Frieda Mattheyse

In October of 2017 I saw Frieda for the first time at a group meeting and I found her composure elegant, yet striking. We didn’t initially interact much but at another meeting just before the festive season of 2017 started we had more interaction with each other and she told me of these beautiful christening gowns of her three children she had at home and wished to know, although they aren’t wedding gowns if I could still use them for Angel Gown® garments and it was an immediate yes.

At the time I had not yet disassembled a christening gown but I saw the potential in pairing the lace with wedding gowns of a more simpler design. As the festive season was looming it became a bit of an acrobatic act to arrange a meeting for collection and so it passed over till 2018. A little bit after three in the afternoon on 3 January 2018 Frieda called to arrange a meeting and once again my time was difficult as I had been in bed for a few this with an unrelenting fever, but by that Friday I’ve had enough of my bed rest and invited her over.

She shared with me her special memories she had of the christening gowns.

The one on the right was worn by her eldest son in 1979, completely crocheted by her grandmother – and let me tell you, that lady knows how to work that needle! The delicate details and seamless connections of all the panels are spectacular, but the beauty does not end there. As we can see per the photo there is some blue hinting through from beneath. This is a baby blue cotton undergarment with some hand detailing on the hem done by her mother.

Her daughter was quite the lucky princess back in 1988 , having not one but two christening gowns to choose from! The one on the bottom left is in white cotton with beautiful different lace inlays. She explained baby drooled a bit much and sadly not all the stains were removable and she was concerned I wouldn’t be able to use the gown. I explained to her that is fortunately not a problem. The stained area is so small that the lace is easily removable and guiding our creative muses to add some new touches. Frieda explained that the one on the top left, also for her princess, was store bought and came in removable layers, also lacy and made of cotton.

We would like to thank you Frieda for sharing your memories with us, a little piece of your history and of course a huge thank you for your generous donation to The Angel Gown® Initiative, our first donations of 2018! These christening gowns will make the sweetest Angel Gown® garments after we have worked our magic on them.

Eric Elronde and the TAGI team.