose any beauty they had as they age. As I have told you, I believe more than once, look at the camera and show us your pretty face. Listen to Carolyn “You are gorgeous…” No better evidence than your selfie, which shows most of your face. We need a lot more beauty in this world that is so full of ugliness. You add a lot of beauty to the world with your lovely art gowns, but you would add so much more beauty to the world if you would show us your pretty face, lovely smile, and bright, beautiful eyes.

    I had mentioned to another blogger who has issues with herself that I broke my 25 year old vow of no more wedding photography, and photographed a wedding a couple of weeks ago. The bride looked so pretty in her dress, and everyone told her so. She was reviewing the photos and told my wife that she had never thought of herself as pretty her entire life, and she didn’t believe people when they told her she was pretty. But she said when she saw the photos of herself in her dress, she saw a pretty woman, and for the first time in her life she realized that she is pretty — she is 70 years old.

    1. This is such a wonderful comment. Thank you!
      I think you are a person who has not prescribed to commercialized ideas of beauty. I look at old photos of Jean Harlow, the first blonde bombshell, and wonder if she would get a second look in Hollywood today.
      It seems advertisers have streamlined the idea of what we should think is beautiful. I, like many, bought into it.
      This leaves me & many after 45, those who are not skinny, those whose facial features aren’t perfect, etc. feeling not good. Obviously the beauty industry and it’s advertisers aren’t going to tells us anything we really need to hear that will create good feelings about ourselves. Then we wouldn’t need to buy the plastic surgery, and other products they are peddling.
      Now they are brainwashing men, too.
      This is definitely a place where we all need not to be inside the box, but outside.
      Congratulations on doing one wedding after 25 years! It was the right wedding, the one the universe wanted you to do. Imagine not seeing your own prettiness until you are 70? Congratulations in helping her see her prettiness!
      Wonderful story!

      1. Timothy Price

        Many clothes designers want the clothes noticed and not the model, but then the models become the “look” to go with the clothing. But you are right and it’s a shame.

  6. Resa this is amazing! You are beautiful in this awesome gown. I adore this! I particularly like the shot in your barefeet. It such an elegant shot but with a holly go lightly message. I’m so glad you shared this with us. Let me assure you , you are absolutely gorgeous and the perfect model for this breathtaking gown! ❤

    1. A Holly Go Lightly message from the poet Holly! What could be more romantically poetic? How wonderful it is you saw that. I’m grateful for your words. Aging is not the most fun thing I’ve ever done, but your word elegant rings. Elegance does not age.

  7. Reblogged this on ABC of Spirit Talk with Carolyn Page and commented:
    Tenesa – Honorary Art Gown

    Were you ever challenged? Well Georgiann @ Rethinking Life challenged Resa to model a Vera Wang gown that mysteriously found its way into an alley ~ all alone and in need of a beautiful heart.

    Hence, Resa, and her beautiful heart, together with Tensoe’s spray paints created a unique gown whose beauty could best be shown by our own Designer of the most fabulous Art Gowns.

    I present to you Resa McConaghy ~ with Love

    1. Thank you, dear Aquileana! This whole beauty and aging thing is a conundrum to me.
      Nonetheless, this post has helped me to feel fierce. I adore you, and the best part is that between us, age is not an issue. Hugs & a great Sunday! xoxo

    1. Thank you Shehanne! It’s been a whirlwind of emotion. After all, I’m not used to modelling, like the hamsters are. OMG… I would love to see your hamsters in my Art Gowns! If not, I would at least love to see one of your heroines in an Art Gown! xoxo

  8. Well, what a surprise ! You are so brave to take the plunge (and that includes your
    neck line 🙂 ). The gown is almost a Cinderella story and looks really wonderful modelled by you dear Resa. Heck, you are really lovely in that gown, a beautiful woman in a beautiful dress. Made my day !
    Love and hugs. Ralph xoxoxo ❤ ❤ 😅😳😍👗💕💕

    1. Dearest Ralph,
      Thank you!
      Modelling this gown is a big awakening for me.
      I feel like a spoiled pampered cat! Now I’m wondering about all the kittens that are not loved, about all the women on planet earth who do not feel loved, let alone worthy.
      Well, dear Ralph, tell the cats I love them & I want us all to be loved…. especially Samantha & Sonic, as I know they are monitoring your email.
      Am I the only person who doesn’t have emoji action? Uch!
      Resa xoxoxo ❤

      1. What a lovely reply from you my friend. I agree with you about the kittens and women. Will things ever improve ?
        I have an emoji app on my Windows 10 laptop google chrome browser which I found in the chrome Web store. I expect most browsers have them in their own stores.
        Ralph xoxoxo ❤

      1. I bet, I would be for sure. So different from Benji and Ms. Zulu. They are used to being a model… Wooff-Wooff from Benji and Ms. Zulu, oh wait there comes Ms. Zulu giving you a big lick on your face. A

  9. I love the colors that embrace the gown so glowingly! Your heart brings to life so many wonderful delights…I really love this one Resa…simply magnificent, my sister! Love, hugs, and blessings my sister!

