A little sneak peek here at the amazing and always imaginative photographer Joy Strotz at work Sunday at Villa Montalvo in Saratoga, California. After spending the day there I have to say, this is the perfect place for the couple planning a wedding set in grand splendor: Rolling acres of green lawn, Italianate architecture overlooking gardens that could have been planted in the South of France. Add to that this was the perfect backdrop for the bouffant-style gowns we planned for this shoot. While I don't want to give too much away before the actual spread comes out, I'm going to share a few tidbits about designing these gala bridal gowns. They all start out as simple silhouettes in luxe fabrics that can be customized with ribbons, trains, pick-up effects, over skirts, etc. The beauty of all this layering is different components can stay on, be bustled or taken off at different intervals throughout the day. I also created some of these dresses as separates or sheaths so you can use them post wedding. Fast forward with these pieces in your closet you're set for that surprise art opening or concert invite somewhere in the not too distant future . . .