February 8th, 2018 | Julia Braime
With the weekend almost in sight, we think it’s high time for some serious dress candy; which might just be the extra inspiration you need if you’re about to embark on your dream gown search.
Today’s gorgeous loot of loveliness comes in the form of the brand-new collection from our fabulous Sponsor Luella’s Bridal. Located in the Wimbledon Village area of London, this independent boutique not only stocks a stylish range of creations from edgy international designers, but it also produces its own line of totally dreamy dresses.
Having just launched their second collection, titled Expectations, the team at Luella’s wanted you lucky Brides Up North readers to be among the first to see these utterly beautiful gowns in all their glory. And so today we’re brining you a first look at the five stunning designs that make up the collection, while finding out about the inspiration behind these fine creations.
Here to tell us more is the lovely owner of Luella’s, Rachel Attwell…
Tell us about the inspiration behind Expectations?
rachel says: The collection is inspired by Trinidadian jewellery designer, Sarah May. The collection includes five distinctly different dresses, which have been carefully designed to match Sarah’s island pod rings, which were inspired by her original engagement ring and then her subsequent life journey. Named; Happy, Love, Dream, Believe and Abundance.
The idea behind the collection, is that each ring can be interpreted in the wearers own unique way and Luella’s felt that there was something truly special about having a ring to wear that is so personal to each individual.
As such, we felt that it was important to include an assortment of styles to reflect the essence of the rings and therefore our bride’s personality. Each dress has an element of sparkle so that even the simplest styles, still look and feel truly special.
Can you give us an overview of the styles of dresses that make up the collection?
All of the dresses have been designed by the Luella’s team and are handmade in the UK. Each has been designed to reflect our beautiful free-spirited brides and includes a mixture of simple understated and intricately beaded slip style dresses and beautiful lace and tulle gowns. There is a selection of low plunging backs, soft flowing skirts, stunning hand beaded lace and our signature pleated skirt.
What about the fabrics and colourways used within the collection?
The collection is made from a variety of beautiful silks, satins and French laces and the most exquisite selection of hand beaded appliques. We have used more than 16 metres of tulle in the skirt of one of our designs! The dresses are made in a mixture of colours ranging from soft ivories to warm cream tones and our Nieve dress also comes with a slip that can be ordered in a choice of ivory or oyster.
Talk us through the dress designs one by one…
Isla – The Isla dress is made from two layers of sumptuous silk satin in a soft ivory colourway. The bias-cut design features a low v neckline and plunging v-back which is framed with the most exquisite handmade beading in a floral design in ivory and soft blush tones. The dress also features and optional long flowing train and can be made in either off white, ivory or oyster silk satin.
Elsie – This simple understated design is made from the finest sand washed silk crepe with a gorgeous matt finish, in a subtle off-white colourway. It features a low v-neckline and low v-back with a medium sized train and fine metallic antique silver straps and waistband.
Amber – This modern backless design is made from cream Japanese handmade silk and features our trade mark pleated skirt. It includes a racer neckline and stunning beaded straps in a mixture of milky white, blush and ivory tones.
Layla – The Layla dress is made from the finest French cotton lace layered over an ivory silk satin underlay. It includes shoe string straps, made from tiny ivory beads which also feature on the waist band of the dress, and a medium sized train with a beautiful trailing floral design.
Nieve – The Nieve dress is made from French inspired beaded lace in a beautiful floral design. It features three-quarter-length sleeves with a scalloped boat neckline and a low v-back. The skirt is made from over sixteen metres of super fine, soft flowing tulle and features a medium sized train. This style comes with a silk satin slip that is available in either off white, ivory or oyster and includes a matching silk satin waistband.
Do you have a favourite design within the collection?
I think my favourite dress has to be Isla. I love the simplicity of the bias-cut design and I fell in love with the beautiful beading as soon as I saw it.
What type of bride would the 2018 collection appeal to?
The modern free-spirited bride which is exactly the type of customer that we attract. Luella’s brides always want to make a statement but look effortlessly understated at the same time.
When designing a Luella’s collection, what are the key elements that you take into consideration?
Fit, comfort, offering something different. There are so many things that we have to take into consideration, but we are always careful to design dresses that remain true to the Luella’s brand. This means that they have to be modern with a little bit of a unique twist but still enable our relaxed style of bride to feel really comfortable whilst wearing our dresses. We try to design dresses that will allow our brides to look really stunning but still look like themselves, which means that the dresses have to look really special but still let our customers’ personalities shine through. We work really hard at the design process to try to ensure that we get this just right.
What would be your best advice to brides when they are searching for ‘the dress’?
I think one of the best pieces of advice would be to take a few really calm and non-judgemental friends with you to your appointments. We often listen to brides being railroaded into trying on dresses that they don’t really like or discounting designs that they love, and I think that it’s important that our customers are allowed to choose what feels right for them. If you do feel pressurised into making a decision then my advice would be to return with a completely different set of friends, or family members, that know you really well, and make your final decision then.
Any other exciting news to share?
Yes – we are delighted to be able to reveal that we will be working with one of our favourite wedding planners Emma Joy to offer our brides something really special next month. Stay tuned for more info!
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Former lawyer and bride to be Julia founded Brides Up North in 2010 with a chip on her shoulder. Frustrated by the poor Northern presence in glossy bridal magazines and online, she decided to do something about it herself. Astounded by the rapid growth of her blog and brand, Julia now manages Brides Up North’s online content alongside their busy wedding exhibition season, industry events and related commissions. And she’s always, always, got a new project on the go…
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