Sunday, January 30, 2011

Here We Go Again - Another Wedding

Yes, you read that right.
We are having yet another wedding
in our famly.

This time,
I'm the mother of the bride.
and her boyfriend
made it all offical last night.
They are looking at
perhaps a late
That give us 4 months, give or take.


I'm not making her dress.

Sew, Sew Happy!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

The Day After - The Recovery Begins

I am calling this day
the day of
I'm exhausted and
there is so much
stuff to put away.
I'm way behind on laundry,
dishes, shopping, errands
and taking

It's wonderful to have
 the wedding is over.
All the pictures have been taken.
The cake eaten.
The car decorated.
And they are off on their honeymoon.
It was worth it.
Every minute.
I'd do it all over again for them in a heart beat.
(except for dealing with the bakery and what has been tagged "the bread bowl incident")

It's a wonderfully satifying feeling
to see one of your own
be so
I think
he walked
on air
all day long.

 I don't think I've every seen him happier.

Don't they make a great couple?


The dress turned out okay, don't ya think?

It was a tad too short when it was bustled.
I had let it down quite a bit, but it still was too short.
That was disappointing to me.
However, she could have worn a potato sack and still been radiant.
(I was sneaking around the professional photographer when I snapped this pic. 
That's why they aren't looking at me)


Here are a few pix of the dress skirt, all bustled.
They aren't the best but we were in the shade and I didn't
dare let my flash go off while
the photographer


Sew Happy,

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Wedding Gown Update -- All Finished!!

That was one

I totally left my comfort zone
and stretched myself
to the limit
with this dress
new techniques
that I had never done before.
1) The corset back.
2) The pickup skirt.
The corset back really turned out nice
and to tell you the truth
was not as hard as I
imagined it to be.
Certainly more time consuming than a zipper,
yet not much more difficult
and an amazing result.
Would I do it again? 
In a heart beat. 
I have a tutorial
(That I will post once life has settled down a bit)
One thing I would do differently with this
corset back, or rather two things. 
First, I would have cut it back
quite a bit more
leaving more of
the lacing
and less dress. 
Once the dress was on
and all laced up,
There was only 2-3 inches
of the lacing after
cinching her in nice and snug
rather than the beautiful
wide lacing
displayed above. 
I would not have used ribbon
as the lacing and instead
invested the time into
creating a lacing 
out of self-fabric
with more body
(which I did try but it's not a good memory and we'll leave it at that) 
When the ribbon is laced
and cinched tightly
for that snug fit,
it crumples and looks more like a thick
string rather than the beautiful
satin lacing as pictured. 
Even though the dress is
it has lost some of its
decorative charm and interest because of those two things. 
Live and learn, right? 
Second was the skirt pickups.
So widely popular
and appearing to be an easy thing,
they turned out to be really quite
a challenge,
at least from my perspective.
Depending on the look your after,
there are some decisions to be made prior to construction,
ideally in the drafting stage,
both of these being the total length of the dress
and placment of the drapes. 
Of course, not realizing this and not making them in advance,
I was faced with struggling with the drape placement as well as getting the fullness we desired, especially in the back. 
I knew that I needed to add additional fabric
to the length of the skirt,
and I thought I had with the addition of
15 extra inches
to the over all length of the gown 
(basically guessing and not really thinking through the process)
but that was just not enough.
I now know that I needed at least 20 to 25 inches, perhaps more,
(which would have radically changed the amount of fabric needing to be purchased)
for the look I was after --
a very draped and full back with plenty of
length for a moderate train.
To maintain any sort of train beyond a sweep train,
I sacrificed much of the fullness and drape in the back as a result,
something that was disappointing to myself as the creator and
something that made its presence, though beautiful, fall somewhat flat.
The front drapes, however, were very nice and
we were both pleased
with the result.
This is the front bustled at the sides.
(I personally prefer the dress bustled because of the extra fullness)
  Sadly, I realize I did not get any photos of the back of the dress finished
to displacy the full train.
Here is the only shot of the back fully bustled and not hanging, propped up agains the ironing board, just for an idea of what I'm talking about.  
(not the best picture, sorry) 
The sleeves didn't work out like I had hoped either. 
I really struggled to get them on
and get them to hang right
(try 5 hours' worth of time)
only to have the bride try on the dress
and not really like how the petal sleeves turned out;
they just weren't right.
I then cut them down and creating
a cap sleeve instead. 
Now reading back over this post,
I realize I've sound a bit negative, if not hard on myself. 
I'm really not trying to be. 
I just want you all to realize that
this was a huge learning experience for me. 
It's important for me to share what I've learned. 
So if anyone out there every tries to
make a wedding gown with those features,
at least they will have a reference point of what not to do. 

The things I do love about the dress are:
the fabric that draped so beautifully
(a soft, matte satin that almost glows)
the lace
(beautiful, delicate with a touch of pink)
((I rocked the application!  Love working with lace)) 
the beading
(because I didn't have to do it and it's really beautiful)
Most of all,
I really love how
is when
she wears it. 

