from a hot mess to the perfect dress...follow the adventure as the old lady and I attempt to make my wedding dress.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Do you buy a titsling or do you buy a brassiere?

Every summer for as long as I can remember my family would pile up in the 1984 Chevy Caprice station wagon exactly like the one from Chevy Chase's Summer Vacation-- and go to Indianapolis to visit our extended family. Lizza (my sister Anne Elizabeth) and I would always demand to watch Beaches about five times while we were there, so it kind f became our thing. This week a glass of wine and I were working on sewing up the muslin when I stopped and said, "Hey, Mom!! Look!! It's a titsling!!" If you've never seen Beaches I'm sure this makes no sense. So here ya go... Otto Titsling. I was pretty excited and immediately called Lizza to tell her! As soon as I said the words "bra" and "Beaches" she broke into song. Our family motto is "relationships come and go, but crazy is forever". And this posting is plenty of evidence that we live this on a daily basis. I love my crazy family! Most days.
Otto Titsling, inventor and kraut...

This is kind of the idea..

As far as the inspiration for my dress, I’m thinking of channeling an Old- Hollywood actress with a curvy fit-and-flare style gown. I found some stunning alcenon lace online that I want to order and back with ivory silk shantung. I interned for Ilaine Hartman, a Mardi Gras costume designer, in New Orleans a couple of years ago and am extremely inspired by the beautiful lace gowns she makes. We found a couple of patterns online that fit the idea I’m going for. We're in the process of adapting them because pattern-making is not the most exciting thing in the world. I want the lace to be a v-neck and the silk to have a sweetheart line beneath the lace. I found a pattern among all of the old patterns of my grandmothers that I inherited and used it to draft a bodice for my dress, which was neat and totally confusing because there isn’t any printing on the pattern, only punched holes. We’re in the process right now of fitting a muslin sample of the gown to move forward with the lace sample. I'm excited already with what we've been able to do! Here are some pictures...

My design

One of the patterns we used.

Good old Grandma Rusty's pattern.

Thanks, Sandy!!

let's hope we can spin some gold...

Two years ago I caught the bouquet at my sister's wedding. It wasn't so much me "catching" it as me crouching down in the back of the group of overly-ambitious ladies-in-waiting and the bouquet smacking me in the face. Everyone thought my sister did it on purpose but she swears otherwise. Charlie and I are getting married on January 14, 2012—almost exactly 3 years after my sister. I guess the bouquet knew what it was doing.

Having a degree in fashion design is kind of a curse because I realize that the quality I expect in a wedding dress far exceeds the extent of my budget. So I’ve decided that my mom and I should make it. Sandy, my mom, has been sewing our smocked and Heirloom dresses since the beginning of time—every big occasion in my life my (baptism, 1st communion, high school graduation) has included one of her beautiful heirloom dresses so it seems appropriate that she would pull through this time too. And if she’s nice I might not lock her in the windowless make-shift sweat shop of a broom closet. If we don’t drive each other completely insane, which honestly wouldn’t take much because we’re a stone’s throw from certifiable as it is, this could be a fun experience! I hope you enjoy reading this blog and following our attempt to spin some wedding dress gold. And don’t bring up the whole first-born child thing—I’m sure Sandy’s already started knitting that elephant blanket she found hoping that I would become an Alabama fan for the children we aren’t having for 5 years…