Wednesday, July 14, 2010

A new life for a gown from my past

As my polonaise has been slowly taking shape one question has been at the back of my mind. What will I wear it with. Strangely the colors and texture are not as easy to find complimentary fabric as I would have thought. While wandering through the fabric store gazing at anything blue, yellow, or off white I was tickled by the memory of a gown from years ago that was light blue and navy blue. I had decided to trim in navy blue anyway so I pulled out the old gown when I got home.

This was a natural form gown made about 10 years ago using all Truly Victorian patterns.
If you look closely at the bodice you will notice that some of the buttons have been replaced with little flowers. This was an emergency fix after the dress was hit by a truck. Luckily no one was in it at the time.
You see years ago I ran a children's birthday party business. We planned and threw tea parties, princess parties, pirate parties, fairy parties, you get the idea. This was one of the tea gowns that my partner Wendy made for me.
Well it happened that we had a booth set up at a baby fair. And we had the gown on a dress form as part of our display. Upon leaving the gown went into a trunk with our money, candy, and paperwork. As we were driving away people kept honking at us. Then we hear a thunk as we pulled onto one of the busier intersections in Sacramento. To our horror we discovered that we had left the trunk on the top of her car and it was now sitting in the middle of the road and people were swerving to avoid it. We pulled over just in time to see a very large truck hit the trunk and my gown attach itself to the front of the truck and keep going.
We were able to salvage the bodice except for the buttons that had popped off at impact and the underskirt. The over skirt was found 4 miles down the road covered in grease.

So this gown was put in first a bag, then a box and kind of forgotten about. Until now.
 Close up you can see more of the grease on the over skirt.

Right now I only have a use for the underskirt, I have always loved this dress because it was my first attempt at making an actual historical gown. Not that we knew enough about fabrics and such but still it looked great and felt wonderful to wear.

But now I have a decent underskirt to go with the Polonaise that I have been working on. I don't think I can bring myself to tear the bodice apart. I may reuse the lace from the over skirt though.

I can not help but be in love with this plaid.

Things pinned together to get an idea of how it's going to look. The fabric has a nice life to it. I haven't even put ties in it to get the bustle to take shape, this is just over my bustle.
So this is where we are. The project is coming together nicely I am extremely happy with how it's looking.

1 comment:

  1. brilliant! I love the story behind this poor thing! it was a beautiful dress to begin with, and how awesome that it's getting a second chance :-D