A Very Long Tail

I knew I was in trouble when the new bride sent me these photos from the website: 675Ad-Martina-Liana-Wedding-Dress-775x1024blog-header-675-1024x510

Here is the list of what had to be done to make this dress fit BEFORE we even tackle that bustle:

Add bust cups, hem front lace, hem 2 layers of satin lining, take in zipper 1/2 inch each side, move buttons over 1/2 inch with interfacing behind.

So with those things done, let’s get to the bustle…the bride says it is only 7 feet long…only. The satin layers will be bustled on their own first and then the lace.

The bride wanted the bustle to form an upside-down “V” in the center with the other points dropping down to each side.  She wanted to be able to grab both sides of the center bustle and wrap the lace around her like a cape.


Here is what we came up with just using safety pins:

P1200398-2P1200441P1200443 There are 7 lace bustle points and 1 satin one. It seems a shame that with such a gorgeous train, it will all be hidden for 90% of her day and the weight of all that fabric will be buttoned to her back.

She will not be wearing a veil but another older bride decided that what she needed for her second time around wedding was a killer veil. That is her bustled dress under it,  complete with beaded belt and lots of lovely lace bordered lace. And yes, there are an additional 8 dresses that have to finished this month with more in the annex waiting to be basted.


Now that the tulips are up and trees are showing their buds and the days are brighter, Mr Mole and I realize that we will have to get cracking on the veggie garden planning and planting soon. Our schedules have to include weeding AND weddings, sewing AND sowing, writing AND righting of planting structures and re-potting and re-painting of fence panels and gates before the temps get too high.

Wishing you all care-free sewing time and time to sit and listen to the Spring chorus of birds seeking mates!

Almost forgot…thank you to the folks who suggested using a pant hook for the last bride on her bra strap. She picked up her dress today and with much pulling and pushing we got that puppy hooked and snapped and ready to walk along the beach…whew!P1200456P1200455

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30 Responses to A Very Long Tail

  1. Robin says:

    Well the bustling you did is really artful. Yay for spring time and gardening!

  2. mrsmole says:

    Thanks, Robin, your last post of Marfy patterns really makes my brain get excited over new ways of adding pizazz to a wardrobe! http://robindenning.com/2016-2017-marfy-catalog-overview-of-free-patterns/

  3. Sandi says:

    Mrs Mole you are right😊 What a beautiful train to be made into an upside down bustle. You did a beautiful job!

  4. Karen Lyon says:

    Mrs. Mole. I hope you charge through the nose for those dippy train ideas. I read a good tip for starting tomatoes you and Mr. Mole may like to try. Slice overripe tomatoes into quarter inch sandwich style slices (from the grocery store that have not been refrigerated). Place slices in individual starting pots with fertilized soil or compost and potting soil. Cover slice with about one quarter to one half inch of soil. Keep moistened in direct sunlight until seedlings sprout and grow. Keep the biggest and healthiest seedlings and plant when ready.

    Be grateful, where I live, the ground is still frozen a couple of inches down. We usually have to wait until May to plant. Even then, we run the risk of frost bite. Happy garden planning and have a good week!


    Date: Sat, 2 Apr 2016 11:17:34 +0000 To: grumpykaren@hotmail.com

    • mrsmole says:

      We have frost until May here too so the tender plants have to spend time in the garage with the citrus trees until then. Your tomato suggestion made me laugh and remember a trick I saw on Pinterest last year. It showed rose cuttings inserted into potato sections and then buried in a pot. Supposedly the sugar in the potato would help the rose to take root….well….at the end of the summer we had potato plants growing in the pots and the rose cuttings died. Our backyard would be almost entirely filled with cherry tomatoes if we didn’t pull up all the volunteer plants from the birds!

  5. Colleen says:

    I would like to know if you used buttons and thread loops and what type of buttons that would not distract in the beauty of the dress? There is not much fabric strength to hold the weight of the train especially if someone steps on the dress.

    I have had some huge prom trains to bustle this season and that can be quite a job! The most difficult one involved the 3 inch horsehair (plastic) braid at the hem or a mermaid style. I did a ballroom bustle or princess bustle sewing small loops inside at the braid and ribbons to the lining to not show on the outside. It took a number of ties. Whew! I find some of those exhausting trying different options until one works!

    My tomato seeds are started and the spring bulbs are beautiful in the mid-west! May your brides be appreciative and your seeds all sprout!

  6. Cactus says:

    I can’t help but giggle when I see one of these gowns – tight fitting with the long train trailing out of the butt, like a piece of toilet paper. If the gown were not so fitted to the lower body, it would not give that illusion. But, yes, I realize it’s the style now.

    • Kathryn says:

      I thought the same thing (which I blamed on having 9 and 8 year old boys)! I took one look at it and thought it looked like she was pooping lace.

