Kenzie's Wedding Dress

Two posts in one week?! I'm on a roll here, folks! I finished my sister's wedding dress on wedding eve with some last minute hemming and alterations. Last minute sewing is the price of making a wedding dress for someone who lives on the other side of the continent. We arrived in Utah on August 30, one week before the wedding, but I got a stomach bug shortly thereafter that set me back a couple of days. Luckily my laid back and patient sister didn't seem one bit bothered by the fact that her dress was one of the final pieces of the puzzle to come together before the wedding, so I just chugged along! I am so happy to have been able to add to her special day by making her dress. She was radiant- really and truly- and my pictures don't do it- or her- justice at all. Nevertheless, my pictures are all we have right now, so they'll have to do!

I had planned to do a photoshoot with her a few days before the wedding to get some good pictures, but since the dress was finished the evening before I ended up just following the photographer around between the ceremony and reception as she took their photos. This explains why they aren't looking at me in nearly any of the pictures:) This also explains the sub par pictures. I work well in one kind of light and that light only- I have very little photographic range. Hopefully that will change soon- I'm going to a photography workshop in October at Lake Anna, VA and I CANT WAAAIIIIIITTTTT!
The dress was inspired by a few she found on pinterest- this one and this one, mainly. She wanted strapless, sweetheart neckline, form fitting bodice with lace appliqué, and a gathered flowy skirt. I used Burda Style 7086 for the bodice and made a simple gathered skirt for the bottom.
The bodice was fairly straightforward, only my fabric choice made things difficult. Apparently chiffon is like, kind of tricky? Yeah, first time chiffon sewing here. Any tutorials/advice on sewing it said stuff like "practice on a simple project first" and "don't make something you care too much about on your first try" ..... and so I made a wedding dress. Ha! Still, I managed, and while it isn't perfect (I'm looking at you, little lace leaf on the upper bust! Stop drooping like that!) I'm really happy with how it came out. And most of all, she liked it!
And now, for my pattern review summary:
Things I loved:
  • the bust shaping- the pattern pieces came together quite lovely
  • the boning insertion was easy and straightforward (its been a good while since I've done boning)
Things I changed:
  • omitted the skirt pieces and opted for a gathered skirt instead
  • added a chiffon overlay to each bodice pattern piece
  • applied lace appliqué over the entire bodice, post assembly
Things I'll change, next time:
  • use a more stable base fabric to better support boning (you can see it buckling a bit in some pictures)
  • omit some fullness of underskirt to reduce bulk at the waist
Notions & Fabric:
  • dove colored chiffon from Joann Fabrics
  • lightweight poly for bodice, lining and underskirt from Joann Fabrics
  • invisible zipper from, you guessed it, Joann Fabrics
  • Lace from Touch of Lace (lightly dyed to match the fabric better with a poly dye)
Congrats Kenzie and Abe! Aren't they a fantastic pair?! Thanks for sharing your special day with us!