Top 5 Pro Tips for Designing your own Wedding Dress

We are beyond excited for all the creative wedding dress designs we are working on this year! See below our top five professional wedding dress designing tips for designing your own wedding dress with us!

Shana Bailey Photography

1. Narrow down your complete bridal look before your first design meeting.

Be sure to have your complete look in mind prior to your first meeting. Utilize Pinterest, wedding magazines, or Google images for inspiration. When you pin or print your inspirational photos write a caption with description of which feature you loved about your dress.

2. Have a budget in mind for both your dress and alterations.

While we include alterations in custom dresses for our local clients, if you are long distance you will need a separate budget for alterations local to you.

3. Trust the process!

Once you’ve booked your custom wedding dress, trust the process! It’s so hard to wait, but just like in the shop, all good things take time. Gown production can take 6-9 months.

4. Select shoes of the same height before your try on.

While you might not have the right vision for your accessories, shoes are the most important for a first fitting. Be sure to check return policies with the boutique you order from.

5. Have a selection of undergarment options ready for try on.

We have a selection undergarments we can special order for you. Be sure to inquire this at your time of measurements and fabric selection. Most cases dresses are created with enough support to avoid the need for undergarments. However, it is important to keep this option in mind.

We hope this helps you with your custom wedding dress design process! As always, feel free to reach out via text if you have any questions: 208-696-1155



-The Bridal Tailor

How to use our Wedding Dress Preservation Kits

Shipping Kits US wide

Hi! Britt here with Modern Cottage. I love how simple our wedding dress preservation shipping kits are! We can ship these wedding gown cleaning kits all across the United States, so don’t hesitate to reach out with questions even if you aren’t in Idaho.

Here’s how you can prepare your dress to ship out for a wedding dress cleaning or preservation:

STEP 1: Be sure to add your wedding dress color, fabric content, designer, and dress value to your form. These things are extremely important. You want to be sure our gown cleaning experts can address your gown color and content accurately. It is also important to know the designer and value for insurance purposes. However, in my 17 years of preserving and cleaning gowns, I’ve had great experience with our signature required shipping.

STEP 2: Mark with the “stain” stickers specific stains you would like brought to our attention. This is easier than it looks! You really can’t mess it up, just put the stickers where you want us to really dive in to cleaning that stain.


Roll your dress and set in the bag gently, be sure to include any accessories you want preserved. Then ship via the prepaid shipping label. When rolling your dress up try to start from the top with the skirt being on the outside. Be sure to deflate the bag after putting your dress in it to keep the packaging compact.

How to use a Wedding Dress Preservation Kit
How to use a Gown Preservation Kit

Top 3 Reasons to have an Expert Clean your Wedding Dress

Hello! It’s Brittanie Cline with Modern Cottage. I am jumping on here to share with you my top three reasons why you need a gown expert to clean your gown. Number one, the biggest thing is fabric content knowledge. A gown expert is going to know what type of fabric you have and the best treatment for your gown. Number two, beads and stain treatment. So basically, what is on your gown embellishment wise as well as your specific stain for treatment?

“A gown expert is going to know how to identify the grass stains versus the dirt stains versus food or wine and how to differentiate treating that with each fabric content. “


A gown expert is going to know how to identify the grass stains versus the dirt stains versus food or wine and how to differentiate treating that with each fabric content. Number three, in handling and packaging, it is important to have a gown expert because they’re going to be adequately trained to package your gown in acid free tissue paper and acid free cardboard box with the shadow box. Generally a gown expert will also know to wear gloves while handling your dress. It is important that any time you pull your dress out of the packaging as well, even if you’re looking at it after it’s been cleaned to wear clean gloves; this way you are preventing oils from your hands going on to your dress. When you do that, you’re preventing any future stains. By wearing gloves, you are preventing those future stains so that we can maintain that color and that lasting color for up to 100 years. Those are my top three reasons why you need a gown expert to clean your gown. If you need your dress cleaned, feel free to text me at 208-696-1155 and I would be happy to ship you a wedding gown preservation kit, or you can drop it off at our local location just between Sun Valley, Idaho, and Twin Falls, Idaho.



