Sewing and needlework has always been a part of Evelyn’s life. Some of her fondest memories were learning these skills from her grandmother “Nana”, who gave her the confidence that if it could be done, with a needle, thread or fabric Evelyn could “figure it out and do it”. Over the years Evelyn has also been a product designer and wedding/formal wear designer. She has made or altered thousands of gowns in her career. Evelyn’s other passion is bobbin Lace. So, what happens when you put garment design and bobbin lace together? You create a museum quality one of a kind Wedding gown! Here is the story about “THE” (totally handmade eleGANTz) gown.
Process of creating “THE” gown:
Talk to bride about her dreams
Take the brides measurements
Create a pattern
Make a muslin mock-up, fitting and adjustments
Sketch a lace design
Facts about “THE” gown:
Thread used, Egyptian cotton 36/3 and Opera 5 for gimp
Over 2000 meters of threads used to make 685 square inches of lace
Over 500 hours to complete
Dress fabric Ivory dupioni silk
Pictures are worth a thousand words, here is the final result:
“The lace on the Wedding gown tells the Bride and Gown’s Love Story
Some of the Bride’s request were an open back, cap sleeves, not strapless and for the skirt to flare out below the knees.
Sleeve Design has symbols that tell where the Bride and Groom met.
The back lace design includes flowers, hearts and other important symbols that were important to the couple.
Left Back - “ML” are the Brides initials, 6 is the month the couple got married, the design also includes is a lucky English horseshoe ,to honor the Brides ancestors.
Right Back - The Goom’s initials are “DS”, 30 is the day they got married, two 4 leaf cloves were added for good luck and to honor the Groom’s Irish ancestors. The clover is also the Vermont state flower where the couple got married.
Left Back Original Design sketch- The original design had a much fancier inner edging but was changed to safe time.
Right Back Original Design Sketch - The actual lace was made narrower at the neck to better fit the gown.
The sleeve include the year the couple got married (2012). The masks were the hardest part of the lace to design and make. Smartly I did this first instead of stewing about it.
Original sleeve Design Sketch - The Bride and Groom met while acting in a theater production, that is the reason for the comedy and tragedy masks and a theater curtain.
Front bodices and stand up collars. Notice the interlocking wedding rings.
The lace was originally made in one piece than cut apart to form the stand-up collar. Taking scissors to the lace was SO hard to do.
All of the lace was made on this 15” sawdust stuffed pillow using Old Holland bobbins. The thread used was 36/2 Egyptian Cotton with Size 5 Opera for the gimp. The heavier gimp help accent each motif. The finished lace was enclosed in plastic bags so it won’t get dirty while working on other parts of the lace.