Category Archives: Here and There

Crunch Time!

The week before Christmas is like a time warping anomaly that creeps up on us every year–we know it is coming, and yet always seem so surprised and panicked once it gets here! There are suddenly not enough hours in the day, finishing your gift shopping seems like an impossible feat, and there are just too many pies and cookies to be baked in the kitchen.

Well, let us help put your mind at ease this season–The Tailor Maid is here for you for your last minute alterations!! Our Express Service promises to get your alterations completed, back in your hands, and have you off to your Holiday parties looking smart, sharp & tailored in 48 hours or less!! (OK, we can’t promise you’ll be on time for your parties, but we’ll take care of the sewing!)

So amidst your holiday hustling & bustling, stop by The Tailor Maid  and we’ll help you out during this busy time of year! Now go get that shopping done!

We’ll see you soon, and Happy Holidays!!



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Happy Ho Ho Holidays!

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! And what better time to shout out a big “THANK YOU!” to all of our wonderful customers? The Tailor Maid wishes you and all of yours a wonderful holiday season, and as always, we appreciate your business & support!

Getting ready to throw a holiday party?? It’s not too late for custom holiday linens! One of our specialties at The Tailor Maid is creating custom table runners, table skirts & cloths, napkins and decorations for your festive table! Using fabrics of your own selection, let us create special and unique linens for your party or special event! Please call or stop by for more information!

Our blog and newsletter have had a huge and continually growing following this year, and we are thrilled to have you all as our readers! Please print & present this posting to receive 10% off your next visit to our Stanford location!

Don’t forget to stop by The Tailor Maid this season for all of your alterations, home accessories, and party clothes perfecting needs! Our Express Service can have that puffy party dress ready for the dance floor in under 48 hours!

Ho Ho Ho!


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Breaking Fashion Rules: Why White is RIGHT After Labor Day!

As summer winds down and Labor Day approaches, we must sadly wave goodbye to a few wonderful “warm weather” things–late sunsets, lazy days at the beach, flip flops, and the nostalgic sound of the ice cream truck circling the block four times a day. Thankfully, there is one thing (or color!) that doesn’t have to be rushed out the door–WHITE!

It’s been a longstanding fashion rule, be it inspired by old-fashioned etiquette or the practical temperature properties of the said color, that white should not be worn after Labor Day–no shoes, bags, dresses, linens–you name it! But there are so many ways to say YES to white once fall rolls around, and no, we don’t just mean “winter white!”

White jeans are a staple wardrobe piece and can be paired with a number of colors, (try deep purples, oranges, or hunter greens for fall hues and a drastic pop!) or pair that white dress with a soft, dark cardigan and great boots to give it new feel for cooler weather.

And by the way, just because it’s almost fall doesn’t mean you have to abandon bright colors either! Even on its own, there are so many ways to wear white through the fall and winter…take a look!

And what about that addendum to the rule–no open-toed shoes? We say forget it! Open-toed pumps, especially paired with bright tights and socks this season are on the rise! So wear that white, strut those pumps, and come see us at The Tailor Maid for expert fashion advice, along with expert alterations!!

And hey!–the Today Show agrees with us! Check out yesterday’s segment on adapting your summer wardrobe for fall, and wearing those whites after Labor Day!

Also, don’t forget about our new duplication service! We can make you a little white dress from your favorite black dress too!

So enjoy the rest of your summer dear readers, and we’ll see you soon at The Tailor Maid!

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Knock it Off!

You know that dress from last season? The perfect little number that you wish more than anything you had bought in red, too? Or how you would jump for joy if you could clone your favorite skirt in every color of the rainbow? What about an old top that has worn so thin, it should be on it’s way out, but you’ll never be able to find “that one!” again??

Fret not! The Tailor Maid is pleased to announce yet another wonderful service–garment duplication! Our talented and seasoned tailors will duplicate your favorite garments and recreate them in fabrics of your choice! If you thought that you could never find that perfect dress again, we’re here to solve that problem for you!

Let us "clone" your garments!

Here’s how it works: bring us your garment that you’d like us to duplicate, along with your selected fabric, and we at TTM will work our magic! In about two weeks and a fitting or two, we’ll produce your new custom garment and return your original back to you. Don’t worry–if you have questions about fabric selections and yardage, we can help you answer those queries!

Take a look at a custom skirt we recently constructed!

Here is a look at the fabric provided by our client and one of our tailors hard at work with her fitting!

Work in progress!

A custom made matching shawl completes the ensemble!

Ta Da! A custom made skirt in a hand selected fabric–truly one of a kind!

The finished product! A beautiful brand new skirt with a tried-and-true fit.

