Heirloom Gowns & Pandemic Weddings – Part 1

At the Atelier, we have enjoyed meeting the many brides courageously finding ways to make their weddings possible during the pandemic. One very memorable Bride and Groom we met was Kristin and Sven Lindblad. Their love story, their eloquent navigation of their wedding celebrations amongst the constant changes, and of course, the 1942 heirloom wedding dress worn by the bride, left a very large impact on us. This is a story we just had to share with our clients! As this is a longer story, we will share it in three parts.

Kristin and Sven are travelers, environmental conservationists, and passionate about philanthropic causes. Kristin Lindblad is a former PR and communications consultant.  She now focuses on managing philanthropic efforts and serving in an advisory capacity to NGO’s focused on cultural and environmental conservation. Sven Lindblad, is a second generation Swedish explorer and founder of Lindblad Expeditions. Sven’s father, Lars-Eric Lindblad, is known globally as one of the “fathers of eco-tourism”. Together, Kristin and Sven, have traveled all over the world. Naturally, their wedding plans were just as exciting as the life they live.

Kristin came to Jennifer in 2019 with her grandmother’s gorgeous heirloom ivory satin wedding gown from 1942. The dress had since been worn 4 times by other women in the family.  It was in amazing shape for being worn many times, and the satin was clean and intact.  It was a very special gown and Kristin wanted to find a way to wear it for her wedding but with some new additions to personalize the dress. Jennifer collaborated with Kristin to restyle this vintage gown into something truly special and unique. 

The first issue to be solved was that the wedding gown was too small for Kristin, both in the bodice and in the length.  Apparently the women in her family were extremely tiny!  So Jennifer started the process by taking fabric from the long train and adding panels in the sides to make the bodice larger.  

The next decision to be made was whether or not to keep the sleeves.  They were typical 1940s style long sleeves with covered buttons at the wrist.  Kristin and Jennifer went back and forth on this decision for a while, taking time to sleep on it, thinking about it.  In the end, they removed the sleeves, which resulted in a strap over the shoulder.  Then they discussed whether or not to remove the strap and make the dress strapless. 

Kristin was concerned about making too many changes to the dress, and consulted with her family.  They gave their blessing to whatever she wanted to do.  In the end, that was the final decision – to make the dress strapless.  What a change from a traditional 1940s style gown with long sleeves to a modern strapless wedding gown!  

Stay tuned for part two where we share how the gown became strapless and the extra items that were added to complete the look.

Real Weddings: Mickenzy

We are highlighting the Bride Mickenzy today! She got married on September 9, 2021 in Duluth, Minnesota. We had the joy of working together with her on her wedding gown. Below is some more information on the work we did for her, photos from her special day, her wedding vendors, and her favorite memory from her wedding day.

We did many different wedding gown alterations for Bride Mickenzy. First, we let out the straps that were too tight. Then, we made small darts at the neckline to tighten the front. We added new bust cups and added boning under the bust area to keep the bodice from collapsing. We hemmed all 4 layers of the gown. For the top lace layer, we had to remove certain appliques and reposition them to make the hem look cohesive. The goal in this type of work is to make it seem like nothing was done. Everything has to flow perfectly! Lastly, we created an English Pick-Up Bustle for her gown.

Having your wedding gown altered is a very precious and tedious process. We can’t emphasize enough the importance of finding a skilled Alteration Specialist to do this work. It takes tremendous care and a meticulous eye to carefully alter your gown while maintaining the integrity and intricate detailing of your gown. At JOA, we are specialists in what we do. Each and every gown we work on is entirely different from the next. 

We have a wealth of knowledge in not only sewing, but also in how various fabrics work, how to make changes blend smoothly so you have no idea anything was done, and how to mold the process to the individuality of each client. The alteration process is curated to the uniqueness of your gown and your body. There is no cookie cutter formula for altering gowns. People are not symmetrical. One shoulder may be higher, one breast larger, one hip higher, etc. Working in this field requires gentleness and kindness for each client we work together with. Every client’s body is completely different. 

Here are some photos of Bride Mickenzy on her wedding day with her husband…

A favorite memory from the bride:

 

“A favorite memory of our wedding day was having a sweetheart table during dinner to spend quality time with my new husband! “

Wedding Vendors

Dress: Ellys in Kihei (@ellysformalwear) (Designer: Stella York) (@missstellayork)

Wedding Gown Alterations: Jennifer Oberg (@jenniferobergatelier) 

Photographer: Sydney Breann Photography (@sydneybreannphoto)

Hair/Makeup: Sisu Beauty, Duluth MN (@sisubeautyco)

Videographer: Hunter Chear, Chear Media (@chearmedia) 

Wedding ceremony: Enger Park in Duluth (@

Reception: Greysolon Ballroom (@greysolonduluth)

Flowers: Saffron and Grey (@saffronandgrey)

David’s tie: Otaa Australia (@otaa.australia)

David’s tux: The Black Tux (@theblacktux) 

For wedding gown alterations and custom wedding dresses get in touch at love@jenniferoberg.com.

