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Designed your own wedding dress but can’t afford to have it made? Read our list of tips to make it into a reality.

By Andrea Petrou on September 14th, 2009 0 comments yet. Be the First

happy_bride.jpgIf you’ve been drawing your dream wedding dress since you could hold a pencil but can’t afford to have one made, or haven’t got the time to make a dress from scratch by yourself, then we might be able to help you out.

These tips aren’t for brides who don’t want heavy embroidering or lots of detail but we hope they may help others.

The first thing to do is go and try on a few dresses which seem to be a similar style to the dress you have designed. You may love the fishtail look, but it could look completely wrong once you’ve actually tried it. We advise popping down to a few stores and trying on a range of styles just to make sure it’s definitely the style for you.

Once you’ve made up your mind, then it’s time to cheat a little.

Dress designers are flexible when it comes to ordering a dress, including those where you are buying off the rack, as they’ll still need to make you one up. Therefore it’s worth asking the store to see if they can order a dress plain without any of the detailing. This will not only be slightly cheaper as there won’t be any work required for decoration, but it also means you can buy a fairly low cost dress as you won’t be looking for the overall look. We estimate that the average cost here should be around £500.

Shop around and look for a dress that is the most similar to what you’ve always wanted. Yes this may take time, but, these dresses can be found. Then ask if you can have it made up without the detail. Doing this will give you a blank canvass where you can add your own designs.

If you want crystals on your dress then we recommend buying these in bulk from haberdashery stores or from Ebay, where you will sellers offering these for around £10 for 200. These places are also an excellent place to pick up feathers, bows or piping that you may need for your designs.

Once you have all the bits in place you have two options. Depending on your budget you can choose to have an independent dress maker stitch on the decoration as you want it (although this may be pricey) or you can do it yourself.

If you opt for the latter, and you have a specific pattern in mind then we advise you to invest in some tailors chalk. This is used by seamstresses so they can get the exact patterns right on a dress and can be rubbed off easily with a damp cloth after you have sewn on what you need.

If you’re worried about ruining your dress then draw out the pattern on tracing paper and carefully tack this onto your dress with small stitches and a very fine needle to ensure you won’t make marks in the dress.

Once you have done this, then you can begin stitching. We advise you leave at least 4 months after the dress has arrived to do this to ensure you have the dress of your dreams.

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