Why does this cost so much?
- Generally the clothes/bags etc you can purchase ‘off the peg’ in a department store or mall are mass produced. That means that the company making the $5 t-shirts has bought a very large quantity of fabric and thread at wholesale prices. If you buy thousands of metres of fabric, you can get a very good deal. A seamstress buying fabric in small quantities at retail price will have to pay a good deal more for materials.
- That same t-shirt was probably made far away, in a country/factory that does not have and/or enforce labour laws or use skilled labour. That means that the people working there are not likely paid a living wage and are not trained in the finer points of sewing. Most will do only one job as part of an assembly line, and do not make the garment from start to finish.
- A cheap t-shirt is cheap for a reason. The manufacturer is concerned with quantity over quality. The fabric is not going to be top shelf, the seams will wear quickly and cost cutting measures like not cutting on the grain of the fabric may result in twisted seams once the item is washed.
Why Custom Made?
- Having something made just for you means that it can be something unique to you. No one else will have the same dress or bag. It is made to your specifications, with the help of a trained eye.
- The seamstress or tailor is usually someone who has trained specifically to build garments with attention to detail and construction. They might have gone to school for their trade, apprenticed under a working professional, or self educated with years of research and hands on work. They take pride in making garments and other items that both look good and function properly. They can also mend and alter existing items, giving them a longer life. Their skill and knowledge will produce a better finished piece and make you look better. Their priority should be quality, and customer satisfaction. Their reputation depends on it.
- A custom made item is an investment. It should look good, and last longer than a cheaply made one.
Do you make Wedding gowns, and Bridal party dresses?
- Yes, I have made wedding garments, but I am very picky when it comes to these items. I know that the market is flooded with cheaply made, but often expensive gowns that can be easily had with a little shopping. They tend to be made of the same types of fabrics and tend not to fit everyone well. I’m not interested in making something you can already purchase off the rack. I prefer to make something worth making from scratch. I have made a green wedding dress and a whole party of 18th century gowns and waistcoats. Do you want something with an antique or vintage look? Something a little unconventional? Something in an interesting colour scheme? Something you will actually wear afterwards? Something with a hidden pocket or a convertible skirt?? I’m glad to construct garments for your special day that express YOU! I don’t do crepe-back satin sheath dresses – they look cheap and are not flattering on anyone…
Can I pay in instalments?
- I am aware that custom made can be expensive, especially for something complex. My usual rule is that you pay for materials and a portion of the total up front (varies depending on the total cost) and pay instalments as the process goes on. I generally require full payment upon the completion of the item. I believe that this is a fair deal for both myself and my clients. I need to make a living but I also want to make my services accessible to as many people as possible.
- There are also options when it comes to certain designs. I can recommend cost saving measures if necessary. Often this means using less expensive materials, or altering a design to be less time consuming to complete.
Do you do alterations?
- Yes! I specialize in finding a way to make things functional even where others may have said no. There are of course certain situations where there is little to be done, in which case I’ll let you know.
- I can also do basic mending, hemming and zipper installation for small fees.
How do I start the custom item process?
More FAQs TBA!