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Behind the Dress: Fern Gown

Fern Gown
Art: Vera Wang

As I’ve learned more and more about the symbolic meanings that have been associated with different flowers, I’ve used floral imagery more consciously in my work. In this collection, I’ve taken inspiration from floral motifs and the timeless spring charm of the garden party. With Fern, that flower symbolism becomes very artful indeed.

The peplum sits low, giving an effect that’s almost like a drop-waist to the skirt, so it emphasizes that beautiful statuesque posture in the bride. The structured gazaar tiers of the bodice set off her figure in a very classic way, while the asymmetry of the crumbcatcher lends an artful edge.

Then, the dramatic gorgeousness of Fern arises from the tension with the tissue organza of the skirt, done with an architectural “ladder” technique, where the shapes are always moving and changing, always in motion. As the bride advances, the layers of the skirt undulate and ripple with light and shadow.

For me, the graceful layering of Fern evokes the stem and petals of a flower, but with a very modern vocabulary. The bride who wears Fern has a more sophisticated eye and is looking for something beyond the traditional wedding aesthetic.

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