Racing driver Cheryl Linn Glass married Richard Lindwall on February 19, 1983.

On February 19, 1983, racing driver Cheryl Linn Glass (1961-1997) married Richard Allan Lindwall (b.1957), the chief mechanic of her racing team, in an elaborate $ 50,000 ceremony at the Cathedral St. Mark’s Episcopal of the Seattle Capitol. Hill, followed by a reception at the newly opened Sheraton Hotel in downtown Seattle. The lavish wedding is fully documented as the Seattle (Rhodes) ‘Wedding of the Year’ by Seattle weather and other publications, and the cover generates a lot of demand for Glass’s designs. In response, in 1985, Glass would open a studio in Seattle named Cheryl Glass Design, specializing in wedding dresses and evening wear.

Prepared preparations

In 1980, at the age of 18, Cheryl Glass became a professional racing driver after nine years of amateur racing. This led to her racing career and meeting her future husband Richard Allan Lindwall, originally from California. Lindwall joined Team Glass as a team leader and chief mechanic and they traveled together in quarter midget, sprint and dirt car races across the country. Their passion for racing cars was something that brought the young couple together. When Glass’s helmet passed, they were concentrating on the track.

In August 1982, Lindwall proposed to Glass. The couple initially wanted to run away. After Glass changed her mind and set the date six months in advance, she immediately began planning her wedding venue, atmosphere, music, and guests. “My dad said he wanted to send me in style, and I could have whatever I wanted,” Glass said. Seattle weather:

“I wanted the most formal elaborate wedding I could imagine because most of my life I wanted to go broke, put all of my effort into something and be the best… I feel like my life is in this dress … It was mainly intended for the atmosphere of the people at the wedding and those attending. I want them to have a fantastic evening – a wedding like most people have never seen and will probably never see him again “(Rhodes).

Glass designed and beaded her size eight wedding dress, with the help of friends, in over 1,000 hours of work over six months. The Times Described it in detail in a feature article published two days before the wedding:

“The dress in silk skin and antique lace is beaded with 40,000 pearls, 6,000 seed beads, 7,000 crystals and 25,000 iridescent sequins …
“From the dress will fall a matching 15-foot train appliquéd with 100 large lace flowers, trimmed with 5,000 pearls, 1,800 seed beads, 3,000 crystals and 30,000 iridescent sequins. tissue, [Glass] used five large pots of instant tea as a colorant “(Rhodes).

The cost of the dress was estimated at $ 3,000 and the pearls at nearly $ 1,000, with the full badges weighing around 40 pounds. Her handmade shoes, adapted to her somewhat odd shoe size (one foot size 7, the other size 9) were covered with lace. Her bouquet consisted of several dozen off-white roses, two dozen gardenias and 400 stephanotis flowers.

Glass also designed her nine bridesmaid dresses in coral pink taffeta and beaded each of 300 pearls. “Not only were their shoes dyed to match, but even their makeup was [was] professionally coordinated. ”(Rhodes). The bridesmaids each received an antique-type porcelain doll, each designed and manufactured for the different sizes of dresses they wore.) Glass’s fiancé, Lindwall, set out to make hundreds of small porcelain wedding bells, bearing the couple’s names and the wedding date, to hold the groom’s cake.

Given the massive planning of the wedding, Glass wanted her dress listed in the Guinness Book of World Records and the ceremony presented in Modern Bride magazine. The wedding party consisted of 24 attendants and the cost of the whole affair was estimated at $ 50,000.

In December 1982, a near catastrophe could have destroyed the plans of the marriage if her father had not reacted quickly. A fire broke out in the basement of the family home. With bloodstained hands of cut glass, he grabbed his daughter’s wedding dress and rushed out of the house. It is not known how the fire was started. The dress was not damaged and the blood stains from her father’s hands were washed away.

Overjoyed and tired of all the preparation and planning, Glass knew the event would be memorable. There would be great moments happening and unforeseen circumstances lurking around the corner.

Wedding extravagance

The painstakingly planned wedding took place at 5 p.m. on February 19, 1983, a cool winter day, at St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral, located at 1245 10th Avenue E on Seattle’s Capitol Hill. . High on the hill above Interstate 5, the cathedral is an easily visible landmark in the city. With the arrival of the guests, a mixture of traditions and cultures was represented as the church filled with family and friends from everywhere.