The Bridal Tailor

Tips & Tricks for Storing Your Wedding Dress

Hey it’s Britt with Modern Cottage Bridal, and today I’m gonna talk to you about tips and tricks to storing wedding dress. So if you’re headed to go pick up your wedding dress, this is the blog post for you to read. If you’re headed to the bridal shop to pick up your wedding dress I highly recommend getting a bridal bag on hand to bring with you. I have some here at the shop. You can inquire about that by shooting me a message here. I could also have one ready for you when you come to your first fitting I highly recommend storing wedding dresses in a bridal bag on a hanger. Leaving your dress in a box can crumple the fabric. It doesn’t necessarily damage it, but it can snag the dress on the box.

If you’ve had your wedding dress for alterations and want it to your wedding. I highly recommend getting it preserved and cleaned. Then once it comes back preserved and clean. Generally speaking it will come back either in a bag or presentation box of some sort. So those are my best tips and tricks for storing your wedding dress. Be sure to check out more information on cleaning your gown here.

When to Use a Petticoat

Hey guys it’s Britt with Modern Cottage Bridal. Today’s tailor your wedding tip is to ask your seamstress about a petticoat. This tip is great for you if you are looking to add more volume to your skirt, and to fill out the under layer. You might be thinking what is a petticoat? A petticoat is the extra volume or under skirt that goes underneath your wedding dress. Sometimes I hear people call it “cupcake” or “prairie skirt” or “that under skirt thingamajig.”

You know what I mean. Anyway, that “thing” called a petticoat.

Here at modern cottage you can request a petticoat when you schedule your first fitting online. From there I will more than likely be requesting a picture of your dress just so that I can have the right petticoat pulled out for you to try to dry out. Now if you’re on the opposite spectrum of things and you’re thinking: “I don’t want to add more volume.” Let’s say you want to maybe de-fluff your dress. That’s possible too. We can actually remove part of the volume of the under skirt that’s built into your dress. So check those options out when you are scheduling your first fitting with Modern Cottage Bridal and have a blessed day!

You can schedule your first fitting here, and add a petticoat at checkout.

I can’t wait to see the dress you picked out!


The Bridal Tailor

Wedding Dress Preservation

Hey all! Britt here, your bridal tailor.  Is your wedding dress sitting in your closet with stains from your wedding day?  Depending on how long your dress has had stains you may not be able to take your dress to the dry cleaners.  Some dry cleaners can’t get out wedding dress stains that have sat longer than a few weeks.  A wedding dress preservation might be the better fit for you if your dress has stayed put longer.

We do gown preservation here at Modern Cottage.  We help you through the whole process with Wedding Gown Preservation Company.  Our certified specialists are absolutely amazing about the care for your gown.  Vintage wedding dresses receive extra special care and are sent to a specialty team for any repairs or special coloring troubleshooting.

If you are looking to keep your dress to share with generations to come, I highly recommend getting your wedding dress preserved.  It’s refreshing to see your dress brought back to life and to know that it will be the same condition as when you first fell in love with it.  Any missing beads, tears, or snags are also repaired with a gown preservation.  You can also request 3 accessories to be preserved with your dress for free. Accessories include veils, clutches, broaches, hairpieces, etc.

You gown comes back with original color, stain free, and completely repaired.  The process takes approximately 4 to 6 weeks to complete.  If you are having a reception separate from your ceremony at a later date, we recommend seeing a dry cleaner between events then getting your dress preserved. If your dress has been in storage with stains for quite some time, if not decades, don’t worry, Wedding Gown Preservation can get it out.  I was absolutely amazed by the results from a stunning 1950s wedding dress that came back with original ivory color, brighter, and looking like new.

You can schedule your gown cleaning, or request a shipping kit online here.

Wedding Dress Alterations: Tips & Timeline

Hello! You deserve to have a dress that fits perfectly, and I’m here to tell you it’s totally possible. Here is your wedding dress timeline, if you are not in alignment with this timeline, shoot me a message and I’d love to help you make a new game plan to ensure the perfect fit!

