Carolyn’s dress: The belt

I promised one more post on details from Carolyn’s dress while we wait for her to get married so you can see pictures of the whole dress in all it’s glory.

I’m naughty though, the only part of the dress I am really going to show you is the belt.

The belt is an important part of the design for Carolyn’s dress: it’s the focus of a lot of detailing and beading, and provides a visual break in the skirt and bodice.  We had to get the design for it just right.

This is what Carolyn drew:

A beaded and bejewelled belt

This is what I drew:

My design was heavily based on Carolyn's

The design needed to be finalised and polished once a buckle was selected.  This is the buckle we picked:

Isn't it gorgeous!

With the proportions and lines of the buckle in mind, I drew 6 different possible beading patterns:

6 designs drawn with the buckle in mind

Then I decided that the top two (A & B) sucked, and I re-drew them.

Much better!

This turned out not to matter at all, as Carolyn liked E best.  Clever girl!

I love the scale effect of pattern E.  It’s like a clever wink to the whole mermaid silhouette of the dress.

And this is what the finished belt looked like:

On the dress

The buckles and the beaded and sequined design

A touch of blue for the belt lining


  1. Ingrid says

    This is so gorgeous! You are truly gifted and I want to tell you that your blog brightens up my day! Please keep it up!

    Greetings from Germany


  2. I am ridiculously pleased by the touch of blue. Love the cranial touches.

  3. Elise says

    It’s so beautiful–and it looks like the whole dress will shine so prettily as she moves! I liked the blue, too!

  4. Stunning! I can’t believe what a lot of work has gone into this dress so far! You blow me away!

  5. Natalie says

    BEAUTIFUL! I can’t wait to see the entire dress!

  6. Oh wow. Wow. Really. This little glimpse is absolutely stunning – and I don’t even like beading or sequins … or at least I thought I didn’t! I’m going to have to totally re-evaluate that!

    I can’t wait to see the whole dress!!

  7. Bravo! When is she getting married? (So I know how long I have to wait) Wonderful job!!! And that belt buckle is fabulous.

  8. Madame Ornata says

    Wow it looks incredible! Well done, what a great job. All that time, talent and love gone into it have created a truly special gown. I can’t wait to see the final photos.

  9. Love the buckle, is it old, or did you bye it new. Wonderful detailing, I have to say your blog brightens up my day too. Keep up the wonderful creative work that you are doing, the world needs us creative ones to fill it with beauty.

    Its so wieird cos I was working with a box of buckles yesterday, and I was thinking of doing a post on them.

    • The buckle is old – probably 1930s. I bought it at Three Buckets full. Do post about the buckles you were working with! I’d love to see it!

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