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Elizabeth's Story

Elizabeth came to see me in 2020, with her beautiful fabric, which she sourced during one of her cruise holidays whilst ashore in Muscat. She asked me to make her a special dress for a cruise that she and her husband were planning to take to celebrate their Silver Wedding Anniversary. After showing me a few styles of dresses that she owned, as well as online ideas, we came up with few design suggestions.

As the 4 metres of fabric provided were narrow width, the size of the pattern made it challenging to cut out – like solving a puzzle. The fabric also determined the fullness of the skirt. I wanted to match embroidered embellishments in seams, making sure that the placement would be flattering and compliment the figure. Because we went for an off-the-shoulder neckline with a tightly fitting bodice, we opted for a corset style structure to eliminate the need to wear a bra.

With a corseted, tightly fitted dresses I am always cautious about the zip holding all the pressure during movement, as it is not as strong as the seams themselves, so I suggested a wide elastic band with a hook-and-eye fastening inside the dress to give extra support

and security, as well as flexibility for comfort. To give the skirt fullness without the petticoat, I added a horsehair braid to the hem. The applique in the neckline is handstitched to give the cleavage extra detail and depth. The dress is lined with antistatic lining from The Lining Company, which I use for most of my linings.

Of course, plans were delayed by the pandemic, so eventually, a year later in 2021, Elizabeth & her husband managed to go on a cruise round the UK to celebrate not only their 25th Wedding Anniversary but also their 26th Wedding Anniversary and one formal evening during this cruise Elizabeth wore the dress I had made for her along with a matching mask to comply with the restrictions.

As it turned out this was their very last holiday together as Elizabeth lost her husband in late October 2021. But at least he got to see her in this dress and thought it was beautiful & stunning. So it is doubly special to her and she tells me that it brings back wonderful memories, rather than sadness. She plans to wear it again in the fullness of time as her late husband told her to be brave and be strong.

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