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Friday, November 8, 2013

BRIDAL HANGER

Designer bridal hangers have become very popular recently.  Thirty years ago when I got married, the gown was photographed on the bride, so nobody cared about the hanger.  Of course, I also wore a wedding hat--so, what did we really know back then!?   Lately, as I've been second shooting weddings with my daughter, we started chatting one day about taking all the detail shots before the ceremony.  It's a kick to spend time playing with the programs, garter, earrings, shoes, necklace, bouquets, wedding gown, etc.   As you know, today many photos are taken of the gown draped on the hanger; very trés chic!

Having a unique hanger can add a certain ambiance to the overall photo and definitely helps to showcase the gown...and you know my love of bridal gowns...as a designer and seamstress, we definitely have to make sure that the gown is given "its day" and the details are captured!

The hangers with the bride's new surname written in wire (Mrs. Bradshaw) are really cute and popular these days.  There are a couple of really good You Tube videos out there if you want to learn how to make one of those, or there are many great shops online where you can purchase them.  I decided to try a few different ideas that I had rolling around in my head.
The first thing I did was to take a trip to the thrift store on Saturday (50% off day!).  I knew I was looking for wooden suit hangers; they're nice and sturdy and would accent my idea well.  I found one there in really great shape; can't beat .29¢.   I also picked up some of the whimsical letters that I've used before at Hobby Lobby. The rest of the supplies, I already had on hand.

For the first hanger I used the two-step crackle coat finish to give the
hanger and the letters an antique look. It's so easy; just follow the directions on each of the cans....the base coat is gold and the top coat is antique white. As the top coat begins to dry it cracks and the gold shows through.    I "blinged" the heart with a bit of glitter and also the top edge of the hanger....and then used the trusty glue gun to attach the letters to the wooden bar of the hanger.   To add a nice protective finish, I sponge brushed on a good coat of Mod Podge.
For the second one, I used a hanger I found in our coat closet and went with more of a natural wood look.  So, I stained the letters and then glued them onto the hanger.  I added some rhinestone embellishments to the letters and added a few pre-made burlap daisies, a silver heart charm and voilá!








For the third design, I chose to paint the hanger an off-white color.  For the letters I decided to glitter them with a combination of silver and gold glitter; I used a coat of Mod Podge as my base and then dipped them into the pool of glitter I had poured onto a paper plate.  After they had thoroughly dried, I added a Mod Podge finishing coat right on top of the glitter.                                                            
To finish this one I decided to use some pearls, rhinestones and ceramic roses near the top of the hanger; I lightly glittered the hanger, coated the entire hanger with Mod Podge and added a bow as the finishing touch.  I have a hard time deciding on a favorite, I like them all!

Maybe these ideas will inspire you to try some of your own ideas.   My daughter plans to have a couple of these on hand for the weddings she shoots to offer the bride just in case the hanger she has is the standard issue bridal shop version and she would like to use one of these instead.

After I posted a sneak peek on my Facebook page, I had a friend suggest these would make a great engagement or bridal shower gift.  Now that's a great idea!
They are now available on the SheaMarie Designs online shop.  I can make them just as you see them or I can customize them in anyway you would like.  I think they would also look really neat by adding a subtle touch of the bride's specific color palette to the mix by painting the heart, dotting the "i" or adding a bow in the accent color.  Hangers on the shop are made exclusively with brand new wooden hangers.

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