Friday, May 14, 2010

Now for something completely... not leather!

Over the next few weeks or so I've decided to attempt to chronicle the design & creation of something completely different here, my wedding dress.

(& Danny, don't look at the pictures!)


I have been wanting to focus on the custom-made process for some time now, and have collected photos, and started writing, but time gets quite crunched during projects and I have many starts to many projects, but it's almost overwhelming for me to put them together, especially since time only permits me to do it when a project is done and out of the studio at which point I 'm kinda done with it and off the the next thing!


I do hope to compile a lot of this ( focused on the leather) once the whole blog gets it's scheduled work over starting next month.  Maybe I'll even get some help to do it… But right now, since it gets a bit quieter going into the summer and I am actually able to spend a little time each day on this and this is the type of work I have not done in ages, I thought it would be a good way to start working out a way to present "the process"… & forgive me if it winds up being in dribs & drabs. I am going to try and do it as it happens.


Ok, the start of this dress is the fabric. (Yes, you read that right- not leather, a rooftop party in high summer is just not the place!)


I am starting with a large rectangular antique cutwork linen tablecloth. The linen is a very tight smooth weave, nothing like it exists on the market today as far as I can tell, the closest thing out there is true Irish Linen & it is not even close.  The cloth is very heavily embroidered, by hand probably in China, probably over 50 years ago. It is almost entirely cutwork, very little solid linen remains and I won't be using much of it. The tablecloth belonged to Danny's Mom. It was very much used and has been washed - a lot.  It's really wonderful.


Ok, now design.  I was completely perplexed.  For myself,  I always tend to go for comfort first, but at the same time, heck,  it's my wedding!  And since I'm making it I want to show off a bit.  I also want it to be sexy and fun and most of all unique.  Also at this point I am still not quite sure of using that table cloth...so I play around.

So fiddling with the rectangle of the cloth, I get this... very sloppy, but wanted to see the way it hangs.
I like the points. The gathering will have to be figured out. May or may not work. 


I couldn't quite get a handle on what I wanted for the bodice, probably because it's for me ,since I never have this problem when creating for other people.  Again my first instinct is for  comfort.
So I do this:

Not too bad, but what the heck am I gonna do with that lace? And all those seams? And trying to match the embroidery as well?  Since this will need some actual fabric added to make it work. Yikes!

Next: Switch gears, comfort be damned!  Plus this give me a place to work with the medallions in the lace that run through the center of the cloth,  the Elizabethan corseted bodice has a nice clean flat area to play with.


Still, me,  I'm confused (still wanting comfort - D. wants sexy, btw.)  so I send this pix to some girfriends. (crowd sourcing a wedding dress?)  Guess Which?  I'm kinda excited now.


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