Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Making the Dress: The Finale!

Hello there!  

It's me again.  And as promised, I'm wrapping up my little series about my adventures in making my own wedding dress.  First of all, it worked out!  I'd be crazy to say I wasn't a tad worried that it would be a total flop and I'd be rushing to a bridal salon at the last minute to find something to wear.  Thanks to starting early, lots of design editing, and many late nights by my Aunt Donna (she's a superhero), my dress was aisle-ready!  Not only that, I LOVED it.  Truly.  It was worth all of the long hours and major minor setbacks.  

About those setbacks.  I already told you about almost running out of fabric, and about the lining issue (see Part 3), but that was nothing compared to the zipper malfunction the week before I was supposed to wear it.  We had a lovely invisible zipper in the side of the dress, lined up perfectly.  But of course, when I tried it on, the zipper refused to zip past the big seam at the waist.  We tried multiple tactics to get it up, but nothing worked.  We knew that even if it eventually worked, the last thing we wanted was for me to be stuck safety pinning my dress on my wedding day because it malfunctioned again.  Aunt Donna didn't want to switch to a different zipper (because the invisible one looked so perfect with the ruched style of the dress), but I said I would rather have a construction zipper in it, than be stuck fussing with it on my wedding day.  Soooo, my Aunt Donna saved the day by getting a new (sturdier) zipper, which still looked great and eliminated a potential disaster of epic proportions.  (We're the only ones who know what it looked like before anyway!)

So here you go, the final photos and the day of the big reveal!  HUGE thanks to Jamie (Jamie Delaine Photography) for capturing the dress and the day perfectly.  

Putting the pieces together:

Slight sweetheart neckline in the making (sideways!):

Hand-gathering the top layer of the skirt (the dress was 4 layers in total - 2 sheer, 2 cotton lining):

Can you count the pins?:

Can't wait to see it done (ps thanks for the shirt Jamie)!

This is what I mean by editing the design (please excuse the brown tank top): 
Straps try #1 - not a fan of the shape it's creating.

 Try #2: better, not great - too wide.

 Try #3: Very close!  Slimmer and more gathered to match the rest of the dress.

And now - the finished product!  Complete with a rhinestone belt from Tessa Kim on Etsy - just to give it that extra something - and my sparkly Toms.  For more photos of the day, visit Jamie Delaine's blog.

Getting ready to put it on:

Backyard shots:

How the back turned out in the end:

So there you have it, my dress-making adventure!  Even though most of the stitching and cutting and ruching was by me, I can't give enough credit to my Aunt Donna (can you tell?) for her guidance, patience, commitment to my dreams, and long hours of hard work.  This was an impossible task without her.  And she did much more than just help with the dress - but you'll have to wait until my next post to see where else she worked her magic :)  Next up, my favourite wedding-day details!

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