Wednesday, May 11, 2022

A Wedding Dress, By the Numbers: Part 2

 By the Numbers Recap

The Muslin Pile Up

So, at the end of part 1, the getting started and making muslins "episode", I had spent about 5 weeks making 7 or 8 muslins. But we aren't quite ready to get down to the sewing 

Choosing and ordering the fabric came next.



Sourcing the Fabric

1: Embroidered Tulle; 2: Satin; 3: Silk Organza and 4: Bemberg Lining

 Long gone are the good ol' days when you can waltz into a fabric shop and waltz out with everything you need for a wedding gown. Here in the Washington, DC area, one of the go-to shops was G Street Fabrics which had a fabulous bridal department. They still have the bridal department, but the shop's look has more of a warehouse feel than it used to, and it's down to one location in Rockville, Maryland. Still, Laura and I took a field trip to Rockville. I wanted her to have a chance to feel the kinds of fabric that we were talking about. We made one purchase. The boning.

Moving on, we went online, and a priority was anyplace that could send swatches. We ended up concentrating on 3 online places:

1. Bridal Fabrics, located in the UK. They have gorgeous fabric with reasonable prices and ship around the world. Our biggest concern was turnaround time. Our window for sewing was tight, and while there were some definite maybes, we just didn't know if we would get everything in time.

2. NY Designer Fabrics. Also had some gorgeous fabrics but the fabric Laura loved from there had prices that were higher than what she wanted to spend.

3. Mood Fabrics won the day for 2 of the 4 fabrics (2 & 3 in the above picture) that we needed. Laura ordered so many swatches! She ended up ordering the polyester satin for $8.99 a yard and is hands down the nicest polyester satin I have ever seen and worked with. Frugal minded brides should not turn up their noses and the "polyester" aspect. It has beautiful drape and glow with none of the harsh sheen I have seen on other cheap satins. We also got the silk organza underlining there.

Laura ordered the embroidered tulle (1 in the picture) from an Etsy shop, and this was the fabric we waited most of August for it to arrive. This definitely played a role in our "can we finish the dress in time for an October 2 wedding" stress!

Locally, we purchased lining (4 in the picture) and notions from Stitch Sew Shop in Alexandria, Virginia (where I also happen to work), as well as fabric for my Mother of the Bride dress and for the flower girl dress (more on those later).

How Much Fabric?

Since I wasn't using a pattern calculations had to be done. From the muslin making, I knew the bodice would take about half a yard. But the skirt? I took to graph paper. I didn't know any other way than to draw it out to get the estimate.

We settled on 7 yards of each of the 4 fabrics, and had leftovers of everything except the embroidered tulle.

Bonus: All the fabric used is machine washable!!

A Wedding Dress, by the Numbers: Part 1


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