Monday, June 13, 2016

Super Model Mantilla Modelling!

I made a lovely mantilla for a super young woman who does a wonderful job for the pro-life cause.  She had expressed a desire for one that had scallops all round the edge, so with my trusty embroidery machine I managed to find a way to copy the shape of the scallops that were already along one edge of the fabric, and came up with this,

I just hope the modelling agencies don't come after her,
we wouldn't want her to stop her good work!

It's a lovely soft cotton-embroidered lace, (so hard to find decent laces of that sort at a reasonable price!) It did take a long time to make, so doesn't come cheap, but it's well worth it if you want something spectacular.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Last First Holy Communion Dress of the Season!

Today I managed to deliver the last dress I will have to make for First Communions this Spring/Summer - whew, a weight off my mind! It was quite exciting when the first few commissions came in, then it became rather daunting as I had more orders than ever before this year. But, thanks be to God, everyone got what they wanted, and in time for their special day.  I also have to thank  my trusty courier, (you know who you are, Mrs P!) a lovely American lady married to a chap from my parish, who very helpfully took dresses over to the States when she was visiting family, and posted them over there, thus avoiding the worry of them being held up in customs. She also brought back the pretty fabric that I used in this last dress. 

Isobel's dress is made of embroidered polyester chiffon fabric,
lined with cotton lawn, and trimmed with bands of cotton broderie anglaise..

With wide satin ribbon ties.

Now I can put the white threads away, and move on to another project at the other end of the spectrum, a cassock for a lad who enjoys serving at the altar.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Baptismal Gown for a Summer Baby

I made a First Communion dress for a little girl last year, and her mother is now expecting a new little one, so she came back to me for a Baptismal gown.

This is the first one I've made since I desperately tried to finish my son's before his Baptism - nearly 19 years ago now! (Which you can see in the Header photo of the blog, next to St Zelie!)

The mum had several ideas of what she wanted, so using those, and my own finds - a fantastic lightweight cotton lawn with woven satin stripes and tiny lozenge-embroidered stripes - some lovely soft cotton Nottingham lace, and several specially digitized embroidery designs, it came out beautifully. 

The only problem with sending it to the USA was that the tracking number went dead after it was logged as having got on a plane at Heathrow, so there was a rather nail biting week or two where I hoped and prayed that it was still in transit - and eventually it did turn up - in plenty of time, since baby is due in June!

I was very pleased with the way it turned out but it was time-consuming to make, it took just as long as a first Communion dress!

Detail of the baptismal shells

an IHS cross

and some wheat and grape vines

The fabric is light as gossamer,
and has a cotton lawn lining

Had to wait for an obliging gust of wind to show it off!

A simple button fastening at the back

And of course, there has to be a matching bonnet with embroideries

And the expectant mum is very happy with it too, DG!

Monday, May 2, 2016

Traditional First Holy Communion Dresses 2016

Here are a few examples of what has been keeping me busy the last couple of months!

Leena's embroidered cotton voile

It has a huge duchesse satin bow, by request.

Mary Genevieve's embroidered cotton dress
and mantilla veil.

The dress has been made to be passed down
to Mary's younger sister, Margaret, hence
two matching bags have bee personalised.

This lovely embroidered cotton voile
catches the light beautifully.
Made for Heidi Elizabeth.

For sisters, Helena and Liliana who will be
making their First Communion at the same time.

A beautiful cotton broderie anglaise fabric was
used in Shianne's dress.

Nina's dress is also a lovely light-weight
cotton broderie anglaise.

With a satin ribbon tie.

Friday, March 11, 2016

Chasing away the Chilly Winter blues

 I'm a bit of a sucker for old fashioned sewing patterns, so when I saw a 1950s one for a baby's "papoose" type sleeping bag I snapped it up. Last Summer, I had bought some lovely quilted fabric from one of my favourite places in France - Alencon (couldn't get any lace, but there was a new fabric shop on the outskirts of town which sold stuff, the likes of which I've never seen in the UK) - and I had been wondering what to do with it.

I love the donkeys, and the Sunbursts.

Bright and cheerful for this grey time of year.

It seemed ideal fabric for the papoose, and I had a little lady (and her Mum) in mind to try it out on - one wonders whether things from yesteryear are still likely to be appealing to the Mothers of today!

And the lovely cotton pique lining fabric was from the same shop too,
I think St. Zelie may have liked this if she were sewing today!

The mother was delighted with it, as the baby had been cold in her Moses basket at night, since she always seemed to throw her covers off.  Mum has just managed to send me some lovely pictures of her sweet little one (less than a month old!) fast asleep, and looking very cosy, I must admit!

God Bless, and
Sleep tight Philomena. X


Saturday, January 9, 2016

A note to Those interested in ordering a Traditional Modest First Holy Communion Dress

 Happy Epiphany-tide to one and all!

I had a few enquiries last year from folks interested in ordering First Holy Communion dresses for their daughters.  Unfortunately, our computer self-destructed at the end of the year, and I lost a lot of my old emails, and addresses.  So please, if you are still considering ordering one, do get in touch again so that we can discuss your requirements, and I can start sending out sizing charts, and sorting out fabric quantities, etc.

Also, anyone else interested in ordering, the sooner you place your order the better it is for me, as I will have a rush of work once February comes, and I wouldn't want to disappoint.

20 + C + M + B + 16
Adoration of the Magi by John Flaxman (source)
John Flaxman, Adoration of the Magi

Thursday, November 19, 2015

The Lads get a Look-in!

It's not all bonnets and frocks at Zelie's Roses!

Thought I'd post a few photos of something different.

Made for a certain 18 year old's birthday, I was informed, after he'd worn it out to a club one evening that several people had asked whether it was a Versace!! I am not a follower of fashion (can't you tell? I tend to hark back to earlier, more modest styles) so I wasn't sure what a "Versace" would look like...until I 'googled' it, and came up with these -

A mere snip at £490

A wee bit more expensive £550

The piece de resistance, £1,175 - but it is silk,
not wonderful cheap Fabricland cotton!

I asked whether he'd got me a few commissions from them, but alas, no... I wouldn't have sniffed at making them for a fraction of the price!...sigh... I must admit, I think my pattern matching is every bit as good as that of the workers Versace gets to make his shirts! I hope they are well-paid for it, considering the final prices of the shirts - it's no mean feat to get all those patterns to match, I can assure you...

Ah well, better to work for love rather than money, eh?