And Now, the Stunning Conclusion of...Finding the perfect formal dress (by, uh, making it yourself)

8 years ago

A few months back, I had posted here about the dress I was having made--from scratch--for my brother's wedding. I showed you all a few options that I had been toying with, in terms of concepts to work into the dress. You see, every dress I've ever had made in the past has essentially involved me falling in mad love with one random accent (such as the waistline shown here, which I'd seen on a bridal gown, and promptly ran with, directly to the dressmaker). What I'm trying to say, I suppose, is that while I obviously hope each dress I've made has looked good, they've unfailingly all revolved around one particular detail that, to me, is the one thing the whole dress (pardon the pun) hangs on.

This time, things proceeded a bit differently.

As is my habit, I selected small sections from other dresses, and began compiling them into what I thought would be a singular pretty dress. I set about taking the neckline from this dress, and the hemline from that...A FrankenGown, if you will. But something just wasn't sitting right with me. Not to get all Tim Gunn on you, but the dress wasn't flowing, and wasn't working for me. It seemed...disjointed. (I mean, MORE disjointed than what you'd generally expect from a hastily-scribbled, amateur/fake designer's drawing.) I began to get a little nervous.  And then, randomly, I was reading an online article about Evan Rachel Wood, and stumbled across a photo of her in her Oscar dress. HOW I MISSED IT DURING THE ACTUAL OSCARS, I DO NOT KNOW. It was (in my opinion!) gorgeous, the precise shade the bride (my future sister-in-law) had selected, and it only needed a few small modifications to make it modest for the (Orthodox Jewish) wedding, specifically, sleeves, and a filled-in neckline. The sleeve part was easy (see below), but I definitely needed the assistance of my dressmaker in figuring out how to seamlessly transform the top of the dress, and also, generally "toning down" the fullness of the dress. It was a fancy wedding, yes, but not a red carpet event:

 

 

SHe suggested reworking the top from being an inverted "v" to an a straight empire top, and changing the style of the skirt from being a circle to a standard "mermaid" look. Here's the gown in progress:

 

 ...and here's the completed gown, front...

 

 

 middle...

 

...and back (zipper looks curved because of my wretched posture):

 

It's not often that a dress EXCEEDS your expectations, but that was definitely the case here; I adored the dress, and could not believe how well my dressmaker executed the idea. Having a dress made from scratch definitely requires a bit more effort, but I feel that the results are definitely worth it!

 

Metalia also blogs here.

 

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