Are you swooning over a designer gown, but the price tag has you feeling overwhelmed? Can't get it out of your mind, and other wedding dresses don't measure up? Don't lose hope - let us help you.
How It Started
For a first-time bride, embarking on the wedding dress journey can be a path riddled with various challenges, obstacles, and moments of uncertainty.
Luciarna had been down this road before and remembered all too well the disappointment of her first wedding dress. This time, she was determined not to make the same mistake again. She had learned valuable lessons from her experience, and those memories reinforced her commitment to finding the perfect wedding dress she wouldn’t regret again.
“I hated the wedding dress I had when I was young and I regret not picking what I wanted and settling.” – Luciarna
This time, Luciarna had a crystal-clear vision of her dream wedding dress. She came across a designer wedding gown that captured her heart completely – it was THE ONE. This dress consumed her thoughts, leaving no doubt in her mind that this was the wedding dress of her dreams.
However, a significant hurdle loomed before her – the steep price tag that often accompanies high-end designer wedding dresses. It was a predicament that many brides can relate to, Designer couture wedding dresses often command prices in the tens of thousands of dollars, making them unaffordable for many brides.
The dilemma at hand was how to proceed?
Luciarna found her solution: a custom-made wedding dress.
In June 2022, she contacted us, expressing her desire for a custom wedding gown.
We were delighted to help her, but there was a unique challenge. Luciarna was six months pregnant at the time, and she had some reservations about ordering a custom bridal gown with measurements to be taken nine months before her wedding, especially when she was just beginning her third trimester.
Luciarna had worries about fitting into her custom-made wedding dress, given her pregnancy and the timeline for ordering, making the dress, and shedding the post-pregnancy weight to regain her pre-baby body for her March 2023 wedding date.
She had her heart set on a fitted style for the wedding dress, which raised some concerns about how the custom-made wedding dress would fit her due to the pregnancy and the time frame to work ordering the dress, getting her wedding dress made and the weight loss to bounce back to pre-pregnancy baby body by March 2023 for her wedding.
Luciarna’s baby was due in October and she had asked if it would be possible for measurements to be taken in January 2023 but this timeline posed a challenge due to the intricate and highly detailed nature of custom-made wedding dresses.
Luciarna requested for measurements to be taken in January 2023 however this would not leave any time with dress production due to the intricate and elaborate nature of custom-made wedding dresses – where everything is made entirely from scratch and delicately made by hand.
Ideally, we recommend scheduling custom-made wedding dress orders 6-8 months before the wedding date. However, it's important to note that certain designers and dressmakers may require up to 12 months to produce custom bridal gowns.
Indeed, there are ways to handle this situation. Luciarna mentioned that she typically wore Australian sizes 10 to 12 before having a baby. What's fortunate is that in her previous pregnancies, she was able to get back to her pre-baby size within a few months. Her physically demanding job helped her lose the post-pregnancy weight quickly. This turned out to be very lucky for her.
Considering the expectation that Luciarna would likely return to her usual dress size, it was recommended that her custom-made wedding dress be ordered in a size larger. This would allow for any remaining weight and ensure a comfortable fit. Sizing up is a common practice because it simplifies the process of dress alterations compared to ordering a smaller size.
The Original Dress Design
Luciarna fell in love with the “Estelle” wedding dress by Galia Lahav which came with a price tag of $18,000. The designer’s website describes this design as “A sheer mermaid dress made entirely of sparkly beaded fishnet with intimate beaded fringe details and hand embroidered floral accents. This sensual dress offers a plunging v neckline, drop low back and detachable sleeves.”
We hold deep respect for the original designer’s work and do not duplicate another designer’s wedding dresses to honour the original designer’s creativity and work. Instead, our specialty lies in crafting a one-of-a-kind bespoke custom wedding dress tailored to your unique preferences. We draw inspiration from the original design you love, using its elements as a foundation to create your dress. Our goal is to infuse your gown with individual touches that mirror your style, personality, and preferences, ensuring it complements and flatters your body beautifully.
In collaboration with Luciarna, we engaged in a discussion about the design elements she wished to modify from the original dress to ensure that the gown truly embodied her authentic self.
Luciarna emphasized her fondness for the gridded style fabric used in the original wedding dress, articulating her wish for a fabric that embodied a similar essence. In line with our dedication to clear communication and transparency, we clarified that duplicating the exact fabric might present challenges. However, we assured her that we would make every effort to source a close alternative that captured the desired essence.
With a very specific vision in mind, Luciarna had been scouring for inspiration photos and knew exactly what she liked and didn’t like when it came to her custom-made wedding dress. She had sent through photos of other designs of fabrics and designs which was also inspired by the original Galia Lahav wedding dress but there were aspects which Luciarna did not want hers to resemble such as not wanting “glitter or sequin”, fabric patterns that too sparsely spread as well as a very yellow beige lining.
We proposed a beautiful, beaded mesh gridded fabric that would be suitable to achieve the look Luciarna was envisioning.
