Thursday, January 26, 2012

30 Day Challenge of Things I LOVE...Day 1

It's been many months since I've written a blog and I've debated as to whether I ever wanted to write another one or not. It seems so time consuming, and I just can't ever seem to get myself to do it. When I first started, It thought it would be a creative outlet, but there are SO many amazingly talented bloggers out there, I just felt like a guppy in a sea of dolphins. So, I'm challenging myself to write every day for 30 days, about something I love. Something I own or have created that I love. I can do this, right? It doesn't have to be anything GRAND. I just have to let it flow and not over think it. I AM my own worst enemy! Ok, here I go...


 I created and made this beauty this past summer for her September wedding. She had a vision and couldn't find anything she liked anywhere. One day, she said, " can make my dress!" Without a 2nd thought, I replied, "sure I can!" WHAT??? Did I REALLY just say that?

She lives in Utah and I live in Oklahoma, so this was going to be a challenge. She came to town in April, for her brother's wedding, (yeah, both my kids married within 6 months of each other) and the hunt was on for the perfect fabric and lace. She thought she wanted an English lace until we found....drum roll, please.....FRENCH lace! Straight from Paris! We almost passed out! If you've ever handled French lace, really held it and touched it, you'll NEVER go back to domestic lace again! The difference is night and day! We found it at shop here in OKC that specializes in wedding fabrics and lace. We bought all that she had left of this beauty and decided on silk chiffon for the fabric. DREAMY!

I started on the dress in May and actually sent the bodice to Kira, in UT, for a fitting. She had it pinned and shipped it back. The lace panel, front and back, had to be sewn on by hand. I had my husband hang a quilt on a wall in our bedroom and I pinned the dress up on it and hand sewed it from there. It was INSANE! I had a bum shoulder at the time (needed surgery, but that had to wait until after the wedding), but kept my eye on the prize and worked through the pain. I pretty much had the dress done when I left for UT in late July. We wanted to have that "WOW" moment when she tried it on...

"WOW" wasn't exactly what we got. It was more like slumped shoulders and tears. Something just wasn't right. It needed something more. After I calmed the bride out of her anxiety attack, we put our thinking caps back on and decided the skirt needed to be raised and it needed a big ruffly flounce on the bottom. Luckily, we found this tiny little shop in SLC that carried the silk chiffon in the right shade of ivory (close enough) and we bought YARDS of it. I sewed and hand gathered and pinned and it wasn't enough. We went back, time and time again, and Teresa, the wonderful, helpful, delightful shop owner, was thrilled every time we walked in because that stuff ain't cheap! I swear I gathered miles and miles of that silk chiffon. I was staying in a bedroom in the basement and layed it out on my bed. I had to keep it away from the groom, after all. Not only was there a 10" flounce on the dress, but there was a 5" flounce on the lining! Was I insane or WHAT???

Hand gathered INSANITY!

We finally had our "WOW" moment with GOOD tears this time and I had to BEG Kira to take the dress off. She was so in love with it and I was so in love with her for being so in love with it. It was so good to have it done with 2 weeks to spare!

This was her actual wedding day. What a GORGEOUS bride!

She couldn't figure out her something "blue", so I stitched their initials and wedding date under the lining of the dress. That was fun!

This is by far my greatest creative accomplishment and I doubt I'll ever out do it. It was an out of body experience of sorts. I look at it and I know I created it. I cut and stitched and sewed for HOURS, DAYS, MONTHS, and yet, it seems surreal. She was a beautiful bride and I miss that dress. It became a part of me, like a spare appendage and I really want it back, but she's not giving it up. I'll just have to go visit it. Sit and sip tea and have a chat with it. Feel that French lace and silk chiffon. Smile and sigh at my greatest creative accomplishment...EVER!

And...they will live happily ever after....Kira and McKay Montague!


Shell said...

Girlfriend, You are FAR too Critical of yourself! Look at your beautiful Blog! Look at the dress you made your daughter,,,Gorgeous!

I don't know when you first visited my blog, but a week or so ago I posted a THANK you for those that put up with me in the beginning, bad photos, and the likes!

Just have FUN with it! Of course you CAN post 30 posts in 30- days, but otherwise, just Share, whatever! For me, some days are funny, some days are sad, some days are creative,,,,,Heck, I've even posted "disasters" I TRIED to create!

Hugs and Love,

Robin Thomas said...

This is a wonderful challenge, looking forward to seeing your posts.

I love this dress so much. But I dearly love the little embroidery, that is the dearest touch.


jackie said...

Oh Nan I knew it would be beautiful and beautiful on her! I know it was a true gift of love but what a gift one she will never forget and you won't either. Who knows someday her daughter may wear it and wouldn't that be awesome!
Thank you so much for getting back into blogging! I love your writing and I love your challenge!