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Thursday, January 18, 2018

Quick! Hand Me a Gown!

A couple of years ago a friend shared this story with me: she'd been invited by a business client to be his '+ one' at a gala event. She was honored -- and horrified. Simultaneously! What to wear??

She tried on every gown in town and online. Even the ones she didn't like and the ones that were super expensive. She eventually found one that wasn't terrible and fit mostly. The evening was elegant and she was having a such a good time. Then, something happened. A woman walked past her wearing the very same gown. Ugh. And looking much better in it. Double ugh.

If I'd known her dilemma, I'd have suggested this gown! Simply chic, sophisticated, graceful. One-of-a-kind. Custom and affordable (two words not often said together.)


This one shoulder, belted, flowing gown is almost finished. Remembering my friend's story, I couldn't wait to share the photos!

In black, it's a smart evening gown. In white, a wedding dress. In red, a special holiday occasion dress. In pastel, a spring formal. In a soft gray, an intimate dinner on the beach.

One-of-a-kind. The fabric could be any color. With or without a train. Mini or maxi length. Plus size or petit. Paired with a shawl or bolero in the winter.

Quick! Let us make this gown for you! Follow this link to our Etsy shop.

(Gown shown in black ponte. Estimated fabric and labor costs $100 - $250.)

Monday, January 15, 2018

Marja and I together created the perfect little warm weather dress.

All right, it may no longer be warm here in the Shenandoah Valley today. (brrrr) But the warm weather will return, and sooner than we think.  I can hardly wait to make more of these beautiful cotton dresses!

The blue and purple flowers of Marja's dress are gorgeous and I may be able to obtain more yardage of this very cotton print.  There are a bazillion other gorgeous cotton prints too, of course.  I love this one:

Another one of my loves is plain, solid, luscious BLACK fabric.  A soft and lightweight black fabric in cotton, linen, silk, ramie, or blended fibers would be totally irresistible for a barely-there shift-style dress.

Please check out Marja's version of the dress to find out how to commission the creation of YOUR dream dress.

I guess I can't resist pulling out a perfect black linen from my stash today-- I shall make the dress for myself before the temperature rises again!  Update coming soon.

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Winter Wedding Gown

What makes a bride beautiful? Confidence that her hair, make-up, and dress reflect her personal style. In our opinion, the perfectly fitted and unique dress is the holy grail.


This custom gown was designed by Kathleen, in collaboration with the bride. A fitted bodice tops the soft gathers of the flowing skirt. The rayon fabric and lining are completely breathable, completely soft feeling, completely complimentary to the overall gown design. The lace ‘jacket’ is an off-the-rack remodel, opening in the back and secured with long, wrap around ties — it’s the finishing touch to this simply elegant wedding gown.

The bride thanked us when she picked up her finished gown. But then she called us after the wedding to pass on a message from the groom. “Tell Kathleen, thank you! Your dress is so beautiful and I really, really like it!” he said. Blew. Us. Away. 

For more information, would you please visit our Etsy shop, Kathleen Temple, Tailor

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Two-Piece Dress, the design displayed

Two-Piece Stretch Knit Dress:
The Design, Displayed

Hello Arianne-  I want to show you my dark blue prototype for the Two-Piece Dress design.  I will use the design to make your Two-Piece Dresses, one of the snakeskin-looking knit and one of the geometric patterned blue and gold knit.

My video here probably doesn't show the design any better than if I had made some still shots of my dark blue version of the design.  Oh me, oh my, my poor photography....  But I will send you some still shots sometime too.  I am sharing the video with you here on my blog because I couldn't get it to load into either email or Facebook message.  Oh me, oh my, my poor computer skills.  I can work with fabric, however, never worry!

No way could I figure out how to change the (sideways) orientation of the video.  I need a new computer!  So turn your head sideways and as you imagine the design in *your* awesome fabrics, you can see some possible characteristics.  (I hope!)

One thing I don't really like about my dark blue prototype is the waistband of the skirt.  You may not be able to see it in my sketchy video, but like the bodice's waist, it is held in place with long tie ends that wrap all the way around.  For your two dresses, how about if I secure your skirts' waistbands with inconspicuous buttons or hooks, rather than ties?  The bodices will still have ties, but maybe skip them on the skirts?  I have been wearing my dark blue prototype for a few hours already today and I do wish, now that I have been feeling the dress for a while, that there were less tie-end fabric encircling my waist.

I cut out both of your dresses this morning.  I had enough of both fabrics that I was able not only to cut the front panels to allow for more overlap (if you want yours to have more overlap than my prototype, that is) but also to allow for the front panels of both of your skirts to be self-lined.  They will be more opaque that way, and will drape more nicely.

The sleeves on your dresses could be 20" long for the bracelet length look we discussed.  I was able to cut your blue and gold knit sleeves even longer than that, though, just in case you may want the sleeves on the blue and gold dress to extend all the way over your wrist bone.

Let's discuss by email any of these matters and any other ideas and visions we may develop for your two Two-Piece Dresses.  I look forward to hearing from you!

having lots of fun,


Monday, April 25, 2016

Oh my.  If only I could show Catherine Mumaw what I created out of the splendid cotton fabric she gave me.

I'm grateful to Catherine for her lovely gift.  She traveled all her long life, collecting beautiful fabrics from here, there, and yon.  She brought back this particular cotton print --ink-black and deepest yellow, with little accents of ivory-- from Indonesia.  

Catherine graced me with some of her beloved fabric souvenirs shortly before she died.  I have yet to craft into dresses and such most of the fabrics.  But here's to you, Catherine, with gratitude.

The Catherine, a caftan.

The CATHERINE, a caftan most wondrous, will soon appear in my Etsy shop.  This is where I display my creations in order to give my clients from all over the world ideas for garments they may want to commission.  I will there showcase The Catherine and ask clients to send me some beautiful textile from which I can create the caftan (or other garment) of their dreams.  Check out the possibilities and let your imagination soar:

Monday, April 11, 2016

The jeans of yesteryear.

I must find a very lightweight denim.  I must replicate these jeans.  1977 was a good year for great jeans.  Great year for Ted and me, too.