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Going to the Races? Don’t forget your Couture Clothing….

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With spring finally upon us and summer just around the corner, the social season at horse raceways and polo matches across the United Kingdom is beginning. These events are not only a festival of sport but also style and elegance. From Chester and Doncaster to London and Manchester, men and women will be donning their high fashion and millinery for the world to see.

What you may not know is that most of these venues have a dress code. Regardless of the venue, everyone is expected to be dressed traditionally smart. If you are a woman, that means a formal dress or pant suit accompanied by a hat or fascinator and heeled shoes. Some venues go further with their expectations by specifying that attendees not bare midriffs or shoulders. The most stringent of dress codes is at the Royal Ascot race. With 300,000 race-goers and the glare of the international media present, it stands to reason that the organisers of the Royal Ascot want to continue the tradition of elegance and pageantry, which requires outlining a dress code that ensures class and sophistication.

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An example of Couture Tailoring

For women who love to dress, any of these of events are a perfect time to show off your style savvy. But remember, it is not all champagne and roses, you and your outfit have to last the day or evening. Here are a few of my style tips to help you out.

  1. Heels: Yes, they are expected, but be sure to pick a pair of a reasonable height. You may want to opt for your 4” heels versus your 6” since you will be standing a great deal of time.
  2. Handbag: Fashion trends show clutches that seem to be getting smaller by the day, but keep in mind that you are going to be at these events for several hours. Be sure to pick a bag that not only matches your outfit but has room for a powder pack, lipstick, tissue, and a phone. You’ll also need to be camera ready. Chester’s Boodle Festival includes a group of judges picking out the best dressed women in the crowd. You wouldn’t want to be called on stage without any lipstick.
  3. Cover for your shoulders: Putting a nicely folded Pashmina or Silk Stole in your handbag would be a great idea, since these are outdoor events and weather can change.
  4. Bring Your Personality: These events are great opportunities to network. They can build new relationships or nurture existing ones. You need to show everyone your inner style.
  5. Fabulous Dress or Suit: This is where I can help you out.  My couture-online boutique has some wonderful options of exclusive one-of-a-kind dresses that can easily take you to any polo ground or raceway. Further, you can give me a call and commission a couture piece. Why take the chance of seeing someone else in your exact dress at one of these events? And, finally, I work with great fabrics like jersey, which are delightfully comfortable. You will feel like you’re wearing a piece of luxury lingerie.

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Pant Suit commissioned for Mother of the Bride wedding abroad also works for Race Day

Whatever you decide, I wish you a fabulous season at the track and matches.

I’m A Couture Designer!

One of the most common questions that we ask one another is “What do you do?”.  When I respond to that question, “ I am couture designer.”, I get a mixed reaction of quizzical looks and flattering nods of “Oh that is wonderful.”  And from time to time, I get “Ahh, you’re a dressmaker ( or seamstress) which leaves me with quizzical look on my face!

Yes, I make dresses along with blouses, trousers, skirts,coats and tops. However, a couture designer is someone who creates a garment specifically tailored for a particular customer. We work with refined fabrics, and exquisite embellishments. The process is extremely labour intensive since the couture designer is involved with the inception of the design, sourcing the fabric, creating the pattern and then executing a carefully interlined, fitted to perfection garment.  A great deal of the work is done by hand.   These customized fashions are not available for mass production and variations of style are limited to one or two other garments.  They are exclusively designed garments that require a great deal of artistry in their execution. The creation of one these garment can take between 50 to 100 hours

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Pearly Queen

This is the genre of my fashion business. I strive to create unique glamour dresses, coats, suits, tops and trousers for all women. When I work in this genre, I am inspired by my client, and the reason why she needs the special couture dress.

A dressmaker or seamstress is someone that works with someone else’s pattern or design.  This is where every designer starts and must master before we can strike out and create our own garments.

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I do have a ready-to- wear line that is on my website that are exclusive designs.  These garments were not created for one specific person but there is only one of each design.  They only fall under the category of ready to wear since they are ready to wear and standard sizing is used!  You can buy the piece if your size is available but know these are exclusive one-off dresses and tops.  “What makes them exclusive one-offs is that no two styles are exactly the same and the fabrics are not reused for the same style.”I understand that not every women wants to commission a distinct design and this is a great alternative and  luxury that you cannot ignore for your next special occasion.

