The Future is NOW!

by Erin on February 22, 2006


ebay item 8305987417
Check it out! This site lets you design your own dress (from a fairly broad template of silhouettes, necklines, sleeve lengths, and skirt lengths), choose your fabrics, and enter in your measurements! You can even ask for pockets! Then they custom-make your dress and send it to you in three weeks. The whole thing costs $189.

I've seen this sort of thing for bridesmaids' dresses before–in fact the models here look fairly bridesmaidy–but expanding to day dresses is a great idea.

Okay, so I have a few caveats: first, I see that you can pick some fabrics that aren't really great for the style of dress. For instance, I could have had this one done up in silk chiffon, which I think would have looked like crap — not enough body, and no mention was made of lining when I chose it. It would also be better if you could send them your own fabric, although I'm sure it would be a pain to figure out yardage for individual sizes. And if this were my site, I would have a page that shows the best dresses for certain body types: apples vs. pears, tall vs. short, busty vs. not-so, with both line drawings of the different types and real people wearing the dresses.

Other than that, though — this looks great for people who are hard to fit and don't sew themselves. The interface is intuitive and, unlike some other design-it-yourself sites, it didn't force me to use IE, nor did it assault me with a three-minute Flash animation.

The dress on the left is their "Christine," with the vee-neck changed to a scoop. I have made about ten dresses pretty much exactly like this, only with fuller skirts (and no belt) and different neckline variations, and I wear them constantly in the summer. In fact, I'm planning a white eyelet version for this summer …

{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

JuliaR February 22, 2006 at 9:00 am

I am glad to hear you have 10 dresses from the same pattern. So do I. (And 10 shirts and 10 skirts…) The one that works for me is like the “Marikate” in that website. Fun stuff!

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Anonymous February 22, 2006 at 9:27 am

I recognize those fabrics. They’re from Fashionfabricsclub.com.

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oliviacw February 22, 2006 at 10:05 am

I like the “Christine” with a square neck and elbow length sleeves, in lavender linen. And hey, you didn’t say that they allow you to put pockets in the dress!

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Erin February 22, 2006 at 11:33 am

Yes I did say you could ask for pockets! I just didn’t say it in all caps. :-)

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Jilli February 22, 2006 at 11:41 am

Good heavens. Look at that, the Marilyn is a princess-seamed dress. I’d have to e-mail them and ask what the skirt circumference is. If it isn’t full enough for a petticoat, I shouldn’t even bother. I wonder if a person could get a discount if they ordered multiples of a specific style …

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Jonquil February 22, 2006 at 12:45 pm

Very, very nice, and tempting. I’d love to have the “Marilyn” in rayon. First I should finish hand-basting a muslin for the hippie blouse in progress!

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DivineMsN February 22, 2006 at 1:16 pm

I would love to know if anyone has actually ordered from this site.

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Becky O. February 22, 2006 at 2:00 pm

I’m tempted to order a dress!The Christine with a square neck & sleeveless in a periwinkle silk dupioni, perhaps?Alas, I just bought a New Look pattern #6557http://www.simplicity.com/index.cfm?page=wnlook.cfmand saved myself $184.00.

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Jonquil February 22, 2006 at 3:32 pm

I think one of today’s Fug dresses is absolutely fabulous, and the wearer (Dita van Teese) carries it off.http://gofugyourself.typepad.com/go_fug_yourself/2006/02/_i_would_have_r.html

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Jonquil February 22, 2006 at 3:32 pm

Sigh. link.

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Erin February 22, 2006 at 4:26 pm

I know! I thought that Dita dress was lovely. You can get away with a skirt like that when you have such a tiny waist. Sigh.I suppose even Go Fug Yourself nods.

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jenny February 22, 2006 at 9:29 pm

I love the color of Dita’s dress—I just don’t love the tight band at the bottom, for purely practical reasons. Used to have one of those and felt like I had to walk like Barbie to keep from splitting the seams.

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jenny February 22, 2006 at 9:52 pm

My dress choice would be the “Grace” with a bateau neck and cap sleeve in knee-length. Fabrics: Silver Dutchess (Fancy Fabrics) or Pink Floral Sateen (Cotton Blends). I do love the Gray Print Silk Shantung, but I think I’d look like I’d been run over by a really big truck.

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Shiny Blue Black February 22, 2006 at 11:39 pm

“Christine” Square neck, sleeveless, Mid length, Blue floral cotton. I have the cutest bolero to go with.Too bad though, that $189 price tag is a tad high for me.

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Marikate February 28, 2006 at 6:56 am

As one of the founders of Dress by Design, I wanted to answer a few of the questions that were posed by your site. We do line our dresses whenever appropriate; the only dresses we don’t line are ones that the fall of the dress would be hindered by lining. We are already in the process of developing an e-mail newsletter for our customers that will send out information such as promotions and what dress style looks best on what body type, ect. Keep a look out on the site in the upcoming months as we are adding two new dress styles-a halter and a strapless. We are also making some changes to our pricing, so expect to see that in the upcoming months as well. Thanks for all your feedback. If you have anymore questions or comments you may email me at mmoore@dressbydesign.com

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Anonymous February 9, 2007 at 12:59 am

Check out Olivia Luca’s website for designing your own dress.www.OliviaLuca.com

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Anonimous September 9, 2007 at 4:50 pm

Nice! Nice site! Good resources here. I will bookmark!

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Maxwells September 10, 2007 at 2:39 am

I see first time your site guys. I like you :)

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Anonimous September 10, 2007 at 7:57 am

Excellent website. Good work. Very useful. I will bookmark!

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