I have always said that
the dress
is only the frame
to the picture, not the picture itself. 

Sew Happy,

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Wedding Gown Update -- Corset Back

I do hope everyone is having a wonderful week.
Mine has been busy as always.

I just wanted to post an update
on the dress.
I am down to days
to needing this done.

I made great progress yesterday
finally completing

I'm pretty happy with the results.
I did finish the modesty panel
that goes behind the lacing
which this pictures doesn't show.
I have yet to get more pictures of the back in its completed stage.

At any rate,
it's coming along nicely.

I have a complete tutorial
coming up on this corset back
that I will post later on
so stay tuned.

Sew Happy,

Monday, January 17, 2011

Wedding Gown Update

I was overly optimistic
the time it took to hand apply

Well, it has been awhile since I've done this.
My memory isn't as good as it used to be obviously.

15 hours
hand work


it's still not entirely done.
I have more to apply around the neckline
and shoulders and down the back a bit.


It has taken so much time,
that I'm now down to just days
before this must be
photographer ready.

So why am I spending my time on my blog?
To share my progress.
What do you all think?

I will let you
in on some of my
the dress is done


Sew Happy,

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

The Wedding Dress Sleeves -- How To Make Petal Sleeve Pattern

I'm doing pretty well
on this wedding dress.
I'm right on schedule
of where I want to be.
There is just over 2 weeks left
until the wedding,
and I feel that I can
actually get this done afterall!
I'm came to a stand still
waiting for a fitting
and then placement of the lace,
so I decided to jump ahead a bit
and go ahead and get the
sleeve pattern drawn
and the sleeves ready for
the lace that will go on them.

The bride
wants petal sleeves.
This is one style
of petal sleeves to give you an idea
of what we are talking about here.

The only difference between the
sleeve that I am actually making
is that the petal "lap"
will be towards the back
of the sleeve
instead of the front of the sleeve
as shown here.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Stop The Train

I have weddings on the brain, I guess.
So, for fun
(I apparently have NOTHING to do),
I looked up
pictures of some
wedding dresses with trains.
Some are awe inspiring
and down right dramatic.  
Others, well... 
let's just say it takes a special bride to handle them. 
Enjoy some wedding inspiration and
maybe a laugh or two.
Let's start with some classics. 

Royal Length trains (10+ feet from waist)
are apparently rather trendy right now
according to 
This is lace love at its best.
I love the look of lace against the floor.

Now for the more unusual side.
gives us some
Here are just a few of the
interesting dresses found at this site.

 I think those are feathers with a set of wings on the back.
Very, angelic wouldn't you say? 
 The longest train on a wedding dress.
Makes you ask yourself,
"Where's the caboose?"
Peacock feathers. 
'Nuf said. 

Sew Happy,

Thursday, January 6, 2011

The Wedding Dress -- Sewing Day #5

Actually, I think it's more
like sewing day 8 or 9.
Basically, I've lost count.

Wish I could say I've lost weight
over this dress
but, no, sad to say
(gotta keep that chocolate rush going).
However, the lining is all finished.
The fit is near perfect.
The casing for the boning are in place.
All seams are pressed and finished.
Just need to place the bra cups
because I forgot to at our last fitting.

Here's where I'm at now.
It is so
beautiful gown
start to
The picture just doesn't do it justice.
I only have the front half of the dress here pinned to a hanger.
The top of the front is covered with
the more plain part of her lace yardage.
That will serve as a "base" or filler
for when I start to applique
the lace into place.
The idea here is give the lace
back its orginal
beauty and character
after I cut the
lace apart and
piece it all back together to
take shape on the bodice.
When I get to that part,
I'll share more on that.
But for now,
I have the front of the dress ready for its next stage.
Now, I need to cut out the 2 back pieces.
They are very long because of the uptakes in the train
and very wide, so this takes place...
don't laugh..
on my king size bed.
My kitchen table isn't big enough.
Most days my dog won't even walk on my floors.
So, the bed is
the only place
wide enough
and long enough to cut out these pieces.
Once these are cut out,
I will also apply the lace netting and
then do the
darts in the back
followed by the shoulder seams
and then the side seams.
Press, finish seams and then
onward to the lace applique
I'll snap some more pictures when I'm at this point,
maybe with the bride wearing it. :)

Sew Happy,
I am sharing my wedding dress adventures
on a few of the linky parties
listed on my linky party page.
Check them out.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Back to Basics

Or at least back to Basic Training.
We sent our soon-to-be soldier
back to basic training early Sunday
It was a hard good bye
but we are so
proud of him.
Love you, Matt!
Cards and letters heading your way!

Sew Happy,

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year!!

May your
New Year
be safe
and spent with loved ones.

Sew Happy,


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