The wedding ceremony was performed by an episcopal priest. The bride and groom exchanged rings as a symbol that they got married, and photos were appropriately taken. More than 600 guests had been invited. The wedding was so important that Glass created a five-page program listing the highlights of her wedding to hand out to guests. Music before and during the wedding was performed on the pipe organ of St. Mark’s and by the Northwest Symphony String Quartet. Before the ceremony, corsages were delivered to the homes of 40 of the guests.

The wedding reception was held at the newly opened Sheraton hotel in downtown Seattle on Sixth and Pike streets. It was the first big event organized in the hotel. The reception started with a catering staff serving champagne and appetizers, followed by a seven-course sit-down dinner with wine. Forty tables adorned the room with extravagant floral arrangements for the guests. The Opus 4 String Quartet and five members of the Bellevue Symphony Orchestra played dance music. The six-tier spice wedding cake was eight feet, two inches high, decorated with cream frosting, sugar bows, and marzipan roses.

The whole event was a memorable celebration. Before it even took place, Glass’s father, Marvin Glass, summed up the event and his daughter’s role in its conception:

“I assumed when Cheryl had a wedding it would be like this… because with everything she does, she’s very specific about how she wants it to be – just right.” (Rhodes)

A good idea starts with requests

Glass’s wedding and opulent bridal gown gained recognition across the country. Many were so impressed with her designs that Glass received many requests for designs from other brides-to-be. Two years later, on May 23, 1985, at the age of 23, the racing driver opened her custom studio Cheryl Glass Designs in the historic Interurban building built in 1891 at 102 Occidental Avenue S in the Pioneer Square neighborhood in Seattle.

The boutique specialized in bespoke wedding dresses and formal evening wear, and offered catering services for special events for local and national customers. Each dress was a unique original design made to customer specifications; prices starting at $ 1,000. Glass’s work has been nationally recognized in fashion and style publications. Her beautifully created fashion sketches were exhibited in her studio before they came to life.

Glass was recognized as the Most Outstanding Young Designer in a tribute to black designers of the Pacific Northwest in the 1980s. She owned, managed and operated her fashion design business for 12 years, until her death. premature in 1997.


Elizabeth Rhodes, “What a marriage!” Seattle weather, February 17, 1983, p. D-1; Dick Rockne, “Breaking the Barrier at Indy 500,” Same., October 19, 1983, p. E-1; Marilyn Kirkby, “On a Fast Track – Racer has a varied career,” Same., May 23, 1985, p. E-5; Renee Mitchell, “Talented Designer Leads the Top of Life on the Fast Lane”, Seattle Post Intelligence, July 19, 1987, p. F-4; “A racing car driver exchanges a helmet for an elegant veil” The independent disc (Helena, MT), September 25, 1983, p. 25; “Pit stop for the wedding”, The Billings Gazette, February 20, 1983, p. 21; “This marriage is difficult to beat”, Montana Standard, February 21, 1983, p. 16; Marshall Pruett, “The Life and Death of Cheryl Glass,” July 14, 2017, Road & Track website accessed July 1, 2021 ( de-glass-cheryl /); Francesca Steele, “Don’t Hate Me Because I’m Fast: Remembering Cheryl Linn ‘The Lady’ Glass, 1961-1997”, July 14, 2019, Hemmings website accessed July 1, 2021 (https: //www.hemmings . com / stories / 2019/07/14 / dont-hate-me-because-im-fast-remembering-cheryl-linn-the-lady-glass-1961-1997); Esther Hall Mumford, Calabash: A Guide to African American History, Culture, and Art in Seattle and King County, Washington (Seattle: Ananse Press, 1993), 29-30; Cheryl Glass website accessed September 11, 2020 (; “Seattle’s St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral opens in 1930” (by Priscilla Long), (accessed August 6, 2021); “Cheryl Glass” (video), YouTube site accessed June 15, 2021 (; “Shirley Talks About Cheryl” (video), YouTube site accessed June 15, 2021 (; “Cocktails and Crankshafts: Cheryl Linn Glass Special” (video), YouTube site consulted June 15, 2021 (

Licence: This essay is licensed under a Creative Commons license which encourages reproduction with attribution. Credit should be given to and the author, and sources should be included with any reproduction. Click the icon for more information. Please note that this Creative Commons license only applies to text, not images. For more information on individual photos or images, please contact the source listed in the image credit.

Major support provided by:
Washington State | Patsy Bullitt Collins | Paul G. Allen Family Foundation | Museum of History and Industry | 4Culture (King County Accommodation Tax Revenue) | City of Seattle | City of Bellevue | City of Tacoma | King County | The Peach Foundation | Microsoft Corporation, other public and private sponsors and visitors like you

Comments are closed.