Formals & More

Archive for February 2010

I can always tell how much fun I am having by how soon I start thinking about home and work. This time was no different, except for my question as to whether or not it would have happened at the same time if the weather hadn’t turned sour.

During the winter months, I typically start to feel a little cabin/spring fever by the end of January. By the end of February, it gets pretty intense. This year was worse, only because the weather here (as in the rest of our fine country) sucked. Just when you think it may warm up a degree or 2, it plummets back down 10 degrees, then has the gall to rain or snow more! So when I learned back in January that we would be going to Roatan, Honduras (WHERE?? –  you say?) the end of February, I couldn’t have been more ecstatic! Of course, I first had to look it up on a map. Honduras is a smallish country at the northern border of South America. Roatan, is an island of Honduras, just about 44 miles off it’s northern shoreline. Focusing on the warmth and sunshine I would soon be absorbing is what has kept me going these long days of winter. So, I finished as much work as I could, packed my bag with new bathing suits, 3 new dresses ( 2 of which I never even wore) a few other items, and I was off. Delta only has 2 flights there every week and they are both on Saturday. Oh, boo-hoo. My husband, who would be flying his Christen Red Eagle Bi-lane down, (the whole trip was for an airshow that he and his partner performed in down there) wouldn’t be leaving til Sunday, not get there till atleast Monday. Guess my friend Maria and I will have to spend a few days alone. Stepping off the airplane into that warm sunshine was like walking into heaven!!! I could feel the warmth seep down into my bones and completely and truelly warm me for the first time in months! We were greeted at this tiny primitve airport by 2 gentlemen who quickly let us know that they were to be our official escorts until our husbands made it down. They had promised our husbands that they would take excellent care of us in this strange country we had never been in before. These gentlemen were the ones in charge of producing the airshow, and seeing that everything went as planned. They were awesome! I now know how royalty feels. They brought us to the resort we would be staying at, telling us that whatever we want, we do not have to pay. It is all taken care of. They wined us, dined us, took us snorkeling, gave us a tour of the island, took us to a very ‘cultural’ shopping district, and wouldn’t allow us to be left there to shop on our own until they had deemed it ‘safe’ for us. They were perfect gentlemen. Easy to talk to, fun to be with, very informative, and just plain nice. By the time our husband finally got there late Tuesday afternoon (which is a story in itself), we were so relaxed and happy, we wouldn’t have cared if they made it or not! We lay on the beach all day for 2 days. Stayed mostly in the shade, so as not to  burn our fair winter skin – yet somehow still managed to come home with a perfect tan. The airshow was set for Friday, and while our husbands were at the airport on Wednesday, giving rides and preparing for the airshow, we continued to relax and soak in the rays. Thursday dawned with another story. Winds, the likes of which I haven’t experienced since hurricane Opal rushed through Georgia many years ago, bore down on us. Some rain, not much. Mostly strong winds. The palm trees were whipping around, the ocean water was churning up creating huge waves which splashed upon the rocks and the docks. The sky stayed quite dark all day. The wind never let up. Much too windy to go outside, let alone to the beach. It was really quite devastating; to have come so far for the sun and warmth, get a taste of it, and then be hurled back into a frozen state again. You see, I didn’t bring warm clothes. No sweaters, no jackets, no socks. I was frozen. I all but cried. Not only for myself ofcourse, but for the very real possibility that if it continued, there would be no airshow the following day. After all the miles over that great expanse of water called the Gulf of Mexico, which our husbands had flown their tiny little airplanes over, after all the prepartion and planning our gentlemen escorts had done – we couldn’t concieve of the airshow having to be cancelled because of something so uncontrollable as weather. So what do you do when the odds are stacked against you? You pray. I am here to tell you – God answers prayer! We woke on Friday to beautiful, calm sunny blue skies! Perfect airshow weather! It couldn’t have been a more perfect day for an airshow! And let me tell you – those red airplanes looked so damn good up there against that blue sky! I have always been very proud of my husband for the man he is, and what he does, but there was something special ‘in the air’ that day!  The crowds started to gather early, and as the Red Eagles came screaming down out of the sky, the crowd roared! Many of the viewers had never seen an airshow before, and were amazed, awed and even a little bit frightened!  Maria and I felt like celebreties, as everyone wanted to ask us about the planes and our lives as airshow pilots’ wives. It was a grand day, the culmination of months of hard work and planning on many peoples parts. A grand end to a grand stay. Saturday, our day to return home, brought another cold hard rain, which started to finally let up as we were boarding our airplane to return home. Our husbands were planning to leave today (Sunday), weather permitting. In those small airplanes, they are limited on conditions they can fly in, so if it’s too windy, or the clouds are too low, or if it’s raining very hard, or even if the temperature is too cold, they are grounded. What I am really not liking about it, though, is that our phones don’t work down there, and they didn’t have room in the airplanes to bring their laptops (yes – very small airplanes!) so, they can’t let us know when they are heading home! I put them in Gods gracious hands and just let it go . . .

