31, is an incredibly kind and gracious
individual born in Santa Clara,
California. When she was four, her
family moved to Provo, Utah, where
she grew up with her five siblings
and later attended Brigham Young
actually co-produced, wrote, and
starred in a wonderful documentary
about young women demanding modest
clothing. Its called A
Modest Revolution, and a local
distributor will launch the film
this coming Spring.
grew up Mormon, Denise insists That
doesnt mean I had it easy.
in the community in which I did
grow up. Many people term it "Happy
Valley" because most everyone
is Mormon. Although it can be
quite opposite for young people
growing up. Because everyone knows
what everyone else "should"
be doing, the cool thing was to
do the opposite of what everyone
else was "supposed"
to be doing. I had opportunities
to experiment with drugs, alcohol
and sex just like most teens today.
The culture in which I grew up
was not immune to any of the outside
Due to great
friends and wonderful parents, Denise
was able to rebel against these
influences and eventually do the
unthinkable: she actually wore a
modest wedding dress when she walked
down the aisle in 2002.
We know what
youre thinking. But where
did she find a gown that wasnt
it made. She had to. After all,
when she was just eight years old,
she was already drawing pictures
of modest evening gowns in my Snoopy
So when Denise
met the right man, it was time to
go vintage. Her next-door neighbor
and close friend Anne helped a lot.
to Anne that she had found a vintage
dress she wanted to take to a seamstress.
There was only one problem: the
dress didn't have sleeves. If you
know anything about clothing, you
know that its tricky to mess
with one element of the design because
you never know how the whole finished
product will look once it's stitched
that Denise go to an antique shop
in Salt Lake City that stocks vintage
wedding dresses. Denise tried on
several dresses and nothing was
working, but I wasn't getting
discouraged because we were having
such a blast trying on these lacy
old beauties. In the nick
of time, Anne spotted a lilac lace
gown from the 1930s that was hanging
in the back behind several other
from the shop owner that it was
going to be shipped out of the
store because it had been there
too long. The dress was definitely
not in mint condition nor had
I envisioned being strung with
lilac lace for my wedding day
but we knew it would make the
perfect pattern for my actual
wedding dress. It was high enough
in front and back. And for only
$35.00 who could complain? It
was mine! Most important, this
dress had sleeves.
Those folks were so quaint back
in the 1930s!
Denise snatched up the lilac number
immediately and took it to Anne's
sister-in-law, Alisa, who lives
just up the street from them. As
it turns out, Alisa took several
classes in the Fashion Design department
at BYU and actually won the fashion
show the year she entered her designs
(when Gloria Vanderbilt happened
to be the judge).
So she was in good hands.
made a pattern from the lilac dress,
using blue and red polyester--just
scraps of fabric she had lying around.
It fit Denise perfectly, but the
downside was she looked like
the bride of Superman. Luckily
this was not to be the final dress.
She did start calling her fiance
Super Steve, however.
purchased white lace and satin for
the actual dress, and her gown was
made in no time.
So for those
of you who have been writing to
ModestyZone, wondering if there
are other options than strapless
or sleeveless wedding gowns, the
answer is, not really! (See Charlotte
Allens lament about "Strapless
Brides.") But you can always
try what Denise did and have your
gown made. It was not even that
expensive. Those wanting more details
can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
and her husband Steve have an almost-two-year-old
son whose name is Paul Stephen.
He is adorable
and couldnt be more proud
of his Rebelliously-Good Mommy.
you would like to nominate a Rebel—including
yourself—please send a short
personal profile and what you are
rebelling against to: email@example.com.
There is no age limit, but high
school and college students will
be given priority over grandmas,
since grandmas, after all, are supposed
to be good.