"I just get a bee in my bonnet sometimes and just go for it," 80-year-old Shirley Ellicott said of the knitting challenge
A crafty great-grandmother has pulled off her most impressive project yet — a hand-knitted wedding dress!
Over the years, 80-year-old Shirley Ellicott of Whitsbury, England, has created everything from scarves and shawls to christening gowns and prom dresses using her self-taught sewing, knitting and crochet skills.
Recently, she got the itch to tackle an even bigger challenge: her first wedding dress.
"I’ve sewn a wedding dress before, but have always wanted to knit one. I wanted to do it properly, so I found a pattern and off I went," Ellicott told local newspaper Salisbury Journal. "I just get a bee in my bonnet sometimes and just go for it.”
In only three weeks, she turned several skeins of yarn into a chic, 1930s-style white long-sleeved cotton dress featuring a mix of knit patterns, rose-shaped pearl-effect buttons and even a wide train.
The design, which has more than 1,000 stitches, can be worn with the buttons in either the front or the back, according to the BBC.
“It’s amazing what two needles can do," Ellicott — who has five children, 11 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren — told Salisbury Journal of her wedding-fashion masterpiece.
The dress is currently on display at a local charity shop in Fordingbridge, and a portion of the proceeds from the sale will go to support the charity's community outreach efforts.
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Ellicott told the BBC her passion for knitting began when she was just 5 years old, and it remains her favorite pastime. “I knit, I sew, I crochet — whatever I can do with my hands, I will have a go at,” she said, noting that it was actually her husband who pushed her to finally tackle the "bucket list" project.
"Ken, my husband, he said to me, ‘Why don’t you make that wedding dress you keep on talking about?' I said, ‘OK,' ” she recalled to the BBC.
While her stunning bridal dress awaits its new home, Ellicott has already turned her thoughts to her next knitting project: a jacket.
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