I know some people are great about taking their clothes to a tailor and tweaking the fit so it’s juuuust right – but I’m not one of them. I generally don’t buy anything that I know I’d have to get taken in or hemmed or altered in any way (maybe I’m too impatient?). But I’ll admit: when it comes to shopping, there’s nothing better than a great fit – the occasional serendipitous moment when you try something on and feel like it was really made for you. So when PIOL reached out to see if I’d be interested in designing my own dress, I was super excited.
The idea behind PIOL is brilliant. You start by selecting your hair color, eye color and skin color – and then the site offers up a palette (a.k.a. your “color aura“) based on the most flattering shades for your coloring. Then, you choose from five basic dress silhouettes: shift, sheath, draped, draped empire waist and tailored. I picked tailored – which then took me into the virtual “design room” where I was able to customize my dress even more. Based on the suggested color palette, PIOL shows a range of super high-quality fabrics swatches (solids and prints) to choose from. I decided on this jade green matte fabric because the color felt like it would be an unusual addition to my closet (in a good way). After finding a fabric, you can pick a neckline (like scoop neck, v neck, open neck, etc.) and skirt style (pencil, full, a-line, maxi, tulip, etc.). Plus, the site lets you choose your hem length, different sleeve styles and any other finishing touches. Once you’ve settled on your perfect dress design, the site walks you through your measurements in the virtual “fitting room” – where you can specify your waist, hips, bust, etc. (basically all the numbers that no one likes to think about). Once you’ve gone through the whole process, your dress design is manifested into reality by an actual NYC seamstress (not a machine in a foreign factory), bundled up in pretty packaging and shipped to your door in about two weeks.
…And the final result? Fits like a glove. I was super impressed by the quality– the fabric feels luxe and the dress itself is incredibly well-made. So if you’re in the market for the ultimate LBD (or just want to play around with the online design tool), check out PIOL. You’ll love it.