Moar on how we does it!

Here we start, as usual, with reclaimed bedsheets that begin a new life as pattern pieces:

Conscious Elegance sustainable wedding dress Laura bedsheet pattern pieces

Reclaimed bedsheet pattern pieces

We’ll spare the pics of the pattern piece dress iterations, here is the bedsheet Laura on the dress form, with ‘Kimberly’ in the background:

Conscious Elegance sustainable wedding dress Laura patten on the dress form

Laura mock-up first try

But honestly? I didn’t like the way the bodice worked. Yeah, I know; halter bodices are rare and wonderful things. And I’ll do a halter on another design, promise. I had something else in mind for this dress; I was going to make such a fabulous skirt that the bodice needed to be simpler so as not to compete. This bodice was much more like it. And the skirt was starting to gel:

Conscious Elegance sustainable wedding dress Laura pattern second try

Laura mock-up 2nd try

Here’s the back:

Conscious Elegance sustainable wedding dress Laura mock-up back view

Laura mock-up back view

(As a private aside: I love love love how the bedsheets drape, just like satin would. It really makes it easy to see what the real dress will look like).

Pattern created, now it was time to grab a reclaimed silk dress and get busy. And here we see why using reclaimed fabrics are um, an Adventure and why lots of designers don’t want to bother:

Conscious Elegance sustainable wedding dress Laura laying out the pattern on reclaimed silk

laying out the pattern on reclaimed silk

See the layer on top? That’s the bedsheet pattern. The layer on the bottom is the dress-turned-back-into-fabric. You will of course notice that they don’t quite match up and there’s this GAPING VOID where part of the skirt should be. Sad, sad empty void. We cannot have this; we abhor a vacuum.

Here’s what we do. This is a different void from the pic above (there were several) but you can see that we took off some here and put it there…

Conscious Elegance sustainable wedding dress Laura making it fit

Making it fit

And here’s what the reclaimed silk fabric looks like when it’s dress-ready:

Conscious Elegance sustainable wedding dress Laura Sewing it together

Sewing it together

Again, I’ll spare all the piccies of the ruching and the stitching etc. etc. There are lots of those pics in other post entries. ┬áBecause we loves ruching, we does.

Here she is, Laura on the dress form! And that heavy silk satin? ::LOOOOOVE::

Conscious Elegance sustainable wedding dress Laura taking shape on the dress form

Laura taking shape on the dress form

Back view…

Conscious Elegance sustainable wedding dress Laura's back view on the form

Laura’s back view on the form

And, since we always like to create our gowns in more than just white. I chose a gorgeous deep blue hemp/silk/organic cotton satin. The straps you see are the bathing suit straps that belong to the model for whom I was sizing the dress; I’d borrowed a bikini top for that 3-D effect. Worked really well too. I might need to do that for all of my models in the future. ::makes note to self::

Conscious Elegance sustainable wedding dress Laura blue version front view

Laura blue version front view

Here’s the back. I like showing the back; it’s the view that most people are going to be looking at during the ceremony. Usually.

Conscious Elegance sustainable wedding dress Laura blue version back view

Laura blue version back view

But the dress could use some decoration. True, I’m not one for bling. I think bling is what designers use to cover up shoddy seams and stuff. I might get flamed for that, but there it is. Often it’s the cheapest-made dresses that have the most bling. ::hops off soapbox::

But decoration? Sure, so long as it doesn’t interfere with the lines of the gown. And these don’t: they are a new breed of flower that I just…um…made up. Not that there’s anything wrong with roses, but I’ve used roses for years and there’s other flowers out there. These flowers would be all kinds of texture-rich and use different fabrics and weaves and add fun dimension to the dress. AND they could be made with scraps. Because we like to find ways to use everything. It’s that ‘zero-waste’ principle thing.

Flowers flowers flowers!!:

Conscious Elegance sustainable wedding dress Laura flowers added!

Flowers added!

Here’s a close-up of those pretties, so you can see the fun textures:

Conscious Elegance sustainable wedding dress Laura detailed view of Laura's flowers

Detailed view of Laura’s flowers

And here’s the dress on a real person (our model, Talia)! Obviously, these aren’t the actual finished shots; I took these pics all sneaky-like with my phone, when Talia wasn’t expecting it. You get to see the chinks! Smoke and mirrors! We don’t use a professional studio! We don’t need to! Betcha no one else uses professional studios either…at least not the folks you’d actually trust…

Conscious Elegance sustainable wedding dress Laura on a real person!

Laura on a real person!

Here we have a reminder that modeling is thirsty work. All those bright lights heating up the set…

Conscious Elegance sustainable wedding dress Laura Let's have a toast!

Let’s have a toast!

Talia was such a good sport. And don’t the flowers totally make the dress pop? Here’s aside view. Yes, her hair is in fact blue on top. She likes it that way:

Conscious Elegance sustainable wedding dress Laura side view

Laura side view

Here’s the back, with the skirt bustled:

Conscious Elegance sustainable wedding dress Laura back view

Laura back view

And here’s ‘Laura’ in blue, with the black hemp/silk and organic cotton flowers. Now you know why I specifically chose to make the dress in blue: to match Talia’s hair:

Conscious Elegance sustainable wedding dress Laura in blue, formal shot

Laura in blue, formal shot

Soooooooo beautiful!! And bonus: we shot these pic on Talia’s birthday!! Happy birthday, Talia!!

If you feel like seeing other views of ‘Laura’, you can visit her here.

Be well all
Lori

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