The Dress

We’re going to be parents! And we got married! And we moved into a new home!

My apologies for the four month hiatus, but I return to you all with nothing but great stories and happy news. Etienne and I are going to be parents come the end of January 2016! Our summer began with the news that we will be parents and the season ended with a beautiful wedding. We marked the arrival of fall, our favourite season, with a big move into our new home!

Baby boy Sniatowsky-Pelletier
Baby boy Sniatowsky-Pelletier

As wonderful and thrilling as this whole journey has been so far, the first trimester of my pregnancy was a little uncomfortable. I took comfort in knowing that the discomfort of nausea and fatigue, as my friend Andrea had pointed out, was a sign that everything was working as it probably should be. Sadly, it all left such little energy and time for sewing. Aside from my nursing work, June and July were pretty low key, mainly consisting of lots of naps, carb heavy snacks and a generous amount of a new TV guilty pleasure: Nashville! This saw me through until the very end of July, when Etienne and I entered full time wedding prep mode. Etienne pretty much single handedly organized our entire wedding reception. I am incredibly grateful to my husband for his excellent attention to detail and organizational skills. I honestly couldn’t have asked for a more diligent partner. He stepped up to the plate and took on more than his fair share. I already knew he was going to make an amazing husband and soon an extraordinary father but he certainly earned some extra stripes here. Thank you, Etienne, je t’aime très fort!

For the wedding, I was put in charge of decorations and table arrangement/seating. The flowers were simple, one large white hydrangea was placed in a vase in the centre of each of the ten tables. With the help of my dear friend Nathalie, we cut and sewed 200 white lace triangles and created some beautiful pennant strings which were strung across the ceiling of our reception hall. The lace was upcycled from old white lace curtains I had purchased at Village des Valeurs for 3$ each. I sewed them individually on 1/4″ gift wrapping string from the dollar store. It worked out perfectly, providing that festive wedding feel without that enormous wedding price tag.

Now on to the dress. Since our engagement, I had been dreaming of making my own wedding dress. I had purchased beautiful off white lace from FabricDotCom at the very beginning of the summer yet only started working on the dress the first week of August. I was having difficulty deciding on a pattern yet found myself favouring plunging lace neckline and midi length skirts. I began piecing it together on my dress-form. I created a beautiful plunging neckline with a deep V-back, both meeting at an elastic waistband attached to a gathered double lace layer skirt hitting me mid-calf. It was exactly what I thought I wanted. On the dress-form, it was my perfect wedding dress, however on my 18 week pregnant frame it was not a flattering design nor a comfortable dress. With only two weeks to the big day, I began to panic.

My lovely friend & fellow sewist Andrée-Anne met me on St. Hubert that Sunday to go fabric hunting for dress #2. Armed with a few ideas I pulled from Google Images, Andrée-Anne’s know-how, and my unshakeable determination for creating my own dress, we succeeded in our mission. We found some beautiful stretch fabric at Regent Tissu. I chose a dusty pink lycra stretch blend  for the bust portion and an off-white stretch satin for the skirt. I also picked up some white slinky stretch lining and some dusty rose lace to create a belt.

I still couldn’t decide on a full dress pattern so I chose to build it in pieces, selecting styles that I liked and believed would fit my growing & changing body. I opted for the Burda Bodice Top (04/2013, #115) which I altered by removing the pattern straps and opting out of the front opening.  I chose simple 4mm wide elastic straps from Ultratext. The design shape of the bodice constructed with the strong and tight stretch of the fabric I chose, lent it self perfectly to my growing bust. I had grown from a 34B to a 34D in what felt like just a few weeks!

The bottom portion of the dress was self-drafted following Elena’s maxi skirt instructions off her site Randomly Happy. I attached the bodice to the bottom lined portion and the results wielded were fantastic! It fit my waist, hips and baby bump beautifully. The only hiccup was the bodice which I didn’t adjust correctly. Andrée-Anne has become a true and treasured friend who saved the day- and my dress! As I stood in front of the mirror wearing my unfinished wedding dress 10 days before the big day, she patiently stitch ripped sections of the facing of the bodice open and pinned the bust and back darting adjustments. She taught me how to pin, mark and sew the darts properly while keeping her hands off my sewing machine. “I can’t do it for you, you’ll want to claim full credit for this dress later”, she kept repeating as she encouraged me to dive in and fix my dress myself. And I did. And it turned out to exceed all of my expectations. Merci, Andrée-Anne!! Je te dois bien ça, tu m’as sauvé la vie.

I attached the elastic straps and made a simple lace belt using two button closures in the back and voilà, dress number two became the dress I loved the most and the one I wore to marry my love.

Our talented photographer, and I’m proud to call our new friend, Matthew Perrin took some incredible shots of not only our special weekend but he also documented an afternoon as I worked on my wedding dress. He photographed our unconventional rehearsal dinner, a Baseball game BBQ at Parc Vinet, and our wedding ceremony & reception on the following day. We can’t say enough wonderful things about Matt’s work and I feel like the photographs speak for themselves. Here are a couple dozen to share!

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Before I sign off, some special fashion nods must be given to the lovely Andrée-Anne and actress & model Nastassia Markiewicz. These two beauties made their own dresses for our wedding as well. Andrée-Anne’s two-piece dress details can be found on her blog post. Nastassia’s dress was also a sexy two-piece number which can you believe she self-drafted and created from some remnant that she had in her fabric stash. I’m honestly blown away by these two!

And the food was delicious!

Oyster & Scallop bar courtesy of Choice Harbour

BBQ Ribs, chicken, grilled salads, fries and deep-fried macaroni balls by Blackstrap BBQ

Dessert pies by Rustique

For more details on the day, please visit my mother-in-law Kathleen’s blog post.

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One thought on “The Dress

  1. Belle de belle Natasha.

    Tu as travaillé hyper fort et tu as raison d’être fière de toi. Tu as fait un super boulot avec tout!
    Je suis contente d’avoir pu t’aider dans le processus de LA robe. Mais je suis surtout contente d’avoir été une élue de la A-list et d’avoir pu fêter avec vous 😉

    P.S. Merci de m’avoir mis côte à côte avec la belle Nastassia. I feel like shit.

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