Just imagine how Pippa Middleton is feeling? She’s already stunned the world once in that ivory Alexander McQueen thunder-stealing gown when she walked down the aisle in 2011 behind her sister at Westminster Abbey. Now she somehow has to top that for her own wedding, to hedge fund manager James Matthews.
Will she decide to set herself apart from that now iconic maid of honour silhouette and choose a completely different style? Will she move more towards opulent and embellished, floaty and ethereal or minimal and modern?
The point is Pippa is no different from any other bride — yes she is in the public eye but at that very moment she finally chooses her dress, she is saying to the rest of the world “this is how I want to be seen on the biggest day of my life”. And every bride is saying exactly that.
Famous or not, you’ve got to find your own true wedding style. After all it is a (beautifully elevated) representation of yourself.
Francis Bridal Design — Bohemian Luxe
If that ‘look’ that you are envisioning is tumbledown tresses and beautifully finished, bohemian elegance then you are in luck, I have just the designer for you!
I’m delighted to introduce to STG, Francis Bridal Design – the first bridal collection from designer Trish Irving.
This look is modern, low-key luxe — serious boho if you like. Just take a look for yourself at these gorgeous unstructured, vintage-feel masterpieces.
Each piece — designed and made in London – is created with the best, carefully selected fabrics (right down to their signature stretch satin linings), the detailing is exquisite, the quality is sublime and the result is delicate, radiant, free-moving, elegance. It’s such a fresh approach to bridal. Chuck out your corsets — this is a love letter to bohemia.
Immediately it’s clear with Francis Bridal’s collection that there is a distinct and coherent personality and a very accomplished character – from Etienne – the gorgeous silk georgette bridal gown to the beautiful ivory embroidered lace Albi dress.
And this definitely was the intention.
If you build it they will come
New Zealand-born Trish began the Francis Bridal collection after struggling to find her own wedding dress. All the boho styles that she was drawn to were too skimpy and not particularly accommodating to the more, lets say, bountiful bosom. She also felt like boho was perhaps becoming a bit of a clichà© and wanted to introduce something a bit more modern in the mix.
So after a 15-year career in luxury fashion, trained pattern cutter Trish Irving decided to tap into this wealth of experience and harness her unyielding energy and creativity to orchestrate her own exquisite portfolio of elegant boho luxe dresses for modern brides.
I love her vision and totally understand her drive and passion. The idea for STG came to me when I was also preparing for my wedding and I couldn’t find what I was looking for (one single place that brought inventive and original ideas together for a style-focused Jewish bride). I knew exactly what I wanted but had to create it myself. Just as Trish has.
So I’m instantly drawn to Francis Bridal, not just because of the breathtakingly beautiful gowns Trish has dreamed up, but because I know the intention and designs come from a very real place.
“It’s Not About The Dress, It’s The Woman Who’s Wearing The Dress”
Knowing the back story to how Francis Bridal Collection was started, it’s no surprise really that while the look is unstructured, floaty and dreamy, the ethos behind the collection is one of identity and strength. It’s created for women who know exactly what they want. Perfect for our strong Jewish brides out there.
And did I mention that Francis Bridal was named after Trish’s mother. The ultimate tribute to the mother of the bride.
As Trish herself says, “It’s not about the dress, it’s the woman who’s wearing the dress”. I love this quote.
And let’s face it, nothing is more dazzling than being confident and comfortable in what you’re wearing.
Modest wedding gowns for modern brides
For those struggling to find a more demure (or tznius) wedding dress that is simple and graceful but with an astounding level of detail then please do take a moment to browse Francis Bridals Lookbook.
Modest is one thing that Francis Bridal know how to do. In fact without wanting to take away from this humble quality — they’re actually utterly brilliant at it!
Most of the dresses have covered shoulders — so that’s perfect for your big moment under the chuppah — and all are floor-length.
The necklines vary and this is a crucial element to selecting the best shape for your body type. High collars look beautiful on slim, long necks whereas a lower neckline like the Valence or the Carbonne suit those with a larger bust.
What’s great about Francis Bridal – especially if you’re opting for modest – is that the plunge neck can be customised for more or less coverage depending on your needs. And so typical of the thought that’s gone into the designs, the plunge is always offset by a gorgeous delicate touch – the demure, silk satin covered buttons on the side seam of the Valence or the softening scalloped edging of the lace on the Carbonne.
And who needs a strapless dress for that lower straight across neckline? Why not choose an illusion covering for the bodice, giving the appearance of a low neckline while retaining your modesty like the Albi.
For a more modern modest look how about pairing this scalloped lace suplice top (worn over a camisole) with the floor sweeping Sainte skirt made of soft silk georgette, gently gathered into a silk satin waistband. I love how this skirt is cut to sit at the narrowest part of your waist and is swooshy without being puffy. Reserved but super stylish.
If you missed the STG post on choosing a ‘modest’ dress for your Jewish wedding, let me fill you in here…
Given the design, quality of fabric and craftsmanship that goes into creating each gown, the look is not the only modest thing about Francis Bridal. Prices range from just £420 to £1,700 – with most pieces priced between £1200 and £1,500. For those looking for a timeless family heirloom, this really is a pretty amazing investment.
Destination Wedding Wow
The fabulous thing about the unstructured Francis Bridal look is that it lends itself so well to a destination wedding. The timeless, laid back style would work as well at a Guy Ritchie style English summer garden party wedding as it would at a George Clooney inspired Italian extravaganza. It would never look out of place.
Not just that, but on a practical note, the gowns are easy to pack and are light and comfortable to wear — that’s not normally the first thing a bride says about her dress — even to the point you can wear your own underwear. There’s no built in reinforcement that could restrict and irk somewhat on a Riviera beachfront.
How does she make these dresses so glorious, yet so lightweight, easy to wear and practical?
The starting point, Trish says, for her Francis Bridal designs is the fabric, always the fabric. And then she thinks about the shapes — it has to look amazing on a real woman with curves.
All the dresses are lined with stretch silk satin because it is light, comfortable and drapes beautifully. These are overlaid with vintage inspired laces and silk georgette to give a relaxed bohemian vibe to the collection.
Designed to allow the bride to wear the underwear of her choosing. There is no need to worry about the width of straps or tackle with hidden support.
Trish Irving is a force to be reckoned with — it drives her to keep creating masterpieces which are undeniably sensational and I already can’t wait to see her next collection.
To have a real sense of Francis Bridal visit their gorgeous website or even better, arrange a visit. They’re based in South West London in beautiful Kew, and they’d be delighted to see you there or if you cant make it, Francis Bridal can arrange a Skype session. The dresses can be bought online and shipped internationally, so don’t worry if you’re overseas. Please see here for sizing and other frequently asked questions.
For any other questions, or to arrange a visit, call (+44) 7445 640024 or email firstname.lastname@example.org, and for more boho luxe inspo, find Francis Bridal on Facebook, check out their Pins, and follow them on Instagram
You can also find Francis Bridal at The Vintage Wedding Fair in Chiswick on 13th November 2016, The Teddington Wedding Fair on 7th February 2017, and Chosen Wedding Fair Islington on 5th March 2017