Simple Gowns

Do I ever get simple wedding gowns?

Yes, and they are a delight to work with.

Suzi Wong

Here is a latte colored 2 layer knit dress with soutache braid embellished English netting that has had about 6 inches of the hem pinned up.

P1190235-2  P1190236-2

All that had to be done was a hem.  You can see the 3 layers of skirts and the vertical panel that holds it all together. Each knit layer was hemmed with the coverstitch machine and the netting layer with soutache braid was done by hand and then all were attached to the panel. It looks a bit weird but this is how the original looked so I try to duplicate it.P1190462

Want more simple?

How is this for simple…simply Vegas baby!

WTOO-by-Watters-Caprina  wtoo-caprina-10015-1507-wedding-dress-188097-2

The center back zipper had to be taken in and a bustle added and the front slit raised to expose the top of her leg. Imagining dragging the small chiffon train all over Vegas, I just made a small French under bustle button and loop for her to at least be able to walk backwards without stepping on her tail.

You can see how much the zipper is pinned out (1 inch each side), at least this actually brings up the top edge and stops showing the top of her butt cleavage (crack).


All hand thread tracing and hand basting to get all the pleats to stay put and at the correct angle. Lining is basted shut temporarily.


Again, like with most dresses, I do not cut off the excess at the zipper in case she needs it later or sells it to a larger girl. It is all tucked inside along with the lining excess. The zipper had a strip of interfacing, so I moved it over to use it.


Let’s baste the invisible zipper for the second try-on and before machine stitching.


With all these thick pleats coming together, it is a real effort to get the zipper tab up without catching the chiffon so I made small back stitching stitches. The original was done with machine stitching and looked very industrial. There was no hook and eye before, so I added one.


How about a close-up of the bling brooch? Blue aquamarine stones and pearls really are gorgeous! P1190786

But wait…did you see a glimpse of her $899 shoes? They came in their own padded box. The platform soles are almost 2 inches high and the heels are over 7 inches tall.  Here is a Pinterest link.


Did you know that you could even order a blinged-out $400 garter too?P1190782

So, while all of these accessories are pretty darn nice, the bride never stops to think…”wait a minute, my dress is chiffon and it will catch on anything rough.” I see rhinestone sandals and bracelets catching on the hem edges and ruffles all the time. So imagining the garter catching on the dress and being worn for most of the evening is a worry. It probably is NOT the one the groom will be tossing into the crowd of reluctant groomsmen!

Fall temps (85 F) bring more fruit with cherry tomatoes that come up every year, a gift from the birds and Autumn Bliss raspberries.


Thank you to all my readers for taking time to add their great comments and welcome to the new followers!



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42 Responses to Simple Gowns

  1. That top dress is very pretty and elegant looking…the second…ugh. All the $$$ Bling in the world isn’t going to make that one look good in the back with all those strings criss-crossing her back. Good grief. And had to laugh about the chiffon versus the bling…that’s going to present a problem.

    As usual, you do your best to get these brides looking their best! At least none of these required a huge wedge of fabric inserted into the back 😉

    • mrsmole says:

      It seems I’m either inserting a wedge or removing one from the zipper area. I forgot to mention that I also had to raise the front slit so her entire leg could show…classy, no?

  2. Wow, that’s a lot of bling….she definitely picked the right location for her nuptials!!! The bridal gown fairy godmother strikes again!!! Excellent work!!!!

  3. symondezyn says:

    That first dress is quite nice – very classy and a pretty design 🙂 The second though… why oh why would ANYONE want butt cleavage??? Even after the alteration, I would still be VERY uncomfortable with a back going that low. And unless you’re bone-thin, those flimsy strappy back details just look like twine over a roast LOL ^_^

    • mrsmole says:

      I am laughing out loud, Amanda….”twine over a roast!” Butt cleavage to balance the front cleavage of course! Sitting down would be another issue! You see all these things convince you to have a more modest wedding gown for your wedding!

      • symondezyn says:

        I’m finally almost done my dress, Mrs M, just the hem left to go 🙂 I thought of you a lot during the making, and I think you’ll approve of the final outcome 😉 Definitely no butt cleavage, bust padding or fake tans here (or cowboy boots! LOL!!)

      • mrsmole says:

        Hooray!!!! Can’t wait to see it on you! It will be a real treat to see something custom made and well fitting with not a cowboy in sight!

    • Cindy says:

      “those flimsy strappy back details just look like twine over a roast” Hilarious and a very apt description!

    • Sharon says:

      The next time a customer steps out of my fitting room wearing a strappy back dress I will be thinking of you symondezyn. Thank you for your description that has now burned a visual into my brain. I promise I will try not to snicker, but I can’t make any promises.

  4. jay says:

    Well, this blog is certainly an education! I actually like the bling, but feel the second gown needs to look fragile – but not be shredded on chunky lumps of glitz. Do these ladies try the dresses on before they buy them?

    • mrsmole says:

      You know they do, Jay, and they imagine having the largest bust pads attached for maximum front cleavage! The first dress was just so simple, the second…just flashy.

