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The Process of Bespoke Clothing – Lady Melbourne

by Julie Goodwin, / Thursday June 15th 2017


Closeup of Lady Melbourne’s navy tailored blazer

What does ‘bespoke’ mean?

We hear it all the time these days – bespoke soap, bespoke candles, bespoke jewellery, bespoke underpants. Yes, custom-made, tailored, underpants—you heard right.

It wasn’t until I started a project with Melbourne couturier Julie Goodwin, that I learned about the true meaning of the word.

It’s a 17th century tailoring word, born when gentlemen would visit their tailor and select, or ‘bespeak’ for a piece of fabric. It was then ‘bespoken’ for, or ‘bespoke.’

From then it evolved to mean one very specific thing: clothing that’s made from scratch using the precise measurements of an individual.

“Finally I went to the craftsmen, for I was conscious of knowing practically nothing, and I knew that I would find that they had knowledge of many fine things. In this I was not mistaken; they knew things I did not know, and to that extent they were wiser than I.” Plato

Sometimes confused with made-to-measure, bespoke is truly something original and unique.

At her Melbourne atelier, Julie and I chatted about a garment that I might like created exactly to my measurements. A blazer came to mind, as it’s a timeless piece you can wear again and again. In part two, I’ll be talking in-depth about the actual step-by-step process, but in this post I just wanted to introduce the idea and showcase the stunning end result. The antithesis of fast fashion, I’m already re-thinking my wardrobe and how my clothes are made. Have you ever thought about how what you’re wearing came to be?

This interview first appeared in Lady Melbourne’s Blog


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