Getting a dress made in Bangkok – Tailors for Women

For a while I have been eying up a dress in the window of a shop near Asoke. Given that one of the things on ‘my to do before I am 30 list’ is to have a dress made, I decided this was reason enough to explore my options.

Let me tell you shopping has never been more fun. Getting a dress made in Bangkok means you can chose the colours, the fabric, and the best thing is that they take the measurements in Thai and despite learning numbers in last weeks lessons I didn’t catch a word, so I have no idea how fat I am!

I went to Atelier Azzurro (http://www.azzurrotailor.com/), and they were fantastic. The best thing is that instead of being run by men who have no idea about women’s fashion, I was greeted by a young woman who had been trained in Milan and had designed some of the dresses in the window.

I picked a navy dress with a silver sash, that she had designed based on some of the clothes she saw on the TV show Mad Men. The fact that she watches Mad Men was exciting enough!

I had barely been measured for my first dress when I was planning my next dress, a slightly modified version from the Louis Vuitton AW10 campaign…

After a week I went back for my first fitting. They tend to make things slightly too big and then pin you in on the first fitting. I took a picture in the changing room, which doesn’t look that impressive, I just wanted a before pic:

I went back a week later for my final  fitting and it fitted perfectly. Now I need to plan afternoon tea at the Mandarin Oriental and cocktails at the Sky Bar to show it off. And save my pennies for dress number two!!!

I loved the extra detailing: little poppers under the top to keep your bra straps in place, and the face you can order more coloured sashes to

 

This week, I also purchased a slightly cheaper dress from an amazing stall near the underground. The stall owner seems to hunt down the best vintage dresses from around Bangkok and I always want to stop and have a look first thing before all the good things go (which would make me late for work). On my way home the other night I found an amazing spotty dress, a bargain at roughly £7. And it fits! However it was long enough for two of me, so I decided to try out my local sewing machine lady.

This is not MY sewing machine lady!

Dotted all over the city are ladies and their Singer sewing machines. On Sukhumvit Soi 18 we have a double act who work in the shade of a large tree near the Rembrandt Hotel: the sewing lady and the shoe repair man. I dropped my dress off (communicating mainly with nods and sign language) and then 24 hours later I picked it up. She had done a great job of taking it up and it only cost £2.

When I moved here I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to fit into anything, and my experience with the XXL sport shorts only made it worse. But on my last trip to the weekend market (JJ) I found some cool t shirts and interesting clothes stalls run by independent Thai designers (no Chang t shirt for me!) and now with the dress making and the vintage shop I have found my new shopping heaven!