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Life is short, buy the dress!

Searching for the perfect gown should be a fun, memorable and most importantly, stress free process.

Not always the case when wedding dress shopping but I have been lucky enough to speak to two wonderful and extremely talented New Zealand bridal designers.

Put the fun back into the experience and read on to hear what these fabulous ladies have to say.

Liah Roebuck Bridal Design offers gorgeous off-the-rack as well as simply stunning custom made gowns.

All dresses are designed, handcrafted and fitted in Liah’s New Plymouth studio.

Liah was kind enough to answer a few questions for us (all while renovating her studio!).

What are the key things you would love for a bride-to-be to know or

have prepared before they come for a try on/fitting?

My biggest piece of advice would be to keep an open mind. I often have brides come in saying “I definitely want this” and then when they try on that style, or that colour they almost feel a little deflated as they had their mind so set. Flash forward and I have them try something on completely off track and they fall in love! 

Remember too. Dress shopping can be so overwhelming, make sure you bring with you only people with opinions you trust and believe in.

The difference between off-the-rack, made to measure and custom made?

Being based in a small town can be rather challenging. Often brides will know another bride, even by association, so I try and make sure I use limited runs of laces and styles. 

My off-the-rack gowns are made for when brides visit, for them to try on and get ideas about style, shape and different fabric options. To keep my off the rack sample gowns fresh, they are for sale at a discounted price – great for brides to be on a budget! My made to measure option lets brides choose one of these pre-existing styles but customise the fit or lace.

Last, but not least, we have custom! For me this is the most popular in Taranaki. From the sketch, right through to pattern making and fittings, custom gives brides the freedom to pick and choose every last detail of their gown.

 And finally how do you know when a bride has found ‘the dress’?

It’s always my favourite moment, when a bride’s gown has gone from a sketch through to production, and they walk out for the first time, look in the mirror and are just speechless!

I think the beauty with custom, and a big selling point for it, is being able to make additions and change details along the way. So if they aren’t quite right – we change it! Making the final product everything they could have hoped for.


Ivory and Stone Bridal are an international online Bridal Boutique that create exquisite, unique Wedding Dresses at an incredibly affordable price.

They are lucky enough to be based in the truly stunning 

and perfect wedding destination of Wanaka.

We asked Annette the Owner & Head Designer of Ivory and Stone some of the important questions every bride-to-be needs to know about.

What is the difference between off the rack, made to measure & custom made?

Off the rack is a predesigned dress with no amendments. Made to measure is a dress specifically made to your specific measurements and custom made is a dress designed and made specifically for you.

To ensure a really fun day of try-ons what do you recommend a bride does to prepare?

Wear nude underwear and bring any photos you have of dresses and styles you like. If you already have your wedding shoes bring those too.

Bring your girls! I’ve had loads of fun days with Brides and their Bridesmaids, Mum, Mother in law at consultations. Lots of laughs (even some bubbles! ;)).

They can also help with feedback.

Choosing your wedding dress is such an exciting time, share it with your loved ones!

What are your ultimate tips and tricks for a bride-to-be in planning mode?

There may be things that pop up in the last couple of months of planning that you hadn’t accounted for or even thought about, don’t stress, it’s totally normal!

Just keep a little extra funds aside for this. 

The main thing I say to Brides is don’t get caught up in the small stuff, try and keep it light hearted and delegate tasks to your trusted loved ones.

This is such an exciting period for you and you are planning an incredible day for you and your Hubby to Be. Don’t let the minor details distract you from that. xx


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