    1. Thank you, brother Wendell!
      The artist really did a great job! It was an honor (although somewhat scary) to model it!
      I hope your Sunday has been full of blessings!

    1. Thank you, Rob. Aging is difficult, but this challenge has helped make me to be fierce in the face of it!
      I hope you had a great day of protesting. Now, I am just seeing that many were run down by a van on London Bridge.
      Perspective: I am lucky that I am getting to grow old.

      1. I’ve heard about the tragedy on London Bridge.

        You guys have an election coming up
        and Putin is trying to affect the outcome. I have no idea of the actual circumstances of the events on London Bridge but I’m bracing for an escalation of Active Measures in the U.S.

        Our Nation’s are under attack by the most insidious enemy we’ve ever faced.

        As for aging, without it we might never really mature. Everybody does a little dance with denial at first…but somehow it all gets better. 🙂

    1. Thank your Mr. Wapojif!
      Oh No! You have a new Gravatar pic! I already picked out your bow tie for the ceramic ducks wedding, and dressed it on your old Gravatar.
      Well, it’s too, late to change it now. The wedding is in 2 weeks.
      However, I think you look simply elegant in your red bow tie.
      Madam Resa xoxo

  10. I read and then reread the thoughtful comments on your blog. Resa, you have a magnificent coterie of kindred spirits. Believe what they are saying. Time brings us confidence and knowledge of who and what we are. And we are beautiful. Beautiful and strong. When I celebrated my 50th birthday I decided that I would “not go gentle into that good night”. My lines and wrinkles I wear like a badge of honour. I have earned every one of them. A couple of years ago I celebrated my 80th birthday. I am still waiting to get old. XXXXOOO Virginia

    1. My dearest Virginia,
      I do have a coterie of kindred spirits! I don’t post here often, as Art Gowns don’t grow on trees!
      Neither do Virginias, Resas or any of the other wonderful people who visit me here. I need to hang around a lot longer to keep joyously appreciating everyone.
      You are so incredibly beautiful at 80+. You are my role model.
      Now, I will begin to think of my badges of honor, the ones I have already earned, and the ones yet, to be earned.
      You are an inspiration!
      Much love, Resa XOXOXOXO

  11. Resa!!! I’m just seeing this post now OHHHH I love it on so many levels! It’s not only a beautiful gown with original spray painting – the heart across its front mesmerized me – but it’s also an example of recycling (go green!) as it was re-purposed from an alley throwaway, and it speaks to women’s struggles with aging. Thank you for the courage to step out there without any airbrushing on that fire escape and dazzle us!! You are even more beautiful to me now ❤

    1. My Dear Christy!
      You know, I drank wine that night and hid until noon the next day after I posted this.
      I have been moved by the support we all give each other in life, life that has no answers to all of my questions.
      Tensoe is a wonderful artist, but more, he is is a lovely person. He resurrected the gown (Vera Wang). Then Georgiann, when she saw it and challenged me to model it, resurrected my strength.
      We go green! We go with the beauty of aging! We go with the strength of all the positive souls that surround us. We go!
      You are a special spirit and I adore you!
      Resa ⭐ ❤ ⭐

  12. Ohhhh Resa, you’re beautiful in that wonderful gown, you’re the most beautiful bride I’ve ever seen … well, maybe the second, Sol …
    Seriously, you have a very nice face and a perfect body to pose with this gown, the photos are so beautiful, my congratulations to Norman.
    I think that you have found a new life for this gown, a life full of adventures and emotions, now he is an art-gown and wants to thank you wrapping with his light all your beauty.
    Congratulations my young and brave friend, excellent post !!!

    1. The whole Tenesa story has been quite a saga. Now I find I am the human model for an Honorary Art Gown!.
      I never thought about that, until Georiann suggested it.
      I wonder if Sol alone in her Wedding Gown should be an Honorary Art Gown?
      I’ll look and see if I have many other photos of Sol.
      I just started the new gown. It will take 2-3 months to make.
      There is time for a post in between, if I already have pics.
      Thank you for your many compliments, dear Belén.

      Abrazos y Besos

  13. I have been in and out of WIFI for the past month! I’m back home and was able to see this post in full colour. Ah Resa, there is a marvelous creativity in the vibrant folds of this magnificent gown. Now that I am in my 6th decade, (yes, I am a baby boomer) I am filled with gratitude for the many adventures that I have experienced over the years – the most profound being connecting with kindred spirits. This post is about resilience, repurposement and engaging in all that life has to offer. Just as Tensoe transformed a dress, so too must we be open to transformative moments. Ah,Resa – it is a joy to be connected. Many hugs!