Custom Wedding Dress Timeline

  • 12-8 Months: Sketches and fabric samples.
  • 8-6 Months: Order your custom wedding dress.
  • 6-4 Months: Draping, sample pattern fittings.
  • 4-2 Months: Dress is made and ready for regular alteration fittings.
  • 4-6 weeks: At this time you should have your accessories & be planning you second or final fitting.
  • 2-3 weeks: Your final fitting will be scheduled during this time as it insures the best fit for your wedding day.
  • Your wedding week: If you have requested your dress be steamed, you will have a scheduled pick up during this week.
  • Keep in mind the number of fittings is dependent upon the style of dress you choose.
  • We accept bookings all across the Pacific Northwest, specifically serving Walla Walla, Boise, and La Grande. Dresses are made to the closest fit and our seamstresses are available to travel to you.

Wedding Dress Alterations Timeline

  • 12-8 weeks: Dress has arrived and is ready for regular alteration fittings.
  • 4-6 weeks: At this time you should have your accessories & be planning you second or final fitting.
  • 2-3 weeks: Your final fitting will be scheduled during this time as it insures the best fit for your wedding day.
  • Your wedding week: If you have requested your dress be steamed, you will have a scheduled pick up during this week.
  • Keep in mind the number of fittings is dependent upon the style of dress you choose.

Wedding Dress Alterations: Tips

  • Always go the next size up! Your consultant might try to convince you to go the size that’s barely too small, but they may not know the structure of the dress.  It can’t hurt to go on the larger side if you are already having fit issues. This is especially true with fit n’ flare dresses.
  • Wear you shoes to your first appointment.  Be sure to bring the exact shoes you will be wearing when you walk down the isle.  Half an inch can make all the difference, so this is key.
  • Just bring you.  It’s important that your voice be heard in the way you want your dress to fit.    If you really want to show off your dress, bring someone close to you, someone who values your opinion.
  • Schedule your hair trial for the same day you have your final fitting.
  • Have someone else pick up your dress after it is steamed.  Have a bridesmaid, or family friend pick up your wedding dress.

If you have any further questions, or if you are looking for an estimate on your wedding dress alterations, please see our price list here.


Top 5 Ways to use a Vintage Wedding Dress

No. 1: Wearing your vintage wedding dress

If you are only a few inches away from squeezing into the family dress, you can request a corset kit to match.  Most vintage dresses are not made with forgiving seams.  If you are local to Walla Walla, Washington, Boise, Idaho, or La Grande, Oregon, I serve these areas for wedding dress alterations.  You can see pricing here.

No. 2: Recycle it

Order a simple wedding dress that is the silhouette you are dreaming of.  Then work one-on-one with a wedding dress designer to create innovative ways to include fabrics from the vintage wedding dress.  Please, don’t try to reconstruct the original dress to be an entirely different dress.  If you are just removing sleeves, or making some adjustments to the neckline, then by all means, rock the original dress on your wedding day. Most vintage wedding dresses were made with little to no under structure. Keep this in mind with recycling.  You can brainstorm some more ideas with me here.

No. 3: Put it in your bouquet

This one is a super simple way to include grandma or mom as you walk down the isle.  It’s the perfect “something old” to add to your wedding day.  This option is perfect if the vintage wedding dress has lace applique.  Talk with your local florist about ways to add the fabric to your bouquet.  Local seamstresses can also make fabric flowers for you to add to your floral arrangements.  Here are a few of my favorite local florists:

La Grande, Baker City, Pendleton, Oregon: Fitzgerald Flowers  Succulent Hub

Walla Walla, Washington: Holly’s Floral Boutique

Boise, Idaho: Flowers At Will

No. 4: Add it to your garter set

A custom garter set is a budget friendly way to add that “something old” to your wedding accessories.  Your seamstress can use the lace applique or create a fabric flower to incorporate with your garter design.  We specialize in custom garters and ship them nationally.  You can schedule a free consultation here.


No. 5: Preserve it and display 

Once you dress is cleaned and preserved, you could pick up a vintage mannequin to display the dress on next to a family picture display.  You can preserve and clean your gown by scheduling a cleaning or ordering a cleaning kit here.

If you need help with your project, your first consult with me is free.  Visit our scheduling page to book your first meeting. I look forward to helping you brainstorm your wedding project!