Tuesday, September 15, 2009

...and if I married the sea would I be a pirate???

As many of my family members and closest friends know I have not always been super keen on the concept of marriage. I have no problems with it in regards to others, but have always thought the idea was not right. I am a very independent soul, and I am sure if the right person came along this might change. That being said the idea of it has always (and my being in it) made my skin crawl a bit.

I've often said to many of my dear friends that if I ever got married it would be on a giant pirate ship next to the sea. I would design myself an elaborate gown covered in skulls, dead bird wings, dried out sea creatures and lots of black and blue. All my favorite people would be there, including my darling Kati and her parrot Nigel, as well as many other pirate spirited folks who fill my life. We would drink rum and whiskey right out of the bottle, or even out of a shoe (okay, maybe not a shoe, but I find the idea very comical and pirate-like). David Bowie would play all night, bottles would be broken in celebration, and the night would end with giant chest full of bird bones and long lost treasures. At the end of the night I would send my guests on their marry way as they walk the plank off the ship and leave their valuables with me... (kidding!)

When I told my mom about this idea she teased me about how it would be hard to ever find someone who would agree to being the counterpart in a wedding like that. One of my dearest friends teased me that it would be my wedding getting married to the sea, and that she wanted to be my first mate. Regardless I love the idea. Perhaps it is just another sign that I never really grew up, and just like playing dress up and pretending to be a pirate.

In 2007, the last Summer that I was living in Seattle, I had a few clients commission me to make their wedding gowns. I encountered a few very frustrating bridezilla moments with a couple of these brides to be, and swore at the end of the Summer that I wasn't going to do wedding gowns anymore. As many of you may be aware from looking at my work white is not usually my preferred shade of textile medium.

I didn't touch a wedding dress for the two years following that, which was also my first two years living in New York. Last Spring, after completing and showing my Origama Pink collection, my childhood best friend Emilee announced that she and her lovely boyfriend of 8 years would be getting married. I had always wanted them to get married, and had been telling Emilee since I started Papusza that if they did marry I wanted to make her a dress.

I was happy to fulfill my offer, and create Emilee a lovely bone white dress. She wore this during her very magical and unconventional wedding this past Summer (see photos below), after the ceremony. During the ceremony she and her husband wore beautiful traditional Indian attire (which his parents had bought for them in India) to celebrate his family and background.


After the ceremony for the reception they dressed in playful roaring 20's attire, and danced the night away, like it was The Great Gatsby all over again. I created Emilee's dress using bone white silk charmeuse and organza for the skirt and the base (the dress was two separate pieces; a slip and a transparent over dress). For the bodice I used intricate antique lace, which Emilee's mother had sent me. The lace had been passed down from Emilee's great aunt, who had worked as a seamstress for a designer in New York in the 1920's. I really enjoyed creating lovely bodice detailing with this lace.


A couple of months back Elizabeth Raab, another one of my dear friends (who is also a great photographer that has shot lot's of my work; www.elizabethraab.com), asked me if I would design and make her wedding gown for her ceremony in October. Last week we went and got materials (including a gorgeous Swiss lace with baby blue accents), and for the past few days I have been culminating the dress, and starting the base of it. I look forward to finishing it in the upcoming week. Please stay tuned for details. I plan to use bird bones as buttons on the back for detailing, and lot's of feathers, which we all know I love.

Please stay tuned for photos of the work I do on Elizabeth's gown. Also, if you or anyone you know might be seeking a custom gown for a wedding, or any other special occasion, and you want a Papusza please feel free to email me at kaytee@papuszacouture.com. I would be happy to create you something special, and I promise not to used pirate skulls or birds bones unless you want them...

Photo by JW Anderson. See more photos from this event at http://zymogenphotography.com/naik-mccready.html.

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