My wedding dress is by far the most complicated thing I’ve ever sewn. I don’t know how long it took, since I carried it around with me and basted while I was talking to people or watching tv or waiting for the bus. I’m not going to talk you through how to sew your own, because there’s just too much to it, but if you’re curious how it’s put together, these are the pieces of the pattern:
The lace at the back came from Lacis, a wonderful lace store and museum in Berkeley. I finished the rest of the dress before I put it in, and it’s not structurally important, just tacked into the back.
I had planned on putting in an invisible side zip, but I was afraid it would be too heavy and make the dress hang asymmetrically. I kept putting it off, knowing it wouldn’t look right, telling myself it would only take half an hour and I could do it whenever. The day morning of the wedding I realized I wasn’t finishing my dress because I knew the zip just wouldn’t look good, and had Rosalie and Prima sew me in. It was slower than putting in a zipper, since it was a weird angle to sew at, but I’m so happy with the way it ended up looking. Thank you Rosie and Prima!
I couldn’t get quite enough of the matte silk I used for most of the dress, so I used a shinier silk charmeuse for the under layer of the skirt and some of the lining. As so often happens when I run out of fabric, I love the way the two fabrics work together, and I’m glad I had to do things this way.
Both fabrics were very fragile and slippery – I couldn’t use pins, because they would leave permanent holes in the fabric, but it moved around too much to sew directly on the machine. I’m not a big fan of basting in general, since it is so very slow, but it’s absolutely necessary for this sort lightweight silk. And it was worth all the time it took to end up with this dress.