Something Old, Something New [Part 2]

1 Apr

Cocktail wear? JK

The idea to rip apart my wedding dress came to me while I was completing one of my tasks for Chapter 1 of Walking in this World.  Julia Cameron calls it What the Hell, You Might As Well. Not unlike Chick Peggy, my list of “20 small, creative actions you could take” started out looking a lot like my to-do list:  1.  Repaint the baseboards and doorframes.  2. Wash the cat.  6.  Upload/order new pics.

I progressed to the more titillating:  8. Ask friends for favorite easy recipes and make one a week.  11. Learn all the verses to the Pirates of the Caribbean ride song.  12. Buy new kitchen towels.

Thus warmed up, I resolved to throw caution fully to the wind, which led me to:  15.  Cut up wedding dress and make pillows.

Who will need the pillow first?

Perhaps you’re thinking I mean bed or sofa pillows. Alright, I admit I did consider that first.  But then the Muse whispered to me, “pillow…wedding dress…think, Tracey, think.”  That’s it!  I would recycle my beloved dress–Coco’s dress–into a ring-bearer’s pillow for my children to use at their own weddings.

My dear spouse fully supported this inspired idea, that is, once he understood it.  My straight-faced jape about wanting to pair the bodice with jeans for my next Girls’ Night Out prompted his asking if I had really gone mad.  It was a rhetorical question to the positive.

Okay, so I wrote this idea on my task list.  But what came over me to actually do it?  Why the sudden, uncharacteristic urgency?  Well, like other reckless and unreasonable actions which I have undertaken, including this blog, I blame it fully on Chick Eva.  She was over the night of the wedding dress massacre, dropping her girls off for a sleepover.  When I told her about my no. 15, her support and enthusiasm had an intoxicating influence on me.

I used the top layer of tulle for stuffing.

The next thing I knew, there was a ripper in my hand.  As Eva took my picture and I prepared to make my momentous first rip, we were both laughing uncontrollably.  It felt like we were conducting an illicit middle-school prank and not an important creative experiment.

As soon as the initial damage was done, however, it was as if a weight had been lifted, one even greater than those twenty-something layers of tulle.  Liberation wasn’t just at hand; it was in my hand, one carefully torn stitch after another.  This was a thrilling sensation I had not anticipated.

I envisioned my grown daughter and son, their teary eyes following the precious pillow being carried down some church aisle by a yet-to-be-born nephew or once-removed cousin.  Even more, I envisioned my bedroom closet–freed of the Great White Snowball–and like my artist soul, cleared for room to move, to walk and to create.  I think Coco would understand.


My old dress bodice is now a new ring bearer’s pillow.


3 Responses to “Something Old, Something New [Part 2]”

  1. hostingthemuse April 1, 2011 at 6:26 am #

    Wow! Beautiful!

  2. ticklingthemuse April 1, 2011 at 2:36 pm #

    That is gorgeous! Good for you – what a great use of the dress. I’d do the same, but I don’t think my sister-in-law would appreciate that (I borrowed my dress from her) =)

    • Ree Howell Threlkeld April 6, 2011 at 7:30 pm #

      Just got a request from a friend to “rip up” daughter’s wedding gown and make a christening gown…….. idea almost as good as yours!

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