1980s Fergie Wedding Gown
This dress was a special order from one of my clients. She wanted a gown similar to that worn by Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York in the 1980s, with a few minor changes. I took a vintage pattern (Butterick 4743) and re-drafted it to fit (since it's out of print it was no longer available in her size).
I kept a dress diary for this gown while I was making it.
Photos by Time Travel Costumes.
This dress was a special order from one of my previous customers. She wanted a wedding gown similar to that worn by Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York, in the 1980s. This gown took 16 yards of satin and 3 yards of organza.
Since I used a vintage pattern, it was not the correct size, and I had to resize it using the instructions from Sensibility.com. This turned out to be fairly straightforward.
There was a flaw in the pattern that I had to fix (unrelated to the resizing). The princess seams of the bodice did not lie flat. One side was puckered no matter how carefully I sewed it together:
In order to get the princess seams to lie flat, I had to redraw this portion of the pattern. Basically, the two sides of the curve should be closer to being a mirror image. Here's a photo of the original pattern curves:
Here's the redrawn pattern piece on top of the old one:
And here's the new princess seam:
As you can see, the bodice looks nice and simple with smooth princess seams:
I modified the sleeves (per the client's request) so that they closed with elastic at the elbows rather than having the pointy cuffs of the pattern. The interior of the sleeves are suppored by a massive stiff piece of fabric to hold the shape of the puff. Here's a photo of one sleeve with the support, and one without, so you can see the difference:
She wanted a train that was six feet long, so I added a couple of feet to the train pattern (which was easy since it was already a two part pattern piece). The train itself took three yards of satin and three yards of organza. It was pretty awkward to work with all that fabric when I was topstitching, but it turned out very pretty.