Charlotte Balbier
Brides Up North Wedding Fairs

look book: clean lines

February 22nd, 2018 | Laura McDonagh

Cortana Grace-dress-deco-wedding-coat-2-cortana-bridal-1000x1500

This afternoon we’re talking about sculpted columns, bold lines and architectural sweeps – but this isn’t a piece about wedding venues, oh no, it’s all about dresses – specifically, simple, fuss free-wedding gowns with clean lines and sleek silhouettes.

There’s something about a minimalist gown that, while timeless, has a simultaneous up-to-the-minute feel perfect for a fashion-forward bride. Here at Brides up North we love the edginess of a dress with less, and we’ve gathered together a whole lovely loot of unadorned beauties for your browsing pleasure.

Main post images by Cortana.

Cortana Gala-2-Cortana-bridal-1000x1500

First up is Spanish designer Cortana, a label which boasts a romantic, boho vibe. We love the luxe factor of the Gala gown; a silk satin bias-cut beauty which looks slinky and effortlessly chic. The attention to detail is just stunning – that diagonal row of silk-covered buttons on the back gives us all the feels – and the thin straps feel bold and youthful and a little bit 90s-Calvin-Klein, which is always a good thing in case you’re wondering.

The Cortana collection also features the stunningly minimalist Grace with daring back and thin crossed strap detail and the silk brocade Linda, made with a touch of lurex to give a super-flattering fit and stretch. There’s also the Valentina which, quite frankly, makes my heart sing – the boat neckline! The sleek drapery! And is a strong contender in my frequent ‘What Would I Wear If I Got Married Again?’ mental debate (don’t mention that to my husband, kaythanks?)

Cortana Grace-dress-deco-coat-7-cortana-novias-1000x1500

Onwards to a Brides Up North favourite – the always-opulent Eliza Jane Howell. EJH is known for their decadent vintage designs, and so might not seem a natural bedfellow of the Clean Lines brigade. However, in Gill Harvey’s recent collections, we’re seeing subtlety, simplicity and lots of plain silk alongside the embellishment and embroidery. Belle from the Leading Lady collection is a stunner with a contemporary feel, complete with bold halterneck, textured figure-hugging fabric and a daring sheer back. Daisy from the Legend collection and Clarissa from the Debutante range are unquestionably more vintage in style but still simple and sleek, with Daisy offering the tiniest hint of embellishment and Clarissa’s floaty sleeves a great option for brides less inclined to bare. Luna from the Stardust range gets close to the fussier end of the spectrum with its frothy skirt and mini train, but the long sleeves, close fit and semi-sheer overlay is dreamily clean and sculpted.

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Eye Candy: Sassi Holford Signature Collection 2014

November 26th, 2013 | Julia Braime

Sassi Holford 2014 Matilda


Tuesday’s are just the worst day of the whole week, aren’t they?  I’m hoping this big fat dose of eye candy by Brides Up North favourite Sassi Holford brightens the mood.  After all, who on earth can stay grumpy in the face of such pretty?!

And the best news?  All Sassi’s 2014 Signature Collection is landing in wedding dress boutiques near you, right now

Sassi Holford 2014 Amelia


Sassi Holford works with absolute attention to detail and an uncompromising eye for quality, and each season her collections are individual yet balanced, focussed yet inspiring.

The 2014 Collection defines classic elegance, achieving this with dramatic silhouettes and exquisite fabrics.

The design emphasis is on femininity: for the bodice the key lines are the elegant portrait neckline and bustier detailing. Many of the gowns offer coverage on the shoulders and arms as the trend away from strapless continues. Silhouettes should be designed to make a statement – from an impressive ball gown to a flattering column skirt with fluted hem.

During the year Sassi visits European fabric fairs and this season sees her working with a range of impressive textured fabrics in combination with soft, floating fabrics such as fine lace and embroidered tulle.

Sassi Holford 2014 Catrina & Georgina Jacket

Catrina & Georgina Jacket

Sassi Holford 2014 Clarissa


Sassi says:  My 2014 Sassi Holford Signature Collection was conceived around my notion of modern elegance but emphasised with dramatic silhouettes and tactile fabrics. To achieve this I have consciously moved away from traditional laces to unusual, feminine laces and combined them with delicate tulles and chiffons. Though some designs are elegantly simple and rest on the perfection of their lines, I adore the styles that are exquisitely embellished with laser cut fabrics and 3D textures.This season my necklines are more demure, but contrast beautifully with a number of dramatic but feminine deep V backs (a detail that I’m particularly enamoured with at the moment).

Sassi Holford 2014 Emily


My primary concern is to make the female form look truly fabulous. My brides are elegant, feminine and romantic.  All my designs are available in the standard size range of 8 to 18 but they can also be ordered in a size smaller or up to size 28 if required.

Sassi Holford 2014 Evelyn


Sassi Holford 2014 Ida & Beatrice Belt

Ida & Beatrice Belt

My gowns are handmade in Somerset by my wonderfully skilled team, and the integral corset that we put in each gown creates a beautifully streamlined silhouette and ensures a high level of comfort for the bride on her big day.

Sassi Holford 2014 Jessica & Jemima Coat

Jessica & Jemima Coat

My signature piece would be Jessica from my Signature Collection – the dress alone is a stunning silk crepe column design but it can be worn with a jacket and a sash, just a sash – just a jacket. The different looks that you can create with this dress, for a bride, are almost endless and whilst simple, they’re all so effective.

Sassi Holford 2014 Josephine & Josphine Skirt

Josephine & Josephine Skirt

Sassi Holford 2014 Megan


Sassi Holford 2014 Mimi


Sassi Holford 2014 Rebecca


Sassi Holford 2014 Ruby


Sassi Holford 2014 Sara


Sassi Holford 2014 Veronica



Visit for more information and a list of Northern stockists.


Brides Up North UK Wedding Blog – Images © 2014 Sassi Holford

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