We are absolutely thrilled to announce that we are now home to Sew Fitting, an alteration specialty shop located inside of Bridal Traditions! You may contact Julie directly for appointment information at; 828-292-9123
Sew Fitting owner and seamstress, Julie McClanahan is excited to start fitting our brides, and their bridal parties into their gorgeous gowns! Julie is a one woman show, and will take as many clients as she feels she can without risking the integrity of her work. If, and when she is booked up we will still have our referral list of trusted local seamstresses available.
It's now my pleasure to introduce you to Julie, owner and operator of Sew Fitting Alterations!
Julie began her love for sewing around the age of eight. Becoming intrigued while sewing a simple washcloth by hand, for 'arts and crafts' in children's church one Sunday. Having had a talented grandmother who was an artist and 'sew-est' also helped in supporting her fascination with sewing. Julie is now very particular with her work and understands that it's essential to take time and care in each item she works on for the best possible outcome.
Julie has worked with the Hour Glass Cleaners on West D. Street since 2010, helping out with repairs, and some of the more complex alterations. She has also been consistently altering bridal and formal gowns in her home for more than four years. Julie recently decided that she was ready to expand her business more into the bridal world by partnering with Bridal Traditions. When she approached me with the idea I jumped at the chance to have an experienced seamstress in the store again, if for nothing more than as a convenience to our customers.
Besides sewing, Julie has many other interests including art and spending time outdoors. Whether it's hiking, biking, or gardening she loves to spend time in nature. She openly admits to her passion for natural living, and considers herself a health nut. Her love for healthy, nutritious food is just one thing she prides herself in.
On this journey of opening up her own shop inside of Bridal Traditions, she's discovered a new found love for refurbishing old furniture, and plans on adding it to her list of hobbies. It definitely pans in well with her love of thrifting.
Most of all, Julie loves to spend time with family and friends, including her two miraculous children, Coda and Corwin. She un-doubtingly realizes that the most important thing in life, is the people you share it with.
But by all means, if you want to use it as a wrist loop then do it, after all it is your day and you can do what you want. We just felt that before you do, you should know why the hanger strap is not a wrist loop.
For those of you that have no clue of what we are referring to, it's the long satin loop that you will find attached to the underneath of your wedding dress train. Yeah, that thing! And, it is very uncommon knowledge that it's sole purpose in life, the only reason it exists, is to hold the train of your dress up on the hanger. It is a very handy little invention and we love them for sure, they keep our dresses presentable and the trains off the floor.
It is also a very common mistake that they double as a wrist loop, so that instead of using a bustle for your train you can hook this wondrous piece of satin to your wrist, and carry your train with you all night! And, we totally get why that has become a major misconception. If you will think back to when there were balls and cotillions, and all the ladies dresses had trains, wrist loops were common practice. You may even remember seeing paintings of women, with their trains being held from their wrists by these loops, as they are waltzed around the ball room. But, if you take a closer look you will see that the loop is attached to the outside of the skirt, not the underneath. Can you imagine what would have happened if a lady actually flipped her skirt over revealing the underside of her dress and crinolines?!?! Horror, of horrors there would not have been enough fainting couches in the whole neighborhood!
So, you see dear reader, that while they may seem the same there is a very big difference between a hanger strap and a wrist loop. The real tragedy of choosing to use the hanger strap in place of a wrist loop, or bustle, is that you would be hiding all of the detail on that gorgeous train! Think about it.
Having your wedding dress altered is a necessary part of wedding planning, and it is quite an undertaking in itself. Wedding and formal gowns are not made from the fabrics that we are used to wearing everyday. These fabrics are not typically "stretchy" so they need to be altered to fit your shape. All gowns are structured differently and each woman has her own contours that are unique to her, the key is to mold the dress to your body shape while keeping the integrity of the gown design. The good news is that most formal gowns are made with alterations in mind, the bad news; this takes time and multiple fittings.
The most common misconception that I see with alterations is that people don't understand why it takes more than one fitting, or why the dress is not perfect at the second fitting. Depending on the dress, the person, and the type of alteration it can take several fittings to get a dress just right.
"Show up with an open mind. It may take more than one appointment to get a perfect fit, so don't despair if the dress puckers or pinches." Randy Fenoli - Much Ado About Alterations
If you are in the alteration process, please be patient with your seamstress, remember she/he is trying to mold this delicate, unforgiving fabric to the shape of your body, and that is not an easy task. Everything that is done to one part of dress can affect another part, which it is not always predictable.
For more information on this subject please read; Much Ado About Alterations, a must read article about the alteration process based on an interview with Randy Fenoli of Say Yes to the Dress.
Cheryl is our in house seamstress. She actually owns her own alteration shop in a neighboring town, but we are lucky enough to have her drive over two days a week to fit our customers. This lady can do some amazing things when it comes to fabric. Incidentally when you have alterations done at Bridal Traditions you do not pay the store you will pay Cheryl directly.
We are offering two new services to outside customers that we have not offered before and made some changes to our current in-house services.
1. Alteration Appointments
If you purchased your gown with us you can make an alteration appointment free of charge. All you pay is our contract seamstress for the alterations. Bridal Traditions never profits from the alteration work.
For outside customers we will be happy to schedule an alteration appointment at the store with our contract seamstress for a small appointment fee. We use the same professional alteration expert for all appointments whether you purchased your dress here or at another location.
2. Gown and Dress Steaming
We are now offering to press or steam dresses that were not purchased at Bridal Traditions for a steaming fee. We have also changed our steaming policies for dresses that were purchased at Bridal Traditions. We still include a free steaming with any regular price dress purchase, but going forward there will be a discounted fee for steaming a clearance or discounted dress.
3. Gown Preservation
This is not a new service to us but we thought we should mention it again. Bring your dress in after the wedding and we can have it cleaned and preserved for you for one low fee. We do accept gowns that were purchased elsewhere, but if you do buy from us you receive a significant discount on your preservation cost.
Please visit the website for more details and a list of fees for any of these services.
Store owner, Kelly has been in the bridal industry since 2000, when at the ripe old age of 20 she opened her first little store front on a wing and a prayer. She is a certified wedding planner (no, she does not plan weddings), and everything she knows about bridal and formal wear has come from, gut instinct, trial and error, and watching LOTS of What Not to Wear.