Sunday 14 September 2014

Interview with Natalie Ross from Just Wiggle

Me second from left - Photo by David Wickham
I have a very exciting interview for you all. I have interviewed the inspiring Natalie Ross, owner of Just Wiggle. I was lucky enough to be one of the models for this wonderful company. The photo shoot was held at Bar Des Arts in Guildford which is a lovely venue and the bar was the perfect setting.  

Natalie makes bespoke, made to measure wiggle dresses for women of all shapes and sizes. The wiggle dress is one of the most flattering dress designs, and both myself and Natalie absolutely love wearing it. Natalie takes a lot of time and care to make the best fitting dress, but to the highest quality she can achieve.  

It all started with the encouragement of her family and friends who gave her the confidence to pursue her dressmaking further. After making wiggle dresses for Natalie to wear at her vintage inspired shows, ( and then for her backing singers, she started getting orders from fans and friends and so she decided to make a website for her dressmaking.
Photo of me for Just Wiggle - Photo by David Wickham
The brand is all about making a handmade wiggle dress that fits your curves, and is made from modern fabrics so it's easier to wash and comfortable to wear, and has the style and design of her favourite era, but that nobody else owns. Your wiggle dress will be bespoke, a 'one off', like when you buy a vintage dress, you know no one else is going to have the same dress as you at a party or event. Over the past 6 years Natalie has been completely devoted to vintage fashion, especially the late 1940s and early 1950s and she tries to portrait this in her dressmaking. From the way she makes her patterns, to the way she designs each dress, to the fabrics she chooses.

Photo of me for Just WigglePhoto by David Wickham
Natalie has two wiggle dress designs to choose from, a classic and a modern design, which can be tailored to suit your taste (i.e cap sleeves or 3/4 length sleeves or a slit at the back or a fishtail). Natalie offers a bespoke wiggle dress, made to measure, with a choice of fabrics and trimmings from £129.

So what is the wiggle dress???

The width of the hem is narrower than the hips, which brings your legs closer together at the knees causing the wearer to 'wiggle' or sway when walking, hence the term 'wiggle dress'. The wiggle dress was designed to accentuate the curves of a woman’s shape. The waistline is figure-hugging, which highlights the classic hourglass silhouette.

 The History

The most original and iconic wiggle dress wearer was Marilyn Monroe. However, as you can see from all the wonderful pictures displayed on Natalie’s ‘What’s Wiggle’ page, many Hollywood stars and singers chose the wiggle dress shape too, like Sophia Loren, Ava Gardner, Lena Horne, Bettie Page, Diana Dors and the fabulous Shirley Bassey, to name but a few. In the past few years the wiggle dress has been popularly revived by many famous women including Dita Von Teese and Nigella Lawson.

Photo of me for Just WigglePhoto by David Wickham
The classic design never goes out of fashion!

Some styles never go out of fashion and the wiggle dress falls into this category. Whether it's on the catwalk or the red carpet, the simple and timeless design is seen again and again. Kylie Minogue wore a pvc wiggle-style dress at the Brit awards 2014 and Beyonce can be seen also wearing wiggle-inspired dresses. 

Many of you have asked where I have got the black dress with pink lips from….well this is where! It’s a Just Wiggle creation by Natalie. This was the dress from my photo shoot for the website. This was my first experience ever professionally modelling and it was fantastic. All the models were great and lovely to work with. I even got to work with regular professional model and burlesque performer Miss Cherry on Fire.  Just like any other customer I emailed my measurements to Natalie who then made my dress made to measure in her classic style from on trend fabric. The fit was spot on, perfect for me. Exactly as you would expect, the dress showed off my curves, looked great on the bust and was a perfect length. I’ve worn the dress to the Blog Awards, burlesque shows, dinner, nights out and I always receive compliments. It’s great as I know that I’ll be the only one in the dress and the styles are classic and timeless. The dress is comfortable, easy to wear, easy to wash and fun! My honest opinion is that they really do everything they say and they are well worth the investment as the dresses are such good quality.

Here you can learn more in my interview with dress maker Natalie Ross…

Me second from left - Photo by David Wickham
Model Keisha
Photo by 
David Wickham
How have you found your move to Barcelona?

I moved to Barcelona at the beginning of August, so I’ve only been here a short time, but already I feel quite settled. I love the change in pace and the climate and the people are very friendly. I am learning Spanish, which I’m really enjoying. Barcelona is very easy to get around; their public transport is brilliant and for a city everywhere is within walking distance or a short ride on the metro or bus. I have just started a residency performing in a bar in Gracia, an area known for its art, fashion and music so I’m very happy with the move so far.

How long did your website take to put together?

The website didn’t take that long to put together, I had already designed my own logo and had a clean and simple look in mind. The most time consuming part was deciding to have a shop or not. In the end I decided to keep it low key and just have a contact page for my customers, and see how orders go and how popular my brand becomes. I would eventually like to employ more dressmakers and have a shop.

