Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Colourful Kimono Bride Sarah!

When i started my bridal label (originally called Culture Shock) back in 2001, one of my main aims was to create beautiful, one-of-a-kind wedding dresses that embrace diverse cultures from around the world. I have always adored Oriental brocade fabrics, and the fascinating art, food & cultures of Asian countries such as Japan, China and South-East Asia in particular... so designing wedding gowns influenced by these wonderful concepts was something i just HAD to do!

Almost by accident, i started working with unique one-off vintage kimonos and obi fabrics, bought in Japan & given to me by a client, as she requested I make something special for her using these authentic textiles. After experimenting with various dress styles, splicing the kimono prints & combining them with plain coloured silks, and playing around with proportions & design lines, I eventually came up with several wedding dress concepts that I felt were flattering, elegant, boldly stylish yet also DIFFERENT from other Asian-inspired designs on the market - my own interpretation or "fusion" of East meets West. So over the years I have had the great pleasure of turning these concepts into reality, for my brides that want something colourful, bold and truly WOW for their wedding day!

One such bride is Sarah, from Canberra, and these are her wedding day photos, showing how FABULOUS she looked marrying Jacob in her 'Culture Bridal Couture' kimono gown. When Sarah first came to see me, we discussed her fave colour RED ( & how good she looks wearing red!), what style gowns she liked, & then looked at several vintage kimonos i had in my collection. After much thought, she chose the most STUNNING red & white vintage kimono, with pretty coloured flowers, gold embroidery & funky cherry blossom detailing, and from this one-off fabric, we created her 2-piece bridal gown (silk dress and matching kimono jacket).

Sarah and Jacob's wedding day was a great success, and to quote Sarah directly from the lovely Thank-You card she sent me afterwards...

"To dear Lisa & the wonderful Culture Bridal team, Thank you so much for creating the perfect wedding dress for me, it was more than I ever imagined my wedding dress could or would be. Jacob's jaw apparently dropped as soon as he saw me! All of our wedding guests were absolutely blown away, with comments like 'GORGEOUS' and 'SPECTACULAR', and led many of the women to say they wish they could have their weddings again so they too could have such a unique dress!"

Brides like Sarah make me so happy, and remind me of why I am in this business & why i truly LOVE what i do - meeting inspirational women who embrace their individuality, and are not afraid to break with tradition on their wedding day to wear an original, colourful & truly unique one-off gown. It brings joy not just to them, (and myself), but also brings joy to everyone that has the opportunity to see them looking so amazing & happy! Plus, of course, I get to visit Japan to buy more vintage kimono and obi pieces - i love that, too! Another quote from Sarah to finish this story...

"Everyone commented how much the dress suited me, so thank you again for creating a dress that really did represent who I am. I have already worn my jacket again!!"

Sarah's Kimono wedding gown by Culture Bridal Couture
Sarah & Jacob's wedding photos by Richard Miller
And a special thanks to Tina, for introducing me to the beauty of the Japanese kimono!

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