- 5 years ago
- Wedding: March 2013
I have been meaning to start a thread on my Jasmine’s Bridal Shop experience for a while now, because similar posts on Weddingbee have been so helpful to me in my dress-buying process. I’ll try to keep it simultaneously informative, helpful, and brief. Here goes!
I spent the first 3-4 months of my engagement looking at dresses online (most of them within my budget), and ultimately coming out disappointed. I am a very picky person, and none of the gowns I saw (although many were gorgeous!) fulfilled my vision for what I would wear on my wedding day.
Two dresses, VW351124 (the David’s Bridal Vera Wang line) and Pronovias Dogma were high in the running, although neither were perfect. I tried on the White by Vera Wang dress twice, and attempted to find the Pronovias sample in my area (and two counties over!) in order to try on. The White by Vera Wang confirmed the silhouette and style design that I was going for, but it was extremely hard to find the Pronovias since it was a very new line.
VW351124 (I didn’t like the satin loop thing, I wanted to make it a modified sweetheart, I wanted a v-shaped back, the sash around the waist was too thick and made my torso look too short, and the flowers on the train weren’t placed very well, IMO).
Pronovias Dogma–GORGEOUS dress, but I wasn’t sure how I felt about the tulle, the train wasn’t long enough, the neckline would have to be modified to a curved sweetheart, and there wasn’t enough detail for me).
It was about then that I started reading posts on WeddingBee about Jasmine’s Bridal Shop and other Chinese dressmakers (Jasmine’s received the best reviews, and gave me the most confidence in Chinese makers). After many questions, many hours researching and poring over pictures on their blog, and Rachel631’s AWESOME thread on her trip to their workshop and her custom dress, I decided that I could save money by ordering a dress from them, and be able to execute my dress vision exactly to my liking.
I sent Jasmine’s a brief inquiry via the contact form on their website, and my consultant James and I proceeded to deliberate over my dream dress over about 30 emails before I finally was happy and sent a deposit. I included in a few of my emails some Word documents containing pictures and instructions very meticulously indicated. In some other emails, I just attached images and told James what I was referring to in the body of the email. Most of the instructions for the dress were on the Word documents though.
This is ONE of the sketches/pictures I included in a 6-page Word document detailing how my dress should be made.
While James and I were corresponding, the bees on this site were SO helpful and encouraging, and they really reassured me, despite how OCD I can get. During the time of the emails, I decided it was worth the 24-ish dollars to order fabric swatches of satin and organza, the two main fabrics of my dress. I received them in a perfectly timely manner, with a monitored tracking code. It was well packaged, each fabric in its own labelled plastic bag, all put into a foldable garment bag.
I spent about a week agonizing over the fabrics with my mom, my future Mother-In-Law, neighbors, anyone that would listen/look. Many who have gone with Jasmine’s in the past have agreed that the Premium grade and the Designer grade organza differ the most. The different grades in satin/tulle/etc. are much more similar. Anyway, I was sent Premium Satin, Premium Thin Organza, Premium Thick Organza, Designer Satin, Designer Thin Organza, and Designer Thick Organza. The thin organzas were ruled out quickly because of a weird Moire effect (google it) in bright light. The Thick organzas were harder to decide between, but I eventually chose the Designer grade because it had less of a Moire effect, it was slightly less “shiny” (for lack of a better word), and it felt less like plastic. I will say that I did a burn test on all the fabrics I was sent, and they all had a high amount of synthetic material in them.
After I decided on Designer Grade fabric, I sent in my order form, my measurements (taken by a seamstress), and I transferred the deposit by Bank of America. I felt safe doing so, and I got a discount. I had also been discussing a custom veil with James which was also included in the order. James clarified some things like the color of the beading, and what went on each layer of the dress, etc. I also sent in maybe three clarifications/revisions after the production began. James told me that further revisions may cost extra, if they conflicted with what had already been made.
For example, I changed the color from white on the order form to off-white. He told me that they had already cut the white fabric, and that to re-cut and start over would cost around 85 (can’t remember exact price). I decided to have the inside layers white and the outside layers off-white. Then I second-guessed myself within 24 hours and emailed him again just to keep the entire dress white. He told me that he wanted to give me at least 24 hours to think about it, and that he didn’t tell the seamstresses to cut the off-white fabric just yet. Sure enough he was right! I was so grateful that he anticipated my fickle-ness 🙂
It has now been about 36 days since I sent in the deposit, and I have received my mid-production picture by email!! [Continued in next post]