Model Maria Photo by David Wickham
How long does it take to receive a Just Wiggle dress from initial inquiry to final finished product?

When a new customer contacts me, I give them a private consultation, and once the design and fabric is finalised and agreed, and payment is made, the customer will receive their bespoke, made to measure wiggle dress within 28 days. If the customer has a special deadline then this can be discussed.

Model Lizzy
Photo by David Wickham
What is your favourite style from Just Wiggle?

I like both designs, they were my favourite designs out of many that I have tried out, but for me the ‘classic’ is my favourite. I think it’s because it suits my petite and curvy body shape and makes me feel confident.

What is your favourite type of pattern?

I make my patterns myself and my favourite are the classic and modern designs I have on my website.

What is a customer going to get from a Just Wiggle purchase?

A new customer will get a private consultation with me personally, followed by a handmade wiggle dress that is made to measure, bespoke and individual. No one else will have the same wiggle dress as the dress I make for them.

Do you ship worldwide?
Model Em Photo by David Wickham

Yes I will post to anywhere in the world. The customer will have to pay the postage, but I want to be able to make a handmade, made to measure, bespoke wiggle dress for everyone.

Who would you love to have model for you?

Dita Von Tease please!!! I have many friends and I see so many beautiful women of all shapes and sizes who would be perfect models for my wiggle dresses.

Tell us about your recent Just Wiggle photoshoot…

On set pic of us girls
Photo by me
I organised a photo shoot for my website in April this year. I chose 8 friends and friends of friends as models, all different shapes and sizes and ages to represent my brand. I wanted to work with David Wickham again, as he did an excellent job of taking vintage style shots and capturing the mood for my first wiggle dress photo shoot where I modelled my own dresses. I chose a retro cocktail bar called Bar des Arts in Guildford, which set the scene perfectly. And then I email all the models, got their measurements and design each dress. I couldn’t have achieved such great shots without the incredible models and David. It was so much fun too!

Model Maria Photo by David Wickham
Can your dresses be found at any stockists in off the rack sizes?

I will be showcasing my dresses at a handmade showroom in Barcelona, but a date has not been confirmed. For the moment I am going to concentrate on made to measure orders through the website.

Will you produce other types of clothing such as floor length dresses, wedding dresses, prom dresses etc?

I am open to changing the design of my wiggle dresses if a customer requests and I am very excited to be making a wedding dress for one of my friends for 2016.

How Would You Describe Your Own Style?

My own style is a combination of my love and obsession with the late 40s and early 50s style and designs, colours and textures of modern fabrics. I make most of my own clothes so I love to experiment.

Model Vic Photo by David Wickham
Who is your style icon?

I love all the glamourous fashions from the Hollywood movies, especially Rita Hayworth and Marilyn Monroe, but I also admire Dita Von Tease and Gwen Stefani.

Who is your favourite designer?

Without doubt it’s got to be Coco Channel, simplicity and style at it’s very best.

Where do you love to shop?

Now that I have moved to Barcelona there are some great vintage and designer clothing shops in Carrer de Verdi and Carrer de Tallers. I make most of my own clothes and add little gems as I find them.

Are you still singing out in Spain?

Yes I am and It’s all very exciting. I have just started a residency performing in a bar in Gracia, an area known for its art, fashion and music and I am been gigging solo around Barcelona. I am looking forward to what the future holds in Barcelona. I update my website regularly with my gigs and news so check it out at

Model Jolly Photo by David Wickham
Who do you turn to for inspiration: Both Business and Style?

I have been performing my own music on the vintage scene in the UK for a couple of years now and I have been very lucky to meet some incredible business women. Felicity Clifton of Now-Voyager with her wonderful vintage inspired hair accessories, Lilly Lewis and her incredible vintage millinery/ bespoke hats and fascinators, Judy Berger of Judy’s vintage fairs and lastly Ronke Fashola and her vintage inspired clothing company Love Ur Look. 

Who would you love to have as a customer?

A woman with curves who hasn’t worn a wiggle dress before.

So what can we expect to come from you next?

I hope to have made many wiggle dresses for women all over the world and see my brand and business continue to grow. I also hope to learn spansih and enjoy my new life in Barcelona. I would like to get myself known on the music scene here and start writing some new songs.

Me second from left - Photo by David Wickham

On set photos taken by me - Left photo model Lizzy & me, middle photo model Maria & me and right photo just me!

Take a look at Natalie’s beautiful creations in her online shop!

Watch Just Wiggle's video here: 

Film by Silvertip Films

Not to mention following on Facebook and Twitter!

I would like to thank Natalie for her time with this interview and for sharing with you all. I will introduce you to more fabulous companies in the future!


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