Gowns Fit for a Goddess

Gowns Fit for a Goddess
Nothing fits like a tailored piece — except a garment designed and created just for you. One local designer takes this individual approach to offer clients truly one-of-a-kind gowns.

The wedding gown makes a bride a bride. There's just an unmistakable quality of a gown that takes a woman from beautiful to stunning, and local designer Erika Berthy adds a little extra of that ingredient to take her gowns one step further.


"I want a woman to look like a queen and to feel like a goddess," Berthy says. "I think every woman deserves to feel like that at least once in her life." And Berthy, who has worked for the Vera Wang brand, holds it as her passion to make that happen.


Berthy recently created the wedding gown for Karen Schottelkotte, the senior vice president of store design and planning at Macy's. Beyond designing and creating Schottelkotte's non-traditional couture gown inspired by her love story mixed with the underlying Venetian theme of the wedding, Berthy actually was with Schottelkotte the day of the wedding to dress her in the gown and ensure the precise fitting and appearance of the gown.


Each of Berthy's gowns truly is a labor of love, with 300 to 800 hours put into each piece, not counting her constant thoughts and even dreams about the gowns, she says. Depending on the materials and time involvement required, Berthy's custom gowns range from $4,000 to $15,000. 1209KROMBHOLZ.gif


To get started on a custom gown, Berthy meets with her prospective client to figure out if they are a match. "I always want to know that I would be able to give somebody my best," she says, so she needs to make sure the client is a match for her just as much as she is a match for the client.


After discussing vision, style, body shape and coloring, Berthy drapes a half-size version of the gown (think a 2 1/2-foot-doll sized version of the gown) so that her client actually can see and feel what the dress will be like. "I think it's neat to be able to see your gown in a miniature version before you see the full scale," she says.


With this miniature version, Berthy and her clients are able to discuss whether any elements need to be changed. And in the event that the client does not like the gown, Berthy will drape another after re-discussing the vision for the gown.


"I absolutely want the dress to be beautiful and the customer to be satisfied with it, but I want the customer to feel beautiful in it," Berthy says. "There is a difference between something being beautiful and feeling beautiful in it."


Beyond custom gowns, Berthy is available for commission for other custom work, including cocktail dresses. For more information, contact Berthy at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Photographer: N
eysa Ruhl
Models: Erika Berthy, Lauren Jones (bottom photo)
Accessories: Provided by Paolo

Linda Palacios -

Linda Palacios is the editor of Cincy Chic. Send her an e-mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .Read More >>

More articles by this author

Hairapist in TrainingHairapist in Training
Hairapist in Training As your hair is cut, sculpted and shaped,...
Picking Herself up, Aiming HighPicking Herself up, Aiming High
Picking Herself up, Aiming High After 20 years in business, this...