Custom Gowns For Non-Basic Brides | Verve Magazine
India's premier luxury lifestyle women's magazine
October 24, 2016

Custom Gowns For Non-Basic Brides

Text by Wyanet Vaz

The designers at Karleo give us a step-by-step guide to creating bespoke bridalwear

“She wanted a particular flower in a sketch which she had made as a kid, to be a part of the beading in her gown”, reminisce designer friends Karan Berry and Leon Vaz who co-founded Karleo, which is, of course, a play on their first names, and a label that creates bespoke wedding gowns. Having worked with couture labels like Armani, Valentino, Marchesa and Ralph Lauren, the duo decided to amalgamate Indian inspirations and textures with a western approach to design. In collaboration with a strong network of craftsmen in India and through a process that spans across three months, their brand of wedding-wear caters to the many whims and fancies of the modern Indian bride.

The mood board
This would involve a complete study of what the bride wants and her requirements. The first step is a design consultation. “We understand her body type and suggest suitable embroidery options along with cuts and shapes.” Step into their studio to find mood boards usually filled with images that the bride shares, references, sketches, and artworks. The entire process heavily involves inputs and suggestions from the bride, where even the smallest details are shared with her. “Every bride has a vision from the beginning of how her wedding gown should look like. Be it hand-drawn prints that need to part of the beading to having the wedding date and name embroidered, even hints of colour from the décor which they want as a part of the accessories.”

The bespoke bride
After finalising the design, a mock of the gown is created, followed by sessions for trials and fittings. They work with fabrics like tulle, satin, organza, beading in the form of thread work; even hand painting and fabric manipulation. They offer the complete works including custom handmade accessories as well as collaborating with a bespoke show studio, so all the bridal needs are met under one roof.

The timeline
The process spans across three months, and in the case of royal weddings it could take as long as 6 to 8 months. The first month is for designing, going through the drawing board and freezing on the shape and colour. The second for measurements and trials and the third and fourth month are for touch-ups and final fittings.

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