    1. Rebecca!
      Welcome back to the big wide world of WiFi!
      It really is a wonderful gown, and who should love a graffiti gown more than me? LOL!
      I agree with all the insightful ideas you present in your comment: resilience, repurposement, engagement and transformation. (Me boomer, too!)
      Life does offer us a lot, well some of us, and I am one of the fortunate daughters, as are you and so many that we are connected to!
      Many hugs flying at you! Be careful they are very big, knock your socks off hugs! 😀

    1. Dear Charlie,
      It seems dreams is the theme for us this week! 😀
      I’m so happy you came to see this post. It means a lot to me.
      Your comment makes me feel like an angel. Many hugs flying back at you, my friend! xox

    1. Yay! Thank you, Melanie! 😀
      I hid for a day after I did this. However, the response has been so positive and supportive,
      I feel great about it. 😀

  14. Oh, I’m so glad you took the plunge and modeled that beautiful gown. You look wild and free and beautiful and strong in it! Thanks for sharing and encouraging us to look at ourselves in a new way!

    1. The plunge…. it was a plunging. I’m glad I was challenged!
      Thank you for saying I look strong in it. I want to be strong. I want to challenge commercial norms. I want all to feel beautiful.! ❤

  15. Oh my if this isn’t the best post yet!! You look gorgeous in the gown, the design was made for you and the wonderful artistic painting just compliments the gown and you. I love her being displayed in your home, because she fits in perfectly in with the other gowns – stands on her own for sure. But here my dear Resa is the bottom line – you my lady are beautiful, aging only flatters us as we move up the ladder of numbers. I just turned 60 and feel awesome – confidence today is a heck of a lot stronger than it was in my 20’s and 30’s. What the hell, live your life baby, you’ve come a long ways and are a beautiful woman Resa! Flaunt it, because you have it!

    1. Mary, thank you!
      You are super! I’ve had a lot of fun with this gown. I’ve hung her in a doorway so I can see her everyday. Mary, I am very close to your age, and I agree, confidence comes with time. At least it should.
      Commercial marketing doesn’t seem to want us to flaunt our mature beauty. Well, I’m taking your advice, and I’ll flaunt it….. when I can.
      I also like that I was wearing art. I think the art helped make me a flaunter! LOL!!

    1. You make me hear a song… “Fairy tales can come true, it can happen to you, If you’re young at heart” ❤
      Thank you for the wonderful comment!

  16. Thanks for guiding me to this post. What a creative idea for a gown … and I love the way it turned out. Simply outstanding! … Thanks for modeling and sharing a bit of yourself. You look fabulous … embrace your age!

    1. Thank you, Frank!
      The gown turned out “simply marvelous, darling!”
      I am trying to embrace my age, but it took a challenge to share it visually.
      I’m so happy you popped over!

      1. Embracing our age is easier said than done, and each of us handle it differently. I have the same answer whenever someone asks if I would want to be younger again … no matter what age they suggest … I always answer, “To be that stupid again? No thanks.”

  17. Looks fantastic Resa! Well done for taking the risk too. Never feel bad about age. I spend loads of time surrounded by boisterous 20-somethings at rock’n’roll concerts. It’s alright!

  18. Resa what great comment you have gotten!!!!! Yay for you and you deserve each and every one AND I’m so excited that you have decided to use one of these fantastic photographs for your blog picture. Seriously…that is WONDERFUL!

    1. Georgiann!
      I agree, there are a lot of wonderful comments here. And to think I hid for a day after I posted it!
      Life is filled with so many personal ups and downs and human tragedies and injustices, that the importance of the idea about what one looks like … beyond just generally healthy, is a travesty.
      I’ve bought into the commercial ideas that youth and beauty can be applied through make-up products and surgeries. I didn’t think I had, but here I found out a lot about my brain being washed.
      It’s been an eye opener.
      I’m liking my new site photo, too!
      Well, I’m off to the Emmy site now to nominate. That will take a few hours. Then I’ll log back into GLaM, and pop by for a visit. Hope you are having a fab Sunday and that Emmie is in the yard rolling in the warmth. xo

  19. Wow, Resa. I am so pleased you decided to model the gown.. You look beautiful.. And we all so often fall into that thought trap of thinking we are too old.. as I get older, lol, I say we are as old as we feel.. and somedays, yes I may feel my age.. But others I feel like a teenager and often act like one with fits of giggles.. 🙂 All good for the soul. lol.. ❤

    And what a transformation.. So beautifully painted.. I always view certain graffiti artists as very talented.. To paint often large murals on walls etc to find that wonderful perspective is a gift..
    As are your gifts for your gowns..
    So loved this transformation.. and well done to Tensoe for his amazing artwork.. 🙂

    Love and Blessings and many thanks for your own lovely compliments..
    Hugs Sue 🙂

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