Can you keep a secret?

Posted by on in Thoughts, Wedding, Words | 5 comments

I regularly get asked by clients and colleagues ‘can you keep a secret?’  In fact, I spend a lot of time being asked to keep secrets.  Sometimes pretty big secrets, and sometimes relatively small, but all worth keeping nonetheless. It turns out being trustworthy comes up pretty high on the list of required job skills for a good designer or dressmaker and I treat my clients in the same way I do my friends: if you ask me to keep things secret, I do it.

For women who regularly seek their friends’ and partner’s opinions on what to wear on even the smallest occasion, keeping a wedding dress secret can be a huge deal, and I wouldn’t want to be the reason that the secret got out. I have known women have their beloved as their style adviser, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to share pictures and details all over instagram. It’s a private business and I like to keep it that way. It’s an honour to be so trusted and I leave it to my clients to share as much or as little as they want.

Faith Caton Barber bespoke pink wedding dress Dusty photograph by Fiona Kelly Shoes by Emmy Shoes

Photograph by Fiona Kelly shoes by Emmy and dress by Faith

Sometimes, I really struggle to keep my own secrets. For example, when I have ideas or projects on the go , or when I am working on a styled shoot there is the eternal wrestling match of excitement and the dreaded words ‘exclusivity’ and ‘intellectual property’.  Being party to something that needs to be kept under wraps requires discretion, patience and so much willpower. You would not believe how much I want to jump and shout with excitement when an exciting dress is decided upon, a new design is being draped on the stand, or a photographer is showing me something from the back of my camera that makes my heart melt with joy. In the end I keep the secrets because I know the surprise is so much better for being complete. A half guessed-at birthday present with feigned surprise is never as good, don’t you think?

In this age of sharing, with social media eternally crying out to be fed with something new and wonderful,  I really don’t want to be the one that over shares. Thankfully, I can be content in the true delight of all those first glimpses, the sight of  a couple seeing each other for the first time on their wedding day, the grand entrance at the top of the stairs at a ball, the congregation’s sigh when they see the bride, even the more low-key reveal of the sliding of a coat from a woman’s shoulders at a party. So many surprises and secrets to be kept. So yes, I definitely can keep a secret, would you like me to keep yours?


Photograph by Fiona Kelly see the full shoot on Rock My Wedding


  1. Food for thought, and written so beautifully.

  2. Great post, something very sweet about it!

  3. Oh I find it terribly hard to keep a secret. I get SO EXCITED about things. I am also notoriously impatient when it comes to things like Christmas and Birthdays, as I want to give people their presents NOW.

  4. It is a magical job you do. Hard work I’m sure. (It involves sewing, for one thing, so for me it would be some form of personal hell) But how amazing to share such special moments with your customers. I sometimes think that we are rather honoured to come into peoples’ lives at such special times.

  5. You are very good at secret keeping, Faith. Its such a wonderful thing you do in creating something so special and so secret! If secrets can be kept then its a wonderful thing.

    Lovely post.

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