Dress and Coat for Irene
Irene had very firm ideas about what she wanted to wear to her daughter’s wedding. The dress and coat ensemble was designed to take her from a cold January daytime to the black-tie evening party. The dress was made from old gold silk dupion, lined with silk satin. The boned bodice has a v-neckline front and back with hand beaded detail over the ruching at the shoulder. The dress was cut princess-line with a slim shape fitted down to the hip and then the skirt was a slight a-line. Splits from the hem up the seams revealed shot silk chiffon panels to flick out as Irene walked. The splits were graduated in height, higher at the back than front with hand beaded detail highlighting the top of each one.
The coat was made from thicker silk dupion woven in gold and blue and lined in silk satin. The coat was also cut princess-line and slim fitting with box pleats at the back to kick out as Irene walked and echo the dress below. A deep plunge v-neckline revealed a little of the dress beneath while the stand-up collar was elegant and kept out the cold. The long sleeves were gathered to the shoulder and finished with wide cuffs in old-gold silk with contrast buttons. The coat fastened with concealed hooks and eyes with ruched panels drawing the eye to the vintage brooch I sourced to complete the look.
Original design sketch for the dress
Original design sketch for the coat
To begin with Irene wanted the front hem of the coat to curve up and reveal the dress beneath. During the fitting process she changed her mind and the coat was eventually made with a straight hem.
Irene asked me to source her a brooch to complete the look of her dress. We found this vintage one etsy.com £40 which is faux pearl and lapis lazuli.
The hand beading at the top of each split was created to echo that on the shoulder. Each element became more ornate as the splits got longer around the sides and back of the dress.
Dear Felicity, Thank you so very much for making my dress perfect. I’m thrilled to bits. Also thank you for managing to fit me into your busy schedule, it’s very much appreciated. I hope we meet again in the future, and have fun with that adorable kitten.
Irene also had accessories made in matching fabrics for her husband and various members of the bridal party.