All in all – the best vacation I think I’ve ever had.  Here are just a few pics . . .

The beach in front of our resort.

Heading out on the boat to snorkel, with my escort, Odirre

A perfect sunset after a perfect day

A view from our room

The guys finally arrive and relax

The weather turns nasty

Getting the beach ready for the airshow!

The Red Eagles soar!!

Our last day – heading home!


My sweetie and I!



I finished up all the alterations I had lined up to do before I leave this Saturday on my vacation. So, yesterday I headed up to Gail K Fabrics, in Atlanta ( the only decent fabric store in the state – which is a very sorry case – being that this is ATLANTA PEOPLE!!! you would think we would have more than one decent fabric store!) Anyway, now that I am done with my rant – I was looking for fabric for a dress I will be making for my BFF’s sister. She is a cancer survivor and is having a celebration party in March for which she needs a new dress . I have made  her several dresses in the past, so it should go well with no problems. However, I was beginning to wonder if I would ever find the ‘right ‘ fabric. She wanted to match the fabric to a set of emerald jewelry that had been her mothers, and had been passed down. Well, emerald jewelry is not the same color as what I always thought it was~! I brought a piece of the jewelry along to help match. Good thing I did. It ended up being much more blue than I expected. I was invisioning a deep green – really green! Not. Also, the fabric needed to have some stretch to it, although not too much, as it will also serve as a ballroom dance outfit. So, I get to Gails, and it is crowded to the gills with students from the Savannah School of Arts (Atlanta campus). Now, if you’ve ever been to Gails, you know that it is basically standing room only, anyway. Picture it with 20-25 students running around looking for and pulling bolts of fabric all over the place. Imagine Project Runway on steriods. What should have taken only 1/2 hour to maybe 1hour (remember – this is Gails – you don’t just walk in and out) took almost 2 1/2! Although , to be honest, after I found the emerald green stretch charmuese, I was drawn to the bolts piled high on tables in the middle of the room that held such gorgeous chiffons and georgettes! I had been playing around in my head about just one more dress to take on the trip (which I leave for in 2 days!!!). First I chose a lovely print of blues, lavendars and greens. But there wasn’t near enough. Back to the drawing board. You can’t leave Gails with just one piece of fabric, after all. I hhhmmmed and I hhhwwwed, and finally asked some one elses opinion. It was down to between another blue and purple print, or a bright yellow and white. Now, I was torn, because blues and purples are my favorites. I never, and I mean never! wear yellow. But it was calling my name. The 2 people I asked opinions of convinced me to get the yellow. So today I got it cut out and partailly sewn. It will have a rusched waistband with tiny beaded flowerettes on it, as well as on the straps. Tomorrow it will go together fast. Which is good, because I still have more laundry to do as well as clean the house, start packing, take in a black strapless sundress I fpound at Target for $6, run to Etaines for an appoinment, and still find time to sit and watch Greys Anatomy.

