Tuesday, May 03, 2011


With all the attention on the Royal Wedding this past week, the talk for the last few days has been about "The Dress", who designed it, what it was made from, etc etc. As a dressmaker, embroiderer, & lace-maker, I want to be able to touch, feel, turn it inside out, & really look at how it was made. ( especially the bustle detail) . I want to talk with the people who were involved in its making to find out every little detail. Television footage, internet pics ( even with magnifiers) & even press releases from the Royal School of Needlework are not enough to satisfy my hunger. This video makes me even more hungry.

We all know by now that "The Dress" was made of lace, & motifs were hand stitched to the dress by skilled embroiderers. So now I would like to show you all a wedding dress that I made back in 2008 using the same process. The bride wanted a wide lace border around the bottom of her dress, but fabrics that included this were out of the price range. So I created the border for her.

I cut the border from the purchased lace fabric, then very carefully trimmed all the excess tulle away. This border was then hand stitched every few mm onto another piece of tulle that became the over skirt of her dress.

The lace fabric had different sized motifs scattered all over it, so from the scraps left from cutting the bodice, I very carefully cut lots of little lace motifs and appliquéd them onto the tulle above the border into a different pattern.It was 7.5 meters around the hem of this layer, so with hand stitching the border both top & bottom, and hundreds of little motifs being appliquéd in place, I think you can all imagine the work involved. I may not have had the Royal School of Needlework to help but I did have help. The bride, her bridesmaids, and my dear friend R.... helped to cut out motifs & to appliqué them in place. My friend & I are both members of The Embroiderers Guild here in Sydney.

When the lace was purchased for this dress, we found out that we could have lace especially made into any design we wanted. It was a little late for that, but still interesting to know, though the extra cost involved still may not have been in the budget

This dress may not have had the amount of lace or work that "The Dress" had, but it sure had a lot of love with every stitch. I think it is one of my greatest creations.


Lace-lovin' Librarian ~ Diane said...

That was certainly a work of love! My mom made my wedding dress, and the day of the wedding she decided the dress was a half inch too short. She lengthened the hem and couldn't get the crease out, so she went and bought more lace. The dress was finished about an hour before the wedding. The lace cost more than the dress did, but it was beautiful!

Linda said...

What a beautiful dress Jenny. I used to make wedding frocks too, so appreciate the time and effort it took to make this frock. Thank you sincerely for sharing this part of your world. I am always interested in the different things bloggers have done. Cheers.

Simply EVENTful said...