Friday, 30 July 2010

Figure Envy.

Yes, i'm sure we all have it, but at Dresses at No. 9. it's banned!
With many ladies an average dress size 14 or above I don't like the phrase, 'Plus Size.' I prefer voluptious and I've seen and worked with figures of all shapes and sizes. But, the most important part of my work is to make sure each and every client looks a million and feels it too.
I cater for the whole bridal party from the bride herself through to bridesmaids, mother of the bride and groom, the little people and even uncle Ted from...well, whever uncle Ted is from and
my job is to make sure each and every client feels comfortable and confident in their chosen attaire.
Understandably, everyone will be looking at the bride on her very special day, but the bridesmaids will want to look equally as stunning as all eyes will be on them too.
As the word 'wedding' is muttered this could be the time to get fit, tone up and shed a little weight, but take heed.
Never walk into a bridal salon and chose a gown which "will fit me by the time I get married. I plan to diet."
I've seen this happen so many times, the weight isn't lost and the client is left with a gown which won't fit right or look right.
When I am comissioned by a client, I take the measurments at her current size. We talk about weight loss plans, but I will measure at a brides current weight/size. Weight can fluctuate, sometimes from a curvy size 14 to a wobbly size 16 depending on the time of the month or the number of take-aways consumed that week.
The important thing is not to crucify yourself over your weight or the fact you haven't lost any. There really isn't any point in shoe-horning yourself into a gown that is really too small resulting in double boob syndrome or the dreaded back bulge.
Together we will navigate our way through different dress styles and choose what works for you. If a diet plan is in place you will have several fittings to enable the most perfect fit on your wedding day.
Big and beautiful has never been more vogue, so love the skin you're in!

Thursday, 29 July 2010

Happy Birthday Jessica!

I believe everyone should have at least 1 very posh frock in their wardrobe (ok, my very lucky daughter has 3) and
it's not just daughters who request posh frocks, sons request them for their girlfriends too and this is what my son asked me to make for his girlfriend, Jessica's 20th birthday.

Jess had an idea of what she liked so construction was a half kept secret. However, I needed to measure her for the internal corset and like most of the dresses I make, the dress would be built around it.

Jess chose her preferred colour, a gorgeous nude pink silk with a black lace overlay.

The design of the under dress was fully lined and strapless. The inner corselette was attached at the bodice top. The lace dress was joined to the dress at the zip with a few stitches to secure at the under arm.

Jess was fitted again for the corselette and strapless dress, but she wouldn't know how her dress was going to look until her birthday morning.

The lace dress was cut avoiding seams running through the front.

And again at the back.

With killer heels to add to the ensemble, she looked a million!

Saturday, 24 July 2010

Pushing the Sewing Ability.

I don't think I've ever been so brave to push my sewing abilities as I have over this past year.
In many industries, folk are offered refresher courses, training days etc, but what happens with the likes of me who never went to college to train as a dressmaker/designer, but luckily has an eye for detail and a passion for the craft and who literally has to learn by 'doing'.
Sewing is indeed a craft and I wouldn't insult by saying anyone can do it. I am an apprentice, learning a new technique almost every day. Sewing is a constant learning curve, a craft which is filled with emotion whether that emotion is frustration and disappointment or satisfaction and elation. I experience them all.
So, when Jodie comissioned me to make her wedding gown, I jumped at the chance.
Jodie had seen a film and had fallen in love with the character's style of wedding gown a few years ago. "Nothing else will do," she said. But, the only dilema was she lived in Milton Keynes and I in West Yorkshire. However, she sent me her measurment form and travelled the distance for 1 fitting near to completion which would enable me to make any minor adjustments should they be required.
So, I began to draft her wedding gown to her requirements. I opted for a 2-piece gown, wanting to make sure that the bodice needed to be as dramatic as the skirt. The bodice was made using a beautiful gold bridal brocade, while the skirt was a mixture of an ivory duchess satin for the main part and an ivory 100% silk georgette for the train.

I looked at different feathers and their movement from swan and ostrich to maribu and then looked at various fabrics to use for the feather effect in the train from synthetic chiffon to the final choice of the silk georgette.

The bodice had a corset closure allowing for the snug fit.

Each strip of georgette was cut and torn to achieve the overall effect.

Jodie finished her dramatic gown with a cream top hat fascinator. I simply cannot wait for the official piccys.

Saturday, 17 July 2010

Congratulations, Amy.

These past few weeks have had me working into the wee small hours, all in preperation for Amy's wedding today. I was comissioned to make 5 adult bridesmaid gowns complete with jackets, 2 pre-teen bridesmaids dresses, 2 cravats, change sashes and make a mother of the bride outfit within less than a fortnight as Amy's mum was struggling with finding something suitable.
Amy also comissioned me for my personal dressing service so armed with my emergency bag, I arrived at Amy's 9.30 promt this morning.

I pressed the gowns before I arrived which enabled me to hang them straight away until required.

Liz, Amy's mum looked stunning in her gold 100% silk duchess satin dress with matching jacket. I thought the shape of the collar would frame her face superbly.
Liz teamed her outfit with fushia pink assessories and a fabulous ivory fascinator.

The bridesmaids were made from a sumptious purple taffeta

Waiting for Amy to arrive in her horse and cart.
Even though there was a little rain, the girls all looked radient. May I take this opportunity to say thank you Amy for allowing me to be part of your very special day. I wouldn't have missed it for the world.
Oh, and my flowers are fabulous, no need, but very much appreciated.
Have a fantastic rest of your wedding day. xx