As fashionable silhouettes change it sometimes takes a while for dressmaking techniques to adapt to the new styles. An example of this is this 1921 wedding dress. The elegant, draped exterior of the garment gives no hint of the complex dressing required.
It has the 1920’s youthful look, the bust and waist are de-emphasized and the arms and lower legs are exposed. But the construction of this dress is still is very similar to the way dresses were made in the mid-teens. A wide waist tape still anchors the dress in place and layers of fabric still wrap around the body. Below are step-by-step images of mounting the dress.
The dress on the hanger.
Curator, Sara Hume, starting to get the layers in place before fastening the multitude of closures.
The waist tape has been closed with hooks and eyes and the net under bodice had been snapped closed. You can see there is a snap on the waist tape that the skirt will attach to.
Sara secured the the skirt to waist tape and the side of the bodice.
Bringing the front bib across the body.
Here is a view of the side snaps. Both rows of snaps are on the exterior of the seam so when connected they are hidden, as if in a seam.
Fastening the side snaps.
The front bib snaps at the shoulder to the back bodice.
Finally, the train hooks and snaps to the shoulder.