Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Latest Commission

In September of last year; I received a contact through a mutual friend. A lady she had met at a quilt camp was looking for someone who would take her families six wedding dresses and turn them into something else. I contacted the lady and we agreed to meet up and discuss what she wanted and what she had.

For the purposes of this blog; I won't go into lengthy detail about the planning stages & so forth. Suffice it to say I created a few designs & she picked one. I was to make 4 separate wall hangings using the materials from each of the dresses.

The deconstruction of those dresses took the longest and I will remember that should more commissions like this one come about (which would be wonderfully fun!)

The dress materials then had to be prepared using either (and most often both) fusible interfacing and wonder under. Due to the nature of the fabrics this was imperative I assure you. I felt rather like Charlie Chaplin when I was trying to iron on the fusible interfacing as I'd get one section held down with the iron the rest of the material rush off the other end of the ironing board and puddle unmercifully onto the floor mocking my attempts to be neat.

I had to enlarge my design onto freezer paper, then create a pattern off of it using tissue paper. I then cut out each bird section. I had six pieces of fabric (one section from each dress) and would then cut sections of each bird from each piece of material ensuring that each wall hanging would incorporate parts of each dress.

Once it was all fused down to the grey silk; I stitched it all down and added the background quilting. The sections that looks like trees is actually the bodice lace from one of the gowns. I removed it from it's backing; tea stained it and cut it in sections that I then couched down. Lastly, I took the assorted pearls; beads and satin covered buttons (there were 43 on one dress!)and added the embellishments.

On the backs(sorry for the bad picture); there is a pocket on each one; enclosed in it is the 'legend' which has the wedding pictures of each couple, their names and their wedding dates. I had them laminated on vellum.

I'm only sharing the photos of one whole one and not all 4 to eliminate the repetition(though they are each different in subtle ways).

I only wish I was better at photography, the silk reflection really is hard to deal with when trying to get nice shots. Even with my daughters new Canon Rebel EOS, blah, blah, blah, it was so much camera! I mean really; I try to aspire to be good at one thing, quilting... Do I need to be a professional photographer too? Obviously not; I will gladly pay someone next time.

Finished size was 24" x 36" roughly.


  1. Stacy, you've outdone yourself from what I can see. They are astoundingly beautiful. I wish I had a hundredth of your talent

  2. stacy, they are absolutely gorgeous, what an astounding amount of work, and how meaningful. and i echo your sentiments on the canon rebel - my daughter has one, and i tried to take pics of my work with it and didn't come up with anything useable - i think you did quite nicely, the sheen of the fabric is difficult.

  3. Stacy, this is just stunning. What an incredible amoun of work ... and what treasures for this family. Congratulations!

  4. Oh Stacy! This is so lovely! Well done.

  5. Beautiful work. :)

  6. They are amazing. Lighting is the problem when taking this type of photography. You might want to invest in a couple of spots on tripods or bribe two persons to hold the lights for you.

  7. These are beautiful. You did a fabulous job!

  8. What an incredible challenge...you have done an amazing job of incorporating six wedding dresses and making something so artistic and lovely. Thank you for describing the process in such detail.

  9. Wow, Stacy. It's simply beautiful. You must feel good about it - what an accomplishment!

  10. Wow! Those are beautiful. What a lucky family to have you do the work. :)

  11. wow. i know we talked about art a bit at starbucks, but i had no idea. we need to get a link to all the fiends blogs if they have them. really beautiful.

    i think for sheen on shiny things, you want to bounce the light off of something so it's diffused a bit, or filter the light somehow, like with a sheer white scarf. i've forgotten more than i remember about photography. your daughter is so luck to have access to such fine tools at her age. i did, but they belonged to school, so when i left, i lost it all. can't wait to see her pictures from the day


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