Colleen’s dramatic vintage lace heirloom dress reconstruction was a project from the heart. When she reached out to me, I was ecstatic to hear from her! We go WAY back! We’re childhood friends since grade school and stayed in touch after I moved. I always loved Colleen’s presence, her positive attitude and happy demeanor are infectious. Besides, she also has an incredible sense of humor. It’s pretty meaningful to make something so special for a close friend.
My first impression of the dress was that I absolutely loved the dress. Her grandmother’s dress had that classic 1950s silhouette, with a fitted bodice, fully flared skirt, scooped neckline and cap sleeves. This is the kind of shape that flatters every body.
In addition, lace appliqué detailing made up at the top and around down the center front made up her grandma’s dress. Similar to most dresses from that era, it was quite small. I had to do a bit of reconstructing in the top for fit purposes. The first step was to let out seams where I could, as well as opening up the back.
During that process, I found a lace that when combined with the original lace appliqué on the dress, it looked pretty perfect. Then, I created a lace yoke in the back to open things up a bit and lowered the satin portion of the bodice. The result: people could see the lace and more back was tastefully exposed.
To make sure everything flowed together, which is always paramount for any alteration or reconstruction I do, I went ahead and added more lace appliqué to bring it all together. I added a lot for the back train, giving a dramatic look across the bodice to blend the two laces.
I’m always so grateful when people bring me such cherished heirlooms to reimagine. Colleen‘s grandmother’s vintage lace heirloom dress reconstruction was absolutely one of my favorites that lives in my head rent free. The piece still looks like a vintage dress just updated in the most timeless way possible.
Interested in having a dress custom made or having an heirloom gown redesigned? Reach out to us today!
Photos courtesy Wendy Mitchell Photography