When it comes time to choose your wedding gown, there are two options. The first is to buy your gown ‘off the rack’ from a store, which is essentially buying a gown that was designed and made in standard sizing. The other choice is to opt for a custom made wedding dress, made and designed specifically and individually for you. Today, we wanted to dive into custom made wedding gowns and if they might be the right choice for you while also covering a bunch of frequently asked questions we’ve had this year!
What is a custom made wedding dress?
A custom wedding gown is a bridal dress that is designed uniquely for you, and brought to life to fit your exact body measurements. You’ll work alongside a bridal designer or dress maker to create the gown of your choosing completely from scratch. The designer/seamstress will work with you to make choices on laces and fabrics, sketch a design and then bring that design to life with fittings to ensure it fits your body's measurements.
What are the pros to choosing custom made?
There are a few main reasons brides may opt for custom made dress, one is the unique aspect of it. Your dress is designed specifically for you, completely one of a kind, so you'll be the only bride to ever wear that gown. Another big positive to a custom made gown, with it being made specifically to you, is that it’s made to fit your exact body type - no alterations or extra work needed.
The custom gown journey can be the perfect choice for a bride seeking something unique or a bride that wants to be a bit more hands on with her gown. At Euphorie Studios, our initial consult consists of a bride-to-be sitting down with our head designer & Creative Director, Keoula, to discuss the type of gown you may be after, or to provide advice and examples for gowns that may suit you. You’ll have the chance to throw ideas around and get the possibilities to suit your budget before the dressmaking work commences.
The custom made wedding dress process is definitely a good choice for any bride that has a vision for what she wants her gown to look like, having a designer help you bring that vision to life means you’ll be satisfied with your dream dress and won’t have to search through stores to find something that’ll be ‘close enough’ to what you’ve been dreaming of. It's also a great option for anyone that may not know where to start: a bridal designer will be able to guide you with expert advice and styling opinions while knowing the type of dress that will be perfect on you as an individual.
What are the cons to choosing custom made?
When it comes to wedding dresses, making choices can be a stressful time. If you don’t have a decent idea of what you might like, it could be more beneficial for you to allow a bridal store to help you pick out a pre-made gown off the rack so that you can avoid the stress of choosing.
It takes up a lot more time than selecting a gown off the rack. Having a gown custom made requires multiple fittings, consultations and more communication in general to achieve the final result in comparison to going to a store, finding a gown you love, buying it and taking it home.
Note: this may not always be the case. Some bridal stores that source gowns from overseas are having quite large delays with having stock delivered to them currently.
How does getting a custom made wedding dress work?
While all bridal houses will have their own processes, I’ll give some inside to how things work at Euphorie Studios.
Once a bride-to-be contacts our customer care team, they’ll be booked in for an initial consult with our Director & Head Designer, Keoula. At that consult, the future bride will be able to sit down and discuss ideas with Keoula, look through some of our samples in our showroom to get an idea of things like silhouette’s or lace styles and colours of lace or fabrics, among other things. After the initial consult, you’ll be able to get quotes on potential costs of your gown including the options that fit your budget. After which, you’ll be able to take some time to think about your options - we never want to force a bride into buying a gown until she’s had time to think it over, a bride having her dream dress is our number one priority, if we’re fortunate enough to be a part of that, then we love it, but if it’s another designer or store, we’re happy as long as the bride has the one.
When brides choose us to make their gown, we then block out portions of our calendar to ensure their work is done to the maximum standard of quality with plenty of time. Also, we book a follow up consult to finalise design and lace choices before work begins. After the follow up consult, we’ll work with the future bride to book consultations and fittings that work within their schedule and the process moves ahead towards their final fitting & pick up of their dream gown.
Did you know: we also have a photoshoot room set up in the back of our studio & offer brides an optional photoshoot so they can see themselves in their gown before their big day and get a feel for being in front of the camera prior to wedding day portraits.
Extra tips for choosing a custom wedding dress
The number one tip to keep in mind will always be budget. Before you decide to start looking into designers or dress makers, think about your budget. How much can you spend & what range of costs you’re willing to pay will play a big part in what options you’ll have. Once you’ve decided on budget, you’ll be able to give that information to the designers & seamstresses you speak to and you’ll be able to get information on whats within budget relatively fast, saving you a lot of wasted time or stress! The other bonus to having a budget is that you’ll be able to work with a designer to find the perfect gown and then have them help you find budget friendly alternatives - for example, maybe you love a specific shape of gown, but your initial fabric choice pushed the price out of your budget range - you’ll be able to speak with the designer and find alternative options to bring the price more into your ballpark. However, one important factor to always remember, is that if your design deviates from the original design, the price of your gown may increase, so keep that in mind with your budget when making dress-related decisions.
Secondly, take some time to do some research before you meet with your seamstress, Pinterest is a good start. Look up some simple phrases like ‘wedding dresses’ to find ideas of gowns that you like (Clicking on an image and viewing ‘more like this’ is a good tip too once you find images you like!) So that you can take that to your first consult with a designer and help point them in the right direction. It’s not mandatory, most designers will have an eye for what will suit you best, but it is a good bonus to help get some ideas across for the designer.
Another good thing to keep in mind is that a middle ground exists: if you love a gown that’s off-the-rack but you wished you could change some aspects (like adding sleeves) you can have alterations carried out on your gown to change up an existing multi-produced gown into your own unique version of it, allowing you to really stand out!