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The story of a dress or two.

A few months ago, I said yes to a dress—two dresses, actually—one for the lovely bride-to-be Dori, and the other for her sweet Maid of Honour (and sister) Alivia.

It was an easy yes. Having known Dorissa for many years, I knew her style—classic, simple and feminine—a perfect match for Ladey. The bride wanted something that was ‘gorgeous’, ladylike’, ‘feminine’ and ‘delicate’—I would have expected nothing less.

And so the story began with an elegant (and beautifully made) ecru gown with tiny spaghetti straps, and a classic bow at the waist, discovered by the bride-to-be at a local thrift shop.

We toyed with a handful of ideas, before capping the Saturday afternoon off with universal agreement on a design! (The initial design looked like this, and slightly changed over time).

The dress would have a full length lace overlay, fitted at the bodice and cascading from the waist. It would also feature a slightly scooped neckline with a deeper scoop in the back, a court train with inverted pleat, and 3/4 scalloped sleeves.

The next part of the design process was the toile—the first draft of the garment sewn out of a material similar to the fashion fabric. This allowed us to perfect the fit and make adjustments before creating the gown. The final creation featured a row of tiny buttons at the back, and pearl beading around the neckline, cuffs and train.

On to the Maid of Honour’s dress! Alivia’s only prerequisite? A dress that twirled—and twirl it did. We also incorporated a few elements from the bride’s dress—the bow, baby buttons and scalloped sleeves with a touch of beading on the cuffs. We chose powder pink as the accent colour—it happened to be one of Alivia’s favourites, and worked beautifully with the rich burgundy colour palette chosen for the bridesmaids’ dresses.

And voila! When the big day came Dori and her Maid of Honour looked stunning!

I could tell that the girls felt feminine and beautiful. My mission as a designer—and the story of the two dresses—was complete.



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