My dear friend, Beth, is a delightful lady who is very creative, and very Martha Stewart. She loves to entertain and woo her guests with seasonal feasts and beautiful table settings. Each guest always receives a small take-home “favor” at each place setting, such as mini-pumpkins in the fall that have been hollowed-out and filled with fresh mums. Pretty dishes, sparkling crystal and starched linens complete the inviting look. Beth and her husband, Tony, are wonderful hosts and have a warm way of making you feel supremely welcomed.
When the first of her three daughters was married, Beth told me of her plan to cut apart her mother’s (Nana’s) wedding gown, and have a piece monogrammed and stitched into a small pillow for the ring bearer to carry down the aisle. Since Nana had passed on, Beth thought of this as a way to honor her memory and she asked me if I’d sew the pillow. (no pressure there, Beth :)
A couple of years later, a second daughter married, and we made her a pillow using the accent color of the wedding party. Well, daughter number three has no immediate wedding plans, but a niece in the family is getting married on October 10, 2010. Her bridal shower was yesterday, so guess what Beth asked me to do??
I was happy to make one for Bethany, but each time I have to cut into Nana’s silk, I have an anxiety attack. Luckily, the sewing Gods were with me and I didn’t have a slip-of-the-scissors or a major thread jam. In the past, we were able to use some of the dress’s covered buttons as accents, but Beth gave me these little pearl buttons instead. There was a fabric loop stitched into the seam, which I’m pretty sure was used to bustle the dress, and I used it to make a small band under which the ring bearer could slip his hand:
I used Warm N Natural cotton quilt batting to quilt the border around the monogram, and I stuffed the pillow with some polyester fiberfill that I had on hand. Finished size is approximately 5″ x 7″.
At first, I must admit, I was aghast that Beth could take a scissor to her mom’s wedding gown but, soon, the reality hit. Since no one wanted to wear this dress, why not turn it into an heirloom of a different sort? Thanks to Beth’s thoughtfulness and willingness to make that first “cut”, the grandchildren of the family will have a very special keepsake to accompany their fond and cherished memories of time spent with their dear Nana.
Congratulations and best wishes, Bethany!
Note to Little A: Let’s not even think about cutting into mine. You never know…70’s polyester wedding gowns could become highly sought-after collectibles.