With wedding dress keepsakes, it’s all about the dress …. whatever else happens, the details and the character of the dress – the elements that make it memorable and unique and a precious memory of a special day – must (in my opinion) be preserved and incorporated into any keepsake – be it a quilt, or (as in this case) a quilted bed runner …….
Isn’t it gorgeous? I love the detail of the bodice – the pleating and beading, and the long, flowing skirt …. this one pretty much designed itself.
It seemed the only, obvious choice was to take the bodice, and the back, and lay them top-to-top, quilting into the pleats to hold them in place, and then to just allow the skirt to spill, flowing, over the sides of the bed to pool on the floor …
a little like this ….. in its ‘raw’ state – all the boning and lining removed, a few nips and tucks here and there to straighten out the edges, and the basic shape is there …
with all that glorious detail preserved ….
several hours of basting later …..
and the quilting goes in, mostly along the pleat-lines to hold everything together (and the basting comes out …. it can sometimes seem a bit tedious, all that basting, when you know it’s only temporary, but I just absolutely believe that for things like this it beats pinning, hands down, every time).
a little decorative stitching along the edges of the skirt, and along the hem (where I trimmed it, just a little, to reduce the dust-catcher & trip-hazard potential of great pools of fabric lying on the floor)
and the embroidery can go in …. the quilt is backed with a piece of white vintage bedlinen, and edged with ivory satin ribbon …. with the embroidery going across the long sides, top and bottom – the bride & groom’s names, the date of the wedding, and the place they got married.
And done ….. all that wonderful detail on the back and bodice preserved …..
the flounces on the side of the dress re-attached, using a piece of beading, just as it did on the dress originally ….
…. echoed on the other side by the generous pool of fabric taken from the train …
It does, I think, make a rather special keepsake?