The Oxford Dictionary’s definition of Couture is: “The design and manufacture of fashionable clothes to a client’s specific requirements and measurements”.
It is a concise and accurate description of this craft, but I would say that Couture is a bit more magical than this….
Couture is about skills, not about fashion. It is about the process. About every detailed step. About hours and hours of hand beading. About thread as fine as hair and fingers sore from needle manipulation. It is about the careful positioning of stones and crystals. About blurry vision after sewing thousands of tiny gemstones. And more importantly, Couture is about the client. There is no point to a gown without the right woman wearing it.
A couture dress fits. Undoubtedly. Categorically. It is made-to-measure after all. But the process often happens backwards. Everyone is different; shape, size, strength, posture, demeanour, confidence…. Or lack of. All these traits help design a dress.
A Couture dress is a second skin. A better skin. It can hide what you dislike and enhance what you love. The placement of lace curving in at the waist will create a slim silhouette. An embellished detail on the whole length of the sleeves will elongate your arms.
The techniques involved in couture are what makes a gown just that little bit more special… For example, instead of machine stitching a skirt hem, it will be sewn by hand with an invisible stitch.
When using lace, rather than placing a flat pattern on the fabric and cutting it out, the motifs of the lace will be carefully cut and shaped to create an uninterrupted seam.
You might think… Why bother? Because every woman deserves at least ONE special garment.
Whether you keep your wedding dress in the closet for a few decades before passing it on to your daughter, or whether it is a ball gown that you wore at a charity ball and absolutely love but don’t have the opportunity to wear…. Or even that evening dress which makes everyone’s head turn and makes you feel on top of the world….
There should be one classy, beautiful, sexy and timeless piece in your wardrobe.
One piece… as special as you.