Wedding Dress: Reveal

I know last the last post was a bit of a tease, hehe. But rest assured, this post is all about my wedding dress! So, the last time I spoke about a pattern, I’d chosen McCalls M7154 over the Anna dress. I was looking forward to a challenging sew and thought our wedding might be a good opportunity. So I set out with my poly charmeuse, tracing, cutting and tacking all 25 pieces, labouring through all 57 sewing steps. But I don’t know what happened – maybe it was the fabric (ugh, poly charmeuse), maybe it was just the bazillion steps, or the idea that I’d have to do it all again with the real fabric: I fell out of love. I tried to keep going, but in the end I didn’t finish my muslin. It wasn’t even that it was too hard or too difficult, I did learn some interesting techniques and I did love it at first. But in the end I left it unfinished and went back to my original plan: a modified Anna Dress.

My brothers, also my best men!

It was on our 10 day hike that I decided to quit M7154 and thought out how I wanted to modify the Anna. Nothing better than a break in nature to give you a clear mind! When I got back I drafted my changes and made a quick muslin of the bodice to see if they’d work. With some minor tweaks to the pattern I moved on to the silk. The major changes I made were self lining the bodice, and drafting an open back. The minor changes I had already made with my first Anna: an SBA, lowering the neckline, lengthening the bodice, and a sway back adjustment. For the lining, I changed the two waist pleats into darts and rotated one of them to the side seam, creating a bust dart. This way the lining wouldn’t create extra bulk below the bust. And a lining eliminated the need for a facing or bias tape, so an easy finish for the neckline and armholes.

The thigh high split in action. Swoosh!

Now let’s stop with those technical details, and talk about the fabric! Guys this is the most luscious fabric I’ve ever worked with. It’s very lightweight but not at all slippery, so really easy to work with. Because of the texture the layers kind of grab each other so everything stays in place. For cutting I just used some paper weights and my rotary cutter. For sewing I used a 60/8 needle. And to wear it is just a delight, it’s a lot of fabric but it’s so lightweight that you hardly feel it. The split makes it even more flowy. And it really makes this design special, I wouldn’t make the maxi version without it. I Frenched all the seams of the skirt, but hand rolled the hem and the split. I really enjoyed this slow process and felt that this dress deserved the attention. It gives a lovely light and almost invisible finish. The photo is after the wedding, the fabric has become a bit fuzzy at the bottom from snagging in rosebushes and such.

I didn’t do an extra photoshoot, so that’s why all the photo’s are kind of un-posed. We also didn’t hire a photographer, these photo’s are a collection from peoples phones and our camera. Stef wore the Negroni shirt I made for him last summer. The funny thing is that everyone wore blue, purple or grey by complete coincidence. As you can see we had an amazing day, we were as happy as can be, the weather was great and we just had a great time. It was also wonderfully relaxed, for an hour after eating cake we just hung around in lounge chairs and played some table tennis. It was just the way we had wanted it to be.

Now I’m hoping I have more weddings to attend, so I can wear my dress again… Even though it’s not as fancy as M7154, there’s no opportunities to wear it just for fun. Unless I don’t work in the garden, don’t walk the dog or do groceries, which is not very likely. But I’m very happy with how it turned out. It did what a dress like this should do: it made me feel special, pretty and feminine. It’s not even perfect: the lining pokes out at one armhole, and the darts on the inside stretched a bit because I didn’t leave enough ease. But that’s allright: it could not have become what it is if I had strived for perfection.

Even though I might not wear the dress again anytime soon, because I changed pattern plans I do have some already painted fabric left over. I’m thinking those would make a great pair of PJ’s, something like the Lakeside set. At least then I’ll get to wear that fabric more often. It will be like a souvenir from our wedding, that reminds me every night of that special day. And then maybe I’ll also have the courage to use that other piece of silk that’s been in my stash for years. If I can’t wear silk during the day, then at least I can wear it every night. Ha!

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  1. It’s really beautiful! I’m glad you had a carefree happy wedding day, feeling fab but not having to worry constantly over your dress or train or anything! Congratulations!!!

  2. The dress is beautiful & the wedding looks totally blissful. Matching silk pjs sound amazing – super luxurious. Yay for the Anna dress – it makes a great wedding dress.

    1. Thanks Charlotte! It does, depending on the fabric you could have a fancy or a plain dress.

  3. The dress is fab, and you guys look so happy! Congrats to both of you, and may your future turn out as lovely as your wedding photos! (:

  4. Hi Lisa and Stef, you two look beautiful and completely happy and relaxed on the pictures. Your dress is also very nice and the fabric color well designed. I wish you lots of happiness for the future! Love, Marie-José

    1. Dankjewel Marie José! Het was een mooie dag, maar dat heb je inmiddels vast wel van Karin gehoord.

  5. This post really made me smile. What a beautiful wedding. Your dress is perfect and I love that you wore flat sandals with it. You both look so happy and relaxed. Bridezillas could learn a huge amount from you!

    1. Yes the sandals were great, I can’t imagine having to wear heels. I can see how people get carried away by the idea of a big wedding though.

  6. congrats! such a pretty dress! that fabric look so pretty, you have to make that pj set, so you get to enjoy it more often

  7. What a lovely wedding! :) you made a beautiful dress and I’m so glad that you felt happy and special. That is what it is all about.
    Congratulations! :)

    1. Thanks! It is, isn’t it? Somehow it’s so easy to forget what a wedding is really about. It’s not even about the dress!

  8. beautiful! the dress seems to fit your day and your personal style so well. I love the lower back and that gorgeous fabric. congratulations!

  9. Congrats on getting married in your gorgeous wedding dress! I’m amazed by your artistic fabric dyeing. I love the idea of making PJs out of the peace silk..that is brilliant. You get to sleep in luxurious fabric and be reminded of happy times. Nice job!

    1. Thanks! The nights are already getting colder so I’d better get started… I think about them every evening when I get into bed :)

  10. Hi Lisa, congratulations! You look fantastic in your dress, the fabric and fit are perfect and you look so happy and relaxed. I don’t blame you for abandoning M7154 – my own version is still only half finished, it’s so complicated!
    Congrats again!

    1. Thanks Sally! I hope you had a great wedding too. I do hope to finish M7154, but it’s getting shoved lower on the list by more exciting projects. I hope you’ll finish yours too!

  11. I’m not sure why I didn’t see this post earlier but wow, your dress is beautiful! And you look gorgeous in it, happy and relaxed.

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