I've never participated in a Craft Challenge before but as soon as this one was announced, I knew I had to do it! I love Project Runway
and this reminded me of one of their wacky challenges, which are always my favorites.
And so I hit the local Dollar Tree
, imagining Tim Gunn over one shoulder whispering "Make it work" and with visions of Austin Scarlett's cornhusk gown dancing in my head. I knew I had to think big if I was going to wow the judges. I made my way through the irregular toys, plastic Easter eggs, aisles of artificial flowers. Then I found a little display of discontinued wedding decor and invitations, and it came to me, in a vision: The $10 Couture Bridal Gown!
(As Christian might say: It's Fierce!
I picked through the aisles for anything white and frilly and finally decided to use:3
2.5" by 108" spools of decorative wire-edged ribbon (one plain cream satin, one cream with a gold pattern, and one gold mesh)3
bunches artificial calla lilles (8 blossoms per bunch)1
off-white vinyl shower curtain2
spools wedding tulle1
package candle jewels (I'd never heard of these--essentially a long wire with gold plastic beads and fake pearls strung on it, which you wind around a pillar candle, in case your candle feels naked or something.)
The picture shows a package of prefab bows, which I eventually decided to put back in favor of the third roll of wire craft ribbon. Sorry the camera phone pics are so crappy.
I made the bodice first, wrapping craft ribbon around my mannequin and pinning it into place, then sewing the strips together. This took the entire roll of cream-and-gold ribbon. I added straps and extended the bodice with the plain cream ribbon. Then I took the fake flowers apart and used the chiffon corolla (the rest was mostly plastic and paper) to make the ruffled sleeve, gluing then sewing the pieces individually to the straps.
I made fake "buttons" from gold beads cut from the string of candle jewels, and defined the waist with the gold-mesh ribbon, which meets in the back to make a diamond detail:
The skirt I made by draping the shower curtain and pinning it into place. The pins couldn't take too much weight, though, or they'd tear through the vinyl, so I ended up attaching it in the back using mostly strips of stick-on velcro.
Not being able to sew vinyl also made it difficult to attach the tulle to the skirt. I eventually ended up using a combination of hot glue and good old double-sided tape, with a layer of packing tape to hold it down. Not very washable--but hey, most wedding gowns are only worn once, right? I covered the tape with the rest of the cream colored ribbon.
I cut the candle jewels into individual clusters of beads, then used the wire to attach them as accents on the tulle. I used the rest of the gold mesh to make a border at the hem of the skirt.
I must say, I'm not 100% thrilled with the results on the skirt, but if it were really silk, I think it would be fabulous.
Cutting the bodice up the back so I could put it on was scary, but it would hardly be worth it unless I could wear it, right? So I made a velcro attachment in the back.
I used the leftover scraps of tulle and the stems from the calla lilles to make the bridal bouquet. I even had enough tulle and gold mesh left to make a veil! I sent this picture to my Mom as an April Fool's joke. Don't I make a lovely bride?
Thanks for checking out my entry. Now line up ladies, it's time to catch the bouquet!