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Selling a dress three sizes too big

Selling a dress three sizes too big

Hi Brides,

I usually baulk at selling a dress three sizes too big; however, this bride had neither time nor budget on her side.
Fortunately, this dress was priced well under $1000 and the style was suited to a youthful bride, and with a few tweaks we were able to recreate the dress within her timeframe and budget.
There were two key changes made to the design of the dress:
I first removed the top tier of the skirt - this reduced the overall impact of the voluminous skirt, an important change considering how slender she was.
I then ran the dress in along the back zipper - primarily to reduce the size of the bodice - however, this also changed the design of the back of the bodice from a v-shape to a straight back, increasing the support of the weighty skirt on her petite frame.
I try to only recommend drastic changes like this to dresses that are already significantly reduced in price, because these alterations can be very costly. Although I do have to admit it can be very fulfilling to use my creativity to remake a dress that was otherwise ‘old’ stock!

 

Connie xo

 

Lost more weight than expected

Lost more weight than expected

Hi Brides to Be.

This plus-sized bride lost more weight than what she expected to, meaning her ordered dress was two sizes too big!
Alterations were even more extreme because I had to alter it to fit both her large bust and tiny waist.
I also created a bodice piece using boned crepe fabric. This allowed her to wear a bra and provided extra support. Shortening the sleeves to the level of the waist band also worked to better balance the figure.
She looks lovely and the photos show just how flattering a deep-v looks on her!

Lillian West 6422

Connie xo

 

​ALTERATION OF THE WEEK Hiding her Bra

​ALTERATION OF THE WEEK Hiding her Bra

ALTERATION OF THE WEEK

This week's bride chose a lace dress with a deep v-neckline. It was incredibly flattering to her figure and her large bust; however, we were left with the conundrum of hiding her bra.
We spent some time trying to find a solution: it's hard to find larger cup bras in a plunge design, and adding more lace to the bodice meant that the neckline was no longer as magically flattering.
But then I discovered a solution! I added some matching lace to the front of her bra, disguising it and incorporating it into the design of the dress. It was a fantastic result and the bride was very happy.

Connie xo

 

Recommendations

Recommendations

Brides, I feel so honoured when you come in on recommendations!  

example of how two strapless dresses fit on the one body shape

example of how two strapless dresses fit on the one body shape

This is a fantastic example of how two strapless dresses fit on the one body shape - one flatters her figure much more than the other.

Sometimes brides come in to the boutique and say they have tried on strapless/mermaid/lace/ballgown and that the style doesn’t suit them. I always ask them to reconsider, because there are finer details to why a dress doesn’t suit someone - it might be the lace placement, the structure, the neckline or another key element of design.
This bride is a size 12 and the dresses are constructed of different types of lace and are by two different designers. The left flatters the bride’s shape better but in saying that, I have seen the right flatter other women with different shaped bodies. It’s definitely not just about the size.

Connie xo

 

Alteration am I working on this week

Alteration am I working on this week

What alteration am I working on this week?

This week I am creating a lining that will go underneath a sheer illusion back. Why, you ask? Well, my bride loved the dress but I felt that the sheer illusion tulle wouldn’t provide enough support for her larger bust nor hide a bra. The piece that I have created will disguise her bra band and is boned to offer additional support.
The first photo shows the sheer back without the insert, the second shows it during the creation stage, and the third shows it completed. Stay tuned for before and after photos in the coming weeks.

Connie xo

 

Bride buying her second wedding dress

Bride buying her second wedding dress

Hi Brides,
I had another bride in buying her second dress this week. She wasn’t happy with the choice she made with her first dress even after the alterations were completed.
She loves Martina Liana gowns and sent me an email saying her wedding was only four weeks away, and did I think I could help?
She came in before I left for Barcelona and narrowed her selection down to two dresses straight off the rack. I suggested she take some time to think about it because the boutique was going to be closed and no one would buy them in the interim. She would have time to process it all and ensure she was making the right decision this time around. It would also give her time to break the news to her mum!
These are the two dresses she was deliberating over. They are both lovely dresses but one definitely suits this bride's figure more than the other. She has a rectangle shaped body and the style on the right utilises a diagonal design on the bodice and, along with the v neckline, draws the eye downwards to give this bride a waist.
Her mum was happy for her daughter, despite this being her second dress. I don’t have a photo of the first dress as it was at the alterations place, but I can see why her mum was pleased she had finally found a dress she loved!
 