Contact us for more information about this new specialized service and to set up a fitting today!


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Head Down the Aisle in Style!

Here Comes the Bride…

…AND the groom, AND the bridesmaids, AND the entire wedding party!

Which is better, Christmas or Wedding Season?!  We at The Tailor Maid would probably pick wedding season, hands down! We blame it on the beautiful gowns, the punchy colored (and never boring!) bridesmaids dresses, and the crisp, dark tuxedos.

A wedding gown–be it white, ivory, covered in lace, ruffles, tulle, pleating, or all of the above–what can we say?!– Our tailors love them all, as long as they fit perfectly!

Our client, Katie Anderson, tied the knot last summer!

Not only is our staff skilled in complex garment construction and alterations, but we have a fast turn around time too– The Tailor Maid can complete most alterations within a week! We also boast extra large dressing rooms, special appointments upon request, and our store is open 7 days a week,  with Mon-Fri open until 8 PM! (Our full store hours can be found here.)

The Fogelsong/Anderson wedding party went down the aisle with style!

Please inquire about special and specific wedding rates, and any fitting questions you might have!

We can’t wait to make your bridal party look their best!


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When Your Jeans Rip at the Seams, Call Beverly!

The Tailor Maid’s Beverly Nadine was recently interviewed and featured in the Palo Alto Patch! We hope you enjoy her interview, and click here for the original Palo Alto Patch article!

Beverly Nadine’s favorite job might be the wedding dress that had somehow grown too small for the bride – just hours before the ceremony.

“I think the dress had been altered by someone else,” Nadine recalled this week in her shop, The Tailor Maid, in Stanford Shopping Center. Perhaps the bride hadn’t tried it on after her final fitting; in any case, she didn’t realize until D-Day that she had problems.

She was from out of town, the wedding was that afternoon, and the dress didn’t fit.

“But her mom was one of my customers,” Nadine said. “So the daughter dropped off the dress that Saturday morning and we let out every seam the dress had. Two hours later, she picked up the let-out dress and went directly to her wedding.”

Not all Nadine’s stories are that deadline-driven, but many of them are that dramatic. Nadine’s staff of nine specializes in restyling outmoded and poorly fitting men’s and women’s garments, giving clothes that are “too good to throw out” but too weird to wear many more years of life. For years, The Tailor Maid was busy getting rid of huge shoulder pads; now the team shortens and refits the same de-shouldered jackets to achieve today’s leaner and more streamlined silhouette. Still other customers have lost a significant amount of weight, but can’t afford or don’t want to replace a closet full of suits.

“Really good clothing is not only expensive but hard to find,” Nadine said. “And some people just don’t like to shop.” The Tailor Maid staff will fit customers in their homes and pick up clothes for a surcharge, a convenience for people who have many clothes that need altering. The staff also makes custom slipcovers, bed and table linens, cushions and other soft furnishings from fabric the customer provides. Finally, The Tailor Maid alters clothes purchased from mall shops.

Nadine, a former real estate broker and longtime Palo Alto resident, knew since she was 9 that she would one day own her own business. “We’d play circus, all us kids in the neighborhood, and I would be the ringmaster,” she remembered.  Oddly enough for someone who’s owned a seamstress business for more than 25 years, Nadine didn’t grow up particularly interested in design or fashion. Rather, she was intrigued by the challenge of making new clothes from old, comfortable clothes from not-quite-right ones.

“I’m a problem solver,” Nadine said. “What I like is changing things.”

The idea for Tailor Maid came from a similar shop Nadine saw on the East Coast; she opened in Stanford Shopping Center in 1985 in the former back rooms of the then-recently-defunct Joseph Magnin, accessed by the elevator off what is now the west entrance of Ralph Lauren. “I just didn’t see the point in starting in a strip mall,” Nadine said. “If you can’t make it in Stanford Shopping Center, you can’t make it anywhere.” Nadine’s first employee, “a brilliant Austrian woman,” taught her many of the practical aspects of the business, such as how to take measurements.

“I started at a really good time because there were not many women business owners,” Nadine remembered of the shop’s 1980s beginnings. “Banks were interested in lending to a woman-owned small business.” Palo Alto itself had a strong core of emerging businesswomen: the Palo Alto Chamber of Commerce had a Women in Business circle with 100 members. And, of course, they all needed business clothes.

“The bows. The blue suits. The hems down to here,” Nadine recalled of the 1980s business dress code, which women ignored at their peril. “And nobody wore jeans, except to work in the yard. Women were trying to fit in by looking like men. Fortunately, it’s not necessary now.” Nadine became active in the Palo Alto chamber, serving as its president in 1991-92.

