Sunday, May 8, 2011

DIY Wedding Dress Cleaning

I read lots of online articles about DIY wedding dress cleaning, and decided on soaking the dress in Napisan in my bath. I did this twice, fill the bath with hot water and soaked it overnight, then rinsed the sand off and resoaked it. There was so much sand caught in the flowers on my dress! There was still a lot of staining on the bottom of the dress, i tried gently scrubbing it with a soft brush and most of it was coming off, but it was a very slow process. I gave up shortly into it and popped my dress into a quilt cover and into the machine with my normal washing powder and some more Napisan, and put it on a gentle wash, low heat, low spin. 

The mistake i made with this was not tying the cover closed; my dress came out during the wash and four flowers came off. They're all ok though and can be sewn back on, and there was no other damage. There's a few stubborn marks along the very edge of the hem, but the dress looks much better and like new again. I will have a go at removing the stubborn marks at another time. They can be done by hand.

Before and after cleaning.


Saturday, April 30, 2011

Trash the Dress - Beach

The beach we chose has a pile of rocks leading from the sand dune and jutting out into the sea, and then there's a path down to the sand. The sand is quite grey rather than yellow as is usual for Perth beaches.

We started off on the rocks. I had a nice view of the setting sun.



Then i wandered down onto the sand to meet the waves.


And walked into the ocean.


I was intending to swim out further, but once i felt the current take my dress i decided against it. The dress was suddenly very heavy and limited my movements, and i may not have been able to avoid the rocks if the waves decided to take me that way. So i stayed where i could stand.


A wave came and swirled me back to shore, as the light was going, so we decided to finish up with a photo of me lying on the sand with a wave going back out to sea.


We had a great time photographing my Trash the Dress. Now all that was left was to haul my heavy dress, train looped over my arm, back to the car and wash it!

Friday, April 29, 2011

The Royal Wedding

What a gorgeous wedding! I watched four hours of the telecast until they finished after the balcony kisses and flyover. Loved looking at the fashion, especially the hats! I thought Kate's dress was a perfect choice for such a formal occasion, she seemed to have chosen a modern yet classic style that wouldn't date easily. The train was beautiful. And the two boys looked fantastic in their military regalia!

I was very impressed when i read that Kate did her own makeup for the big day. She looked completely flawless.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Trash the Dress - Power Station

We started our photo shoot at an abandoned power station about an hour before sunset. We had to work quickly to get both locations in before the light went.

Fantastic viewing window on the outside wall of the power station.


Inside the station now, leaning against the windows on one side of the building, i found a stack of iron girders to stand on.


This was taken up against one of the fantastic brightly tagged walls.


There was a group of guys walking around on the top floor. Rob called out to them to ask how they got up and they told us the location of the small window they used to crawl in to get to the stairs. None of them thought i'd be able to get through with my dress, but i did gymnastics when i was little :) It wasn't that small anyway.
The stairs are pretty impressive to look at! There's another flight above, on both sides of this one.


Had to be careful sitting on this concrete block, as there was iron crosses sticking up along the edges :)


Leaning on the barriers overlooking the ground floor.


We'd now taken about 40 minutes in the power station so we finished up and hurried off to the next location, the beach, before we lost the light.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Trash the dress location rundown

We had about an hour of light to get my trash the dress photoshoot done in. We had an indoor and an outdoor location picked out. Originally Rob was going to be in some of the shots with me, but he decided against it as his linen suit would be ruined. So he was able to stay behind the lens the whole time; very handy having a professional photographer as a husband! We skipped the boat shed shot as we didn't have time, we'll do that another day. It really needs a cloudy day or sunset as the lighting there is quite harsh.

Our first location was an old abandoned power station. It's a very tall imposing building, two stories but they're about 5 metres or so high. Smashed windows line all sides of the station. Inside it's covered in graffiti, mostly brightly coloured tags, a few pictures, but with the usual scribble over the top. There's broken brick windows with the frames removed to sit in, steel barriers to stand on, and a fantastic curved concrete staircase. We spent about 40 minutes in there before moving to our next location, the beach.

I walked out on the rocks that overlook the beach for the first photos, then moved down onto the sand. Rob took a few shots there before i walked into the ocean. Happily the water was warm - it is autumn after all so i thought that it might already have taken on a chill, but we've had hot weather lately. I went in up to my waist and then floated in the water, but the weight of my dress was dragging me in and out with the waves, and i didn't want to venture any further out. Got a few grins from beachwalkers when they saw me, but no questions. I guess they've seen this done before :)

My dress is now in the bath soaking in Napisan, i hope that i can get all the dirt and stains from Rome off the hem of it. It surprisingly didn't get much dirtier today, just a bit of brick dust on the hem from the station.

We ended up with around 950 photos. I'll go through them tomorrow and pick out our favourites before uploading them. Here's a sneak preview of the two seconds i was able to get my mad dog to lie down for! Seriously it was about two seconds - two shots later he's up again.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Trash the Dress shoot

It's coming up for the Easter break shortly and Rob and i are going to do a Trash the Dress shoot. We're going to bring along a tripod so we can appear together in some of the photos, the rest will be us taking pictures of each other. Should be a lot of fun! I've picked out a few places that i've seen some fantastic shots done at, and we're going to do the traditional Boat Shed shot (nearly every wedding couple in Perth, it seems, has their photo taken on the jetty out to a blue boat shed on Matilda Bay - but who i am to diss tradition!), and the beach. The weather's getting cool already so i want to get this done before the water turns too cold and i wuss out before getting in!

I also need to sew a few flowers that fell off at the at home reception back on my dress. Funny that; my dress survived travelling all over Europe to drop flowers at a local lunch! Must have been the shock of the heat :) I'm not going to do any damage to my dress... just get it wet, and probably more dirty than it already is. Then it gets a wash (yay me for choosing a washable fabric!) and stored away all clean.

Stay tuned for a review about the locations and our favourite photos of the day.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Wedding photos on canvas

A few weeks ago i was sent a link to a coupon for a great deal on a panoramic canvas print. It was less than a quarter of the usual price, for a 50cm x 100cm canvas on a frame, and delivered. Brilliant! Rob and i agreed this would be a perfect use for some of our wedding gift money, so one of our guests has bought us this lovely piece of art.

The offer was from Fabness, an online company who specialise in canvas printing. They offer a good range of set sizes and shapes, and three different options for the 'wrap' (the part of the canvas that wraps around the frame). To order, you create an account with them and then use the online tool to upload your photo. It's very quick, took less than 5 minutes to upload and play around with positioning. At the ordering stage they let you know how quickly they'll produce your canvas and when you can expect to receive it. As a guide, it took them two days to print and ship my canvas, and five days to get to me (which is the standard delivery time from the eastern states to WA).

My parcel arrived on Friday and i was so pleased with it when i unwrapped it! I've never seen a photo canvas up close before, but the surface was shiny (although you can see clearly the weave of the canvas)  and the colours are vibrant. I chose one of our black and white photos, so what i mean by 'colour' is that the blacks are black, not grey, and there's a good variation in the different tones. In other words, it looks exactly like the original photo :)


Close up of the edge. I chose the gallery wrap where the photo continues on around the sides. You can see the surface gloss of the print on the very edge.


Very pleased with it :) If anyone is looking at getting a photo canvas done, i highly recommend Fabness.