Couple sue 'bespoke' wedding tailor for £10,000 over ill-fitting outfits (2024)

A couple has launched legal action against the tailor they hired for their wedding outfits over ill-fitting outfits which needed altering before they could be worn.

Jamie and Nathan Sussex-Smith thought Nathan Palmer would be making all of the clothes for their bridesmaids himself – but found a business card for a Vietnamese tailoring service inside one of the outfits.

Mr Palmer, a former international rugby player who played on the wing for Wales’ sevens, launched his career as a bespoke tailor in 2013.

Nathan, an actor, and business owner Jamie, say they first met with Mr Palmer in February 2023 to commission him to make five dresses, one female suit and a male suit jacket for their bridal party.

This was six months before their wedding on August 27 of last year.

Jamie told WalesOnline: ‘We had a meeting with him and we asked “do you also do female clothing?” and he said he did.

‘I personally asked him does he make them himself and he confirmed that he did. From there we were all happy and ready to go, or so I thought.

‘When we were asking him to make the girls’ dresses we wanted assurance that he would have enough time to get them all done and that he had enough time between then and the wedding.

‘He did have other events before us but he assured us we would have his full focus through the summer.

‘At that point [we had no doubts]. He was very excited, we offered pictures of what style we were looking at.

‘He offered to create them from those designs with additional bespoke parts to show off each girl’s individuality.

‘Our female entourage were all different ages and sizes so it was extremely important to us that they felt amazing and it wasn’t just an off the rack kind of dress And this is obviously why we went to him.’

The couple claim that as months went on they found it increasingly difficult to get in contact with Mr Palmer to arrange meetings.

They say he ignored messages through WhatsApp and Instagram, would take days to respond, or ignore requests to book meetings with them.

When Jamie did eventually meet Mr Palmer, after paying a deposit of just under £2,000, he told him ‘now is your time’ to back out if he didn’t think the outfits would be ready on time – but Mr Palmer reassured him that ‘it will all be fine’.

But during the fitting on August 18, less than a fortnight before the wedding, the couple claim Mr Palmer pulled the dresses out of his rucksack in airtight plastic wrapping, and they were all ‘so ill-fitted’.

Jamie said it was ‘clear’ there were too many alterations needed in the short time before their wedding, adding: ‘It was seven days before the wedding and we thought “something’s not right here, I can’t trust this person”.

‘After we saw the abomination of supposed garments I knew needed to remove all the clothes from his possession and he was saying “no trust me, trust me, I promise you it won’t be a problem”.

‘It got to the point where I think it was four or five days until the wedding and my mum had no finished outfit, and the girls had something but definitely not dresses.’

They then found labels for Tuong Tailor in Hoi An, Vietnam, stapled to the dresses.

Jamie said: ‘My Nathan then contacted this shop in Vietnam to ask if they could make outfits and if you can send fabric to them and they said yes they could but obviously it does cost more because of the shipping.

‘If he did make the dresses then why is there a business card stapled inside from the other side of the world?

‘If he’d said all along “look I don’t make them but they will look amazing, they will look like this”, I wouldn’t have a problem.

‘He claims he wants to be a sustainable eco-friendly fashion designer, but then he’s happy for fabric to be shipped around the world.’

Another tailor, Glamorgan Tailoring, ‘worked through the night’ to make the items ‘wearable’ and Jamie went on a last-minute trip to London to find an outfit for his mum.

He says he was contacted by Mr Palmer the night before the wedding to arrange the final payment, which he refused to pay.

The Sussex-Smiths have now launched a civil claim for compensation against Mr Palmer and have obtained a County Court Judgement against his business, Penarth Brands, for £10,353.

They are seeking compensation for the £1,922 deposit they paid, as well as £1,500 for alterations and £2,000 in damages and £1,600 in loss of earnings as well as other expenses. They say Mr Palmer has not acknowledged this civil case to them.

When contacted by Wales Online, Mr Palmer said he would not comment while the legal process was ongoing.

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Couple sue 'bespoke' wedding tailor for £10,000 over ill-fitting outfits (2024)


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