Friday, June 14, 2013

Creating THE DRESS--a Wedding Dress Dyed with Flowers

OK, so I can't sew. Will I let that stop me from creating my my own dress for the Ceremony? Well..... Only God is perfect, so....I'll give it a try. From scratch. Except for actually growing the silk worms and weaving the cloth.

I love silk charmeuse. It is so luxurious!
I ordered 4 yards of silk charmeuse from Dharma trading.
Found a pattern that looked simple yet flattering at the local thrift store.

Picked a bag of blue iris flowers, broke off the stems and any not blue part, and soaked them in cold water for a week.

Even after 2 stays in the dye pot, the charmeuse took up so
little of the dye, that it is more silvery than blue
The cloth arrived 12 days before the ceremony. Everyone is so excited about the ceremony! It is being called a wedding, even though Rifaat and I have decided not to register our relationship as a marriage with the state of Washington or to call it a marriage. You see, to "wed" is to be united; "marriage" is a legal term. I don't want to be "married".

I even get a bachlorette party! Sufi style, with semazens turning!

Oh, the dress.

Charmeuse doesn't take up the dye as readily as crepe de chine, so even after two times in the dye pot, the silk is just a silvery blue. Very nice, but so light it makes me look washed out.

It is now 8 days before the ceremony. It will be a Quaker/Sufi ceremony, with traditional Turkish music, the Lord's Prayer in Aramaic and in English, and Quaker style Silent Worship, out of which we will say our vows.

8 days.

The birds are so beautifully singing! And have the flowers ever been so lovely?

The Dress

I practiced sewing the facing on some left over Charmeuse, then tackled The Dress. Practiced painting the rose.

Painted a rose on the front using Colorhue dyes, which don't need steaming.
Painted over the rose with soy wax to protect the color.
Pinned the shoulders and sides together and dipped the dress in Jaquard Red Label Silk Dye, Royal Bue.

I used the Jaquard because I like the way it runs and seeps, and the blue is truer right away. The Colorhue blue looks purple until it is painted on the silk, so it's hard to judge what color you will get.

The Dress pieces still dripping after dipping in Royal Blue

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

To Wed or not to Wed? To Marry or not to Marry?

I don't need to be married. Bob left me in good financial shape. I am happy with my life.

Oh, wait, I was feeling a little lonely before I met Rifaat. It has been 8 years since Bob died. And there is something about being with Rifaat that transcends friendship. Something about the synergy of our core beliefs and energy.

But still. To marry?

So, I've spent the past several months looking into the whys and wherefores of being married. After talking with several lawyers, and--most importantly--with our own inner wisdom, Rifaat and I decided not to register our relationship as a marriage with the state. We want to keep our finances separate and to create a living, growing, life-long union not mired in the assumptions--sometimes unconscious--that marriage entails. I do not recommend this solution to everyone; being legally married to Bob was definitely the right choice at that time.

Some things we considered:
our ages and life expectancies
health insurance or lack of
social security -- how much each of us has invested
property -- each of us has a house promised to our heirs
debt responsibilities
current income projections
Our values and core beliefs
Our children and family needs