The Mak­ing of a Be­spoke Wed­ding Gown

Singapore Tatler Wedding - - CONTENTS - MINDA GOMEZ Founder/de­signer, Sil­hou­ette The Ate­lier

With a be­spoke cre­ation, you’ll be say­ing “yes” to the dress at first sight

For­get about set­tling for an ill-fit­ting wed­ding gown that took you months to find. With a be­spoke cre­ation, you’ll be say­ing “yes” to the dress at first sight

Find­ing a wed­ding dress that is flat­ter­ing and fit­ting is try­ing enough, let alone one that also re­flects your style and per­son­al­ity. It is not im­pos­si­ble, how­ever; with time, pa­tience, and luck, you’ll meet the gown of your dreams.

How­ever, time is an al­most un­heard of lux­ury among brides-to-be. So why not let an ex­pert cre­ate your dream gown and save your­self pre­cious hours brows­ing bou­tiques? A be­spoke gown will fit you like sec­ond skin. The right de­sign­ers can ad­vise on the most flat­ter­ing sil­hou­ette for your body while en­sur­ing no de­tail is left out. You are an in­te­gral part of the cre­ative process, too—you will work closely with the de­signer from your first meet­ing to the fi­nal fit­ting ses­sion.

With your vi­sion and the de­signer’s know-how, you can be as­sured of a one-of-a-kind mas­ter­piece that is quintessen­tially you. Be­spoke wed­ding gown ate­liers, Sil­hou­ette The Ate­lier and Re­becca Caro­line of­fer a peek into the metic­u­lous cre­ation process of a be­spoke gown.

Es­tab­lished in 1995, Sil­hou­ette The Ate­lier is a fa­mil­iar name in Sin­ga­pore’s wed­ding in­dus­try. The ate­lier’s small but ded­i­cated team of de­sign­ers, in­clud­ing Minda Gomez (above, cen­tre), de­sign so­phis­ti­cated bridal gowns us­ing lux­u­ri­ous ma­te­ri­als and fea­tur­ing in­tri­cate, fine de­tail­ing.

SIN­GA­PORE TATLER WED­DINGS (STW): What is the typ­i­cal time­line for cre­at­ing a be­spoke gown?

MINDA GOMEZ (MG): Dur­ing the first ses­sion four to six months be­fore the wed­ding or up to eight months for com­pli­cated de­signs, we usu­ally dis­cuss and con­firm the gown de­sign. The first fit­ting takes place one to two months later. Here, the brideto-be will wear a skele­ton of the dress. Af­ter this, we start adding the lace and work­ing on the de­tails. There will be three to four fit­tings. The fi­nal fit­ting is done 10 to 14 days be­fore the wed­ding.

STW: What kind of prep work should brides-to-be do prior to meet­ing you?

MG: Come with some photos of the types of gowns you like. This could come in the form of a mood board of sketches, photos or mag­a­zine cutouts, or you can show us your Pin­ter­est wed­ding board. It will give the de­sign­ers a bet­ter idea of your de­sign pref­er­ences be­fore they of­fer more re­fined rec­om­men­da­tions.

STW: What should brides-to-be con­sider when choos­ing a gown de­signer?

MG: It’s im­por­tant for them to feel com­fort­able with the de­signer, and that both par­ties un­der­stand each other, which is why com­mu­ni­ca­tion and hon­esty are key—the bride has to be hon­est about what she ex­pects and what she wants; and the de­signer has to be clear about what can or can­not be done.

STW: What’s the most com­mon prob­lem that can arise when mak­ing a be­spoke gown?

MG: Brides-to-be want­ing to change the de­sign and even the cut­ting of the dress af­ter it has been made. To avoid this, we in­form clients that once the dress is made, any dras­tic changes, such as re­shap­ing the sil­hou­ette, will in­cur a fee. If we en­counter brides who can­not de­cide what they want, we would ad­vise them to go for off-the-rack gowns in­stead of be­spoke gowns. That way, they can in­stantly see how the dress looks on them in­stead of hav­ing to imag­ine how it might look on them. We’ve also had preg­nant brides, which means we would have to work on an ex­tremely tight time­line for the fit­tings so as to avoid any ma­jor al­ter­ations closer to the big day.

STW: How do you pre­pare for and cope with un­ex­pected gown mishaps?

MG: We con­duct strin­gent and thor­ough checks on the dress be­fore the wed­ding. That aside, we also brief brides-to-be on the mea­sures they can take in the un­likely event of a mishap. We also of­fer the op­tion of an ad­di­tional ser­vice where one of our staff fol­lows the bride around on the ac­tual day, func­tion­ing as her per­sonal gown as­sis­tant.

STW: What are the most re­quested gown fea­tures?

MG: Plung­ing neck­lines, back­less styles and heavy bead­ing.

STW: Any tips for a smooth gown-mak­ing process?

MG: Know what you want, but give the de­signer space to work on the dress of your dreams.

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