Real Weddings: Lisa

If you have been following our All About Bustle Series then you may remember the gorgeous Folded Fan Bustle we shared! Bride Lisa just shared all of her beautiful photos from her wedding day so we had to share her dress in action and some more about the alteration process.

Lisa had a beautiful wedding at Hui No’eau in upcountry Maui. She got married on May 29th, 2021. 

For her wedding gown, the JOA team assisted Lisa with wedding gown alterations. First, we shortened the straps and then we made them detachable. This was a very nice feature, as Lisa had the freedom to choose whether she wanted straps or not on the day of her wedding. Next, we hemmed three layers of this multiple layer gown. The outer layers of the gown were fine but we needed to hem the innermost layers so she could walk comfortably. After, we created a folded fan bustle for her dress. We attached all the skirt layers together so they acted as a unit. When it was bustled, it fell perfectly together. You can read more details about the folded fan bustle in our bustle series here. Lastly, we steamed and pressed the gown after all the wedding gown alterations were complete.

Check out some of these incredible photos of Lisa on her wedding day. All the photos are captured by the talented Maui-based photographer Bethany Dawn.

And here is a cute photo of Bride Lisa with her bridesmaids helping with the folded fan bustle.

Congratulations on your special day Lisa! It was a joy to work with you!

James Bond film Casino Royale Inspired Gown

Here comes another exciting dressmaking tale! With the recent release of the new James Bond film, we thought it would be fun to share a past wedding gown we created.

Several years ago Jennifer had a bride who wanted a replica of a dress from the James Bond film Casino Royale! The bride loved the look of this gown and was comfortable with the sexier look of the dress. So Jennifer went to work and brought this Casino Royale Inspired dress to life for the bride. Bride Saida and Groom Sol had their beautiful wedding celebration in April 2012 on Maui.

Here are some photos of the inspiration from the James Bond Film…

And here are some photos of the wedding gown Jennifer created…

We love when our clients come to us with such fun dressmaking ideas and visions. It’s always an adventurous task recreating a gown, especially from a film. Have you seen our previous blog posts on the adventures of recreating the embassy ballgown from My Fair Lady? Check it out here

Brides-to-be get in touch for all custom wedding gowns, we are happy to take on all sorts of dressmaking projects. From the classic wedding gown to 007 inspired gowns to My Fair Lady inspired gowns, we love creating them all!

Real Weddings: Kelsey

We worked together with Bride Kelsey on a custom wedding gown. Kelsey had a beautiful wedding on June 26, 2021. We have many gorgeous photos to share from Kelsey’s wedding day. All of the photography was captured by the talented Amber Caires, you can follow her on instagram @ambervisionphoto. Have a peek into this special day….

Kelsey’s custom wedding gown has 12 yards of luxurious 4-ply silk crêpe on the outer layer. The lining is made from 12 yards of dreamy-to-wear silk charmeuse. The gown has a darling detail of a ½ inch embroidered lace around the waist. We also created a 3-point English Pick-up Bustle for her gown.

A sweet testimonial from Kelsey:

“Jennifer and her entire team were a total dream to work with. After a few crises at other places, I was dress-less just two months before my wedding. I went to Jennifer with my concept and she created my dress from scratch! She has an expert eye for detail and was also very conscious of costs in materials, which I really appreciated. I was prepared for a high-stress experience so close to the wedding date, but Jennifer and her team were so sweet, smooth, and enjoyable to work with! Not a second of stress and I have nothing but gratitude for everyone over there. I truly can’t recommend them enough.” – Kelsey S

It was an absolute pleasure working together with Kelsey. The custom wedding gown process is a very unique and memorable experience. We love the relationships that are created with our clients during this creative process. Get in touch for any custom wedding gown inquiries at love@jenniferoberg.com.

Real Weddings: Jada & Kurt

Jada and Kurt were scheduled to get married on June 1, 2020 at the Hui No’eau Arts Center on Maui. They had to reschedule their wedding for a year later, and they tied the knot on June 1, 2021! Congratulations to this gorgeous couple! And brava to all the couples finding ways to make their weddings work amidst the pandemic. We are happy to see our clients finding safe ways to tie the knot. 

We worked together with Jada and Kurt on alterations for their wedding clothes. We always enjoy working together with both the Bride and Groom. 

We altered Jada’s gorgeous beaded gown. We love working with beaded dresses. Check out our last blog about working with beaded gowns here. For Jada’s gown, we lengthened the straps, and made them cross in the back to provide more support over the shoulder.  We took the dress in around the bust and took the zipper in on the back.  We also hemmed the dress, a very nice and meditative process when it comes to working with the intricacy of beaded gowns. The beading was delicate and lovely and we enjoyed putting our heart and soul into the process.  

For Kurt’s wedding clothes, we tailored his shirt so that it fit better through the body.  We find that many men’s shirts fit through the shoulders and are too full in the waist area. This means you end up with a lot of bulky fabric to tuck into the pants.  So streamlining the fit makes a better look overall. We also hemmed his pants.  

We love working on both the bride and groom’s clothing! Get in touch if you and your partner need wedding attire alterations, we would love to work together with you!