This is a gown that takes some of the techniques and modernist aesthetic vocabulary I’ve become most personally attached to, and really creates something so wonderful and unexpected.
In Kirsten, you have a bodice fashioned from layer after layer of razor-cut bias tulle and organza, cut and arranged in what we call a flange technique, which creates all of these gorgeous flourishes throughout every angle of the dress. I’ve used this flange technique in previous collections, and absolutely love it: the way it turns a layer of fabric into almost a painter’s brushstroke. There are so many layers, and they’re inter-related in so many minute patterns throughout the space of the bodice, that they take on this exciting new texture, like a new fabric in itself. You can see how the “brushstrokes” cover the bride, from hip to waist, shoulder to hip, painting her figure in all of these incredibly delicate touches. The fabric in the bodice is soft, and it gathers you in, wraps you up in all of this play of light and shadow.
You can achieve so many dazzling visual effects with flange variations, and with Kirsten, as you can see, I’ve gone for the height of opulence. In the skirt you see an arrangement I call an inverted flange. In the past I’ve used U-shaped or scallop-shaped layers, but here I’ve taken those razor-cut strips, drawn them in together, almost like some invisible force has gathered them up in a handful, and made them criss-cross and whirl and blossom open again. Then, between the flanged pieces, I’ve placed tulle elements that open up the space, and allow the eye to explore this saturation and contrast rippling through. When you work with fabric, there are so many possibilities that arise from the woman herself when she’s in motion in the dress: there’s so much visual splendor.
Light and dark; transparent and opaque; bold shapes and faint suggestions, are all happening at once and all communicating with each other, to show off the female form. So many surprising intricacies emerge out of this seeming randomness. I just love being able to create something like this, and I love when brides respond to it: it’s not traditional, it’s not storybook romantic, and it isn’t something you come across in the ordinary wedding. It’s a bold, gorgeously modern creation.