A Very Special Macaron Pt. 3

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Well, the big day has come and gone. And it’s taken me a really long time to do this post, seriously, the wedding was Nov 30. I’ve just been spending more time sewing than blogging lately.

Anywho, you’ve seen bits and pieces of this dress as I worked on it so I won’t go into construction details here. Just pretty pictures for the most part.

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Justin and I had a really small wedding, only about 30 people and we got married under a tree on the grounds of the Texas State Capitol building so a simple short dress worked really well for that scenario (stiletto heels in grass, not so much).

I never did end up lining the dress. I just wore a half slip under it, no big deal.

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Having pockets in the dress was great ’cause I had to call family to figure out where everyone was and wrangle all the people into one non-predetermined spot. But then someone else held my phone for the actual ceremony. ;)

The only thing I might have done differently had I known was that the main dress fabric doesn’t wrinkle per se but the sheen on it causes deep shadows whenever the fabric folds making it look more wrinkly than it is. Also the fabric was pretty darn stiff.

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But the dress fit well (this is a TNT pattern for me so I wasn’t worried) and the waist band was tight enough to serve as a waist stay so there wasn’t a lot of stress on the organza yoke seams. All in all I’m very satisfied.

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Now that it’s over I’m really glad I made my own dress. The total for the dress came to about $150 and if I bought something similar it would easily have been $500 or more. I think many sewists underestimate their abilities and think they can’t sew a wedding dress. Sure, my dress was short and uncomplicated but I could have done a floor length evening gown if I absolutely wanted to.

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So here’s some tips I’d give to those who are considering about sewing their own dress.

  1. Start early. This is a “no duh” kind of tip but knowing that I finished my dress a month before the wedding was a relief. Plus I had time to make last minute changes if I needed to
  2. Use a pattern you’ve made before and you know fits. Having made the Macaron a handful of times before made sewing this one a breeze. You don’t need a whole dress pattern. If you have a bodice you really like you can pair it up with a skirt from another pattern or draft your own. Just having one part of the dress you know will fit helps save time and frustration.
  3. Don’t stress yourself out too much with other things. You don’t have to make your dress and your bridesmaids dresses. Delegate those DIY centerpieces out to your mom. Focus on one main thing – the dress. If your design isn’t too complicated you can spare time for the extras.
  4. Set a realistic budget. My main fabric was a silk/rayon blend but if you go hardcore with the bridal duchess satin or beaded bridal lace be prepared to shell out the big bucks. Duchess can run $70+/yd. Nice lace can be well over $100/yd. Linings and organzas are cheaper but they add up. This is more about the experience of making your own gown, not necessarily about saving money.
  5. Use couture techniques. Not only does it make the final result extra special but how often do you get to do it on your everyday sewing? This was probably the most fun part of making my dress.
  6. Don’t be afraid to go unconventional. It’s your dress! Do what you want! Do you love the comfy feel of a knit dress but think it’s not fancy enough? You know, silk jersey is a thing. Go short. It might save you money and sewing time.
  7. Take your time so you don’t get overwhelmed. Sew in chunks and work on it a little bit every day.
  8. Know your limits. Maybe you don’t have enough time or patience to hand bead the whole skirt. Perhaps making an entire interior corset isn’t the best plan. This should be fun and memorable not nerve wracking when it doesn’t need to be.
  9. If you have a friend or family member who sews well that’s great but if not, you can still totally do it on your own.
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(portrait of a wedding selfie, this is actually one of my fave pictures)
I was never that excited about planning my wedding, for the most part I was stressed out and worried things wouldn’t get done on time but making the dress was fun and it’s totally unique to me. And it looks pretty good in pictures. ;) Glad it’s over and I can move on to more sewing projects!
  • Margo Gillaspy

    Congratulations! Looks like a beautiful day, and you look wonderful. I also sewed my own wedding dress when I got married 5 years ago. It was funny how many people sounded stressed when I told them what I was doing. I had to reassure them that I knew how to sew! :) I think your tips are great, especially the starting early part!

  • Congratulations! Your dress looks wonderful, well done :D

  • NiKute Williams

    Congratulations, The dress looks amazing. Thanks for the tips

  • Beautiful dress, beautiful bride! Congrats!

  • House Of Pinheiro

    Congratulations… You look stunning

  • Kathy

    Beautiful! Congratulations!

  • SeamsOddLouise.Blogspot.com

    fabulous, you look radiant.

  • Congratulations! I love the short dress.

  • Maeve Fanning

    Perfect dress perfect wedding :) congratulations!!

  • VickiKate

    You look amazing! Congratulations Mrs (& of course to your Mr!)

  • Congratulations!!!!! xoxo

  • Meigan

    Congratulations! Your dress is lovely, and you made a very beautiful bride.

