Saturday, February 9, 2013

Bead One, Sequin Two, Bead One, Sequin Two . . .

My bride wanted her mothers Vintage Gown re-made to look more modern for her May wedding. After removing the big puffy sleeves, reducing the volume of the skirt and adding a structured bodice lining, it was time to reattach the vintage lace and begin beading.

But first, It was necessary to sort through all my beads. She didn't want any silver or rhinestones, just clear, white and pearls. So I got busy . . .

Who knew there were so many different colors of pearls! I now have containers of white pearls, yellow pearls, ivory pearls, pink pearls, and even tan pearls!

After spending a good 5 or 6 hours sorting (yes, I had that many to go through with a tweezers, to separate), I finally got started beading the bodice. Here is what it looked like after 5 hours -

And here is another 5-6 hours later . . . .
I just have to finish the beading on the front of the bodice and I will be done.  Probably another 6- 10 hours. The first few hours were killing my back, but I learned quickly to get up and stretch every 45 minutes or so! I am liking how it is turning out - I hope the bride does too!!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

A Vintage Re-Make

Last fall a lovely bride came to me with her mother's wedding gown from, well, lets just say, a certain era. That one that some of us remember better than others. Those big skirts, the big sleeves, lots of lace, and of course, the big hair!

The dress fit her quite well. if you could get around the big sleeves and skirt. Mom and daughter both had a pretty good idea of what they were looking for; remove the sleeves and make it strapless, reduce some of the fullness from the full gathered skirt, remove the lace 'tail' at the back, and maybe add some beading.

I had my bride put it on, leaving the sleeves off, so we could get a picture of how it might look.

Notice the gathering at the waistline; it made her look pretty bulky (and she's not), and the gathers at the back were even worse!

The first thing I did was to remove the sleeves, them take the skirt in at the sides; removing all the gathers at the front, and exchanging gathers at the back for pleats.

At her next fitting, the skirt fit perfectly, and we were ready to go ahead with re-creating then bodice. Being that it was made back in the 70's, it was made with no lining. I have found that in many dresses made in that era, this was the norm. Fascinating . . . 

Now it was time to make a lining for the bodice, with structure for the new strapless design.

Next up - beading!!!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Aplologies and A New Start!

Apologies, apologies, apologies. I had no idea it had been THAT long since I've posted a blog entry. All I can say in my defense is that 2012 was a VERY busy year! I usually have a month in the summer and atleast one more in the fall/winter that I can play catch - up and relax a bit. Never happened in 2012. I forgot how to relax, I forgot what I did in my spare time. If I wasn't sewing, I was trying to keep up with cleaning and laundry and just living. But no more! It is a new year and I have made a resolution to be more active on my blogging, and in my social life!

And on that little note, stay tuned for more blogging!