Handwoven Wedding - Part 1
Wedding photography by Russell-Killen Photography
So I got married earlier this year! I mentioned it a few times in newsletters and social media, but honestly it didn't get talked about much -- probably because I was too busy making it happen to really talk about it, haha!
I've been with my partner for 8+ years, and we bought a house together around 5 years ago. So to be honest, we didn't *need* a formal ceremony to cement the permanent nature of our relationship. However, it was still really important to us to get a chance to celebrate with our friends and family. And with the last two years being as unpredictable as they have been, this spring felt like a good time to celebrate life and our chance to all get together in the same room and eat good food.
I knew that if I was going to go to all that effort of having a ceremony, and dragging people out to the same location, and maybe even hiring a photographer, I wanted to wear somethind special! I wanted to wear something that was personal and had meaning and represented me to the best of my ability. And as a textile artist, that pretty much meant I wanted to make my dress from the ground up.
It's kind of insane to think about, but for some reason I decided that I wanted to design the dress to be handwoven and hand dyed and hand sewn. Look, the pandemic has done weird things to all our brains. And if there is one chance in my life to go ALL OUT, this felt like it? I don't know why I feel like I have to justify it, haha, but here we are. I spent six months of my life designing this dress, dreaming about texture, and color, and weave structure, and dye blends, and fabric combinations, and wearability, and what I wanted to project on one particular day, and.... This is it.
I'm not going to say "this is me." One dress cannot encompass the multitudes within me. I went through a lot of angst planning a wedding, because let me tell you (something you probably already know) but the wedding industry is *fucked up.* I'mnot going to tell you that I wanted "one day to be me" (I am me every day of my life!). But, well, if I'm going to spend a lot of money and hire a photographer to make me look good, and if I'm going to spend that day talking about love, and community, and family, and if I'm going to spend endless hours thinking about how I want to *feel* on that day -- aparently I want to feel like a fairytale princess. And by golly, I feel like I NAILED IT.
So yes, I made this dress. I am incredibly proud of it. I even wrote an article that got accepted into handwoven magazine about it. I've been meaning to write *several* blog posts about how I made it. I told myself that I had plenty of time -- I got married in APRIL after all, and the article was accepted into the September/October issue of Handwoven Magazine. I still have plenty of time, right? Apparently the issue was released today -- July 29th. Who knew?
So yes, if you're here because of the handwoven article, please sign up for my newsletter. I have SO MANY "making of" photos, and I want to talk about every step I made in making this dress. The decisions about fabric, about dyeing, about weave structure. Each of those topics is its own blog post! And they are absolutely coming, I just, you know, have to actually write them. But if you don't sign up for my newsletter, I might forget to tell you about them (I'm really bad about this whole internet presence thing.) And trust me, you want to see the process photos for this dress.
Fashion/Dress Designer Call:
Also, designing and implementing this dress was fucking incredible and I want to do it again. That said - I *do NOT* want to sew your wedding dress. If you're getting married and you want a dress like this, I'm sorry, I don't sew for other people's bodies. But I DO want to work with any other seamstress or dress designer who wants to see their dreams come true in fabric color and weave structure. If you're a maker/sewist and you want to collaborate in creating unique fabrics for YOUR garments absolutey reach out to me.
Also, I now have this incredible dress in my closet that should not live in the dark. If you're a photographer or model and you want to design a shoot around this dress, please contact me! I don't even need to wear this dress, I just want it to live its fantasy life making beautiful art.