FAQ About Our Wedding Dresses

A woman in a wedding gown stands in front of a barn

Having a gown handcrafted can bring up many questions about wedding dresses. To help you, we have gathered together the most common questions about bridal gowns with answers. Feel free to contact us anytime if you need further assistance.

FAQ about wedding dresses to help you

Please don’t hesitate to contact us anytime if you have any questions about our bridal gown process.

What is the process of having a bridal gown handcrafted by White Silk Bridal?

Our process for all our wedding gowns is enjoyable, stress free and simple. We begin with a consultation. This is where brides bring their collection of ideas and photos of wedding dresses. We go over your ideas, try on gowns if needed, we discuss the fabrics and laces, what your bridal party is wearing, colours etc venue, hair, make up, flowers, shoes, accessories to ensure everything and everyone will compliment you.

You will leave with your gown designed. Allow an hour for this process, you will need to book in an appointment. The consultation is $70.00 on the day.

Book your bridal gown consultation with White Silk Bridal Couture

What happens after the wedding gown consultation?

Once you have had your consultation, measurements will be taken and we will book in a calico fitting. The calico fitting is a mini mock up of your gown. This is where we put all the design lines in, fit it out to get the ultimate shape, you can determine how low or high the necklines are, how wide straps are etc, you get a visual of the gown.

Two bridal gowns on mannequins in the White Silk Bridal Couture shop in Tauranga

The calico then becomes our pattern and from there the gown is made and we book in your dress fitting. During this fitting we make any changes required, hem the gown, try on veils and accessories etc. If it’s possible to make these final touches on the day you come you will be able to take the gown home with you that day as well, otherwise you may wish to book in a final dress fitting and come another day.

You are welcome to bring as many people as you like to these appointments or come alone.

How much time is needed to make a wedding dress?

It’s great to start the design process as soon as you feel ready. To make the gown we like to work 2 to 3 months out from the wedding date but often brides who are losing significant weight or fall pregnant we will leave 2 weeks out from the wedding.

What if I am outside of Tauranga and want a designer bridal gown?

Brides quite often travel to have their bridal gown handcrafted by us. We can eliminate one trip by doing the calico in the same appointment as the consultation. Then we will need to see the bride once more for fitting the gown, hemming and making minor adjustments if necessary. These can usually be done in a day. However, it is a great idea if they can stay overnight in our beautiful city and pop back in early the next day for one last fitting. The gown is then ready to be taken home.

We are planning on making quarterly trips to Auckland for brides who would love a gown made by our wonderful team. These would be over the course of three days so appointments must be made in advance and we require pre paid consultation fees. Please note these will not be refundable due to limited bookings others may miss out on.

What if I live outside of New Zealand?

Brides living in other countries have a slightly different process. We Zoom or Skype if a trip over isn’t viable.

We do a consultation via Skype and we then send fabrics and lace samples then discuss these again by Zoom or Skype or email once they are received by mail.

A calico will be sent and it’s recommended someone who has a little bit of sewing knowledge fits it on the bride if the bride us unable to get a sewer to do it. Instructions will be sent but a quick Skype video call is always preferred then if you get stuck I’m there to guide.

Once the calico is returned I will check it over and begin making your gown. We can Skype or I can send photos through the process. Once it’s all finished I will send it over packaged up and insured.

You may need a local designer or alteration specialist to do any tweaking if necessary.

Do you make bridesmaids and flower girl dresses?

Yes we do! We have an extensive range of fabrics and colours available.

Flower girl dresses are arranged on hangars in a bridal gown shop in Tauranga

Do you make Christening Gowns?

A christening gown, that is made to measure for your child, can be ready for you at short notice.

The gowns are custom made and can be in a selection of fabrics, including silk or from a wedding gown or other gown that’s been handed down.

I make christening gowns for a variety of ages from newborn, to toddler, or older. And please don’t worry if you do need a gown at short notice, just get in touch with me to see what’s possible.

What is your price range for a bridal gown?

It really does vary on the style, fabrics and laces selected. Generally our prices of wedding dresses range between $2800.00 – $5500.00. We will do our best to work within a bride’s budget.

What do I need to bring to my fittings?

If it’s your calico fitting, make sure you wear a really good bra, one that gives good lift and shape. The shape we achieve in the calico is what we will get in the gown. Do not wear a sport bra.

You will also need and shape wear if that’s what you choose to wear under your gown.

