Personalizing Your Heirloom Dress

By Sue Scheele

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Personalizing your heirloom dress while still maintaining the same look can be done with only a few alterations. Give your heirloom dress a new style while still maintaining it's originality with advice from a professional designer in this video on wedding attire.

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Hi, I'm Sue Scheele owner of Classy Concepts Design serving two locations in Mansfield and Round Rock, Texas. Today we are talking about simple alterations to personalize an heirloom dress. If you are looking for ways to personalize your heirloom dress perhaps passed down from someone that you love, some of the ways to really make the dress look different, but keeping with the same look of the dress, is to obviously fit the dress to your body. If the dress is too big or to small, those are alterations that you definitely want to make to make the dress look good on you. Also, changing the sleeves or neckline of the dress can also be a really simple way to change the dress to make it look more like you. We've had brides that have come in and have had all lace gowns that may have been common 20 or 30 years ago. Take the dresses that have long sleeves and bringing them up to a cap sleeve or perhaps a short sleeve to about their elbow and that just kind of modernizes and freshens up the look of the dress, if you're not looking for something thats got long sleeves or all over lace which was pretty common. Also the necklines that go all the up to the neck, maybe thats not something for you. You can also do a V-neck, a boat neck, a sweet heart neckline or take a dress that is fully laced and make it a strapless gown. Obviously, more of these alterations can be a lot more involved then others, but if you are looking for a simple way to personalize a neckline, it can be very simple, but make a dramatic effect on the way the dress looks. Another way to personalize your heirloom wedding dress is to make the accessories work for you. Adding a sachet to the dress, maybe in a color of the wedding colors, like what the bridesmaids are wearing, or in a shade of ivory or cream to go with the color of the dress as it is. Another thing is adding flowers or changing the way that the style of the skirt is. You can add pick ups or put flowers on the actual dress itself. Others ideas are adding beaded appliques, lace and other ornamentation on the dress itself. Maybe it was something more simple and you want to dress it up a bit. You can do that on the skirt area, maybe an asymmetrical design on the bodice or in some of the neckline area or the sleeves if it has any. Lastly, choose your veil and accessories to personalize your heirloom dress. Perhaps you want to leave the dress as is and wear it as it was worn years ago. Another way that you can make the dress you is by choosing a veil or a headpiece or shoes or maybe changing the length of the hem to keep the same style but to give it a different look that is all your own. The quickest way to personalize your dress is going to be to go to your local seamstress or if you can't find one that you trust, contact a bridal salon and they can give you a recommendation of who to go to for these types of alterations. I'm Sue Scheele owner of Classy Concepts Design giving tips on how to personalize your heirloom dress.

About the Expert

Sue Scheele is the designer and owner of Classy Concepts Design, a privately owned business and leader in the bridal/formal wear and window covering industries. She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in design from Oklahoma State University and began Classy Concepts in January of 1998. Combining everything she has learned from her past work experiences and her college education, Scheele brought Classy Concepts Design to the Austin, Texas area and opened a second location in the Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas, area in the fall of 2009.

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