Crowcombe Court

I took three  different Bridal gowns along to the Equine shoot directed by Jo Hansford Photography. We were located at Crowcombe Court in Somerset, at the end of a stunning drive across the Quantock hills. Crowcombe Court is impressive upon approach and an amazing residence to the family  that own it but they also market the old house as a Wedding venue. We were allocated a room to temporarily store the garments and prepare the models for the shoot while the horses were prepared by the florist, an amazing way to display  flowers !

So Jo (Hansford) has created a great blog from her photographic angle along with her partner Nic. Naturally mine is from a designer/seamstress point of view and gives some insight into the development and production of the garments captured in the shots. Im focused on the gowns individually as they are all quite different and deserve their own introduction……

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Links :

Fordham Hair: Hair

Hermione Harbutt : Exsquiste Hair accesories

Brompton Buds: Flowers

Jo Hansford Photography

Nina Norman MUA

Crowcombe Court (Location and venue for Hire)


Making a Corset

My Corset workshops run over a single weekend. I started off by offering this class to beginners so you only need very basic sewing skills but after the 12 hours in total you leave with some precision sewing techniques under your belt, as well as a corset. Many people enjoy the class so much they like to return and so I am very happy to tailor theinext project if they discuss with me any preference in advanced corset skills.

We begin each Class by ‘breaking the ice’, I bring along several examples of corsets in all sizes for folk to get into and they usually gasp at the reduction of their waist size!

Beginners can choose to make an overbust or underbust waspie style corset.

Full written instructions and patterns are provided but I also like to work through the process with each person as we all have different techniques of learning and I enjoy sharing ideas and appreciate the benefits of demonstration my self.


Trying on a corset, you have to admire the waist but most also comment on the back support you feel as a proper steel boned corset realigns your posture.


I like to encourage my students to bring along their choice of top fabric as this is a very personal selection . All other materials are provided by me and included in the materials cost.

I am very happy to help with the design process in planning the position of fabric and the placement of additional trim etc.


Six to eight people usually enrol on the courses, often travelling from all areas of the country to make a weekend of it.


Tracing patterns to suit your size.

Pattern pieces layer out after cutting

Pattern pieces layer out after cutting


Pressing open the seam-work after the panels have been stitched together


The student chose to use brushed upholstery fabric

The floral corset stitched together

The floral corset stitched together , lining up the pattern repeat to create a vision of the flowers travelling up the corset


Pinning the panels together


Inserting the front busk into the corset, with great care and precision


Creating the eyelets in the back of the corset


Trying on the Corset midway through the making process. shrieks of delight at this stage!


Frontview of a denim corset being tried on by a student


Making up the silk casings in this instance for a linen corset printed with toile de Jouy design


Eyelets in preparation for the ribbons or lacing which tightens and fastens the corset. The channels either side of the eyelets are supported with steel bones


Inserting steel spirals

Corset materials come from Vena Cava Design, Highly recommended!


Some precision stitching to apply the casings


An overview of the stages during corset making and some forward thinking in adding lace trim.

If you would like to come along to make a corset, please visit my workshop page for dates. Click here

Clifton Life magazine

Once Documentary and fashion photographer Marie Man had  mentioned Lavender during our first design meeting ..I got to work sketching this corset, skirt and Bustle.. as I had already noticedthe fabrics in my library of silk books. I quickly matched certain fabric textures  to achieve the look we wanted to create.


Initial sketched designs, a result of the first design meeting with Photographer..Marie Man.We talked about Fairy tales with a twist and alternative ideas..What a team..Intuitive from the start.

On arrival at Woodchester mansion, Stroud, Gloustershire I was met by the team…

David Hill Souch, director at Shoot DHS Models, bath models in Bath..We had worked together on an earlier shoot s that was fun to se him there.

Make-up artist  for the day was Sophia Cox and Hair by Chris Bryce who also styles at

Katie Roxburgh gets prepared in Corset, Bustle and Skirt


Helen Diaz and Dave Hill Souch get in the Mood!while all around test lighting


Chris Bryce is the selected Make-up artist on Set


Bustle in the making in my Studio / Somerset


Creating two way lavender Silk Duchess rosescombined with Silk Organdie and Silk Tulle


Silk spider Roses in detail..embroidered by Hand on the edges of the  Bridal corset


This Corset is made of Silk Duchess Satin overlaidwith embroidered Tulle and then the ribbon flowers have been added by handThese can be added in any colour or flower design of choice, perhaps to tie in with a theme or Bouquet


Pages 22 & 23 March 2013 Clifton Life Magazine. Bristol UKLIGHTING: Damien LovegroveFloral Bouqet: Grace Haskins Bramble and WildChocolate cake Wedding specialist : Lizzie Melling, Chocolate Delores

Alternative Wedding Shoot: Twisted Wonderland, Woodchester Mansion, Stroud, Glos. UK JULY 2012


Behind the scenes…


This promised to be an exciting experience,and it did not dis-appoint! The Photographer and Director, Marie Man called me to ask if I would be interested in providing some conceptual Wedding ideas based around colour themes…Lavender and Fucshia…both separate themes.


I was already in the process of building my portfolio for 2013 and these colours fitted in perfectly. I am not inspired by the mass flood of Ivory Bridalwear in the traditional sense so this was great inspiration for me….alternative but commercial, inspired although indulgent as Bridal wear and Unique as it should suit the Brides personality…