How much is it going to cost?

Well, this will depend on what you want to do.  When I have seen the garment you want altered, I will be able to give you a quotation.  Prices will vary depending on complexity.  For example, is the garment beaded?  How many layers does the skirt have?  and so on

What I will do with the bespoke work is give you a quotation for making up the garment.  The price of materials and sundries is then added to the price.  So the final cost is dependent on the fabric quality you choose.  I do not add a mark up to fabric costs, they are charged at cost, plus postage.  Please feel free to ask.  The making up costs for a simple dress can be as low as £120.

Will it be cheaper than the shops?

If we are looking at major high street stores, then I cannot compete with them for finished garments.  Many shop garments are made abroad in countries where labour is very cheap.  On the other hand, if you are considering quality garments, then it could be a different story.  From a professional seamstress you will get a personalised garment which fits you beautifully and is unique.

How much time do you need to make a garment?

The more the better!  At busy times of year, there is quite a demand for dressmaking.  However, if I can, I will try to fit in requests for ‘rush orders’.  But this cannot be guaranteed.

Ideally, for alterations I would appreciate having about 4 weeks, and for bespoke, 8 weeks would be a minimum.   If you do not have this amount of time, please contact me anyway, and we can discuss what can be done.

What is the process for alterations?

There is no cost associated with the first appointment, in which we will discuss the work you want done. Then I will calculate the costs and send you a quote by email.  When you have considered the quote, if you decide to go ahead, let me know and I can start the work.  Generally, there are two or three appointments after this, depending on the complexity of the work to be undertaken.

At the second appointment, the alterations will be tacked, so you can check that they are exactly right for you.  A 50% payment is made at this stage.  At the final appointment, the alterations are finished and the work is released on receipt of the final payment.

What is the process for bespoke dressmaking?

There is no cost associated with the first appointment, in which we will discuss your options, and also look at some patterns and fabrics.   It is good to have some flexibility in your ideas, so we can make the design yours alone.   I will then send you a quotation by email for you to consider.

If you would like to look for a pattern before your appointment,  I would recommend looking at this website Sew Direct who sell a variety of major makes.  For fabrics, I would recommend Craftswoman Fabrics who are a mail order company in Carrickfergus.

I suggest that you do not buy your pattern in advance, in case we change the selection after our discussions.  If you do buy a pattern, please measure yourself for the garment and do not assume that shop dress sizes are the same as the pattern sizes.  Often they can be very different.

The approach can vary depending on how much time you have and how much you want to spend on the garment.  Making a pattern from scratch will always take more time (and cost more) than starting with a commercial pattern which we can adjust to meet your requirements.

After you have accepted the quotation and made the first payment (25% of the labour charge), I will either buy the commercial pattern or draft the personalised pattern.  From this start, I will then make a toile (copy) of your chosen style in a very cheap fabric, so that we can get an idea of what the garment will look like and the fit can be adjusted.

I will then buy the materials needed (which will have to be paid for at the time), and the pattern derived from the toile will be used to make the garment ready for the next fitting.  The next fitting will be in chosen fabric, and the adjustments should be small by this stage.  When this stage has been reached, another payment is made, then the garment is finalised and the final payment is made.

What are your terms and conditions?

My full terms and conditions are available here view terms and conditions.

Will you do home furnishings?

I am sorry, I specialise in clothing, and I am generally too busy to take orders for curtains or home furnishings.

Will you help with student course work?

I cannot provide advice or samples for free, but I am happy to give lessons on specific topics or help make up your course work, at competitive rates.

Can I bring my own fabric/pattern?

Of course!  That would be great.  However, if the fabric is unsuitable for the pattern in any way, we may have to talk through some options on how best to proceed in order to avoid any disappointment at a later stage. If you are looking for a pattern I would recommend looking at this website Sew Direct.  For fabrics, I would recommend Craftswoman Fabrics who are a mail order company in Carrickfergus.

If you do buy a pattern, please measure yourself for the garment and do not assume that shop dress sizes are the same as the pattern sizes.  Often they can be very different

If you have any questions which have not been answered above, do please contact me by using telephone (07917 277285) or email ( or by filling in the form on the Contact page.  I look forward to hearing from you!