Housekeeping

Housekeeping

Hi Brides!
Just a few housekeeping items.
1. Please don't bring coffees into the boutique. They have the potential to make a huge mess when spilt, and it costs me a lot of money to have coffee spray cleaned from multiple dresses. Yes - this HAS happened and it still haunts me.
2. Spray tans are a big no-no. I understand it's nice to look your best on the day, but even older tans rub off on the dresses. I pride myself in keeping my dresses pristine, but even a good dry cleaner will struggle to remove tan stains over and over again. If I can smell tan, I WILL ask you to reschedule your appointment. Please don't be offended; I want my dresses clean so that YOU can have the best experience choosing your dress.
3. Please be punctual. I frequently have back to back appointments and unfortunately I cannot always extend an appointment if you are running late.
4. Be BRAVE! Try on dresses that are out of your comfort zone. If you try on a dress and hate it, that's okay! But you might just surprise yourself!
Connie XO
 

Alterations should be completed at the boutique

Alterations should be completed at the boutique

This video perfectly illustrates why I believe alterations should be completed at the boutique you’ve purchased your dress from…this bride is having her final fitting and collecting her dress, and I can triple check that all of the alterations I have made are correct and that the bride is 100% happy with the final result. So many bridal stores send their clients to off-site seamstresses and the boutique owners don’t see the dress right through to the end. How can they be certain the final product is perfect for the bride’s big day?  

Why I Don't stock Bridesmaids dresses

Why I Don't stock Bridesmaids dresses

I often get asked why I don’t stock bridesmaids’ dresses. It’s because I don’t believe in them! You can buy a beautiful bridesmaid dress from a regular designer…then your bridesmaids can wear their dresses again, unlike traditional bridesmaid dresses that are worn once then put in a wardrobe never to be worn again. These traditional dresses stocked by bridal boutiques cost $330-400 plus alterations. Sheike, Review, Bec and Bridge and Tallulah all have wonderful options for the modern wedding.

You do run the risk of one of your guests turning up in the same dress, but this can be avoided by purchasing your dresses in advanced, from the previous season’s collection.
Connie xo
 

Plus size 22 and looks like a model in this photograph

Plus size 22 and looks like a model in this photograph

I received a thank you message from Wendy last week.

I had to show you all how fantastic she looked in her dress - she’s a plus size 22 and looks like a model in this photograph. Absolutely STUNNING!
It just goes to show that any size and any shape can look stunning if you choose the right style dress.
Congratulations, Wendy. You looked amazing on your wedding day!
Connie xo
 

Emotional wedding day

Emotional wedding day

I have a very emotional story to tell you today.

Last year, Carlie and her mum came in for her first consultation. Her mum started to feel dizzy during the appointment and she left early because she began to feel really unwell. When Carlie came in for her second appointment, I asked after her mum, and Carlie explained that her mother had been in and out of hospital and still wasn’t well.
Carlie came in for a fitting last month and when I again asked after her mum, Carlie burst into to tears and said she wasn’t good at all. Her dad was bringing her mum in to see the dress fitting, and when they arrived I was shocked at how much weight she had lost. She had an oxygen bottle and nasal tube, and Carlie’s dad pushed her in a wheel chair.
When Carlie walked out in her dress, it was a really beautiful moment. I could see the pride and love in her parents’ eyes. But Carlie’s mum struggled with every word, and I didn’t have a very good feeling at all. I made sure that we took some lovely pictures of the two of them together, and I am really glad that I did because she passed away on the 20th February. I rarely suggest we take photos during a fitting, but it felt important to me that Carlie had a record of that moment.
Carlie is got married on the 11th March 2017, to the man of her dreams. It will be a bittersweet day for Carlie, but I know that her mother will be there in spirit.
Connie xxoo
 

Online Buying

Online Buying

I stayed late at the boutique the other night. I had a bride send me an email - she needed an urgent appointment so I did my best to fit her in.

The bride had bought her dress from an online store located in Brisbane. She didn’t feel that it did much for her figure (as is often the case with online purchases) but dealing with returns etc meant that she didn’t have enough time left to arrange a new dress and alterations. Her wedding is the 21st of April!
She understood that she would need to purchase something ‘off the rack’, and I selected three dresses to start with. The first dress she only liked, the second dress she LOVED, and I essentially had to force her to try the third dress on. She barely had the third dress on before she asked to try the second dress on again. She knew it was The One. I had only selected dresses that were in the bride’s size range, to minimise the amount of alterations she would need. This brings down the price - a good thing considering she’d already bought a dress. It also means that I can get her alterations done in time for her wedding.
I am so pleased that this bride will sleep well tonight knowing that she has found her dream dress.
Connie xo
 

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