This post is one of several in the Our Fair Wedding series. You can view the other posts in this series here.
Coming up with a creative and fair wedding dress was one of my favorite parts of the ethical wedding planning process.
To start off, I was terribly picky about the dress. I wanted it to be ethically made. I wanted it to be unique. I wanted it to be comfortable. I didn't want it to alter the way my body naturally looks (no corsetry or push up bras). I wanted it to be awesome for twirling and dancing. And, of course, given our determination to have a low-cost, eco friendly celebration, it had to be within our price range.
I looked around the internet for ideas, and found that there are few options for fair trade/ethically made wedding gowns- and even fewer if your dress budget is under $1000.00. Luckily for me, I have the most talented friends in the world. My childhood friend Lizzie just so happens to be the most amazing dressmaker I've ever met. I asked her if she would sew me a gown, and she said yes! Talk about overjoyed. We sent ideas back and forth, Lizzie sent amazing sketches, and we were in business!
Let me tell you, the search for materials was NOT easy- there's a distinct lack of high-quality lace and plain, fair trade cotton out there! I ended up finally finding some lovely cotton sateen from Near Sea Naturals (organic and grown and made into fabric in the USA) and lace, tulle, and buttons from a little local sewing shoppe down the street from my apartment. I shipped all of the materials and my measurements down to Texas. Lizzie, being the dear sweet soul that she is, periodically sent me updates as the dress progressed (it was hard to be so far away from that gorgeous dress!).
A few weeks before the wedding, a big brown box arrived from Texas with the dress in all its glory! I promptly put it on, twirled like crazy, and declared it perfect. Ethical wedding win. Not only did I love the way I looked and felt in my soft, comfy, cotton gown, but it was so special to know that it was made for me, with love, by one of my dearest friends.