Driving along Irving Street, residents of San Rafael may not notice a little shop along the side with elegant, beautiful dresses showcased in the windows. The place is Noy Designs and it’s the only business of it’s kind in San Rafael. Offering custom designs for women who just can’t find THE dress to fit their event or their personal style, this is a modern Cinderella story, where the client is the one heading for the ball and the owner, Noy Chanthavongsa is a petite, fashion-savvy fairy godmother. Her clients are the source of her inspiration, and every single woman who enlists Noy’s talent will receive a one-of-a-kind garment which, from the very beginning, is a reflection of themselves.
At the age of 6, Noy remembers pursuing the pages of a french book filled with images of Victorian women in their dramatic gowns. She knew then what she wanted to do with her life. Born in Laos, she has over 20 years of experience with dressmaking, from the first fit to the final cutting and beading. After additional fashion and merchandising studies San Francisco City College she worked for designers in Mill Valley and Corte Madera before making the move to open a shop of her own. Bringing in fabric from New York City and fabric expos all over the state, Noy continues to delight clients with her Haute Couture, for whatever occasion may be calling.