The first design is this pretty anarkali from RDC, which I blogged about recently, (although I found it a little too expensive for my taste!). The second design is a little more casual and less embellished, but I really like it because of the cut of the dress, and the fact that it has fitted long sleeves which I find more practical for myself. I also like the drape of the dress and the fact that it is made of panels which give the dress slightly more volume (which can be measured in levels of swishy-ness!)
Image from RDC Facebook page
Image from Zeenat Style
This is the final dress as I ended up with it, with all of the things I wanted which were mostly taken from the above two designs. The velvet part looks black in some pictures but it was actually a deep navy blue which I thought would make a classical combination with the deep red - which is different from the dark brown of the original RDC design. I also originally wanted to make the work a dull gold, but against the cool colours of the dress, I ended up picking silver because it looked more striking. I took the main shape of the dress from the second design above (the Zeenat one), while the navy velvet portions came from the first design (the RDC part). I also kept the small flower patterns all over the dress so that it wouldn't look too empty, although I reduced the amount of motifs as this would be cheaper, and also less crowded, and made them a bit more spaced out. Otherwise, this is quite a standard anarkali dress, which came with silk churidar trousers and a velvet lined duppatta scarf.
This is the bodice pat of the dress at the top, which had a really pretty look to the bodice, and also glittered in a nice silvery way without being too glittery or over the top. I love how tightly made each of the paisley designs are, and how neat they look, especially with the added sequins and the small splash of red in the diamontes. The velvet part of the original RDC design was quite heavily embellished, which is one of the reasons why the cost for this outfit is quite high - and this is something which I had to reduce quite a lot to get a reasonable price for.
The design was mainly taken from this pattern image below, rather than copying the work on either of the two original designs above. This was a design which was suggested by the designer after I stated that I wanted a paisley motif, and it was something I really liked the look of. I wanted something quite intricate as well as not too heavy (as this would have affected the cost) and I'm really happy with the way the bodice looked in the finished product.
The hem of the dress is something which I absolutely LOVE, it feels nice and heavy without being too crowded, and was something which was continued all along the back of the dress. Again, this was very neatly and well-made, and looked very sparkly which flashes at the bottom of the dress. I also kept this hem at the bottom of the dress instead of slightly higher up like the RDC design, and wider than the Zeenat design to make it more of a feature of the dress.
The motif of this dress, again, came from a design that I found which I really liked the shape of, as it looks quite intricate and also quite solid in design. I think that the designer managed to capture this motif on the hem very well, and managed to make it look quite sparkly and detailed. I also like how the paisley design here worked well with the motifs on the bodice, which tied them together well and looked quite pretty together.
THE GOOD: The fit of the dress is perfect, and the work is of one of the best standards of metal-work and stitching I have seen for quite a long time. The designer and tailor were quite thorough with the details of the dress, which helped immensely as it helped me be clearer in conveying what I wanted. I also love the fact that this outfit is not too dressy, and the colours used are fairly classic ones, which will make the outfit more wearable over a long time. And of course, the hem of the dress and the paisley designs of the bodice are just beautiful!
THE BAD: I kept the dress length slightly shorter than the current trend of long dresses, since it made the dress more swishy and helped it hang better when I tried it on. I wouldn't have minded if the length was longer, but this is not really a big issue, but rather an afterthough, and was also due to the measurements which I gave. I like the colours I've used as well, although if I had time (and money) to burn, I'd love to look at different colour combinations (I suppose that's what Pinterest is for!) It would also be interesting to see what the dress would look like with perhaps a fuller skirt, although this would have added to the price because of the extra material, and again, this is an afterthought.
THE UGLY: Packing the dress away. I'm terrible at folding!
This is definitely a timeless design for me; although I've adapted two designs which are slightly more heavier and fashionable, I can imagine wearing my outfit quite a few times and being able to dress it up and/or down as appropriate. I also like how the outfit takes into consideration my concerns about modesty, such as the fact that the sleeves were fitted but not sheer, which is the case with a lot of outfits in the shops today. I haven't worn this outfit yet as I only received it a couple of weeks ago, but I'm sure I'll make good use of it during wedding season!