Another day, another Emery dress! I made this dress for a very lovely fundraising event last weekend – our Open Gardens day at Emma Bridgewater & Matthew Rice’s home in Bampton, Oxfordshire in aid of Michael’s fund for The Brain Tumour Charity. The kind of extra special day which calls for an extra special dress!
I pre-ordered this fabric as soon as the Rifle Paper Co collection for Cotton & Steel was released in the UK, and it was always destined for an Emery. It needed all the bells and whistles so I added both a collar and a bow! I know Michael would like this print as he often chose Rifle Paper Co cards for special occasions and bought me their pretty stationery.
Since losing Michael, I tend to get a lot more nervous about big events and important days. Part of my coping method lately has been to plan a new dress for any upcoming occasion, something to focus on and help me to be a little braver. And since Michael was the kind of guy who gave everything 100% and let his enthusiasm shine through, making a brand new dress themed just for the occasion is exactly the sort of thing he would have loved me to do. Why not go all out?!
It seemed only appropriate to model this dress with a cheery yellow Michael Barry rose, from the rose bush which Michael’s friends so thoughtfully gave me to mark our anniversary this year.
I was a little indulgent with this dress and lined it with another complimentary print from the Les Fleurs collection called Rosa. I also used some of the beautiful selvedge to sew next to my own “Handmade by…” label.
I felt right at home in my fabulous floral dress on Sunday amongst the delightful gardens, and the day was a huge success. We raised £1,386 in total between entry fees, copious amounts of tea and homemade cake, and sales of Tip Top merchandise and handmade goodies. And I also got to meet my lovely Instagram friends Gemma and Nancy!
I can’t quite find the right words to explain what a wonderful day it was, and I’m completely blown away by how incredibly generous Emma & Matthew were to open up their gardens at their home to help us raise money for The Brain Tumour Charity. I’m hugely grateful to Michael’s lovely friend Becky for making this happen, and to all of our friends and family who pitched in to help. It was a real team effort and a truly lovely day, all in honour of our Michael who loved his garden. Here are just a few of the photos I managed to quickly snap before people started to arrive.
Best of all, the funds raised on Sunday have taken the total raised for the Michael Barry Fund to £9,866.55! So we are within touching distance of our first year target of £10,000, and it’s only been 4 months since I set up the fund! Once we reach £10,000, all future money raised for Michael’s fund will go directly to fund research into high grade tumours, so we can keep fighting for a better chance. You can donate here…