High street favourites Phase Eight have launched their new wedding dress collection for 2014 and it’s perfect for budget-conscious brides. We talked to the designer to find out the inspiration behind the new designs and ask her to choose her favourite gowns from the collection…
What was the inspiration behind the wedding dress collection?
The collection for 2014 was inspired by glamorous Hollywood looks of the 1930s and 1950s with embellishments taken from exquisite vintage embroidery and beadings.
I would describe the collection as ultimate femininity, with a glamorous and whimsically beautiful vintage feel – real wedding dresses that are soft and special to wear with delicate detailing, lots of beading, fringing and lace.
Each bridal gown, accessory and bridesmaid dress has been created to ensure that you can customise and personalise your look with beaded belts, lace edged veils, coloured sashes to link in with your bridesmaids and capes in feathers and beading to give glamorous coverage.
What is the design process?
Everything is designed exclusively in-house. Each season we travel to Paris, New York, Hong Kong and India in search of the most amazing vintage pieces or exquisite embroidery that can then inspire a beautiful dress.
Once we have sourced all of our fabrics, the design and buying teams discuss the collection, listening carefully to feedback from our stores and real brides. I then draw up each piece, making sure that the inner construction and fit of every single dress will help each bride feel wonderful in her dress on her big day.
Once each dress is made, we carefully fit them in-house to ensure absolute technical perfection. It typically takes around 9 months of very hard work from the dedicated Phase Eight team from initial sketch to the dresses sitting in our flagship bridal James Street store.
Do you have a personal favourite style of bridal gown?
I love all wedding dresses, it’s my passion! For my own wedding in Sri Lanka I wore a hand embellished silky soft gown and a very, very long lace-edged veil that swept behind me.
I felt so feminine and my dress was perfect for the hot climate. It was fitted to the top hip and then flared out at the hem, with a jewelled belt and cascade of handmade silk roses down my back.
For our reception back in England I wore a hand beaded lace cape and looped up my train. I loved the way I was able to customise my dress for the different locations – we hope to give all brides the same versatility with their own gowns.
Which dress is your favourite from the collection and why?
That’s a really hard question as I love them all! My favourites are Hermione for the glamorous 1930s feel and the attached beaded cape that sits around the shoulders to provide ultimate feminine coverage. This looks gorgeous with our beaded belts that can be worn all day or just added for a glamorous twist in the evening.
I also love the Elodie dress, because it has an inner corset that pulls you in and gives the whole dress the most amazing feeling of being supported.
It has a duchesse satin fishtail shape with a beaded lace overlay and embellished beaded motifs under the bust. The very sheer tulle straps provide coverage without being too heavy. This is a very modern update of the classic fishtail shape but ultimately feminine with the soft embellishment.
Want to see even more budget-friendly wedding dresses? Take a look at our new Dress Collections right here.