One weekend back in the Autumn, we had fellow blogger Pam OKC and her Brit hubby to stay and we all went sightseeing to Canadian, Texas.
We walk into this smalltown museum and art gallery and were gobsmacked to be met by the sight below!
(I am about to break my own 'not too many photo's rule', but I think you'll understand)
Please 'Double Click' pictures to see more stunning detail
The art gallery of the museum had an exhibition of Linda Leyendecker Gutierrez ballgowns, which quite literally took our breath away.
Linda says she has a God-given gift for designing the elaborate hand-beaded gowns for the annual Society of Martha Washington colonial ball held in Laredo Texas, and I have to agree with her!
The beadwork detail on these amazing dresses is just staggering and unbelievably gorgeous.
Each dress weighs approximately 80lbs, the girls who get to wear them are all teenagers and are the only women with the right tiny proportions to fit into one.
In 1939, on a suggestion of the local Monsignor in Laredo, a ladies’ Society of Martha Washington came into being, and the first 13 debutantes - known as “Marthas” - were presented at the Colonial Pageant and Ball.
The Ball has happened annually ever since and every year most of the local debutantes can trace their lineage back 5 or 6 generations.
The name of each “Martha” is called out as the double French doors on the stage of the Laredo Civic Center are opened and the girl appears with her escort. Local families will save for these dresses from birth and are fully involved in the design of the "Martha" dress for their daughter.
This was my personal favourite, I just adore the colour and style of this stunning gown. I only own one dress, just not into them, but I'm not sure any woman could resist donning one of these beauties just once!
I wish my waist was tiny enough to wear it, this could be just the motivation I need to diet!