Since then, work clothing has become more casual, Nadine said, but it doesn’t necessarily need less alteration. Knitwear often needs darts and other shaping added “so it looks like it belongs to you, so it fits you.”  Then there are the clothing transformations The Tailor Maid specializes in, such as making a tote bag out of a too-girly sundress or a chic cropped jacket from an intimidating ’80s-vintage black leather coat. Many customers bring in leather items, Nadine said, wanting to rework what has become a very expensive material.

“I have a great, great staff and we pride ourselves on our creativity,” Nadine said. “I’m gratified by how much trust I feel from my clients.”

What’s today’s equivalent of the dinosaur shoulder pad? “The waistband,” Nadine quickly said. For $50 or so, The Tailor Maid can remove the separate, confining strip of fabric that gives pre-millennial women’s pants and skirts that Oompa-Loompa look, removing pleats if necessary and restyling the garment with a lower, more contemporary waist. Recently, there’s been a growing business in getting rid of what Nadine calls “that flarey thing” at the hem of bootleg jeans. (The shop stocks many shades of orange and yellow thread to match the colored thread on jeans’ seams.)

“We can’t make bootlegs into skinny legs,” Nadine said. “But we can make them thinner.”

The Tailor Maid, Stanford Shopping Center, Palo Alto, CA 94304; 650-328-8858. Mon-Fri 10 a.m.-8 p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m.-6 p.m.  Sunday noon – 6 p.m. Customers who mention Patch receive a 10 percent discount.

Thanks to Barbara Wilcox and the Palo Alto Patch for the feature!


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Have You Heard?

We’ve got big news!

We at The Tailor Maid hope you are enjoying 2011 to the fullest! A new year brings change, and we are no exception!

After 23 years in our Hillsdale location and due to some leasing challenges, we are consolidating into one location: the Stanford Shopping Center, where we have been for 24 years!!

The Tailor Maid extends a huge welcome to our Hillsdale clients! We look forward to continuing to provide great customer service, perfect tailoring and alterations, creative custom made home accessories, garment restyling, and repairs for all of you… our new customers, our relocated customers, and our regular, continuing customers!

Don’t forget to sign up for our mailing list to receive our monthly style tips and discount coupons!

We’ll see you at our Stanford location soon!

—Beverly Nadine and all of our TTM staff members!

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Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays from The Tailor Maid!

‘Tis the season to be jolly… and also to give thanks for all of our wonderful clients!

The Tailor Maid staff wishes our very special customers a wonderful holiday season and a prosperous & joyful 2011.

–From all of us at The Tailor Maid, Happy Holidays!

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And the winner is……

The Fashion Show hosted by the folks at the Stanford Shopping Center this fall was fantastic, and The Tailor Maid was so happy to participate in the event!

We had tons of fun exhibiting some of our tailoring skills at the show, and you watched while we turned a boring black T-shirt into a dress!

We also held a drawing for a $100 gift certificate to The Tailor Maid, and we are proud to announce that out of all our entries, Roberta Robins is our lucky winner! Congratulations, Roberta!

And big thanks to all of our clients and guests for your participation!

Please continue to enjoy our newsletters and blog!


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The LBD; a [holiday] must have!

LBD: a little black dress, an important staple of every woman’s closet, and an abbreviation that should go without explanation.

The LBD is an essential garment that every woman either already does or definitely should own. It should be timeless, make you feel like a million bucks, and most importantly, it should fit wonderfully. The holidays are upon us, and if you don’t have a little black number in your closet that you can pull out and look effortlessly chic, well, there’s never been a better time to get one!

They come in countless styles, lengths, sizes, and silhouettes, so true to fashion (no pun intended!) you’ve got lots of choices. No matter what you choose though, we can’t stress enough how important the fit of a garment–especially the LBD–really is.

When it comes to fit, our  fitting and tailoring experts at The Tailor Maid can help you look like that million dollar gal you are. We know just where to tuck, pinch, shorten, and stitch to make sure your LBD is ready for the holidays!

We can also update your older or out of style little black dress too! You’d be surprised how often a hem length, sleeve shape, or neckline can completely change a garment!

Here we raised the hem length, shortened the sleeves, and lowered the neckline–Ta Da! We’re back in style and ready for a night out on the town.

Want a great alternative to a LBD? Easy–LRD; the little RED dress! (We strongly recommend you own one of these too!)  Still classic and chic, great in a pinch, and totally fun!

So whether you own one LBD or twenty, The Tailor Maid will make sure they all fit perfectly. Our tailors will have you ready and rocking  for the holidays!


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