Featured Brides

Sometimes we get to work with Brides extensively and do a lot of work for them.  Below are some featured Brides that wanted custom work as well as the usual alterations.  These brides hold a special place in our hearts!  We get to meet multiple times and strive to really make their day special and unique.  Hems and Shoulders may keep bread on the table, but these custom jobs really add value to the work we do.

Reception Dress Before

Reception Dress with the hem cut off.

Back of Ceremony Dress Before

Front of Ceremony Dress Before

Back of Reception Dress after.

Front of Reception Dress after.

Ceremony Dress bustled.

Ceremony Dress with under bustle.

The Creative Bride!

One of the best things we get to do is to create a custom look for a bride.  The reception dress the bride chose was full length and was shortened for a fun party look.  The bustle on the ceremony dress will look beautiful in pictures.  This bride will have three different looks by the time she is finished with her celebrations and we are glad to help her make that happen!

What a beautiful wedding! 

The hem with a lace edge was taken up shorter than normal because the bride and groom hiked up to their ceremony location with their dogs.  You can see how long the train on this dress is!  Two loops were needed so that the bride could hold it up while she hiked.  Loops aren't usually the ideal way to handle the train, usually a bustle is better, but given the situation, it worked out perfectly.  In addition to the hem and loops, this bride also had a cinch bag made for her diabetic monitoring device.  There were no room for pockets on this dress due to its style.   The fit is perfect on this dress after the sides were taken in, the front closed an inch, and straps adjusted.  To do that work, the lace is taken off then put back on so the pattern is not compromised.  Photo credit goes to Paige Weber.


A Bustle is used to shorten the train of a dress.  There are many styles including Over, Under, and Ballroom Styles

Under Bustle & Ballroom Style

In the picture you can see plastic rings and ribbons sewn on the lining of this gown.  We place a small little dot of color on the thread holding the rings and on the ribbons so the points can be matched easily.  

Over Bustle

In the foreground you can see one thread loop.  We use a dowel to ensure all loops are uniform and fit over clear buttons.  Above the dowel, there is a string loop on a button, and just to the right of the dowel is another clear button.  The two pins in the lower right are how we mark the bustle points during a fitting.


We challenge you to find the string loop for the bustle in this image.  This technique is easy to put up and take down, but stays hidden while the train is down.

Under Bustle

A beautiful mermaid style dress with a simple under bustle.  

Over Bustle

Train Down

Train Down

Under Bustle

Combo - Ballroom and Angled Over Bustle

This gorgeous and whimsical dress needed a bustle that added to the natural romance present in this dress.  The under layers are up in a ballroom bustle to get the majority up.  We use plastic rings just under the hem and color coded ribbons so that they are easy to match.  The outside pink/peach lace layer is up in points at an angle.  This allows the bottom lace trim to stay even.  Discrete thread loops and clear buttons are used for this effect.


   Over Bustle

The lace stripes on this dress posed a challenge!  An over bustle is a great way to show off any beautiful lace on a dress.  This one looked stunning on the bride!

Under Bustle

With random points

This style really adds some texture to the back of a dress.  This was done using multiple points to give more of a ruffled look.  We use plastic rings and ribbons that are color coded so that it is easy to put up the train and take back down if desired.

Under Bustle

With layered look

You can see how the train looks in the stock photos on the left and the completed bustle on the right.  This bride chose to do a layered under bustle style.  

Ballroom Bustle

This dress has two layers of ballroom bustles.  The lining layers are folded up under the dress using plastic loops and ribbons that can be color coded.  The outside layer is also folded under and attached to clear buttons on the lining layer.  A ballroom bustle helps the dress appear to be hemmed evenly all around.  

Combo- Under & Ballroom

This dress has multiple layers.  The solid lining layers are up in a ballroom bustle.  This means that it is folded up under the dress towards the inside and held in place using plastic rings and ribbons that can be color coded.  The outside tulle layers with the lace appliques are in an under bustle.  We use clear buttons on the lining layers and discrete braided string loops to make this effect possible.  Both layers of the bustle can be bustled and unbustled at the bride's convenience.  The two sets of bustle layers can be reattached using a snap so that the train can be arranged with ease without having to match every single layer up again.


A Hem is the bottom of a skirt.  The main reason to get a proper hem is for safety.  NO ONE wants to trip on their big day, have dirt smudges, or wet stains on their dress.  Layers are finished at different lengths so that the inner layers are shorter and outer ones longer.  Common styles are full length, tea length (12 inches off the ground), ankle/calf length, below the knee, above the knee, high-low (front is shorter than the back), and mid-thigh.  Sometimes people will want a sweep.  This means that the back is longer than the rest of the hem, almost like a mini train and can easily be moved with the foot.  A full train flows out behind the rest of the dress to drag on the floor with lengths varying from 2 -20 feet. 


This dress began as a floor length dress with a train.  Everything was shortened on this hem!  This couple renewed their vows on a cruise ship and the bride wanted some fun energy in her classic styled dress.  She is also very short and curvy.  What better way to show off her beautiful figure than make her dress short and curvy.  She looked stunning and in style while avoiding any trip hazards and others on their second honeymoon!

Corset back

Corset backs can be added to most dresses.  This is a great way to customize the fit of a dress each time it is laced up!  You can choose if you would like a panel of fabric for coverage under the lacing or not.

If a dress is too small, this is a perfect solution!  We would take out the entire zipper, or just part of it and put in loops. Any ribbon cal be used to then lace up the dress.   

If the dress fits, we can still add in a corset back, we would just cut down a portion of the back material after removing the zipper.  

Boning can be added near the loops to some dresses that are sheer or need reinforcement.

If you do not like loops, we can always use grommets!  Grommets are metal structures that would be added to the back of the dress and can be used to lace up a dress.

3rd generation dress

This dress was originally the bride's grandmother's dress.  The lace was very fragile and chemical based as was common at that time.  Mom had worn the dress for her ceremony, and this bride wanted to as well.  We had to remove the original buttons with metal backing as they were rusting and staining the lace.  Boning was added to reinforce the existing lace and large loops so the dress could be 2 sizes bigger for the current bride.  We did a panel aligned with the solid lining in the original dress and then left the top part of the corset open to match the sheer lace at the top.  

Modesty and Fills

This category ranges from small modesty panels, usually for cleavage coverage, all the way to entire torso covered fabric that will provide a bride with the coverage she is comfortable with.  Every modesty job is custom and will need to be scheduled with enough time before an event so that multiple fittings can be done to ensure fit, the design process, and ordering fabric.  

This dress originally had sheer lace straps and a deep plunge neckline.  The bride wanted more coverage and sleeves.  The back was also covered with a piece of fabric that is connected on one side and snaps on the other so that the original closures of the dress can still be used.  Also on the back, you can see the over bustle.


Sleeves come in all different styles!  Droop, cap, short, 3/4, full length, and poofy to name a few.  A consult is necessary so that the type of sleeve and style of dress can be joined flawlessly.

Droop sleeves

This loose fitting style is very popular with this style of dress.  The original stock photos are on the left and the bride's custom dress is on the right.  She chose to make the sleeves match the tulle on the dress and the result adds so much romance the this beautiful gown. 


No wedding is complete without that unique touch that really makes it your own.  Custom bow ties, belts, apliques, and clutches.

Cinch close cell phone bag


This bride is diabetic and needed to have her phone on her at all times.  She had a close-fit mermaid style dress so pockets were not an option.  We used the material cut off from her hem to make the bag match her dress.  This worked perfect for her to stay safe in a beautiful way on her special day.