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Behind The Dress | Liesel

Strapless ball gown with ribbon-embroidered bodice and silk organza floating flange skirt accented by lace applique detail at hem.

This dress comes from a meeting of two worlds: there are elements of traditional bridal, in the grand, fairytale mold, and here this classicism encounters an original, modern perspective: the strapless, shoulder-baring sensuality, and the bold bodice, with its contemporary take on classical decorative bridal design. What’s so interesting in this bodice, and you have it again with other pieces in the collection, is the fresh take on embroidery: a hallowed art form in the grand bridal tradition, and something we tend to associate with an Old-World, perhaps more elegant, or even stiff design. In Liesel, I’ve tried to evolve and re-mix this decoration.

When you encounter embroidery, it’s often with a metallic or contrasting thread, something that draws the eye, but here I’ve gone with more subtle ribbon embroidery, which looks almost like piping, or macramé. It stands out against the pure white organza surface of the bodice, and it certainly signals an old-fashioned sensibility in the kind of pattern. But in Liesel, it’s so refined that it becomes a reflection on itself, a bit of a time capsule: you know, that “something borrowed” that you suddenly see with new eyes. It’s subtle, but it’s a gorgeous effect, and it represents what this collection is all about. It’s the sweetness, and the simplicity, of these decorative materials – the lace, the soft beading, the embroidery – and embracing that classic, heirloom past, while updating it with a modern eye.

It’s also important that with this bodice embroidery, the pattern is always visually accentuating the bride’s figure, without actually getting too skin-tight. The bodice here conforms to the body, and it’s so clean and simple, without any other elements beyond that corded ribbon embroidery, that it really wants to be picture-perfect.

Because this dress is just so beautiful, and so light and airy — the bias-cut organza, which makes up the cathedral-length skirt, is so endlessly aloft, and so spectacularly Old World-princess — it’s a perfect touchstone for this collection. It’s sweet and timeless, idealized, with a pure, romantic heart, and at the same time, it’s living in a very sophisticated world of design.

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