What can I make from the fabric from my wedding dress's train?
July 5, 2012 10:50 AM   Subscribe

I'm having the train removed from my wedding dress-- what can I do with the leftover material as a keepsake?

I got my wedding dress from Brides Against Breast Cancer and plan to donate it back there after the wedding. I love the dress but it has a long train and I really want something that looks and feels simpler and less cumbersome, so I'm going to have the train taken off when I go for alterations. Since I won't be keeping the dress, I like the idea of doing something with the material I'll have leftover from the train as a keepsake. It will probably be roughly 2' x 3' or so. It's chiffon with a layer of lace on top that has embroidered, beaded flowers along the hem and scattered throughout the fabric-- pictures: http://tinypic.com/r/es2h5z/6 and http://tinypic.com/r/v8iow8/6

What are some ideas of what to do with this material? Ideas/suggestions so far: a pillow, a purse/bag, a little cape/shawl. I'm not terribly excited by any of these, so I turn to the brilliant and creative minds of AskMe for inspiration!
posted by EmilyClimbs to Media & Arts (17 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
maybe you could use the fabric as a matting in a little photo collage of your fav pics from the wedding...like you with your partner, parents, maid of honor, silly aunt linda ... whoever.

then it would be under glass and last a really long time.
posted by sio42 at 10:57 AM on July 5, 2012 [2 favorites]

Do you have a small window that needs a cutrain?
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 10:57 AM on July 5, 2012

It could become a fabric cover for a photo album or for your guest book. It might ultimately need to be kept in a cardboard box to keep the fabric clean.
posted by gladly at 10:59 AM on July 5, 2012 [3 favorites]

If you're planning on having children, the classic answer is to incorporate it into a fancy baby dress for a christening or other formal/ceremonial occasion.
posted by lalex at 10:59 AM on July 5, 2012 [10 favorites]

If you're saying no to using it as a purse/bag, I'm not sure how you'll feel about this, but what about a keepsake bag, something with a drawstring, to keep small mementos from the wedding and as your family grows. As a professional organizer, I try to encourage people to keep their memorabilia and mementos limited to things that really have profound meaning to them, and one of the strategies for doing that is to create a self-limiting space (i.e., one box, one drawer, one whatever).

What about having it made into a cover for your wedding album, or maybe even a series of covers if you're the scrapbook-y type. (I don't sew or craft, so I haven't a clue how much material you'll actually have.)

A doll/teddy-bear sized dress for your first child (if you're inclined that way)? A child's dress for something ceremonial? Be sure to let us know what you end up doing! ;-)
posted by The Wrong Kind of Cheese at 11:00 AM on July 5, 2012 [1 favorite]

My Mom had a simple wedding and one thing she carried down the aisle is a little prayer-book covered in white lace, with one orchid. Elegant and simple.

When I got married, I too carred the little lace-covered prayer book with an orchid.

So I'd get a little prayer-book (or other book that has meaning for you) cover it in the cloth from the dress and then carry it down the aisle with you. You can share with your children, other family memebers, or friends.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 11:02 AM on July 5, 2012 [3 favorites]

Is it sufficient material for a skirt? Or a bodice? Have it fashioned into a dress for your first anniversary dinner.
posted by crush-onastick at 11:55 AM on July 5, 2012

Have you bought a garter and/or ring pillow yet? My mother recently turned pieces of a wedding dress into pillows and garters for the owner's daughters, and they looked really great.
posted by specialagentwebb at 12:09 PM on July 5, 2012

Keeping in mind that you're donating the dress back to the charity (and assuming that the fabric of the train is the same as that of the bodice), how about snipping off a swatch to put in a scrapbook, then including the train fabric with the dress when you donate it? That way another bride can use the extra fabric to add panels to the bodice to size up the dress, create a ruffle to make the neckline more modest, even add small cap sleeves. That way you get your keepsake and the next bride (or the next after that) will get the luxury of a broader range of available alterations.
posted by La Cieca at 12:22 PM on July 5, 2012 [3 favorites]

A baby bonnet and a handkerchief. That way more than one child could wear it, and more than one person could carry the handkerchief as a memento on special occasions.
posted by lemniskate at 12:36 PM on July 5, 2012

Is there enough for a flowy sleeveless top? You could wear it for special occasions with hubby.

Small stuffed animal, pincushion, nightgown, underthings, a christmas ornament, hair ornaments.
posted by bunderful at 12:55 PM on July 5, 2012

Depending on how fancy your wedding is you could make a ring pillow out of it. Then you can keep the pillow. Or just go all out and make a nice pillow/cushion for your bed. Edge a square in lace to make a hanky, use it to wrap around your bouquet, make a sash from it for bridesmaids or even a hair ribbons/bands. Have a mini of the dress made to put on a teddy bear/doll. Make a cloth to stand the wedding cake on.

Save the material to make a christening gown if that's something you think you'll need at some point.
posted by wwax at 1:58 PM on July 5, 2012

What about making a teddy bear? When I get around to it someday I'm going to use http://www.tammybears.com/weddingdresses.html
posted by tealcake at 2:48 PM on July 5, 2012

I had custom purses made for myself and my bridesmaids (pictures here). My purse was the same design as the one in the pictures but in a gold-and-white antique fabric, and the pleat was made from fabric from the train that was removed from my dress. (See picture on the left here.)
posted by matildaben at 4:05 PM on July 5, 2012

i don't have a specific recommendation, but even if you don't end up doing anything with it now, I would recommend keeping the bits if they are sentimental to you. my grandma had saved a yard or so of the fabric from which she made her dress 60 yrs ago. The dress is long gone and I wouldn't have wanted to wear or alter it, but I used strips of that leftover yard to wrap my bouquet; it was one of my favorite things :)
posted by Tandem Affinity at 6:11 PM on July 5, 2012

My baptismal gown was made from the train of my mother's wedding gown. If you're planning on kids, and could use such a thing, you might consider saving the fabric for that.
posted by Lulu's Pink Converse at 8:28 PM on July 5, 2012

The pervert suggestion: blindfold, trim for cuffs, use chunks of the material as you might use scarves for tying up, etc.

Assuming you like that sort of bedroom shenanigans, of course. I do and I think that'd be pretty cool.
posted by egypturnash at 9:29 PM on July 5, 2012

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