I have a Thing for hand embroidered wedding gowns from days of old – like this gorgeous wedding dress from 1914, that I wrote about a few years ago.
The other day, I spent a delightful bit of time reading up on Elizabeth Bull’s wedding dress – a Colonial era hand-embroidered wedding dress held by the Bostonian Society.
Two Nerdy History Girls wrote up two excellent articles on the dress.
The first, A Very Special Embroidered Wedding Dress, 1734, exposes the general history of the dress. The second article relates a little more detail about Elizabeth Bull and her dress, and includes some interesting musings by the author.
The Bostonian Society website offers an interesting series on the lives of girls & women of 18th century Boston.
The series is called From Baby Caps to Mourning Rings, and Elizabeth Bull’s wedding dress features in it here.
You can click on the thumbnail images of the embroidery on the dress to see the embroidery up close.
There’s a Moral to this Tale
Besides the fact that the dress is almost 300 years old, and besides the fact that it was re-fashioned to be worn from one era to the next by subsequent generations (the most recent wearing being in the early 1900’s for a photograph), I think one of the most interesting aspects of Elizabeth Bull’s wedding dress is this:
She never finished the embroidery!
That’s right. There are still pattern lines on the silk gown for flowers that she never got a chance to embroider, but obviously intended to!
I’m pretty certain there’s a moral here – a moral somehow associated with all those unfinished embroidery projects that are waiting for our attention. There’s something comforting about a 300-year-old “unfinished” embroidery project that can still delight our eyes and spark our imaginations, isn’t there?
Take some time to read the articles and browse the photos up close! You’ll find it well worth your while!
Tomorrow, I’ll announce the winner of this blackwork embroidery class give-away. If you haven’t signed up for the give-away yet, today’s your last chance!
I’ve been battling with a beautiful bout of pertussis this week, so I haven’t been spending a lot of time with needle and thread (or with much of anything or anyone else, come to think of it!). If the cough would kindly subside a bit, I’m hoping to get back to some serious stitching this weekend.
So, for those clamoring for a Secret Garden update, we’ll catch up next week on the hummingbirds and on some Stitch Fun that I’ve started but haven’t finished yet. I’m playing with an under-used, under-appreciated stitch, and I can’t wait to show it to you!
Until tomorrow, then!