Thursday, July 1, 2010

The walk down the aisle

Well it's been a long time, but here, finally is the long awaited post concerning my walk down the aisle.

The course of true love never ran smooth and neither did my trip down the aisle - which was actually the ramp down to the pier where Justin & I were married. The wood ramp down the pier. The outdoor wooden ramp, by a large body of water. So, to be perfectly clear, the surface was very uneven. Basically designed to catch on knitted lace. Due to various issues during train construction and bustling concerns and the whole "cutting off of the bottom 12" of the dress" the knitted train was longer than the fabric train. This actually looked kind of pretty, but meant that the fabric train wasn't giving the knitted train the protection that I'd thought it would.

Just before I set off down the aisle, there is an indication that we might have a tiny little problem:


Undeterred, I started my walk down the aisle:

See how pretty and spread out the train is? I think was actually snagged again, but it looks good.

Here I am, getting my first sight of Justin.


And trying not to cry.

Thos first three pics were taken by our professional photographer.

All the rest of these were taken by our friend Jay. I'm not sure if our photographer is just a little less free with his shutter finger or if he thought I might not want my herky-jerky progress captured for posterity. But Jay, with the instincts of a true friend, knew that we'd want every minute. Theresa, his wife, also with true friend instincts, immediately posted all of these pictures on Facebook.

So here it goes:

Initially I’m amused. I’m also nervous as hell so everything is hilarious.

This is about the third snag, so I’m done with it. My Lady Minions are poised to spring into action, but I can’t see walking down with a train carrier.

I reach back...

And take matters into my own hands.

This photo shows me talking to myself.

I don't remember exactly, but it was something to the effect that all those people who said I shouldn't try this whole "knit your own dress" thing would probably be pretty amused right now.

Fortunately I was also amused and so were all my guests and my future husband.

And I made it down the aisle unscathed.

Of course at the end of the ceremony this happened:


Leading to these reactions from the family


And from the Minions

(Theresa isn't even in this photo, having lept down onto the grass to run over and unstick me. Justin & I had no idea. We were all just wed and happy.)

There was this reaction from me:

Amy Wedding_107

And this from Justin:


So you can see that it all worked out just fine.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Well - we be wed

Some day I will write an epic blog entry regarding the final details. Hell, my trip down the aisle warrants a photo essay all its own

But for those who weren't there, or just didn't look at me all day, here's me in the dress before the wedding (with the ever vigilant Jenny Gill lurking behind me).

And here I am with my buddy. This was actually taken by Jenny, who was following around after the professional photographer, wrangling my train and snapping a few pics over his shoulder.

Married life is good.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Other projects - wedding related & not

I finished the shrug I was making for Mom - all part of our "If we prepare for cold weather it will be warm" strategy for weather management. I quite like it! I used Vanna's Glamour (yes, like Vanna White. She's a big crocheter. Who knew?), which is a yarn that should look cheap and tacky, but doesn't. It has a metallic strip going through it which gives it a little bit of shine, but the fabric is still soft and has a nice drape. Mom picked out the pattern - Stefanie Japel's Textured Circle Shrug

and I modified it to remove the textured stripes and made the sleeves a bit longer so they hit mid forearm instead of right at the elbow.

Should the weather be chilly, Mom will look fabulous.

I also continued work on a baby blanket I'm crocheting for a coworker. Such was my state of mind that instead of making a granny square, I somehow managed to make a granny triangle. What is really impressive about this is that I did NOT NOTICE that it was a triangle until I'd finished edging the entire thing and then went "Hey, something's wrong here!" Sheesh. Wedding brain.

Have made one strap for the dress and am part way through the second. They aren't blocked, so no picks yet.

And I started on a crocheted halter top for the honeymoon. I may or may not finish it in time, but I have to do something to keep my hands busy. My usual nervous energy is multiplied by 10x.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010


I am definitely ditching the sleeves. I don't know how exactly they don't work, because they look so perfect in my head. They do not, however, look perfect on my shoulders.

I am toying with the idea of making knitted straps - similar to the straps on the original pattern that inspired me.

I like the idea of having the little extra touch of green, not just the green in the skirt.

Or I may just leave the straps plain white.

Another gown close up

The lace buttoned on to the dress. It actually pulls more taunt when the dress is on my body - this is just it draped on the sewing table.

