Mother of the Bride Dress

No, not for me. That honor better be at least twenty years away.

My niece is getting married this summer and I agreed to make my sister’s dress.

It’s been at least ten years since I attempted to sew any type of formal gown, but I was up for the challenge. I figured if I worked slowly and thought about everything carefully, it wouldn’t be too bad.

My sister designed the ensemble–a top, skirt, and jacket–but I had to develop the pattern, which I’m not sure how to do. I traced and measured and erased a couple times. IMG_0940 Finally I was brave enough to cut the fabric. No, not the actual fabric. I made a practice top to see how it looked.



The skirt was too full and had a train, so that had to be adjusted. My sister is also about 5 inches shorter than my mannequin so the skirt was a bit long as well.


After my sister tried it on and we did more measuring and adjusting, I cut the actual fabric.

The top is an ice blue with a raised flower pattern. A blue chiffon goes over this. The skirt is a narrow A-line in light blue satin. The jacket is made out of the ice blue with flowers.


Getting there. It’s hard to tell how everything will fit. I didn’t adjust the mannequin to the right size, but it is about 900 years old and most of the nuts are rusted.

It’s been a lot of fun to try something new. And I’ve learned a lot of sewing tricks. I’ve also learned:

  • I hate chiffon. It’s stiff. It frays. It wiggles. It doesn’t fold the way I want it to. (See item about Heat Bond.)
  • Kick pleats aren’t so bad. Just don’t try to figure them out with a four-year-old jabbering in your ear.
  • Heat bond and Stitch Witchery are not the same.
  • I could say be careful what you volunteer for, but I am so honored to help my sister out.

My sister added some rhinestones to the chiffon to give it some sparkle. And she did look lovely at the wedding.

So proud of my sister and her family! Congratulations!

So proud of my sister and her family! Congratulations!



  1. Beautiful! Great job. 🙂


  2. Very nice! The last fancy dresses I sewed were for my daughters to wear at their half-sister’s wedding. Thank goodness the wedding was at the end of the summer so I didn’t have school to deal with! Your sister’s dress is lovely – great job! And I hate sewing on chiffon, too.


  3. Kathy Heare Watts · ·

    Congratulations on making a beautiful gown for your sister to wear. It sure is nice to look at something you made after it being nothing more than a piece of fabric and now it was a unique piece of art, stitched with love.

    My last project was my youngest daughter’s wedding gown and that was in August 2001. I sewed it on the machine that my parents gave me for my high school graduation in 1976. The same machine I made my wedding gown and two bridesmaid dresses on that same year.


    1. Hopefully, she will be able to teach more tricks. I’d agonize over something, wondering how it was going to work and she’d show me how it do it in five minutes. > Use Stitch Witchery (not Heatbond) to make the chiffon fold nicely instead to just trying to press and sew it.


    2. My first sewing machine was a wedding gift from my parents. I was heartbroken when it gave up the ghost (somewhat literally, there was question that it may be haunted.) I still haven’t been able to part with it.


  4. Dress is dreamy. You did a great job. So impressed! And I know your sister is super grateful for you making such a memory.


    1. Thanks! She was and she looked fabulous. She deserved the treat.


  5. Looks great!!


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