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Behind the Dress: Holly

Holly is a very sculpted, sophisticated mermaid gown, and in a new color for me, Petal. It’s a very delicate dusty pink, and it takes inspiration from those classic scenes of the Parisian ballet, those graceful young dancers that Degas captured for all time.

Of course, with Holly I’ve brought some sensuousness to the picture. Every single line of this gown is shaped and accented, especially the top, which uses a mitering technique: a series of interlocking pieces and shapes are joined together, forming a very architectural bodice.

Usually, mermaids will be made out of a very rigid fabric, forcing the body into a given shape, but Holly is made with stretch chiffon, so it stretches across the shape of the body. So it gives this very soft, seamless look. And that makes it very comfortable, too! As far as mermaids go, you don’t see this used very much—stretch chiffon is usually reserved for softer gowns—but that’s something that makes Holly very unique, and it’s something I’ve been using more and more in bridal.

Aside from making a mermaid gown easier to wear, I think the stretch also makes it a little more sensual and soft. Holly is very supple to the touch. Even in my most extravagant and fanciful designs, I like there to be a certain element of casualness and ease. Comfort can be opulent, and really, for me it’s the ultimate luxury to create something that is both elegant and easy to wear. It’s absolutely modern.

The bottom of this dress is also really spectacular. Those are all hand-cut organza petals—over 200 petals, in fact! Delicate organza floral sprigs line the top of the skirt, spraying and spiraling out throughout the fluttering folds of those layered petals to add a subtle texture and that beautiful, refined extra detail. The skirt wonderfully complements the architectural silhouette by bringing in the earthy, the organic: it’s a big swooning burst of springtime. Holly is a perfect example of the kind of study in contrasts that I always bring to my bridal collections.

Browse the Spring 2012 Bridal Collection

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