About a year ago we were out buying bridesmaid dresses for my sister-in-law’s wedding. I was Matron of Honour. I was also pregnant – but at the very early stages so not very many people knew. We therefore had to come up with every excuse possible to avoid me actually buying a dress on the day. In the end, the other three bridesmaids opted to go for this little number from Oasis:
That left me with the challenge later in the year of finding something that was:
- A matching shade of navy
- Fitted a five-month pregnant me
- Looked remotely weddingy
- And actually suited me
A tall order – especially as most maternity wear has to be ordered on-line as the shops no longer seem to stock very much.
Now I don’t need much excuse to get out the sewing maching, and right there were four very good reasons to make my own dress.
So began a lovely project, which took the following steps:
- Designing the dress. Halter-necks make me look busty at the best of times, and pregnancy wasn’t helping much in that department. So I avoided the same design as the other dresses. Besides, as a dress-maker I would never make a copy of someone else’s work – solidarity among designers and all that.
- Finding the fabric. Matching navy is hard! I ordered a gazzillion samples claiming to be navy, and ended up with fabric that ranged from black to purple.
- Adapting my block. Twice. Once to accomodate my growing bump. A second time to create the pattern for the dress.
- Making up. As the perfect match of colour resulted in me using a stretch fabric, this recquired some creative use of inter-lining to avoid it stretching out of shape when sewing together.
- Finishing off. Love this bit! The joy of hand-stitching lace. And I sent off for some beaded motifs that had to be hand-sewn on the bodice (after all when else in life to you get to wear stuff like this?)
Here’s some of those stages in pitcures:
And here’s the finished thing – have to admit I was really pleased with the result:
So, now with a five-month old baby instead of a five-month old bump, its nice to think back and remember those child-free days – how much things have changed!
And the wedding itself was fab. A joyful day at Clumber Park in Nottinghamshire. My sister-in-law chose yellow and coral flowers for our corsages, which really popped against the navy (she has a great eye for colour). Her dress and bouquet were stunning. There was croquet on the lawn over-looking the lake (I know, this sounds so posh doesn’t it! But generally speaking this was played in a somewhat ad-hoc way due to abundant alcohol). And AMAZING food! Canopes that in actual fact were mini meals in their own right; tomoato and basil brouchetta, beef in yorkshire puddings with horseradish sauce, and the most amazing scones with jam and clotted cream. YUM.
And then BBQ and dancing into the night.
A fab day – would highly recommend this as a wedding venue to anyone.
I just love weddings! So do feel free to share any stories about stunning venues / dresses / food you’ve experienced, I do enjoy reading comments with a brew…
As ever, pleased to be lninking up with: