By Charla Bjostad
Once upon a time, you probably stared at your mother’s portrait in her wedding gown with hopeful aspirations. If you were lucky, she may have allowed you to try it on and perhaps do a twirl or two before returning it to the box. As you honed your own style over the years, however, that once coveted gown likely lost its appeal as a contender for your own special day.
So how do you tell your loving mother, who also dreamed of you one day wearing her wedding gown, that you would rather find something more modern? With all the beautiful new gowns on the internet, in magazines and hanging temptingly on bridal salon racks, it’s getting pretty hard to think about opening that box full of puff sleeves and lace again.
Before you break the news to your mom, consider this one simple solution: What if you use that antiquated wedding gown as a blueprint for a special rehearsal dinner dress or a reception/party dress? If it is basically in tact and contains some attractive details, a designer can turn that old gown into something unique, stylish and you.
Starting with the bodice, high necks can be lowered or removed, and sleeves can be shortened or removed completely. Is the dress a bit snug? Not to worry since there is now extra fabric to take care of that! Moving along, if you don’t fancy that high waist look, a designer can lower it with fabric from the skirt when it is shortened. If your heart is set on a strapless dress with a cute sweetheart neckline, a bit of boning structure can make it happen. That just leaves the original train, which can become a little bolero or snazzy shrug for a quick cover-up.
This kind of transformation is not for the faint of heart (there will be a lot of snipping and cutting!), but more for the creative, adventurous bride who desires to keep family harmony in an otherwise stressful decision. Tradition is priceless!
Charla Bjostad, owner of Pleiades Bridal Design, has been redesigning wedding gowns for over 40 years, including her own mother’s in 1972. Visit www.pleiadesdesigns to see some innovative designing.