In this phase of proposing and selecting fabrics, we also chose complementary materials like lining, illusion tulles, and lace appliques to finalize the fabric selection process.
Neckline - Tulle
This invisible layer serves to reinforce the stability of the plunging neckline, ensuring it remains securely in place.
The "wheat" colored tulle is the most popular choice for creating nude illusion necklines, sleeves or back and is selected for its exceptional ability to seamlessly blend with a wide range of skin tones.
The lace appliqué embellishes the bodice, sleeves, and skirt
Luciarna was captivated by the beaded fabric and floral appliques, confirming her selections, and eager to move forward to the initial stages of dress production. Exciting times were on the horizon!
In Production Progress Photos
Let's take behind-the-scenes for a sneak peek into our production process - beginning with the initial stages of crafting Luciarna's custom-made wedding dress.
Our process involves carefully ensuring all design details are agreed on and confirmed, selecting the lace, creating mock-ups, and providing progress photos throughout the production stages.
The first phase of production involves crafting mock-ups of the dress silhouette as this is the foundation of the entire dress. These mock ups play a pivotal role in ensuring that the silhouette and details align with how the bride wants before we proceed to cut the actual selected fabrics.
Bodice Fabric Layers
After the dress mock-up received approval, we proceeded to present Luciarna with several options for the composition of the fabric layers. Luciarna was uncertain about how sheer she wanted her wedding dress to be and how the lining colours would contrast beneath the beaded fabric.
Luciarna was contemplating whether to line the bodice and leave the skirt unlined or vice versa. However, due to the inherent sheerness of the fabric, we recommended opting for a lining to ensure that the dress wouldn't be entirely sheer.
We presented the layout of the beaded gridded fabric over light ivory tulle for Luciarna to visualize and make her decision.
The original Galia Lahav "Estelle" wedding dress was unlined, which didn't align with Luciarna's desire for a more modest and elegant appearance. Therefore, for Luciarna's custom wedding dress, her gown incorporated a nude-coloured lining to eliminate any elements that might have made the dress too risqué.
Luciarna had some uncertainty about how sheer she wanted her skirt to be, so we laid out a visual depiction of the beaded fabric of the skirt was laid over an underlay for her review. We took this step to provide her with a visual representation of how different fabric layer combinations would affect the overall sheer appearance of her wedding dress's skirt.
Lace Appliques Layout
Our dressmakers carefully position lace appliques on the dress and temporarily pin them in place. This allows Luciarna to review and approve the placements before we move forward with sewing the appliques onto the dress.
In production photos: lace appliques on skirt
Luciarna requested some changes to the placement and removal of lace appliques, and we made these adjustments as per her preferences.
We then presented the skirt silhouette with the lace appliques for her confirmation before proceeding with the rest of the production process.
The Finished Production Photos
After months of detailed discussions, careful planning, and meticulous craftsmanship by our skilled dressmakers, Luciarna's custom-made wedding dress was finally completed.
Throughout the production journey, we sent Luciarna progress photos for her review. Once the dress was fully finished, we shared the completed dress photos for her final approval. Luciarna was thrilled with the final dress and eagerly awaited her first fitting to see her dream dress come to life before her eyes for the very first time.
The Bride's First Fitting
We scheduled an appointment with Luciarna for her first wedding dress fitting, and she looked amazing. Despite having just gave birth in October 2022, it appeared that all the baby weight had miraculously vanished within just a few months.
Luciarna couldn't believe how breathtaking the dress was and how incredible it felt to wear a gown that had initially been just a vision and was now a beautiful reality. This positive experience reminded her of her first wedding dress again, and she commented on how glad she was that she didn't settle for her second wedding dress because she absolutely adored it.
Although the wedding dress was a little snug, our in house tailors suggested adjusting the in-seam allowance for a more comfortable fit. At her second fitting, our tailors had worked their magic, leveraging their expertise and skilled craftsmanship to ensure a flawless and comfortable fit for Luciarna.
The bride's second fitting after alterations completed: fit to perfection
The Bride's Big Day
Radiant in her custom-made dream gown #WeddingDayBliss
The dress of her dreams + the man of her dreams. Luciarna's happily ever after. Congratulations!
The Bride's Feedback
"Thank you for your help in bringing my vision to life. Everyone said it was the most beautiful wedding dress!" - Luciarna Cox
Get In Touch
In the journey to your dream wedding day, the choice of your wedding dress is nothing short of magical. It's the embodiment of your unique style, personality, and love story.
At Envious Bridal & Formal, we understand the importance of this choice, and we're here to make your dream wedding dress a reality. From intricate lacework to personalized embellishments, we are committed to crafting a masterpiece custom wedding dress that not only reflects your vision but also complements your individuality.
Don't settle for off-the-rack when you can have a gown that's as exceptional as you are. Contact us today, and together, we'll weave the threads of your imagination into a breathtaking reality.
Your love story deserves nothing less than a custom-made masterpiece, and we're here to make it happen. Your wedding day is a chapter in your love story; let us help you write it in style.