My Scariest Project

I realize that the title of this post may lead some to believe that I have started to prepare for the Halloween season, but alas, that is not the case.

I just finished one of the biggest, most overwhelming, and scariest projects that I have ever taken on. I should also mention that it was delightful, but sometimes the delight is in retrospect with these types of things.

So, what did I make?

A wedding dress, for a beloved friend.

Yeah.

When my friend texted me in May, letting me know she was getting married, and that she was going with the theme Rainbow Steampunk (I will admit I first thought it was a joke), I started to volunteer my creative services all over the place. Wedding dress! Bridesmaid dresses! Wedding cake! Centerpieces! Steampunk Gadgetry!

My friend was wise, and cut me off, allowing me to focus on her dress and the bridesmaid dresses. She has known me a long time, and knows that once my excitement dies down, my nerves flare up.

One of the very first things I did, was pick out her colors for the dress. She wanted a rainbow, but it was still a wedding dress, so I went pastel.


My Kona color swatches being put to good use.

This was my inspiration dress. My friend was going for fairy with a edge of steampunk, so I knew I would be adding in elements of metal. I used good sense when I decided to purchase a corset that fit my friend to embellish, instead of starting entirely from scratch. I realized rightly, that this was not the time to figure out how to make a corset, even though I spent a fair amount of time online researching the process before coming to my wise decision. Someday maybe, not now.

I took my friend's measurements, added scraps of batting to a dress form to make it roughly the size of my friend, and went at it. Slowly. I was very intimidated. Especially since everyone who asked what I was working on gave me a crazy, you are in over your head, look when I told them I was sewing a wedding dress. I began calling it "a costume for my friend who was getting married." It was way less frightening to think of it in this way. 

I decided to keep the colors in rainbow order, but she wanted green and purple to be the most prominent, as she has green eyes. So I played around with color placement...



And then finalized and stitched it all down. 

Front


Back

After getting the color layer in place, I began to play with adding in more texture, and what I began to call 'bits and bobs.' One special feature that I included was a locket, draped pocket watch style, that allowed her to carry a loved one who has passed on with her on her wedding day.

Many elements changed from this state

The pocket made for the locket includes lace from her mother, and sisters' wedding dress. There is a little vial of mustard seeds, in reference to Matthew 17:20.


I was so grateful that (a) she loved it, and (b) it fit! Overall I was very pleased. And very relived that I was done, in time for her nuptials! 

My hope in making this dress, was that my love for her, and my happiness for her, would be with her as she walks into her new life as a wife. That being able to give her something unique and handmade, just for her, would be a reminder of the special life God has planned, just for her. 

It was an honor to make this, and stretching in all the best ways. I am ready to play with some patchwork though, after being preoccupied with dresses for a while! 

-Teagan