October 2014, my now husband asked me to marry him and I said "YES!" and on January 16th 2016 we said "I do". We were married at a unique venue in Chicago, but didn't neglect to incorporate our heritage into our big day. Little things like adding rosemary into all the floral arrangements (including a sprig for all the guests), schnitzel and homemade German wurst for appetizers, plenty of polkas and waltzes to dance to, homemade German cookies for dessert, and of course dirndls!

While planning the wedding, when people found out I was engaged, the first thing they asked was "Are you making your dress?" followed by "Is it a dirndl!?" My answer was: Yes, I'm making it and it's half dirndl, half gown. For me, when I closed my eyes, I didn't see myself getting married in a dirndl. It may sound cliche, but I've been thinking about my wedding dress since I was a little girl... and it wasn't a dirndl. However, I turned it into a dirndl for the reception!

I had the fantastic pattern-makers at V. Mora (who do 98% of the patterns for Rare Dirndl) custom make a bodice pattern to fit me perfectly, that way, all I had to do was sew it. In hind-sight... I spent WAY too much time on it for the 1 day I wore it... but oh well! The bodice was all hand sewn white lace with long sleeves and a scalloped neckline. The skirt was a white satin semi-circle skirt, but I covered that with a tulle top skirt with a charcoal grey ribbon waistband that tied in a bow in the back.   

I knew I wanted my bridesmaids to wear dirndls. All of them were very excited about the dirndls mostly because they said, "Now these are bridesmaid dresses we will definitely wear again!" They wore their dirndls with the Sweetheart Blouse with Draped Sleeves, black nylons and whichever heels they chose. The bodice was a silk damask fabric with hand pleated neckline trimming, black ribbon lace up front and grey satin piping. The skirt was a black polyester peach skin with a grey poly chiffon apron. They all looked stunning next to the groomsmen in their charcoal tuxes.     

The entire day was beautiful. From the relatively mild winter weather to the sun shining in on us during the ceremony, we couldn't have asked for a better day.

The reception kicked off with a bang and everyone enjoyed their dinners. After I danced the Schneewaltzer with my Dad, it was time to ditch the poofy skirt and put on my apron. I made a light grey beaded lace apron with charcoal ribbon apron ties for the reception. It was great to have a "party dirndl" for the rest of the evening and we sure did party! We danced the night away and it was the perfect end to a perfect day.

Photos by Robyn Photography and may not be used without written consent. To see more photos and the the 6 ways we used our heritage to make our wedding day that much more awesome click here!

Interested in your own Bridal Dirndl or Bridesmaids Dirndls? Click here to learn more!

 Culturally Inspired Winter Wedding
February 11, 2016 — Erika Neumayer

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