I want to share an amazing experience with you today. After wearing the same dress to a black-tie event as someone else two years in a row, I reached out to Nardos Imam at Nardos Design about creating a dress. Having admired her beautiful designs for bridal gowns and ball gowns on Instagram and in her boutique window, I knew she would design something unique and gorgeous. And, wow, did she deliver!
With an eye for glamour and grace, Nardos creates beautiful custom designs for brides dreaming of a special gown and women looking for unique couture pieces. Her specialty is high-end, one-of-a-kind couture bridal gowns, evening wear, and cocktail wear. She also just introduced her first ready-to-wear collection as well.
The process of couture, custom design is an amazing experience. Sitting down with a talented designer to talk about your ideas and have her sketch your vision is exciting. Nardos asked me a lot of questions about my style and vision for the gown. Next, she sketched her interpretation and added her vision to help me look my best. The original sketch is the one we chose and I could not have been more thrilled with the final design.
After the sketch, we chose the fabric from literally hundreds of fabrics and colors. She actually had a bolt of this fabric in her studio and began draping it on me to make the design come to life. After taking measurements, we set the second appointment for a muslin fitting.
At this second appointment, I tried on the muslin which is actually the true pattern of the dress. I couldn’t believe how perfect the fit was. After a few small tweaks, we set the next appointment and I returned to my dress made to perfection. At this fitting, Nardos made a few adjustments to the draping and we chose the length for the hem. Just a few days later, I returned to pick up my gorgeous, custom designed ball gown. In total, we had 4 appointments from sketch to reality.
Nardos says “You can put any girl in a wedding gown and she’s going to look beautiful. But to give the bride that extra boost of confidence, you have to bring her idea for the perfect gown to life. That’s the beauty of custom.” I certainly agree that is true for all of her designs for any occassion.
With the addition of her ready to wear line, Nardos is able to dress you for any occasion whether a bridal gown, mother of the bride, black-tie gala, cocktail party or other special occasion. Nardos’ studio in Dallas in located on Preston Road. You can find all of her contact information here. She’d love to create the design of your dreams, too. Stop by her gorgeous studio Nov 9-Nov 11 for a special trunk show of her custom designs ready-to-wear and luxurious collection cashmere and furs.
Thank you to Nardos for collaborating on this post. All opinions are my own.
Photos by Mary Summers-Hafner
Nardos Imam Biography
Nardos leads the industry with her sophisticated approach to designing high-end, one-of-a-kind couture bridal gowns, evening wear, and cocktail wear, creating looks varying from modest to avant garde silhouettes that accommodate any bride’s or women’s style.
Growing up in the war-torn country of Eritrea, a small country of 4.6 million that borders Sudan and Ethiopia in northeast Africa, Nardos had very limited exposure to fashion during her childhood. She would look through her mother’s old Vogue pattern books for inspiration for the designs she created using the scraps from her mother’s work room as she dreamt about becoming a fashion designer one day.
After graduating high school, Nardos’ parents sent her to the United States to attend college where she was studying to become a nurse. It only took a few classes for her to realize that her passion was fashion design. At 25, Nardos enrolled in El Centro College in Dallas where she developed a skill for costume design which later developed into a passion for designing wedding gowns.
Nardos’ first job was as In-House Designer at Richard Brooks. She then moved to Stanley Korshak in Bridal Alterations. Nardos would wear her own designs to work. It was then that her incredible talent for design was discovered and cultivated into custom, couture bridal and evening wear designs.
Nardos handcrafts every detail of her gowns to bring them to life, adding select high-end fabrics, custom beadwork and jewels hand-selected from around the world. Her love of print and color are reflected in her evening and cocktail designs as well as her ready-to-wear collection.