Bespoke Wedding Dresses
Saying "Yes" to Your Dream Gown
Dreaming up your big day is one thing but finding the precise elements needed to piece it together is an entirely different thing. This couldn't be truer than when talking about wedding dresses. In general, you'll have two options; either buy a gown "off the rack" or commission a designer to specially make one for you.
Perhaps you've made several bridal appointments and still haven't found a dreamy gown that fits the bill. Maybe standard sizing guides don't work for you, even with made-to-measure options, or you simply want to rock a one-of-a-kind bridal ensemble on your big day. Whatever the case, choosing a bespoke wedding dress guarantees that you'll end up wearing your dream gown down to the last detail.
More than likely, you are still figuring out whether or not to settle for a bespoke bridal ensemble. There's certainly plenty to consider; from finances to practicality. Hopefully, you'll get more clarity after feasting your eyes on the Vivian Luk Atelier creations and taking a deeper dive into custom wedding dresses.
Wedding Dress Shopping Options
Before exploring bespoke wedding dresses, perhaps we should revisit the different categories of bridal ensembles you'll typically encounter during the shopping process.
Off-the-rack wedding dresses
As implied, these are wedding ensembles you can buy straight from the rack either at a bridal boutique, department store, or discount outlets. Bridal stores typically stock sample pieces as well as ready-to-wear creations from diverse designers. The catch is that they'll typically have limited pieces of each wedding gown at the store and often takes them several weeks to restock.
Made-to-order bridal ensembles
Most bridal stores stock sample pieces from various designers. Once you pick your favourite design, they'll place an order in your specific size. The issue is that different designers have varying size charts which means that you won’t exactly get a gown that fits like a glove. You may still need to make further alterations, at additional costs, after purchasing the dress.
Made-to-measure wedding gowns
Designers usually have collections of pre-sketched bridal looks that you can choose from and have customised to your liking. In this case, the customisation is limited to the measurements and fit. You can't really make adjustments in terms of the design of the gown.
Bespoke bridal looks
Bespoke bridal looks are specially commissioned by brides who want unique wedding dresses. The gown is one-of-kind in the sense that the designer comes up with a sketch from scratch and further tailors it to fit the bride like a glove. It is the costliest option and takes the longest time to process.
Why Should you Go for a Bespoke Wedding Dress?
Settling for a bespoke wedding dress means that you'll likely spend much more than you would when buying an off-the-rack gown or choosing a made-to-order bridal ensemble. It's certainly easier to purchase a ready-to-wear gown but it's not always the practical option for every bride. In general, going bespoke means the following:
You'll get an original bridal look
If you have a specific vision in mind down to details like the fabric choice, colour, silhouette, and additional embellishments, then the custom-made route is your best option. Perhaps you have family heirlooms or pieces of fabric from a relative’s dress that you'd like incorporated into the outfit. Getting a gown custom made gives you the flexibility to be as creative as you please. The end product is an original creation that is largely influenced by your preferences.
The bespoke gown will fit like a glove
Being told that an outfit was truly made for you is the highest level of compliment you could ever receive about what you choose to wear. This statement hits the nail on the head in the case of a bespoke gown, and the best part about it is walking down the aisle in a well-fitting, head-turning bridal ensemble. Naturally, the entire process involves several fitting sessions but the end result is worth it.
You won't need to make drastic and costly alterations
You won't incur additional alteration costs because off the bat, having a dress custom-made means that nothing is left to chance. Throughout the design and tailoring process, the seamstress will make sure that the outfit turns out exactly as expected. Most importantly, a lot of emphasis goes on making sure that the gown fits right.
You'll need enough time to get the dress made
In general, it takes anywhere from two to eight months to work on a bespoke wedding dress. This is one of the aspects that varies from one seamstress to the next as well as factors like how long you have before the big day. You'll also be involved in every step, and that in itself means that you need enough time to see the entire process through.
Striking a compromise
From working on the sketch to tailoring the gown, you'll need to be flexible about various things. From the design to the tailoring processes; go with the expert's advice if something you had in mind proves difficult to execute. Think along the lines of compromising on the fabric choice if it doesn't favour the silhouette.
Why do Bespoke Wedding Gowns Cost More?
Custom-made dresses, in general, cost more than other outfits. It’s simply because of the amount of work involved as well as the time factor. It isn't a process that you can rush and in most cases, the entire outfit or several elements are hand-sewn. Most designers calculate the cost in relation to the labor involved and the fabric used to tailor the gown.
Most designers will give you the flexibility to change several things, within reason, along the way. That includes elements like going for bigger sleeves or deciding to add an over-skirt to the outfit. It's a time-intensive process overall, and that also adds to the overall cost.
Stunning sea life Inspired Bespoke Wedding Dresses
Shot beautifully by Alea Lovely seaside in Hong Kong and styled by Simply Peachy, these sea life inspired bespoke wedding dresses from Vivian Luk Atelier are breathtakingly gorgeous.
Snorkelling enthusiasts will easily see how coral gardens and sea fans inspired this new stunning new collection!
Vivian Luk attended Parsons School of Design and worked with Vera Wang creating an iconic red carpet looks for celebrities and brides before returning home to Hong Kong to open her own atelier.
From Vivian – “My designs are for women who appreciate works of art. They are dreamy, yet modern and bold. The sculptural forms, lush draping, and intricate details of my gowns create movement with a subtle sensuality.”
Credits: Photography: Alea Lovely // Gowns: Vivian Luk Atelier // Styling & Decor: Simply Peachy // Floral Design: J.F. Floral Couture // Location: Big Wave Bay, Hong Kong // Boutonniere & Decor: Victorian Gardens // Makeup: Mini Chan Makeup // Hair: Nick Fung // Hair Piece: Emmy Ray // Models: Zuzana Tobolkova & Francois Wong.