Made to Measure

As an experienced dressmaker, we are dedicated to ensuring your bespoke wedding dress fits you beautifully. All our custom gowns are constructed to the highest standard, and lined in silk.

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Your wedding dress fittings

There are usually 3 or 4 appointments required to create your silk-lined, made to measure wedding dress, and to ensure it fits you beautifully.

The first appointment is for measuring, usually around 4 months before your wedding day, when we use a calico “toile” (a prototype), to ensure the fit of your gown will be perfect. It is essential that you bring a properly fitting bra for this appointment (more about bras in a moment!), and from these measurements, we create a custom made pattern for each bespoke bride, from which to work on your real gown.

The next appointment is for your fitting, usually around 4 – 6 weeks after measuring, when you try on your real gown, and our dedicated dressmaker ensures the fit and length is perfect (more about shoes in a moment!). In the event that you experience weight change in the run up to the wedding, we can still adjust the dress to fit you beautifully, and it is straightforward to do so at this stage, so we encourage you to reach your target weight if possible by this first fitting (we are now around 2 and a half months before your wedding).

If no adjustments are needed at your fitting, then your last appointment will be for you to collect your finished bespoke wedding dress, around 2 to 4 weeks before your wedding day. Usually there are a few adjustments, design tweaks, or alterations due to weight change, so we just arrange an additional fitting or two, as needed, to ensure you’re 100% happy with your beautifully fitted custom gown.

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To bra or not to bra?

As your gown will be a custom made, bespoke affair, we advise you on every detail that might affect the fit, and we find the lingerie worn under a silk wedding dress plays an important role in achieving the beautiful silhouette of the finished gown. Whether or not it is better to wear a bra, tends to be  dictated by the dress style, and the preference and shape of the bride – everyone is unique, as is every bespoke dress, and we work around you,

We collaborate with a number of specialist lingerie boutiques who understand how our made to measure gowns are constructed, and can therefore give you practical and experienced advice.  Our brides usually take their Caroline Arthur design sketch (which we hand-draw at the very start, when discussing ideas for the dress design), with them to the lingerie boutique, so the assistant can check that the bra they recommend will work with the design.

We encourage our discerning brides to consider the experience of visiting a specialist lingerie boutique to be part of the pleasure in having a bespoke gown made to measure. It is also essential in order for us to take correct measurements and to create a beautifully fitted dress.

For more information about bridal lingerie and how to choose the perfect underwear for your wedding dress, read our recent blog by Guilt Lingerie in West Sussex.

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Hemlines and choosing your wedding shoes

You need to bring your bridal shoes with you in order for us to be able to fix your perfect hem length. In our experience there are a number of factors to consider beyond the beauty of the shoe itself..

  • Comfort – Can you walk in them naturally and stand up in them all day?,
  • Embellishment – Beaded, glittery or sparkly detail can catch on the fabric of the dress as you take a step.
  • Colour – Many of our bespoke brides choose a statement colour, but otherwise, something neutral or the same colour as the gown fabric is ideal.
  • Two pairs of shoes – If you intend to change your shoes in the evening, bear in mind your hemline will remain the same, so try and opt for a similar heel height if you can.

Bustling a train

All of our gowns are made with both a wrist loop inside the train so you can carry the train should you need to during the day, for example when climbing steps or getting in and out of a bridal car.

We also create a bespoke bustle system for each gown involving easy-to-tie ribbons for you to bustle away the train for dancing should you wish.