Well, here they are! This is the first set of 4 dresses that we made for the Pence women. These are the dresses that they wore to the Indiana Inaugural Ball on Thursday evening. There are a lot of detail photos so you can really see up close the gorgeous fabrics that were used.
First, I wanted to say that I did not design any of the these dresses. I was called in after contact was made with the Pences and after the designs had been decided on. Joyce Hittesdorf (my mentor and original owner of Something Wonderful) and Sarah Knochel (my good friend, colleague and current owner of Something Wonderful) were the primary contacts and did all the design work. Myself and 3 other local dressmakers (all members of ASDP) were called in to assist with cutting, hand beading, hand sewing, construction, and all the other work associated with creating 8 ball gowns in 6 weeks. Here are the results!
First up is Charlotte's dress:
Thiswas a black satin mermaid style gown with a lace overlay that created the halter neck effect. Here is a look at the back!
As you can see, it was very figure hugging and cupped the derriere beautifully. The lace overlay was stunning. It was black with silver running through. Here are some close up shots:
Also, due to the nature of the lace, each square had to be attached by hand in order for it to lay correctly on the bodice. Unfortunately, I didn't get any close up pictures of the back of the dress, but because of the large expanse of lace that went from the bodice up onto the neck, a ton of little hook and eyes were hidden among the squares of lace so the dress could be put on. It's that kind of delicate work that really sets custom apart from it's ready-to-wear counterpart.
Next, is Audrey's dress:
Audrey is the youngest Pence and at 21 has a style that highlights her youth. That being said, I was IN LOVE with this burnout velvet. It was so unexpected and I love that she picked it. The color was also amazing in person. Here are some close ups of this amazing fabric:
The gathered panels at the sides and around the back are in a lighter-than-air netting that matched the velvet perfectly. I just loved the rock and roll vibe of this one!
Next is the newly titled Sarah Pence (she and Michael were just married on December 28th!). This gown was deigned around one she loved in a magazine. We altered the style slightly to make it the most flattering for her and it was a show stopper.
The fabric on the bodice of this gown was one of my favorites. It was almost a menswear style, pin striped seersucker, with a gold brocade over the top. It was like no fabric I had come across before. The skirt was in a black silk shantung and held the shape of the skirt wonderfully.
Sarah has beautiful shoulders and the halter style showcased them to perfection. Her back look pretty amazing as well!
Finally, we have Karen's lovely gown. Again, these dresses were all made to fit each of the ladies to perfection and to highlight all their assets. This first dress of Karen's fit like a dream and she wore it beautifully (I just watched her onstage with Mike during his speech):
The top was a silk strapless bodice (in kind of a blush color) with an ivory lace overlay. It had just the right amount of class and modesty that the 2nd lady was looking for. The skirt was a stunning embroidered silk that held the shape of the ball gown perfectly. Four inch wide horsehair was put into the hem to help it stand out and away from the body. It gave the skirt the perfect amount of structure.
The waist was defined with a very simple taupe silk belt that really finished off the dress with a small pop of color. Here are a few more pictures:
So there you have it! The first 4 of the 8. The ladies were all so pleased with their finished dresses and I am sure all four of them looked radiant. However, I must confess that my favorite ones are being worn tomorrow night, so check back for the last 4 tomorrow!
Also, if you're interested in seeing one of the news stories that aired this week I'm leaving this link, because LOOK MOM, I'M ON TV!