About Me

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Melrose, MA, United States
Hi there, and thanks for visiting my Blog! How did I get started? Well, when I was pretty young, my mom taught me all the basics of sewing. It seemed to come natural to me, and by the time I was in middle school, I began to make lots of my own clothes. I did some sewing for people I knew, (including my mom!)and then bought my first sewing machine in 1986 when I decided that I would make my own wedding gown! I live in Melrose, MA with my husband and our 3 boys. When expecting our first, I started to make dolls, just in case I had a girl. I continued making and selling them as they were fun to make and customize for a special girl. I work out of my home and have had the great experience of making gowns, home fashions, dolls and doing many alterations over the years. My work has been largely word of mouth, with very little advertising. I think you will find my work unique and would like to create something special just for you!

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

A Unique Christening gown

August 31, 2017
I received a message on my Facebook page regarding making a Christening gown!!!

Let me back up a little...
It's been a very busy bridal season for me, but was beginning to wind down. So I began to think of what I'd like to do when I am not so busy with bridal alterations....and the first thing that came to mind was "wow, I hope someone contacts me to make another christening gown!"
(I've made 5 so far, all from wedding gowns)

I don't even think it was a week, that I received that email on Facebook!

Here is the story behind this unique gown I was asked to make

I was asked if I could make a christening gown combining 3 generations of wedding gown/attire. WOW! Of course I said YES! So, the baby's mom said her mom, was shipping her Her wedding gown as well as her Grandmother's gown (are you following me?!) When she received them, we set up an appointment to meet, look at the fabrics I had to work with, and discuss the options.

September 7, 2017
The fabrics were brought over:

The (great) grandmother's gown from 1947, was a dark champagne, mid-weight satin, unlined, with an interesting wide corded hem. The wide cording was also on the top of the gown and the sleeves, as you can see in this photo. It hadn't been preserved, so the fabric had some areas of discoloration and deterioration in spots, but otherwise, a gorgeous piece of fabric to work with. Because the wide cording was so prominent on the gown, we decided to use that at the hemline, and allow it to be seen, beneath the lace.

The grandmother's gown from 1976, was a white Organdy fabric with tons of french lace on the top, sleeves and hem. There was beading on the top, but the beads had turned grey over time and were attached with glue (possibly what changed the color), so were not usable. The lining was a stiff fabric, comparable to sail cloth. She also brought the cathedral length veil to me, that had even more french lace, a little narrower than what was on the gown, on all the edges and the headpiece!

Baby's  mom had a lace jacket/topper she wore over her dress. It had lace sleeves and a wide band waist with a long sash.

Also specially requested included would be a bonnet and booties! And she wanted a BIG bow!!!!

After looking over all the materials I had to work with, and the condition of the fabrics, we decided to use the satin as the under-layer of the skirt and the sheer organdy on top, to give the top fabric an antique look. I was unsure about what to use on the bodice yet, so I just got started on the skirt and worked my way up!We were both super excited to get started on this!!!!

We had talked about incorporating all three (3) fabrics on the bodice. So I got to work. I used the satin underneath - just as with the skirt, Mommy's lace over that and I even used her sleeves, for the baby's sleeves, and some french lace appliques from the veil on top of that! The waistband and bow were made from Mommy's waistband, and the bow had french lace detail. I used a heavyweight interfacing to stiffen the bow - the only purchase I had to make. All other materials came directly from the gowns!

I received an email regarding Christening dates: Normally, I like to have 2 months to make an outfit like this, it's just so special and I like to put lots of details into it. I was given a few dates to choose from, so I chose the farthest one out! October 29, 2017 - not quite 2 months but I could work with it

The first week or so is just planning for me. A lot of thinking, laying out all the dresses in my work
space, looking at the details on each, and maybe even some sketching, before I begin cutting any fabric. Once it's cut, there's no going back, and I only have a limited amount of fabric to work with, so I have to be extra careful!

October 23, 2017
Gown is ready to go home!

Here is a link to my work in process photos and the end result :Heirloom Christening Gown
                                               I hope you enjoy this as much as I did!

Since the wide cording was so prominent in the satin gown, I imitated the hem here, and let it show beneath the lace