I spent nine months working on my wedding dress refashion. I really had no idea what I was getting myself into. I had sewn quilt tops with my grandma and watched her hem my prom dresses. I literally bled, sweat, and cried on the dress while figuring it out. In the end it was totally worth it.
Six weeks before my parents were to be married, my mom still hadn’t found a wedding dress. My dad’s mother, my Grandma June (in the yellow, on the left), volunteered to make her one. Grandma spent the next 6 weeks sewing the perfect 70’s wedding dress for my mom.
When I was little and would look through my parents wedding album, I would dream of the dress that my grandmother would make for me someday. I met Brian just after my grandma passed away in 2008. Eventually, Brian and I realized that we were hopelessly in love and decided to get married. Because I had been so close with my Grandma June, when it came time for me to pick out a dress I just couldn’t. I had to find some way to include my grandma in the making of my dress.
My mom dug out her old dress and I started the refashion. The dress was pretty damaged but I was determined. I took the entire dress apart. Each seam that I ripped, I remembered my grandmother. It felt like we had one last sewing project together.
First I removed the sleeves. I saved the buttons and the button loops. Those later replaced the zipper that was on the back of the dress. I also removed the upper collar piece. After I removed that, the neckline was almost exactly what I wanted.
I had to completely rework the back of the dress. Because the outer layer was so damaged, I replaced it with a lace overlay. I made the keyhole back from pieces of the lace and beaded them with the original beads from my mom’s dress.
My grandma saved everything. I went in her craft room and she still had the extra beads and fabric scraps from the dress, from 1978! I used the extra fabric to repair a hole that was in the silky layer of the dress.
The thing that concerned me the most about the dress was that my mom is at least THREE INCHES shorter than me. Good old grandma… she put a FOUR INCH hem in the dress. It was like grandma had made the dress for me, my mom just got to wear it first. I reattached the lace trim to the bottom. I sewed the last bead on the dress the morning of my wedding.
And that is how I spent $20 on a wedding dress;)
I thought it was only right to include a few more photos of these incredible people that have stayed married all these years and shown me the meaning of loving in good times and in bad 🙂 The photos on the left were taken at our wedding when my mom and dad won the “Anniversary Dance” and were celebrated as the longest married couple! 37 years and counting!
Our wedding photos were taken by the incredibly talented Amanda VanVels Photography. My parents wedding photos were taken by Everett McCormick.