I've recently been making a dress for a mother of the groom. I have made a few 'mums' over the years, but it's not something I do regularly.
Anyway, I thought I'd get my act together and take some pics of work in progress of this dress, and up to the finish.
This is a very simple shift dress, quite Audrey looking. I tend to make relatively simple dresses for bridal party people, because often they might not be the type of person that likes wearing matching dress, jacket, hat, bag and shoes etc. I get the idea from feedback that it can be quite tough to find an outfit if you don't feel like a typical bridal party mother (as dictated by the high street), or if you just want something easy.
Or perhaps the wedding or event is a small and/or quiet affair and a simpler dress is required? Whatever the reason, I like making dresses like this, and have lots of 'why don't I make more of these/make one for myself?' type of moments, when I'm making them.
In the past, when I have received an enquiry, I've often said I don't make anything (for sale) other than bridal gowns, but as you can see, I am shifting perspective on this.
The reason for saying the above, is/was purely practical: sourcing fabric for an outfit other than a wedding dress can be tricky. It can sometimes take days, weeks, months, and in one case, years, to find the right fabric.
These days, in most cases, I ask that the client, that's anyone other than 'the bride', supplies the fabric. So for example, the fabric for this dress I'm showing you was supplied by the client, and I supplied the trims, beads and linings, which we discussed when she originally came to talk about having something made.
Alternatively, the client could come and discuss ideas and we could decide what types of fabric might be best, before they then go off for a fabric finding day. Sometimes I am able to supply the fabrics, but that is almost always a silk or silk blend.
The design often develops as I/we look at the fabric, talks about requirements, and generally get a feel for the event and personality of the client. Sometimes, the client comes along with a definite idea of what they would like, and that's OK too, as long as the fabric works with the design. So if you're not sure about the fabric, but are sure about the design, it's better to wait until we've discussed it, or to get a small sample of the fabric, just in case it might not be suitable.
This dress is going to be worn with black pashmina shawl, tiny black hair piece, black strappy shoes and pearl accessories. Easy.