There is nothing quite like the feel that a piece of tailored clothing provides, a satisfaction that is fueling the resurgence of repurposed, mended and custom made clothing.

There is nothing quite like the feel that a piece of tailored clothing provides, a satisfaction that is fueling the resurgence of repurposed, mended and custom made clothing. 

Debbie of Debbie Champ Clothing sees many who opt to alter a favourite piece of clothing to allow continued use, whether it's hemming or changing a neckline or sleeve to give an item new lease of life.

It's a shift away from fast fashion towards a more sustainable future of quality over quantity. "...when people buy clothing online it never seems to fit properly and this keeps us in business!" jokes Debbie.

"...they don't need to travel to a big city to find what they need, it's all right here in Launceston."

Debbie and her team are busy making alterations and repairs from their shop in the Centreway Arcade, churning out up to 30 garments on a busy day, ranging from simple hemming, to more complex alterations to tailored items. The team pride themselves on their attention to detail "...we get a huge range of customers, from those who have been coming in for 20 years, to younger individuals who need help sewing on a button!" says Debbie.

Gone are the days of travelling to another city to source a bridal gown, Launceston's Cheveux Bridal on York Street and MaoCouture ensures brides can find the perfect dress right here in Launceston, and if brides do choose to buy online, alterations are made easy with a variety of places like TM Designs able to create the perfect fit.

Brides to be and those looking for bespoke gowns travel from all over Tasmania to see Anh Woodward of MaoCouture. After an illustrious career in the UK, Anh and her husband fell in love with Launceston's laid back way of life and made the big move for the lifestyle and climate of Tasmania.

Moving to Tasmania was a move originally made to slow down and take a step back from designing, something that Anh quickly realised was impossible "...not designing made me stir crazy!" remarks Anh.

After opening her Launceston studio just months before Covid-19, a sudden decline in weddings and black tie events meant Anh started doing more alterations and even launched a limited edition couture range stocked in Melbourne, but her first love remains designing custom gowns

Anh is understatedly modest about her experience, which started with designing for high street brands including Marks and Spencer and H & M, shows at London Fashion week, representing England in the Miss World Designer Awards at the Miss World 60th Anniversary, and even designing for the likes of Kate Middleton.

Those who visit her unassuming studio are blown away by the quality of the bridal samples (just a tiny selection of the full range) and even more impressive is the price for a custom made couture gown, which can start anywhere from $500, with the average cost being $2000. "I try and keep costs down and brides are always impressed with how perfectly a custom gown fits..." says Anh. "I try to make the process as easy and be as approachable as possible, most of the time brides know what they want, so it's about capturing and refining that, choosing the perfect lace and creating a fit that will suit them on their special day."

From a bride's first visit, usually armed with photos in hand, Anh gets to know the bride, and gets a feel for fabric and desired fit to inform her initial concept sketches, with a finished gown ready to wear down the aisle in just 10 to 12 weeks.

Anh has quickly cemented herself at the forefront of the Tasmanian bridal scene, recently being awarded winner of the Bride's Choice Awards 2021 in the Bridal Gown Designer category.

Anh has been impressed by the sheer number of designers and makers in the Launceston community and is a champion for those wanting to launch their products here. "...what people probably don't realise is that they don't need to travel to a big city to find what they need, it's all right here in Launceston."

Another of those championing designers and makers is Flossy Fabric's Mel Hennessy. Many of Mel's customers have their own small businesses creating items sewn from her beautiful range of fabrics.

What started as a small custom fabric printing business, running small, curated rounds of printed fabric is now a store on St John Street, supported by a strong online community of makers who are embracing the art of sewing and keeping it alive for generations to come.

ALL YOU NEED IN ONE PLACE

From clothing alterations, to fabric and custom couture, here are all of the businesses in Launceston Central City that will have you looking your best.

THERE'S MORE TO LOVE

Debbie Champ Clothing Alterations

Conveniently located in the Centreway Arcade. Servicing major clothing stores in Launceston, as well as the general public, with only the finest quality clothing alterations and repairs.

Shop 7 Centreway Arcade

Silver Needles

Fast and professional clothing alterations and mending conveniently located in the city centre.

Room 6/144 Brisbane Street

Flossy Fabrics

Fabric store stocking custom digital printed fabrics including cotton lycra, bamboo lycra, french terry and quilting cotton.

145 St John Street

MaoCouture Bridal

Bespoke formal wear and bridal gown designer and winner of Bride's Choice Awards 2021 in the Bridal Gown Designer category.

94 York Street, Shop1a, The Quadrant Plaza

TM Designs

Tracie Leslie is an experienced and qualified seamstress specialising in bridal and formal dressmaking and alteration services.

Suite D, 59 Brisbane Street (up the laneway next to Swirlz).

Cheveux Bridal

The latest bridal trends off the catwalk, with over 150 designer gowns in stock. Exclusive stockists in Tasmania of Essense, Stella York, Sorella Vita Bridesmaids Range, Herve Paris, Modeca and Le Papillon.

91 York Street