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Wednesday, August 19, 2015

BAPTISMAL GOWN

These types of projects really melt my heart.  Taking an existing item and re-tooling it to benefit the next generation.  I've done this with veils, garters and other bridal related items.  The gesture is so generous, sentimental and heartwarming; I'm all in....one way or the other, all you need to do is ask!

This particular project was a first for me.  Taking Mom's wedding gown and constructing a baptismal gown (from the train) for her six month old daughter.  The skirt of Mom's gown was so unique, I knew the minute I saw it, that it was going to make an awesome baptismal gown.
The flowers are made with a continuous ruffle of taffeta and organza (taffeta layered on top of the organza) wound and sewn into a large circular pattern; the center of each flower is filled with pearls and beads.  In between the flowers is a serpentine of ruffling, creating the illusion of a solid floral pattern.   I was amazed at how heavy the gown was, I can't imagine how exhausting it must have been wearing it on the wedding day!
Mom and I both agreed that the top of the gown should be very basic, allowing the skirt to be the centerpiece of the gown.  Mom wanted a sleeveless bodice similar to one of her daughter's two piece outfits that is one of her favorites.  I had some remnants of satin which perfectly matched the color of the gown to use for the bodice, so once I created the bodice pattern, I was ready to go to town at the sewing machine.

Once I had sewn the "skirt" (that I had created from the train) to the bodice, I chose to strategically place some additional smaller flowers in between the larger flowers, specifically on the front of the gown.  I wanted to create a more continuous floral pattern and eliminate some of the spaces between the flowers where there was just ruffling.

The back of the bodice has a keyhole opening in the center back with a single loop and covered button as the closure.  

A tiny matching ruffle flower made from some scraps, added the finishing touch for the center front of the bodice.

I absolutely adore how it turned out!  I am so honored to have been a part of creating this piece for the Knight family.  Who knows, maybe this gown can be passed along to another generation in the future?

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