The feeling of happiness that comes from a well fitted garment is magical.
Weddings are one of those moments when a bride should feel beautiful. It is that magical day. For most women, we have dreamed about what our wedding would look like since we were 5, watching the Disney princesses dance around the screen. If nothing else, we have conjured up what that PERFECT dress would look like.
Fast forward, it is now the day you "say YES to the dress." There are hours spent looking for just the perfect one...the one you have imagined for years. You try it on, and you look amazing, but there is something just not quite right. It gathers too much in the underarm. The bra cups are too big, and you feel like you may reveal too much cleavage if you lean forward. If you try to walk across the floor you will trip and fall, from the excessive length, embarrassing yourself. On top of that, there is only one size to try on and it won't close in the back. This just wont do. But this IS the dress you have imagined all your life...
For a full figured woman, thoughts like the ones I describe above, fill my mind every time I try on clothes. The story above is how I felt when I tried on my very own wedding dress. I remember vividly how horribly I felt about my body.
Many years later, I have learned acceptance for the curve of my hips, my well endowed chest line, and I am turning those negative thoughts into positive ones.
Building self esteem with well fitted garments.
When I opened my sewing business it was out of pure necessity. I was disabled in my late 40's, and I still had a family to help support. I never expected i would become a seamstress. But nowadays, I get to help other women feel good in their bodies by providing well fitted garments. Being a professional seamstress, I build up women. I encourage them to see the best in themselves and LOVE who they are, not who they want to be. I challenge the stereotypes, and offer hope . I want people to walk out of my shop with clothes that are well fitted, and make them feel amazing, and wanting to come back for more.
The best moments are when I help brides take those ill-fitted wedding dresses, and "tweak" them in just the right places. I don't want any of my brides to think they can't look and feel great on their special day. I want them to say, "...Because of Cathy, I felt as great as I looked!"
It isn't just about altering a dress, it is about a woman feeling amazing about the body they live in. It is about feeling special!
Kandice: Self worth is worth the cost of the dress.
Kandice came to me a little over a year ago. She was getting married, but the dress she chose was not what she wanted. She couldn't find what she wanted in her size, and could I help alter it. You betcha! That's what i do!
She was a full figured woman like me, and I could see the sadness in her eyes when she tried it on so I could tailor it to her. We got to talking about what she wanted, and the dress just didn't fit her well. The alterations were extensive and costly, almost the price of the dress itself. I could tell that she really did not want to spend any more money on this dress, especially one she really didn't like.
I asked her a very important question...
"DO YOU LOVE THE DRESS? Do you love the dress enough to put more money into it?"
Her response was heartbreaking.
No. No she didn't love the dress. She had settled on the dress because it was the first one she found that fit her. She had spent hours looking, she tried several shops, nothing worked, and she didn't want to look anymore. I related to her experience, and I shared my story. She was sure that her "dream" dress would never fit her, and her body had failed her.
As we continued, I realized her self-worth, like mine, was tied up in the cost of the dress she REALLY wanted. Putting a price on my self-worth was a HUGE mountain I had to climb. As I stood there with Kandace, I took her up that mountain for herself. I encouraged her to challenge how she felt about herself, and to realize she was worth MORE than a dress in which she had settled. I reminded her she was a queen and as such, she could feel like a queen, too.
After a heartfelt visit, a call to her fiance, and a lot of encouragement, she agreed to go look at another bridal shop and see if she could find the one she wanted instead. Later that day I received a text from her, in HER new dress, with smiles from ear to ear. It was too long, but it fit perfectly, and it had pockets! She was thrilled! I altered the hem for her, she thanked me for helping her and as she beamed, she said, "Thanks, Cathy. I feel like a MILLION BUCKS!" And my heart melted.
I made her day special, and I know she will always remember, she is worth the cost of whatever she wants.
How do you feel in your clothes? Do you feel like a "million bucks?" What would it take?
Next Up - Sarah: The Belle of the Ball