  • Donna

    Congratulations! You both look gorgeous and happy :) And that is a beautiful dress; thanks for inspiring us.

  • sewinsteady

    The dress looks perfect (as does your adorable hair). Congratulations on an amazing looking wedding and cheers to happy years to come! :)

  • Sew Little Time

    Congratulations! You and your dress look beautiful. All the best to you both for the future

  • Toni-Maree

    Gorgeous! Congratulations Dixie!

  • Helen McFadyen

    Congratulations! You and your dress are beautiful!

  • Congrats! This looks great and really suits you! What a fun dress!

  • Rebecca at Sew Pomona

    Beautiful dress and lovely photos! Love your tips! Congrats!

  • It looks perfect. I wish I knew how to sew when I got married, but alas, I did not.

  • Sally Williams

    Congratulations, you look beautiful. Great tips too

  • lisa g

    congrats! this turned out so beautiful!

  • Ruthie Critchley

    Congatulations!!!

  • Jenni Murdison

    Congratulations x your dress is lovely, as are your shoes ;-)

  • That is a lovely dress and it sounds like you had exactly the sort of day you had in mind. Congratulations, and thanks for posting your thoughts about your wedding dress. It’s fun to read along.

  • Aleksandra Robinson

    This dress is lovely! Good tip about the shadows created by the dress fabric — I’m about to make a wedding dress and I’d never have thought about that. :)

  • mokosha

    congrats! your dress is gorgeous and you look stunning in it!

  • A Stitching Odyssey

    Congratulations Dixie and Happy New Year! I think your wedding Macaron is absolutely stunning…just like you!

  • Congrats! You did a lovely job!!!

  • Shannon Phillips

    What a beautiful dress! I love the flowers too.

  • thequirkypeach

    Amazing dress! You look so happy and beautiful in all these pictures! Congrats :)

  • Shannon Crabill

    Congrats and your dress is super cute and PERFECT for the wedding you’ve planned.

  • Rebekah Fox

    I’m so happy for you both. And I agree: that selfie picture is one of my faves, too!

  • Congratulations! You look beautiful and your dress is gorgeous, the style suits you so well.

  • Virginia Rand

    The dress is lovely! here’s to a long and happy union!

  • You two look absolutely wonderful. Especially you, Dixie. Congratulations!

  • Victoria

    Congratulations!!! You looked spectacular on your big day!!! What a joy to make your own gown!!!

  • lk

    You look absolutely beautiful, congratulations! And thank you for the tips!

  • Sarai Mitnick

    Oh my gosh Dixie, you look so stunning! What an incredible job you’ve done on the dress. I’m floored!

  • Congratulations, Dixie! If I were getting married, I’d take the same route as you – small and intimate. I wonder if it’s because we’re front and stage all the time on our blogs that in real life, we don’t want to be in the spotlight? Hmmm… regardless, killer job on the dress!

  • Laura

    Gorgeous! What a beautiful job you’ve done. And congratulations!

  • Scruffybadgertime

    It’s gorgeous! And you look gorgeous! It’s an example of the beauty if simplicity, and that you used couture techniques- wise way to make it even more special.

  • ZoSews

    Congratulations! You look absolutely delightful :)

  • Congratulations! You and the dress look beautiful.

  • Clare Szabo

    Congratulations! You look so pretty and love the dress. I really enjoy reading about other sewers who have made their wedding dress. Made mine also when I got married in 2012, and been my best achievement yet.

  • Congratulations! You were a really beautiful bride! The dress suits you so well. It must have felt great to have it done a month in advance. If I ever get married, I shall also make my dress. A bit more extravagant with a huge skirt, though. ;)

  • Sofie M

    Congratulations on a very beautiful looking wedding. You look divine in your dress. I think you have given some great advice in regards to making your own wedding dress. Having it ready early must have been a huge stress reliever.

  • Yay for a self-sewn wedding dress!! It looks gorgeous, regardless of whether or not your fabric throws a shadow. Things ALWAYS look better in real life than they do on camera, anyhoo. Love the simplicity of your style and of course you look gorgeous. And there’s not a single thing on or missing from your list that I wouldn’t heartily agree with – it’s all so true! And before I forget… congrats to you both! x

  • Gail

    You look lovely! Thanks for sharing your pictures!

  • beautiful dress! congratulations.

  • Suzanna Forsythe

    YEAY! I’ve been really looking forward to this post! And q

  • Suzanna Forsythe

    Sorry – posted that comment before I finished! Anyway…
    And all I can say is: Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful!
    Oh – and congratulations to you both, wishing you a happy life together :)

  • sallieforrer

    Congratulations!! In my opinion, small, intimate, simple weddings are always the best! Your dress turned out so fantastic, and you look so comfortable and at ease in it, which is wonderful! I love your list too. If I could go back in time I would totally make my own wedding dress. It just seems a little bit more special, and yes, economical!

