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Nuprimary Custom Couture Wedding Gown


 This past October, two of our dearest friends James Alexander and Gabriela Maj wed in a gorgeous ceremony in Poland just outside of Krakow. We had the honor of working with the bride to create a truly one of a kind couture wedding gown for her big day comprised of custom fabric with head to toe embroidery, embellishment and meaning.

 The bride wanted to somehow pay homage to all the women in her family who came before her, to her heritage, and to the wonderful world of travel, adventure, and awareness she documents on a daily basis. A lot to fit into a wedding gown! Here's how we did it:

Monday Oct. 8th, 2012


Craig and I were honored to be such a special part of yours and James's day. It has been an absolute pleasure for us to design your wedding gown! 

In accordance with your request the dress is comprised of three tiers, representing your past, present and future together with James. 

The production of the dress spans 4 continents. The design, concept and construction having taken place in New York, the initial pattern created in the United Arab Emirates, the embroidery in India and the fabric in Europe. Each layer of the dress has been hand embroidered by a team of 8 expert craftsmen and women in Mumbai over a period of 2 weeks. The hand techniques range from satin stitch embroidery, to silk appliqué to a Bedouin knitting stitch. 

The primary motifs within the design of the embroidery pay homage to your maternal lineage. Large monograms for the maiden names of your mother (Jolanta Jadwiga Klaudia Kruczkowska), your grandmothers (Anna Szeliga and Gabriela Maria Czerminska), and great grandmothers (Aniela Wadowska and Klaudia Malgorzata Brochwitz-Donimirska) encircle the skirts. There is also an ancient Polish symbol representing the Szeliga clan which has been placed as a cameo on each of your wrists. 

Poppies, the Polish national flower and lilies, James's favorite flower for you are to be found throughout the design of your dress. Traditional folk Polish Wycinanki flowers and leaves are found beaded and stitched throughout the design. 

The Arabic saying enshallah, is found embroidered on both hips a playful nod to the years spent together in Dubai. 

Around the hem of each layer in Roman numerals is the date of your wedding. 

The central motif from which the rest of the design radiates can be found on your train. The symbol for the 9th house represents an astrological space wherein your two individual star charts cross. In accordance with this motif you will find on either side of the dress both of your astrological signs in star formation, Aries and Capricorn. 

Framing the skeleton of the design are crescent shapes and line work inspired by the walls of the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi. 

Central to the core motif across your chest is a bushel of wheat for prosperity, and hidden amongst the lilies at the neckline is a busy bumble bee, representing blessings of fertility. 

May you have a long, healthy and happy life together filled with much adventure and endless love. Our hope is that the majesty of this garment and the love put into its creation anchor both of you, and all of those sharing in your marriage ceremony to the power of the present. With its references to the past and to the future, may this dress also serve as a point of reflection for you. May it allow both of you to focus on and understand all of the love that will surround you on Oct 13th. May you take that love with you and remember it always. We are so happy for you both.



Read more about Gabriela and her work on her site:

and here at the NY Times:

Wedding dress photography courtesy of Michael Todaro  


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