Here we go. I was hoping it would wait til I return from my (YEH!!! Can’t wait!!) trip!! which I leave for in (YEH!!!) 6 days!!! But alas . . .it has begun. My busy season. I have gone from  having 3-6 bridal or formal wear alterations in a whole month (yes, I was eating cat food for  a while there) to having a full rack of dresses with more on the way. I am trying to get them done as fast as I get them, because, as I know from past experience, they start to stack up very quickly. Last year I had (at my peak) 27 bridal gowns stacked on the double bed in our spare room, and another 12 hanging from the rack in my sewing studio. Currently I have 6 bridal gowns hanging on the rack, 2 bridesmaids, one prom, and 2 MOB’s. I am still hoping to have time to sew atleast one more item for myself before I leave on Saturday.

I’m intrigued with a new project – silk painting. I simply woke up in the middle of the night a couple nights ago, and there it was. I had a picture in my mind of exactly what I want. Its a white silk sundress, fitted bodice with a straight to a-line skirt (short) and it has several large brightly painted flowers onthe skirt, and some smaller painting on the bodice. Research was a bit frustrating. Are there no places to purchase the needed supplies locally? I don’t want to wait to get them in the mail! It’s a project I want to start on NOW! Ideally, on Tuesday – so I can have it to wear on my vaca(YEH!!!) to Roatan (Honduras) this Saturday (YEH!!!) Why do you think I am rushing these bridal gowns out of here? And it’s not like I have all day to look for supplies! Some people have to work for a living!

Let’s try this yet again. Yes – it’s my 6th try. I spent about 5 hours the other night trying to get my photos uploaded neatly on here. Had multiple problems. I don’t know if it’s me or the site. They just don’t want to load on here nicely. They end up all over the page in all different sizes.

Anyway- finally got the photos on Saturday. Not as happy with them as I had hoped to be. Can only use about half. The one dress I specifically asked multiple pictures of – I got one. From the back. They will have to do for now. Until I can afford to actaully pay someone to do it. I guess you get what you pay for, huh? Ok- so here goes (again!).

Jasmine Couture from Etaine Bridal


This is a Jasmine Couture Dress from Etaine Bridal in Tyrone, GA. It is an organza gown with pleating and beading at the bodice.

"Blossom" full length


This is one of my gowns;  I call it “Blossom” for the hand appliqued and beaded silk flower blossoms that circle the hemline, and gently frame the waistline and bodice.

My "Blossom" gown


Here is another, closer view of “Blossom”. You an see the detail a bit easier here.

My "White Tea Rose" dress


This is another of my dresses – “White Tea Rose”. It is a tea length chiffon dress with a lace inset waist, and finished with a black satin ribbon at thewaist. It has a full attached crinoline.

Matthew Christopher's "Lily"


Matthew Christopher is one of my favorite designers. His “Lily” has intricate lines to contour the curves a womans body. Just gorgeous! Available at Etaine Bridal.

Disney Princess gown from Etaines Bridal


A full ballgown – princess style! From Kirstie Kelly’s Disney Princess Line. Available at Etaine Bridal.

A lovely Justin Alexander tea length gown. Heavily beaded bodice, very full crinoline under an organza skirt. Very Audrey Hepburn style! From Etaine Bridal.

A lovely lace gown by Cymbeline, from Etaines Bridal


This beautiful gown from Cymbeline, is actually 2-pieces! It has a ‘slip’ under-dress, and the lace over-dress. Very feminine and delicate. From Etaine Bridal.

"Blush" a beaded lace and pink silk gown


I named this gown “Blush” for the unique color of teh silk and lace. Not quite pink, but definetely not ivory! The lace bodice is beaded with ivory pearling, and the left shoulder strap is an embroidered and beaded trim that seperates into 2 straps that divide across the back.