  5. I was actually thinking of you…and trying to channel your talents… last year when I altered a bridesmaid dress for a dear young friend. YOU would have called it simple. I did not. 😀

    • mrsmole says:

      Bridesmaids dresses can run into some labor with 3 layers of chiffon skirts, an attached front drape sewn into the side seam and such. What looks like easy peasy, it a headache. Hope you didn’t have to pull any of your hair out, Jilly!

  6. MIchaelC says:

    Well maybe for Vegas, it’s overdressed. It used to be, class costs, but looking like hooker is expensive too. I wonder if you will get a renaissance wedding gown one day. or have you?

    • mrsmole says:

      Nothing renaissance so far…but you never know? So tired of fake tans, huge bust pads and tight butts as I come to the end of the 11 month season. Do you do any such sewing? I drool over authentic renaissance sewing blogs…the patterns, the fabrics, the hand work…must have been a tailor in a previous life!

  7. Inés Venturini says:

    Yikes, those shoes are totally passé. At practically $1000 it’s a shame! Well as long as she is happy.

  8. Christy says:

    So glad to see you get some easy frocks sometimes and that there are more sensible brides purchasing dresses that actually fit!!

  9. Oh my gosh! I forgot what I was going to say as soon as I saw the shoes and garter! Gasp!

  10. Paola says:

    Those shoes are making me wince in pain.

  11. Liz says:

    It is beyond me that women think these polyester confections are magical. Why do you do it Mrs M., do you also think that polyester ivory tulle is gorgeous? Is it just a a way of making a living, or do you believe in it?

    • Sharon says:

      We alter gowns, not design them. Whenever a bride brings me her gown, I hope she has chosen a dress that will emphasize her own beauty. We do all that we can to make her choice of gown, regardless if it is silk, polyester or an old feedsack, fit properly and accentuate the bride’s better features. Afterall, it’s her wedding day, not ours.

    • prttynpnk says:

      I think you need to read a few more posts to have your answer- she spins straw into gold for ladies with a dream. She doesn’t judge the dream, thankfully.

  12. mrsmole says:

    Well Liz, I believe that any gown can be fitted well and flatter the bride no matter what the fabric. I don’t have to like the gown or the person in it, my job is to alter and make it work. If I were a hairdresser, I wouldn’t have to like the color of a client’s hair to cut it, or the cut if my job was to color it. My personality allows me to treat every bride with respect whether she buys a $39 dress or a $6,000 dress to fulfill her life-long dream or her limited budget. Seeing the accessories they choose is entertaining and sharing the inside alterations on the blog helps others too, I hope. My husband reminds me that after sewing strictly bridal for the last 10 years, almost 100 brides a year, I have touched many women and made their day special. I’ve been sewing for regular clients for almost 50 years and love what I do and will continue as long as the eyes and knees keep working. Thank you for your question, I hope I have answered it.

  13. ceci says:

    I’ll never see another of those string back dresses without thinking “twine on a roast” – so unattractive for any event, much less one’s own wedding. Your alterations are as usual masterful and have given me an idea to solve a sewing problem I’m mentally wrestling with. The first dress is lovely and elegant…..


  14. Sue says:

    Makes me thankful my daughter was a practical bride. She chose a classy (and classic) dress. I almost broke my vow not to make or alter my duaghters’ wedding dresses – I had enough fun with the 6 bridesmaids’ dresses – a family friend altered the bride’s dress – and complimented her that she was the easiest bride she had ever worked with. My daughter claimed it was because she had watched me make & alter dance costumes her whole life! Glad to be retired from that business now – except for family (in many ways tougher than strangers!)

  15. Tanya Maile says:

    The first gown is so beautiful! The second…well….it is Vegas… I don’t see how all of her accessories match/coordinate though…

  16. Wead Library says:

    I am in awe of how you handle your brides, all with respect and dignity and they clearly leave happy at the rate of 100 gowns per year and just word of mouth.

    I’ll vote, too. First dress: lovely, Second dress: tacky as hell but those shoes. I agree that they are a leftover from the 80’s and someone seriously got ripped off.

  17. Oh oh. I kinda like both of those dresses – and all the bling. I am still hooting with laughter with the twine on a roast comment though!

  18. mrsmole says:

    OK Kim….a closet bling-lover…I knew you were keeping a secret…just think how that garter would liven up things in your life…wear it to the swimming pool while doing your laps for charity?

  19. maryfunt says:

    Roast trussed up with twine comment was great and very appropriate. Yes the chiffon dress will be in tatters after an evening with the bling shoes and garter but what does she care? Hopefully it will stay together long enough.

  20. mrsmole says:

    After I had to raise the front slit to show the very top of her leg, it may get uncomfortable having that garter grabbing unto the dress and lining…brides…a little crazy! Trying to walk all night in those shoes with the hem of the dress grabbing the huge rhinestones may get her to go barefoot and be sensible. We can only shake our heads, Mary.

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