Gemma Sangwine

Unique and bespoke millinery and hair accessories


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And Finally….here’s the last one I made!

So….the last two blog posts have been about pieces I made for a collaborative photo-shoot….well here is the 3rd and final piece!

The dress was made from 8 metres of pure silk taffeta with a lace-up back and flower corsage at the waist.

I wanted to make a Pre-Raphaelite style floral crown to go with it, and Emmie was able to save some of the off-cuts of fabric for me to make the flowers with.Sally montageI had recently been practising making fabric flowers and was keen to hone my technique and make a finished floral head-piece, so this really was the perfect opportunity!

To start with, two layers of fabric are bonded together, this works best if one of the layers is cotton organdie, but in this case I used two layers of the red silk (I did a small amount of the red silk bonded with black chiffon for a bit of variety!). Then I cut out the petals in a range of sizes, pressed and manipulated them into shape and stitched them together around a fabric covered ‘bud’ to make a natural looking rose.Sally WIP montageI found some green silk (gifted by a friend who popped by the studio and saw what I was up to!) which was perfect for making some leaves and also to wrap around the headband.

The finished piece is asymmetric with a mixture of different sized roses, and includes some made with black chiffon for a darker feel.Sally final montageOn the day of the shoot Harriet did a great job sweeping Sally’s long hair into a romantic style up-do, with braids on one side, emphasising the asymmetric look of the floral crown, which she positioned off to one side, and which also echoed the corsage on the waistband of the dress.

The dress is the ‘Josephine’ by Emmie Miles Bespoke Dressmaking & Design, hair by Harriet’s Organic Hairdressing, make-up by Aine Thomas. And of course the photos are by the very talented wedding and portrait photographer Camilla Reynolds.

The photo-shoot was a lot of fun to be part of, everyone enjoyed the day and Camilla did a great job of recording it all;

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Here’s Another One I Made Earlier…..

In the previous post I introduced the collaborative photo-shoot I worked on recently with Emmie Miles Bespoke Dressmaking. The second dress Emmie designed was a 1930’s style silk satin gown with a train and feature embroidery on the waistband at the front.

It had a soft, regal and feminine feel to it and I decided I wanted to make a vintage diamanté tiara to go with it.

Anne montage

I don’t usually do sketches for my work, I just respond to the materials and play around with mock-ups, trying out different compositions with a variety of different pieces of vintage jewellery, until I find one that feels right.

Anne mockups

The first piece I made featured vintage 1920’s and 30’s jewellery but it was not quite right for the dress, too heavy and geometric. So I tried again, and picked out a selection of diamanté flower brooches that reflected the softness of the embroidery, and had a slight blue/pink tint to some of the stones which worked well with the soft pink silk of the dress.

Anna final montage

For the photo-shoot Harriet styled and set Anne’s long hair in a 1930’s movie star do. Overall, once the dress and tiara were on, Anne looked like a glamorous screen goddess!

The dress is the ‘Vera’ by Emmie Miles Bespoke Dressmaking & Design, hair by Harriet’s Organic Hairdressing, make-up by Aine Thomas. And of course the photos are by the very talented wedding and portrait photographer Camilla Reynolds.