However you choose to engage my services, you will encounter the highest workmanship, originality of a unique design, and superb materials.  It is my goal that I create an experience for you, that you will always remember.

Fashion, Television – Dressing the Celebrity in ‘YOU’

Day to Evening Wear

There is a lot to be said for dressing up, standing out from the crowd, being the special individual you are born to be.

At the moment, I am in love with the unique glamour dresses as worn by the
characters in the television series ‘Suits’

SuitsThe Cast from Suits

For those not familiar with the series it’s all about the power struggles, and lawsuits at a high profile law firm, composed of secrets, intrigue, and cliff hangers, all set to the background of men’s tailored sharp fitting suits; hot dresses that speak of luxury, high end designer looks!

With the added bonus that a lot of the garments are in one of my favourite fabrics ‘jersey’, I am a very happy lady!  You have the cling, fit, shaping and the pertness of the derriere, that gives you a knock-out look, the view is great from all directions, and all of this set in an office environment for our female characters.

sj_722_2x03-meet-the-new-boss-1The character of Jessica Managing Partner

The character of Donna Harvey’s PA

Dressing the celebrity in you, boils down to a) how you see yourself, and b) the message you want your clothes to convey about you.  For example how do you feel about a little cleavage exposure?  The above image of the character Donna, you know will achieve admiring looks from your male counterparts, however, what about your female colleagues, and more importantly, do you care?

Your day to day environment does play a part, and you may prefer the subtly of Jessica’s style,  however, both garments are great for day to evening dressing. There is also the question of jewellery, big statement pieces or soft and delicate. Personally, I would say the simplicity of a fine delicate necklace with a very low cleavage in the case of Donna’s dress, and a bold unusual design where there is nothing on show, as with Jessica’s dress.

If you’ve been wearing a jacket in the office all day, then for the evening, this is the perfect opportunity to show off that dynamic silk or wool patterned scarf, draping it elegantly around the shoulders.

Celebrities exude an air of sophistication that many of us would like to emulate, some of it is acting, but mostly it’s confidence.  As with children when they play ‘dressing up’ it’s about play acting (do you remember those times)?  Having fun is the key, if your didn’t play dress up, now is your chance to embrace a bit of that childhood spirit, added to that a pinch of acting skills, authenticity of character, great looking and feeling clothes; camera, action… it’s now your turn to be in the spotlight!


Rosetta day to evening chic dinner dress by Coral Turner

Dressy Dresses for Women

What is Jersey?

It is basically a knitted fabric also known as stretch knit, and comes in a variety of textures, weights, fibres and colours.

There are various types of knits, however two basic types of machine knitted fabrics, are weft and warp knits; weft knits are similar to hand-knitting and warp knits are made by a machine called a chain loom.  Fundamentally, they are formed by the same principle, interlocking loops of yarn from one or more points of
origin.

If you think of an everyday cotton t-shirt, round neck, short or long sleeves, this is considered to be part of many a staple wardrobe, the quality of this t-shirt, does it shrink in the wash, lose its colour after one wash – all of these factors are determined by the yarn used, construction methods and the amount of stretch in the knitted fabric.

The beauty of the stretch that this fabric retains, is what allows it to stretch over your body and return to its original shape and size.  It should also be noted that some knits will stretch more than others and as with all things; quality is always a major factor.

Jersey cocktail dresses, to sexy going out tops, can be made in a variety of blends: rayon, silk, cotton, mohair, wool, acrylic, polyester each have their own allure, coupled with their stretch and recovery, they are not only comfortable to wear but resist wrinkles better than some woven fabrics, which makes them great for travelling, and be can washable or dry clean only.

Couture clothing in knitted fabrics can be made to fit every occasion which is one of the reasons they are so popular in the world of fashion.

Velvet

Zoe Belucci models ‘Velvet‘ the Little Black Dress as featured on http://www.coralturner.com , photography by Minna Rossi http://minnarossi.com.