Last night did a few hand sewn tweaks (those two problem areas which I thought I'd fixed weren't quite as fixed as I thought) and then did the actual dress hem with the horsehair. Took forever and I complained mightily to Justin about how much I hate hems and how dresses with trains have extra long hems which is unfair. I actually took the time to handsew the train in a blind stitch. Justin doesn't realize what a testament this is to my love of him, but other sewers will. I hate to hand stitch hems even more than I hate hems in general. But it looks damn good.

Then I turned up the hem on the lining - I decided not to have the lining go under the drape of the train, but just to have it follow the line of the train down the back of the dress and then stop at floor level. When the train is flipped up, a little bit of the lining will show in the back, as opposed to a tantalizing view of the backs of my ankles. The lining fabric is a darker ivory than the actual dress fabric, but I figure anyone looking close enough to notice is probably a pervert with an unnatural interest in ankles, so I'm not going to worry too much about offending their sensibilities in terms of my ivories matching.

Anyway, I turned up the hem on the lining. Since, as I just mentioned, it will show a tiny bit in the back, I wanted to make sure that I turned the hem in the correct direction, so the seam allowance of the hem didn't show when the train was bustled. I thought really, really hard about which way I needed to turn the hem, how I needed to situate the dress on the ironing board to make sure I turned it properly, etc. Then, with the unfailing instinct that leads me to get on I-95 going the wrong direction after getting off at a rest stop, I turned it the wrong way. Really, I will get off at the Chesapeake House, go to get back on 95, think really hard about which way I need to go and then get on 95 North, even though I'm driving from NYC to Baltimore. I have a horrible sense of direction. This is one reason I like the rest stops on the Jersey Turnpike - you only have one choice about getting back on the highway, so the worst you're going to do is end up in the Cars/Trucks/Buses lane when you meant to get in the one for just Cars. On the other hand, they don't let you pump your own gas, so I still prefer the Maryland rest stops. I only get back on 95 going the wrong way once out of every five or so trips.

So tonight I'll be redoing that hem and pressing it the other way. Fortunately I didn't have the energy to sew it last night, so I don't have to pick the sewing out. If that was the case, the ankle perverts would probably be looking at the seam allowance, as well as being shocked by the non-matching ivories.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Sewing Tweaks are done!

After completion of the major sewing last Thursday (April 15th. on schedule, if you recall), there was some tweaking that needed to be done. There were two spots on the bodice that weren't laying quite right - one on the left side of the scooped neck and one under the right arm. In heavier fabric it probably wouldn't have been noticeable, but the silk is so delicate that every little pucker is obvious. I also realized that the left strap really needed to be half an inch shorter and that I might have sewn the lining down a little too tight, which was contributing to these pucker issues.

I spent one night thinking about these problems and finishing up the knitting. Then I pulled out my lovely handsewing around the lining and made my modifications. I carefully basted and tried the dress on and checked after every single change. I spent a lot of time sitting at the machine in my underwear and the dress's zipper got a workout (on the plus side, it no longer sticks at all!) In the end, all the changes made it just right. I had started to wonder if I was going to have to redo the whole bodice b/c I'd determined that I could not live with these little imperfections and I was more than a little nervous that I wouldn't get rid of them any other way. Fortunately this was not necessary!

Then I spent a night sewing on the buttons around the bottom of the bodice - this is where the lace will attach.

Put another button at the top of the train seams for the train to hook onto (exact details of that still fuzzy).

Last night finished resewing down the lining. And my shoes arrived. We have a weekend of more wedding festivities ahead of us, but after that - hem! I've decided not to block the knitting until I'm down in Maryland since it will just need to be redone then anyway. So after the hem, it'll be done.

I'm really not sure what I'm going to do with my free time. I contemplated doing a knitting project just for fun with no deadline the other night. I got confused and had to start thinking about something else.

I'll try to put up some more pics, but I don't want to show any of the completed dress til after the wedding. You know, so it's a surprise.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

April 20th

On this day knitting was officially finished. Measured length, decreased and cast off again. Did a chain stitch crocheted border around the bottom, since instead of now having a nice cast on edge, I now had a bunch of loose stitches on a lifeline. The crocheting let me do extra chain stitches between yarnovers and keep the more closely knit parts close, so overall I think it maintains the beauty of the design and also stabilizes it.

Plus, since I decreased out those extra two repeats of the chart, the top now fits around my rib cage almost perfectly, rather than being too big.

Oh and I don't think I like the look of the sleeves. I may go without. Maybe God was trying to tell me something when that first sleeve went down the drain?