Couture, translated from it's original French, means, literally, "sewing", with the strong implication of "dress making". Most, when they see the word Couture think immediately of runway shows and the airy world of Haute Couture, which itself means "high sewing", and posesses an entirely different meaning. Haute Couture is a term utilized for a select few designers, subject to strict rules dictated by French law and overseen by the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture.
Hallowed ground indeed, and toes we dare not to step upon.
That said, the pursuit of such levels of craft are not restricted to those organizations, nor are they the sole domain of the storied Fashion Houses (you know their names!) and their ataliers. . Rather, it is the beacon on the hill to which we can fix our gaze, and aspire.
At Thomas Monk we aspire.
For me, doing a job very well is of paramount importance. From concept to construction to delivery must be nothing short of perfect. Its a bit of a burden, but its an appropriate burden, and one I accept readily; indeed, I seek it out.
I want to make your dress.
I want to help you find that dress that elates you and sets you apart from the crowd. Be it Special Occasion, Runway or Bridal.....
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In recent years, the concept and practice of Demi-Couture has arisen, in part, as an effort to increase the accessibility of high fashion. Whereas couture garments are one-off and custom made, Demi-Couture garments are generally created both in size-range specific and in limited numbers. That is the definition we work by. These are the gowns and dresses I design and drape and draft and construct and I do so with many of the same materials and methods that are used to create our Couture gowns and dresses. There are never any corners cut and there is never an excuse for not creating a garment of the highest quality.
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Bespoke, is a term generally and traditionally used to describe tailoring for mens' jackets and suits, but has recently found use for womens' apparel as well. At Thomas Monk we use the term to differentiate custom made garments, including dresses, from our Couture and Demi-Couture offerings.
This means, we are available to create for you custom made apparel that FITS you, even when you might otherwise find challenges in fitting, for what ever reason, or are simply wanting quality apparel custom made for you.
I will meet with you to discuss your needs, take measurements, and produce a basic pattern set. From there, I will construct a fitting muslin, further perfect the fit, and then, the world is your oyster. Once the basic pattern is drafted nearly anything can be made!
The biggest challenge here is location. I am located in Northern California, between San Francisco and Sacramento. (That said, there are two trips to London every year to see family ; ) and could fit your fitting in!) While its certainly best for you to come to me, I'm potentially open to coming to you.
I'm not at a place yet where I can set up shop in a nice hotel in a big city and meet and measure clients all weekend, but perhaps one day!
This process is easier than you might think. Some clients just really want a pretty, special occasion dress. Other clients simply want day wear but have concerns as they relate to fit: my Fiancee is just shy of six feet in height, so, pants and sleeves and hems are ALWAYS too short. And please don't get her started with the fit through her shoulders either...
I'd like to help you find what you're wanting.
Ready To Wear or, Pret-a-Porter, is a modern staple and allows brands to increase product accessibility. It also affords an opportunity, as it does with Thomas Monk, to provide high-end daily wear, that is exciting both for the client and the designer. I have a penchant for boucle couture fabrics (think Linton Tweed!), as well as sumptuous woven wools and silk in all its forms. Our garments are constructed with exacting precision and will we hope, become your the favorite part of your wardrobe.
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