Saturday, January 10, 2009

BRIDAL COUTURE: MOVING AWAY FROM THE CAKE TOP TEMPLATE

Has bridal fashion become less traditional and more in sinc with haute couture? Think of the brides of the 1960s-70s era. Did their gowns have that fashion forward edge like they do now? No. They were more like satin uniforms trimmed in Alencon lace--the stuff society expected? Bridal fashion aside, women just don't dress up like they used to. Once upon a time we dressed at least three times a day and the right morning, afternoon and evening wear was de riguer. Tune in any episode of I Love Lucy and you'll see what I'm talking about. With the invention of microfibers and ease of wash and wear, we cashed in for comfort eliminating most of the work it takes to sport the kind of chic we created not too far back. In some ways we miss all that and it's coming out in the ultimate dress up game of all: the wedding day. Thus, bridal fashion may be the last bastion designers can really practice their art as an art. So much of fashion is about manufacturing and high production. True designers love an actual niche where someone will fork over some bucks for top quality. Yes, designers want to incorporate all those couture methods no one uses anymore to craft a garment into a work of art.

Competition though sometimes grinding, typically generates excellence. The dresses here are the visions of the top designers in the world. You can see each has put some sort of couture touch or signature on each gown . . . Valentino with pleats and ruffles; Saab with beautiful fitting and one-of-a-kind laces . . . .
Elie Saab
Elie Saab

Elie Saab
I hope these pictures have inspired you. I also hope we keep our casual trends going as well as moving into more of a mode of dressing up. Dressing up to go out to dinner, dressing up to do cocktails, a ride in the country. We all loved Sex and the City. I believe one of the reasons we embraced it was we understood Carrie's need to express herself through dressing. Sure her closet was improbable. And of course I practiced my suspension of disbelief just to get a good look at some of her finds . . . .

Since fashion is more about casual chic these days, there's still a glut of bridal designers all competing to make the finest gown in the finest fabrics. Each has their own version, moving more and more away from the bridal template of traditional into the more experimental realm of couture. And brides as a whole are loving it.

4 comments:

Dani @ Weddings Fresh said...

i love your desire to inspire a sense of pride in a woman's right to dress appropriately and fashionably. there is nothing wrong or snobby to have a sense of propriety and enjoying the fruits of it! i am right there with ya, lady :) great finds and extraordinary gowns.

bridechic said...

Thanks Dani! I know how you looooove fashion . . .

E said...

Hi! I was wondering where you can buy Elie Saab dresses. They are utterly beautiful.

bridechic said...

Try Bella Bridesmaid in San Francisco http://www.thebellabride.com/lezu-atelier.html