Planning a wedding and actually being and staying married are two different things. So much...
A couple of weeks ago I told you about a new wedding Boutique The White Room that has opened in Sheffield, it’s only been open for 2 months but it has been doing amazingly well. I have become good friends with Chloe the owner of the boutique so she invited me along to her first Designer Day last weekend with the amazing Stephanie Allin. The Designer day was actually a 3 day event in which Stephanie brought over her new collection the ‘Jazz Age’ which was showcased in Chloe’s shop!
So On Friday I payed a visit to the shop armed with my camera to take a few shots of the dresses before any of the brides arrived. Chloe had some extra accessories brought in by the lovely Debbie Carlisle Bouquet who was showcasing her new collection of stunning head wear and jewellery, as well as her amazing bouquets, while cakes were provided by the scrummy Victoria made, flowers provided by Swallows and Damsons and props by Hansley Beard
So That’s the shop, stunning isn’t it! Chloe had a full diary for the 3 days that the designer day ran for, with lost of lucky brides trying on the jazz Age collection. As I had seen the collection I wanted to ask the design Stephanie herself a few question, luckly she was happy to oblige.
But first a bit fo a bit of background information about Stephanie, her business and her designs.
Stephanie Allin is one of the UK’s top bridal designers. We have two shops, the flagship store is in London’s fashionable Marylebone and our original boutique and workrooms are in the village of Mumbles on the Gower in South Wales.
For the last 20 years Stephanie Allin has been pursuing the perfect wedding dress. “My style is all about great structure and fit and designing dresses with a freedom that encompasses fashion and the bride’s individuality.”
The workroom in Mumbles enables her to offer a highly flexible service and she prides herself on knowing the name of every bride. Each dress is made from start to finish by one of her expect dressmakers, trained by Stephanie.
As well as designing the gowns Stephanie cuts all the original patterns herself. Each individual gown is cut by hand. The construction standards are renowned and by having a close team of dressmakers it means she has the flexibility to work to short time-scales and make last minute design changes. The turn-around time for our dresses is sixteen weeks however short orders of less than eight weeks are possible at a premium. The dresses are high-end couture and retail £1200 – £3500
How would you describe your style of bridal wear?
My style is all about great structure and fit and designing dresses with a freedom that encompasses fashion and a bride’s individuality.
Who do you think is a typical Stephanie Allin bride?
Our bride follows fashion but is not its slave.
After 20 years in the business what/whom inspires your designs?
My main inspiration for all of my collections is my brides. I focus on their needs for their big day and add the fun and fashionable elements from my love of different places I go, people I meet and sites I see! I am also very inspired by the different eras, my current collection is based on the Jazz Age and I have a lot of 50’s inspired gowns in my collections also.
How do you split your time between London and South Wales
I split my time carefully between my two shops. I am based in my Mumbles shop close to where I live with my family and I am usually in my London shop every other week.
What other designers do you respect and admire?
I love Vivienne Westwood. She is by far my favourite designer and I respect and admire everything she does, I think she is a genius!!
If you could design for any celebrity, wedding dead or alive who would it be?
I would love to design for Katherine Jenkins. She’s a true welsh beauty and I think her style and class is very admirable. I would of course have loved to design for Kate Middleton but I think Sarah Burton did a truly fantastic job!!
Tell me a bit more about the new jazz Age collection, what inspired you to design it?
I love old movies and Hollywood glamour. My team and I had lots of inspiration nights where we watched black and white films and looked through a lot of my mum’s old books.
Which is your favourite piece in the collection and why?
That’s a very difficult question to answer as they’re all my new designs! This collection in particular has been a reflection of my fashion moments and i love the slinky vibe of Ingrid but I also love the structured glamour of Sophia. i have done a lot of shrugs this year and they have given me a whole new area of inspiration and have enabled me to create such a variety of looks.
What do you think the trends will be for the upcoming bridal seasons?
My 2012 trends are demure glamour created by the translucence of lace over the skin and a womanly silhouette either created by a shapely corset or by a body conscious clinging satin or lace.
What is your perfect way to spend a day off?
I have a family so a great day off is to spend time with them! If they’re busy, I do love shopping but I also love a walk on the beach!!
I’d like to say a hge thank you to Stephanie for tacking the time for the interview and supplying me with these lovely images of her collection. Also thank you to Chloe for letting me share the designer day with you.
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(Please not this is not a sponsored post, I’m just supporting local talent)