The Couture Gown Process
Happy New Year! We hope everyone had an awesome time off spending it with loved ones! It's a fresh new start to the year and we have so much in store for you all. Firstly, we want to start off the blog by answering questions a lot of brides have when coming in with a bespoke gown in mind. What's really involved? Where are the gowns made? And what price range should be expected when creating a couture piece with us? We've created a little timeline of what happens when our brides opt for having their wedding gown designed just for them.
During the first appointment, we really take this opportunity to know what you are looking for and what kind of style you are after. Generally, our brides will try some of the gowns in the boutique that may have elements of what they're looking for such as a gown for it's deep V-neckline or a particular gown with a lovely skirt shape or back detail.
We then have a rough idea of what our bride wants in the gown and sketch it up with fabric details and silhouette estimated so we can put a quote on the gown. We encourage our brides to send us photos of anything else they are interested in to incorporate in their gown and to think about the design we created together.
In the second appointment, we are able to finalise any design decisions that weren't made in the first appointment. Sometimes our brides return and mention that they found a lovely back detail that would work with the gown or we may have better suggestions to suit the style of gown they are after. This is the best time to let us know if you'd like us to source a particular kind of lace or embellishment. During the second appointment, you're able to see the final details of your gown sketched and decided upon. In the first appointment some brides may have been deciding between a fuller skirt or a mermaid skirt but at this stage we will know what you prefer for your bespoke creation.
Congratulations! You're about to start an amazing journey in getting your very own wedding gown made from scratch, just for you! This sometimes happens in the 2nd appointment and we fill out a Made-to-Measure form for you. This details all the T&C's, timeline for your gown and design features. Brides usually choose to make a deposit or pay in full after they sign the order form.
We then send you fabric swatches of your gown mailed to you so you are able to look for bridesmaids gowns, shoes, flowers and everything else for your special day.
For brides that don't fluctuate much in weight, measurements are sometimes taken after the order form is completed. For brides that may expect any weight changes, we can organise measurements around 3 months before the wedding.
The toile fitting will be the initial mock-up of the bespoke gown design of the bride. This may be made with calico or polyester fabric so we can perfect the structure of the gown and any minimal design decisions are also made in this fitting. For example, the width of a strap, length of the train or the slightly deeper neckline can be decided upon in this fitting. It's also best to start wearing the right underwear in all fittings from now.
In the first fitting, the structure is the most important part in this stage. We want to make sure that the bride is comfortable with how things are looking. At this point, the gown is often not all-in-one but rather the bodice may be separate to the skirt. And if there is French lace in the gown, the lace will be pinned in place so we can decide if it's ready to be hand sewn to the gown.
The second fitting is exciting as the gown takes shape more and brides really see the almost finished wedding dress! There may be only some slight alterations needed such as the length of the gown. This is the best time to bring your shoes for your wedding day in so we know where the gown will finish. Buttons or closures will also be confirmed in this fitting so we can hand sew that in place as well.
The third fitting involved the completely finished gown so that the bride can see it in its entirety. At this part of the process we will have the bustle and finger loop in place so that the train doesn't get in the way of your dancing! Any minor alterations needed can be made in the third fitting before the final pick-up.
Sometimes brides don't need to try on the gown again at pick-up but it is an important moment where the gown will be handed over to our brides freshly steamed and ready to go! The ideal time for pick-up is a week or two before your wedding day. We wish our brides the best and have the gown carefully wrapped in a garment bag for brides to take with them. And voila!
The whole process is very personal and we love getting to know our brides more over the 6 months. The best part for us is receiving the photos from their beautiful wedding day!