  7. fabrickated says:

    A super job Mrs Mole. Unlike some other commentators I really like this dress and train. Of course the bride has a super figure so she can wear a fairly extreme look and carry it off. The way you swooped up all that lace and satin at the back is very clever – it looks elegant and balanced.

    I also enjoyed the “sewing-sowing” word play too. Both you and Mr Mole have such a way with words.

  8. Sheryll says:

    This looks lovely on the bride, and you’ve done a great job on the bustle. Now let’s hope the bridesmaids were paying attention and bustle it correctly on the day!

    • mrsmole says:

      I rarely get bridesmaids in the sewing room so it is up to the bride to study her loops and buttons and as I take photos with every fitting, she will have a record of what it is supposed to look like for her girls. Thanks for your nice comments, Sheryll.

  9. Bunny says:

    The bustled gown is truly exquisite. That gorgeous lace just speaks to me and I think it is the prettiest one I have seen you work with. Beautiful job bustling that train! After seeing such beauty I am not sure I even want to envision the Barbie bride gone wild on the beach.

    • mrsmole says:

      Beauty and the Barbie…quite the contrast. Barbie picked up her dress yesterday and said maybe she would have the dress cut off very short after the wedding…great…even more revealing!

  10. maryfunt says:

    Beautiful dress and the bride had the figure to wear it. Looks like you have a busy month ahead!

  11. Wow…looks like you have a full plate already! Beautiful train…it is too bad that it won’t be seen, but not sure what the alternative is. Brides used to ‘wear’ their trains on a loop on their arm, so there’s that option. Nice to see a bride who’s picked a dress that fits 😉

    Wonderful job, as always!

    • mrsmole says:

      Some brides want a loop to wear on their wrist but this 7 feet of fabric would be quite a load to carry around all day and to dance with. While lace can look airy and light, that stuff is heavy! Thank you, Cheryl for dropping by and leaving such a nice comment.

  12. sewruth says:

    You are so clever – with your green fingers which transform lace trains, all you have to do is to remember which sewing and sowing you’re doing at the right time.

    • mrsmole says:

      Oh Ruth…that is easy…one I wear a hat and gloves for, the other I am shoe-less and sweating like a pig pinning up hems for 90 minutes or more…both require a rum and diet Pepsi at the end of the day.

  13. Anne Frances says:

    That is such a clever bustle solution. Do enjoy the garden and the birds. You know it’s spring when at 5 in the morning grand daughter age 3 hears the dawn chorus “Mummy, what are the birds saying?” Daughter ” They aren’t talking to you. Go back to sleep” Grand daughter “But Mummy, the birds are awake!”. May all your vegetables flourish this year!

  14. Gorgeous train, and I agree with previous comments about how sad it is that it will be tucked away for much of the time she is wearing the dress – still, it prevents careless damage from guests treading on it.

  15. Tia Dia says:

    Gorgeous gorgeous dress with that amazing train!

  16. Michele says:

    Beautiful, beautiful dress! Many years ago I made a wedding dress for a family friend. When asked what she wanted in style, she said that she wanted a dramatic look to the back of the dress, since this is what everyone sees during the ceremony. Doesn’t this just fit the bill!

  17. Bernadette Pian Williams says:

    Dear Mrs. Mole- You just amaze me with your skill, wit and willingness to share your experiences in the mad world of bridal gown alterations and problem solving. Like you, I went to design school in my thirties, but could not justify putting my child in day care for what manufacturers were willing to pay for design talent. I have made evening gowns and wedding gowns for clients, but was shocked when it came time to settle-up and “friend/clients” would not pay what the work was worth- usually it was a bait and switch, eg., hubby handed me an envelope and that was it, when all dealings were done with bride. When my daughter entered kindergarten, I went back to work in my field, needless to say.

    But I do sew on occasion, and a friend is getting married who happens to want a lace trimmed veil. The veil in your post is stunning, and i wondered if you would share the source for the lace. It appears to be Alencon, which would match the bodice of my friend’s gown.

    I also have a question regarding stabilization of a knit gown, so the skirt will not pull everything down in a droopy fashion. It is actually for me- my husband popped a black tie event on me for THIS FRIDAY and told me to go buy a dress, which I did. At my age, this is difficult–everything is sadly constructed and either prom-y, mother of the bride-y or skanky. Obviously, I had no time to make my own gown, and I do not have a fit-buddy. I recognize that this would require your time, which I would repay by whatever means you prefer–a write-up and release for you to use my photos or monetary compensation.

    I realize that you may not read this post until after the fact, in which case I will just pick an approach–size down as I am a four and had to purchase the six or construct an underbodice to attach the skirt to or try stabilizing the waist with petersham — and then compare it to your best practices advice. I have not made a long knit gown–ever!!! So, thank you for all that you do for your clients–even the ones who don’t deserve you- and for your followers, who learn and laugh alongside you. Best Regards, Bernadette

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