We called this the "Cupcake" dress; from Etaines Bridal


LOVE this fun dress! An alternative to the traditional wedding gown. A Justin Alexander from Etaine Bridal.

Classic Ivory Rose


In the forefront is my “Classic Ivory Rose”, shown here with a black sash. It also can be made with an ivory Organza sash, silk doupioni sash (color of choice) or an oversize silk tafetta sash.

In the background, is a lovely Renella gown of silk charmuese; from Etaine Bridal.

My beautiful flowergirls!


 These are our two lovely and sweet flower girls! Aren’t they adorable!

Feather Fantasy


And Finally!! Here is my “Feather Fantasy”. Just the back, so I will also post some of the photos of it I took in my sewing studio. I love this dress!!!

Here is a full front view. Sorry it’s a bit blurry. The other photos are better!

Anotherview of the back. Again – sorry for the blur!

This is a pretty good view of the front bodice. Don’t you love the line details!!

The back again – a little less blurry!

So – that’s my show! There were lots more dresses (32 in all), but, as I said earlier, these were the only ones worth using.  Hope you enjoyed the show!

OK – I just ‘previwed’ this post. The wording  and photos have become un-aligned (again), but it’s better than it was and I truelly dont know how to fix it. It looks fine when I type and insert on the edit page. When it goes to publish everything goes all caddywampus. I give up! Hopefully you can make distinctions between the photos with the descriptions I wrote. Good luck!

I keep hearing that song in my head,  ” I got my toes in the water, a** in the sand, not a worry in the world, a cold drink in my hand . . .”  Sewing my new clothes has got me thinking of my upcoming trip to Roatan – can’t wait!! We leave in about 17 days!

Spent most of the day working on pictures to download to the computer. Had them all done and finished and then pushed the wrong button and deleted everything!!! Had to start all over. Most of the pictures were of my new wedding gowns. My photogragher was supposed to have photos to me last week of the fashion show. Still don’t have them. Why am I not surprised? I need something to use for a new ad for one of the local magazines I advertise in.  ‘Fayette Woman’ always does a huge bridal issue in march, and they need my submissions this week. So I took things into my own hands and took my own pics. May not be as good as the professionals, but it’s better than nothing!

On the far left is my “Blossom” gown. It is an ivory satin, a-line strapless, with about 27 silk flowers hand appliqued and beaded in sporadic patterns around the hem, the waist, and across the bodice. I don’t know if the photo here will do it justice. In the middle is a tea length chiffon with a lace waist insert. Lots of tulle under this skirt. A simple black ribbon sash adds pizazze to the dress. And on the far right is my favorite!! It’s the Feather Fantasy dress! The feathers say it all! Crazy fun dress, with fanciful feathers done very tastefully.

The other pictures I did today were of my new clothes!

The silky print chiffon with a draped neckline- and a very sexy back!

          The silky beach sarong/dress –

The convertible dress that can be worn many different ways –

And my linen beach pants and lace blouse ( which must be worn with a cami or swim suit underneath!                                     

Tomorrow it’s back to the real work – 7 wedding dresses to fix before next Wednesday!! Mostly hems, and a couple take ins, some bustles, and a couple strap adjustments. nothing major, but I need to get busy!!

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SO, I started going through all my stash and made myself little piles. Sew now, sew later, keep? get rid of? Who knew I had so much in such a tiny closet space! I admit it – I have an addiction. The only real cure is to stay out of fabric stores. And off the internet. Even walmart. And now Hobby Lobby. So there really is no cure. I should just be thankful that Gail K Fabrics is an hour away. It’s sweet torture to go in there. The first time I ventured into that hallowed place, I spent several hours and didn’t buy a thing! It was just too overwhelming. Ofcourse,I did go back with in a few days and purchased much much more than I should have.

Tomorrow I will post pictures of the items I have sewn in the last few days from my stash. I am quite happy with everything. I have one (maybe 2) more item(s) tomorrow – then I really need to get back to my wedding altertions. Have 6-7 due by the end of next week!

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