Forty Years Ago Today

Forty years ago today and six weeks after Kevin returned from a 14 month tour in Viet Nam, he and I were married.  In the ensuing years we have been blessed with wonderful times (and of course some tough times); three incredible children, their wonderful spouses and two adorable grandchildren for which this blog is named.  Along with family and friends, we have created a lifetime of great memories and Kevin is still not only the love of my life, but also my best friend.

Our family - Megan and Chris's wedding

Congratulations to Megan and Chris, who are celebrating their first wedding anniversary today!

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Oh my, how times changed us.  I guess you would call us “vintage”.

At Shaun's Wedding - Sept 2010

About my dress:  Because this is fundamentally a sewing blog, a little information about my wedding gown only seemed appropriate.  (And for those of you who remember the awful plaid suit I made for Kevin in the 70’s, I didn’t make his tux.)

The following is an old folded copy of the dress I copied from a 1970 bridal magazine   then I like “knockoff’s”.  The fabric was a sheer poly of some type purchased from a fine Milwaukee fabric store that bit the dust about 20 years ago.  The cape and veil were made from yards of silk illusion, which is now a rare find and the lace was beaded French alencon.  I cut all of the lace and spent hours beading it, but had lots of time since Kevin was in Viet Nam.

A little hiccup:

For the  year that Kevin was in Viet Nam, I lived with my parents.  They had a toy terrier who was usually well-behaved but like all animals he had his moments.  One day I was working on the nearly completed cape (fine silk – just right for a dog bed) and left it on the couch, never expecting that the dog would climb on the couch and nuzzle in my dress.  But he did, and tore the fabric in several places.   Grrrrh.  I was able to move some of the appliques and cover the tears so all was well in the end but at that time it seemed such a big deal.

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Sewing a Wedding Dress: Countdown 5.5 Months

Sewing a Wedding Dress:  Muslin #2

In early December I took a day trip to the NY Fabric District to buy silk for the dress bodice, some of the embellishments, silk ribbon for the belt, boning, etc.  Yes, also there were a few other purchases for the stash  This time there was a good reason for the trip but secretly I wish I’d have the need to make these day trips more often.

Rhinestone trim

What a gorgeous pin

Most of the purchases worked out except the fabric for the dress top isn’t a good match for the skirt.  It was a rainy day and without the natural light, the color difference wasn’t obvious until I was in better light.  So I’m in search of an alternative.  Photos of all things glitter are at the left.  You can see the purpose of each on the compilation photo below. 

As planned, at Christmas, I had muslin #2 ready for Megan to try on.   For those of you who aren’t into sewing lingo, a muslin is a test garment or sample that you can adjust, write on, use as a pattern, etc.

Muslin #2

This muslin which if all goes well, will be a lining when it grows up, consists of 3 layers of fabric – 2 layers of polished cotton/poly and a mid layer of silk organza.  The cotton/poly is soft and thus comfortable next to the skin.  This trio made a fairly substantial lining, and I’m comfortable with the weight and it will work well for attaching boning later.

The front fit well but needs more sculpting at the front center.  The back also  needs a few adjustments, however the fit was good enough to boost my confidence as this is my first strapless dress.

What are your experiences making muslins?  Is it a part of your sewing credo or are you like me – just make one if you absolutely need to?