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Thursday, July 11, 2013

Wedding Gown Sketches

I have been sketching some wedding gown designs for a client who wants a unique wedding gown. She loves ethnic prints, bright color combinations, mosaics, nature, and textural embellishments. Here are my first 5 sketches for her...

I will show you each sketch first in black and white, and then my water-colored version of each (which is merely a palette suggestion). Also noteworthy- I drew them all as full-length gowns but any of these would also work as a hi-lo hem or knee length skirt.

1. Sunset Gown.
Dress is hand dyed silk, with a sheer silk overlay on the skirt, and continuing over the bodice to go over one shoulder. Tie belt cinches in waist. Dyeing both layers of silk in sunset colors would give the dress a gorgeous, shimmery depth of color. Bodice has a sweetheart neckline, skirt is full and gathered at waist. This design is elegant and timeless and looks good on everyone.

 2. Mosaic Garden Dress.
This dress would be primarily a white fabric- many options possible such as raw silk, heavy white satin, cotton lawn, or even cotton jersey which would give a great fit. Simple strapless top and long skirt with a slight train at the back. Back of the skirt is appliqued with tiny "mosaic tiles" of silk to make a pattern of butterflies and flowers. Design would continue around the bottom of the skirt in the front, but wouldn't go up so high on the dress. I didn't include this in the drawing but it would be pretty to do lots of tiny white buttons going down the back. This dress is chic, eye catching, and also could be made eco-friendly by using upcycled silks for the applique.

 3. Melting Pot Gown
This gown combines many ethnic influences. I think raw silk would be a great choice for the main body of the dress. Bodice is one-shouldered and has colorful silk appliqued trim along top that simulates jewels. Waist cinches in with a silk obi belt in a contrasting color. Skirt features an array of fabrics and textures, including fabric flowers, ruffles, applique, and patterned fabrics, perhaps sari fabric! A bold and festive gown.
4. Rose Trellis Gown.
This dress features a ruched silk bodice and a long skirt with a slit to one side on the front that opens to reveal pleated silk in a contrasting color. Fabric roses surround the slit and travel all the way up the dress, over the contrasting waistband and the bodice and traveling over one shoulder to form a strap. I am envisioning the dress in rich purples, indigo, and berry pinks, with a brighter teal or blue in the pleated slit so the color really pops. This dress is feminine, romantic, and fit for a queen.

5. Modern Grecian Gown
This gown combines Grecian and Indian influences. The main part of the dress would be composed of pieced silks, shown here in a warm palette of reds, oranges, and pinks, to form a simple sleeveless sheath bodice and a long a-line skirt. A sheer silk in a complimentary color would wrap around the bodice and hips, and over one shoulder. I added a thin silk belt to define the waistline. This dress is bold and modern with couture details, yet has roots in ancient culture which give it a timeless quality.

6. Rose Garden Felted Dress.
This is a dress I made two years ago, which was purchased as a wedding gown. I am including it because I think it could be done in many color combinations and also as a full length gown. I think it would be stunning in fuchsia, orange, and purple. The bodice of the dress is silk embellished with upcycled lace taken from a vintage slip. The skirt is solid silk with a sheer silk overlay that has nuno-felted roses scattered over it. (Photo credit, Amber Herrera 2011, model Heaven Townsend)