Skip to main content

Bespoke fashion isn’t a new concept – The centuries-old practice of buying less, but buying better

by Julie Goodwin, / Saturday July 6th 2019

Bespoke fashion isn’t a new thing. Before fashion became a 52-drops-a-year commodity, bespoke was the only way, and the average woman owned very little of it. What she did own, was handmade, handed down from generation to generation, made from scratch for the individual – the best kind in my books.


Elizabethan women


Elizabethan women owned small capsule wardrobes of essential items long before it became fashionable to embrace minimalism. The staple Elizabethan wardrobe was modest; a few home smocks, four or five dresses, and a coat. For women in the upper half of the middle class – a corset, a few accessories and your market basket were what set you apart, but generally necessity took precedence over trends.

The need for practicality also meant that what you did own was made to last – it took so long and cost so much that it had to! Trends may have changed in the fashion world, but the value, beauty and art of bespoke have not, and I love bringing the magic of bespoke back to life every day in my studio.


Brocade detail of Elizabethan Fashion


There’s something special about a handmade, perfectly-fitted garment that speaks for itself. There’s a certain beauty in a finished product borne of hours and hours of intricate work, and it’s something only bespoke fashion possesses. You can see it, you can feel it, you can sense it, and when a woman steps into her finished bespoke outfit for the first time, she lights up.

Bespoke fashion is about owning a smaller wardrobe, but a better wardrobe, and treasuring what you do own. Unlike made-to-measure or ‘off the rack’ fashion, bespoke fashion fits like a glove, snug, to perfection. It is exclusively yours, it means something, and it’s an investment – a worthy one.

Pop into my Albert Park studio in Melbourne for a consultation and I’ll show you just how good bespoke fashion can feel.

The beauty of bespoke: why investing in quality fashion is smart dressing

Erin Modaro interviews Julie Goodwin

A Julie Goodwin Couture shoot to define my everyday muses

I don’t do alterations, but they are central to my philosophy, and here’s a pile I did last week.

Julie Goodwin Couture features in ‘Sustainable Fashion Melbourne’

Jane Vandermeer and the art of holistic soulful styling