Making incredible wedding gowns is a big undertaking…..where did your journey start?
I did work experience with Samantha Wynne during high school. I was instantly in love and spent 3 years at TAFE in Fashions & Textiles. I then worked at Zanzi’s Bridal for over 4.5 years where I fell in love with bridal fashion. I’m married now with 4 daughters and so creating custom one on one gowns is a great way for me to keep on creating and doing what I love.
What inspires you the most?
Fashion is my first love. I prefer timeless styling and that’s carried over into bridal gowns. I am inspired by the styling from the 30s, 40s & 50s. Audrey Hepburn is the ultimate for me when it comes to style….Chique, Simple & Clean. The movie Dirty Dancing is another one, it’s the dresses, the shoes and the movement giving life to the whole ensemble.
What is the most important advice you can offer our brides to be?
When it comes to your wedding dress shape is key. You can put anything on it but have to nail the shape first! I always start with a calico to get the shape just right…. so that your dress fits you like a glove.
Choosing a dress is a big decision for a bride… How does the design process work? Where do you start?
The first meeting is all about getting to know exactly what my client is after, helping them with ideas and options. I often tell them to bring me their Pinterest board too. Sometimes it’s good to try on a few different styles to see what you prefer before customising a dress just to your taste. Then it’s getting the sketch drawn up to help bring their ideas visually expressed. Communication is so important here when creating exactly what they are envisioning. It’s all broken down step by step.
There’s a million and one options when it comes to your dress. Starting with colour, sample fabrics and layers, boning & corsetory, bra cups & support. Then there is hand beading, appliqués, lace trims, swaroski, handmade buttons and loops. We can create anything.
I’m working on a dress right now that has a 9 layered skirt. 6 layers of delicate tuille and 3 layers of silk. It creates a beautiful full look without the weight and it’s got incredible movement.
The whole experience sounds wonderful. What would you expect to pay for one of your custom gowns?
Prices start from $2500 and range to $5000. I’m a one woman show so I’m able to keep my prices comparable to buying off the rack but with me you’re getting a custom fitted gown and my undivided attention.
How did you come to choose Albany to as your homebase?
We holidayed in Kronkup 2 years ago and we just fell in love with everything about Albany. It’s the community, the lifestyle, so good for kids and a great family environment. I grew up on a farm in Serpentine and I’m just aching for that space and simplicity. We are planning to move to a hobby farm here and work towards self sustainability.
When you’re in the country everyone is just more ‘real’. The country girl, I love working with them because although they are warm and friendly they also know what they want.
Thanks Sarah for sharing your creative journey and your thoughts with us. We look forward to seeing many more of your dresses.