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  1. What is it about the word ‘lingerie’? When I started Vee Pretty, making lingerie cases, I had no idea that this word would evoke such deep emotions in women and even more in surprisingly in men!

    To me ‘lingerie’ is just a stolen French word for women’s underclothing (it’s actually derived from the French word linge, meaning linen). It sounds much more glamorous and chic than the clumsy word ‘underwear’ that is often mouthed silently. Why? Embarrassment? Fear of the ‘underwear interrogation‘ – “I wonder what she is wearing”?  I never thought about the connotation of the word being that it is only, ‘on one minute and off the next’ attire.

    I have learned that women have very different ideas about the sort of underwear worn and what it says about them.  And they can be judgemental about women who wear a ‘different’ type of underwear to them  – that poses a question: If you like pretty undies, does that make you a scarlet woman? I am surprised how many women have implied this to me. Pretty lingerie makes some women feel good and gives them confidence about their day, which is no different from how you might feel about your outer garments, so why do under garments have to be linked to a stereotype woman? After all they do exist for to fulfil a practical function, the rest is just design and fashion.

    I make lingerie cases for women to have something pretty in the drawer, at home or when travelling, which is useful and brightens their day. A ‘hyacinth to feed the soul’ which you can put your ‘type’ of lingerie in, or tights or anything else you want to, its up to you and only you. I didn’t expect the word ‘lingerie’ to provoke the nudge nudge, wink wink reactions, nor confessions of ‘I don’t have…,’ ‘I don’t want to encourage’, ‘I am too old’ from women and ‘Phworr’ or smirks from men!

    I don’t think women should judge or be judged by anyone, male or female for wearing pretty undies and hey, if it’s a big knickers or shape wear day so what? If you look around, lots of designers are making stunning lingerie in all shapes and sizes, both plain and fancy styles. Perhaps inherited views, sniggering and hang-ups about the word ‘lingerie’ should be reconsidered - surely ladies it really is time to move on?

  2. We all have dreams of seeing our daughters using our wedding dress for their own wedding, but the reality is that it rarely happens. We may not be lucky enough to have a daughter for one! If we do they may look at our ‘style’ with a wry smile, yes I was married in the late 1970’s! Some of those puffy frilly Bo-peep dresses of the 1980's just don’t fit the ‘princess for a day’ currently in vogue.

    We hang our magical memory in the wardrobe where it takes up space for today’s outfits and is an annoyance to our partners and their own ever increasing volume of clothes– yes men have changed too but that’s for another blog! The attic is another possibility, but will the dress survive the threat of mildew? More importantly who will see it hidden in a box in the dark?

    So what do you do with that amazing dress that evokes a flood of happiness? I was recently commissioned to make a lingerie case and baby first shoe bag from a wedding dress, which quite frankly had seen a jolly good time on ‘the’ day - so good that dry cleaning couldn’t sort out the various marks and stains, despite several attempts.

    I designed the lingerie case to reflect the original dress and used as many of the embellishments as I could. I made a record of the dress photographically with close ups of the detail with you don’t see in wedding photographs, for the owner to keep.

    Now she has two beautiful heirlooms to pass on, complete with a Vee Pretty ‘passport’ which tells the story of her commission, provenance if you like for years to come as these are hand down the generations.

    A meaningful act of loving and belonging from mother to daughter creating useful and practical items and saving a memory from the depths of the wardrobe. And if we don’t have daughters we may well have granddaughters who would just adore a keepsake of Grandmother’s wedding dress!

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