Tuesday, May 8, 2012

One day in May...

I'll be with you in apple blossom time,
I'll be with you to change your name to mine.

One day in May
I'll come and say:
"Happy the bride the sun shines on today!"

What a wonderful wedding there will be,
What a wonderful day for you and me!
Church bells will chime
You will be mine
In apple blossom time.

(Apple Blossom Time, by The Andrews Sisters)

Because May always makes me think of weddings (maybe it's because my anniversary is in May...), I thought I would invite you all to not just one wedding, but four.

As in four generations of weddings. And dresses. Pretty dresses. Even the inside of one of the dresses.

Do enjoy!

How fab! Look at that veil!

So first, 1922 Chicago. This is Maria and Peter, my great grandparents, or my mom's mom's parents. I think of all the weddings in my family, Maria gets the prize for the most amazing veil. I mean, wow. If you look closely at the dress, it looks like it has diagonal rows of beading at the bust and vermicelli beading on the skirt. There are little ruffles for sleeves and it looks like she is wearing white gloves, like opera gloves.

Below is a picture that must have been taken shortly after the wedding. She has a great marcel with a cute little forlock curl. Again the dress has beading and she wears a feather boa and T strap shoes. If I'm not mistaken, I think someone in my family still has the pearls she is wearing.

Below is a close up of the (above) picture of their wedding reception.

Do you see the little boy in the middle of the picture? He is standing next to his father and has his hand up to his face? Well funny how things turn out, this little boy, Constantine, will have a little brother, Spero, who will marry Maria and Peter's daughter, Diana, and they will be my grandparents!

So fast forward to 1950. Diana and Spero's wedding, also in Chicago.

If you have never attended a Greek Orthodox wedding, they are very long, and always the same. Below you can see the priest crowning the bride and groom. The crowns are called stefana.

Then the bride and groom walk three times around in a circle. You can see the crowns connected with a ribbon. This all has significance, but I won't go into it. It would take a while...

For the record, my Grandmother is not the biggest fan of her dress (she refers to it as "the lampshade" hehe) but I think it's pretty! One thing I didn't realize, because today big, poofy wedding gowns are everywhere, is that they were out of style for quite a few years, until Princess Diana wore one at her wedding to Prince Charles and brought them back into fashion.

Personally I like the crinoline, which you can see in the picture below. My dress was large and didn't have one. Instead it had lots of tulle and layers and layers of fabric and it was very, very heavy. 

Maria with the fab veil is on the right and on the left is my
grandfather's mother, also Maria. There are only so many Greek names
out there... :)

That's a pretty serious veil, too. I love the long flouffy ones!

So lets fast forward again to my mom's wedding, 1979 in Los Angeles.

I really don't know whose veil is better...

Ooo look its my mom and Maria!
 I think my mom's bouquet looks awfully reminiscent
of Maria's, with all the ribbons.

... and with our other Maria...

And they're walking. 

...and Diana and Spero!

And now to mine!

Mine's not nearly as fun because its modern, but hey, why not throw it in!

Something blue...

I love the beading! I thought it was kind of a fun, unexpected design.
That french handkerchief was in this little bag :)

Oh dear, my veil feels a little inadequate :(

Verrrrry tiny, of course, but Diana and Spero are in
the second row near the aisle. Bride's side, naturally.

There are those crowns again!

Mom and me :)

The Jurassic Park monster butterflies. Oh god. If you could have seen
the delicate, dainty little frothy butterfly sketch I gave them for the cake...

And my favorite part of my dress: the skirt.

My dress was Vera Wang and my favorite, favorite part about it was the applique work on the skirt. It was covered in self-fabric leaves and foliage. Some pleated, some accented with clear sequins and beads, and with raw edges. They are hand sewn and assembled onto pieces of net, then attached to the dress with a running stitch. In the pictures below you can see details.

The leaves are mounted on net and the
net is sewn to the dress.

You can see the inside of the skirt, where the leaves are attached with
a running stitch.



  1. Well! I am all misty-eyed with nostalgia, so beautifully documented. And though it is not exactly the day yet, let me be the first to wish you and your hubby a very Happy Anniversary! There's nothing better than LOVE, is there?!

    1. Thank you for the anniversary wishes. I can't wait to open the gifts! :)