And lastly shoes. Either the ones you will wear on the day or a pair of similar height. Your final dress fitting you will just need to bring your shape wear if any and your shoes. We usually build cups into our wedding dresses. Unless you really need the support of a bra, then this will need to be the same one as worn in the calico.

What lingerie will I need under my gown?

Cups are usually built into the gown so a bra is not necessary unless discussed. If you’re not wearing shape wear then make sure you purchase nude coloured thong or seamless brief that does not cut into your skin making an indent. We need the smoothest line possible in bridal gowns.

Do you do bridal gown alterations?

The answer is yes, we do bridal gown alterations at White Silk Bridal Couture. In fact, we do a range of gown alterations. Please don’t hesitate to ask what you need help with.

Book your bridal gown consultation today

Terms and Conditions


Thank you for choosing White Silk Bridal Couture to handcraft your gown. These terms of agreement serve to provide you with guidelines for your expectations of your services and procedures involved in purchasing your gown.

On making a deposit you agree to the Terms and Conditions. This contract is made with the bride (or purchaser) who is responsible for all payment including bridesmaids and attendants. A non-refundable booking fee 20% of total amount or $500.00 for Made to Measure and 50% of total amount for other collections is required. This is a deposit in the total cost of your purchase.
Upon the consultation a quote is given. However, this can change and incur additional costs if there is change in design aspects, fabrics, laces, or embellishments. Gown bags, cups, and accessories are not included in the quote, they are additional costs.

What if the wedding is postponed or cancelled?

If your wedding is postponed or cancelled for unforeseen reasons, all or part of the booking fee, is at our discretion, will be retained to cover the cost of work already completed. And if the gown has been started or ordered, the booking fee, plus the fabric used and labour cost to date, will be charged to you and the gowns returned to you.

Continuing, if designs are altered during the making of you gown, the cost of extra fabric and labour may be added to your final account. Once the ready to wear gown is ordered and confirmed, it is final. No changes will be accepted.
Minor tweaking such as nipping in a cm at the waist for example will not incur additional charges. 

Also all sale item purchases are final.

We strive to keep wedding dresses as clean as possible during the making process. It is inevitable that some marks and sometimes damage may occur. Please be aware of makeup, lotions, and standing on hems and walking around in your garment excessively during fittings. We do not accept responsibility for any damage after the gown has been collected from us


Fittings are an important stage in the construction of your gown where we focus on the fit and design details of your gown. Made to Measure will require 2 to 4 fittings (include a calico). Other collections will require 1 to 2 fittings for alterations.

You will need to  bring to each fitting the undergarments and shoes to be worn at your wedding, and any accessories.

For made to measure wedding dresses, substantial weight gains or losses while your gown is being made may incur extra charges. Please advise us in advance and on a regular basis of any changes we need to be aware of. It is essential that you make your requests known to us during the fittings. Once the gown has been further completed after a fitting if is sometimes not possible to undo and/or alter the gown. We reserve the right to charge for any additional alteration.

All Ready to Wear gowns does not include alteration cost. Any alteration required will be added to your final account.


Payment can be made by cash, cheque or Internet banking. 

Ensure you reference with your name.

Made to Measure payment plan

Deposit with booking – 20% of total cost  

Deposit at first fitting – 30% of total cost

The deposit at second fitting – 30% of total cost

Final fitting- balance of final account

Ready to Wear and Others 

Deposit with booking- 50% of total cost 

The deposit with alteration- 50% of total cost 

Final fitting- Balance of final account

*We do not allow garments to be collected until all monies owing are paid. White Silk Bridal can store the gown until the wedding. If your wedding is postponed or cancelled for unforeseen reasons, your gown needs to be collected before the scheduled wedding date, otherwise a storage fee $30 per month will be added to your final account.

In the event a customer decides to end the process and a gown has been partially or fully made the customer is liable to pay the full amount as quoted as well as extra costs incurred due to changes. Payment on items must be paid in full as agreed before collection.

Debt collection: The customer is liable to pay for debt collection fees incurred by the outstanding balance.
Debt collection process: The customer will receive a notice requiring payment due within 7 days before going to debt collectors. If payment has not been made our accounts team will directly contact debt collectors and they will be in touch with the customer

White Silk Bridal Couture is an appointment only private bridal studio in Tauranga.

We’re open Tuesday to Saturday, from 9.30am

Tel: 021 335 115