  • YOU LOOK RADIANT AND BEAUTIFUL. And your husband is a total babe. Congratulations my friend! Hope your 2014 is wonderful.

  • I love this dress and you look absolutely stunning in it! The illusion neckline is so lovely. Looks like you had a beautiful day, huge congratulations to you and your husband. (love your shoes too!)

  • Congratulations!!! I love your dress, your bouquet, the sound of your wedding, everything. It’s the perfect blend of intimate, casual, and elegant. You really did a wonderful job on the dress, if it looks this good in photos you must have really been stunning in real life!

  • Congratulations!! This turned out absolutely beautifully, and what a happy couple you two are. Just perfect!

  • Wow, congratulations! You look so beautiful on your big day, the dress is just perfect! I also made my wedding dress, and was so glad that I did. Amazing job!

  • Oooh, you look so beautiful! I love your Wedding Macaron and it’s so cool that you paired it with mint shoes! :D Lots of happiness to you and your new hubby!

  • Wendy

    Congratulations! You both looked stunning and happy!

  • Congrats on your wedding! Your dress is great – I love that it’s quite simple, but so beautiful. Good choice!

  • liza jane

    Aww, congratulations! You look gorgeous! The macaron was a great choice. Beautiful dress, beautiful bride!

  • Oh wow! You look absolutely beautiful and the dress is a triumph! So pretty. Congratulations to you two x

  • You are a beautiful couple and your dress is beautiful too! Congratulations!!

  • What a beautiful creation! The organza top really just makes the whole thing. And how amazing to always be able to look back and say you made your own wedding dress?? You are very right to love that selfie, it’s absolutely adorable. A few of my favorite photos from our (even tinier) wedding were candid shots like that. Really speaks to the moment. :) Congrats!

  • Jane Clemo

    What a fantastic choice for a wedding dress! I never would have thought but this is stunning. Great job!

  • rhgarza

    GORGEOUS!!! Congratulations!

  • Edie

    Lovely bride in the perfect wedding dress–doesn’t get any better than this. Congratulations!

  • Allie Massey

    absolutely beautiful. As a girl just about to embark on sewing a wedding gown, this is very reassuring!

  • pinkpassion

    I’ve joined vogue, mccall’s, butterrick, kwiksew online club for $9.99 a year. It’s totally worth it. Right now, kwiksew patterns, if you’re a member are on sale for $5.59 or $6.99 for non-members. They have different sales. Buttrick and McCall’s often go on sale for $2.99. But kwiksew and vogue are almost always between 5 and 6 bucks which I think is worth it. Also, I can’t find kwiksew panties, bras, etc, in my local stores so have to go online anyway. Shipping is decent, esp. if you order more than one pattern. For me personally, I think it’s worth it even with the shipping.

    thank-you for this review. I plan on getting this pattern and making the suggested alterations. Great job. They look great!!!

  • Melissa Mora

    Gorgeous, and good thing that unseasonable cold spell we had missed your wedding day!

  • truebias

    you guys look great. love the dress! congratulations.

  • thanks allie and good luck on your dress endeavors!

  • thanks! i’m glad the organza turned out the way i wanted it and yes the candid shots are the best :)

  • thanks! yeah, i love those shoes. they may not be the most comfortable but they’re super cute looking.

  • haha, thanks! I’ll have to tell him you said that. ;)

  • thanks so much! yeah, I’m glad it was a small affair and low key.

  • thanks! yeah, i’m sure no one even noticed the shadows in real life. plus, there’s always photoshop if it really bothers me. ;)

  • thanks lady, I think there’s something to that. i’m normally not one to want to be in the spotlight. the blog puts me in the spotlight but in a very controlled way, i determine the exact words and pics and how many so it feels safer, i suppose. having a smaller wedding made the event feel less like a big spectacle, something i wasn’t comfortable with.

  • haha! that’s funny to think of other people being stressed *for you*. thanks and I bet your dress was stunning!

  • Jen

    Congrats and omg, you really are the cutest! You two look so happy & smartly dressed! So cute with the mint shoes too!

  • Roseana Auten

    Your tips for sewing a dress to get married in are dead on. I love that you went for an intimate and personal experience for your wedding day. (This strapless-twerking-bridezilla madness currently holding sway over wedding culture in this country has got to stop . . .)

  • Christine Newton

    Beautiful macaron! One of my favorites. Congratulations on the wedding!

  • Johny

    lovely pix from the wedding. Congratulations.

    hint you can use our

    puzzles
    to make wedding even more memorable.

  • Nothy Lane

    I missed this post Dixie. Congratulations to you both! You look beautiful in these pics – the dress, the shoes, everything.