Photography: Scarlet O'Neill
"Working with Carissa was the answer to my wedding dress shopping challenges. After walking into bridal stores asking for something "not white and not poofy" and not getting very far, it was clear I needed to go a different direction. Carissa listened to all my finicky preferences, and was always full of ideas and interested in exploring options, including shopping for fabric together! In the end, we found exactly what I never knew I wanted, and I could not have been happier with the dress.
I met Kay a couple years ago, we were connected by my photographer, Kaja, when she met a local blogger who was looking for Canadian Designers to work with, she instantly mentioned me. Kay and I didn’t meet in person right away, with me still being in Toronto it was a virtual relationship, but I was instantly taken with what an incredible presence she had in her photos, she completely embodied the Copious Woman.
In the summer of 2017 Kay and I reconnected because we both wanted to work together again, I was excited to have her model Copious and be one of the faces of my new collection, but her reason for working together definitely trumped mine!
As with any bride, I was completely honoured to be asked to make Kay’s wedding gown, but the designer in me jumped for joy when she said she wanted a black outfit. I had been waiting and waiting for someone to want black and it was so perfect that someone with Kay’s incredible fashion sense and style be the one who asked. She kicked it up one more notch by asking for a black jumpsuit with a floral lace skirt, I literally jumped to the moon with excitement.
Working with Kay on her wedding gown and with her modelling for Copious this last year has been amazing, we have gotten to know each other more and I count myself lucky to have someone who believes in Copious and loves my designs like she does!
Photography: Anita Peeples
I get all kinds of brides that come to me; brides that have no idea what design they want and ones that know exactly what they want, but can't find it. Vanya was the latter and the first email I got from my Silver Bride she had attached pictures of her inspiration and the one that caught my eye was an illustration from a Butterick paper pattern of an open skirt that showed off pants, it was unique and different. Plus she didn’t want her outfit to be all white, she wanted to find a silver fabric that worked well with white, needless to say I was hooked right away!
Each bride has her own vision of how she wants to look on her wedding day and it's when I get to meet them in person where that vision comes alive for me too. Once I met Vanya and got to hear her vision, I was excited and thrilled at the challenge her gown presented. She wanted to wear a skirt down the aisle, then wanted the skirt to open up in the front to show off her pants and finally she wanted to remove the skirt all together to be able to dance the night away.
Most designs are possible, but such a unique design for a wedding gown, it couldn't just be a couture design that was meant for the runway, it needed to be wearable in the REAL world. Functionality is a key feature in my wedding gown designs, my brides need to be stunning but also comfortable in their gown. I would need to think outside the box to make this look beautiful for a wedding outfit for Vanya, but she was so ready to go on the journey with me, so it was easy to say yes!
Because Vanya's wedding outfit had pants we had many fittings because getting a perfect fit on pants takes time, but once we nailed that it was on to figuring out how to create a skirt that did all she wanted. We ended up with a gathered skirt that had a hidden zipper that went from the hem up to the waistband which she could unzip when she was ready to reveal her second outfit! I put hidden hook and eye attachments so that she could pull back the skirt and keep it out of her way to show off her pants, much like the images she first sent me. Lastly the skirt could be totally removed for whenever she was ready to dance the night away.
I loved working on this piece with Vanya, each bride provides me with a new creative challenge and I cherish each women for our journey that we get to go on together.
Katrina was my golden bride, she wanted to be ethereal with a pop of colour and this vibe matched her personality perfectly. She is a very go with the flow, free spirit kind of woman but when she spoke you were 100% focused on her because she is so eloquent! I adored how each of my brides knew themselves so well they chose fabric and designs that suited not only their styles but personalities as well, this is something I stress to my brides. So many people come to me for a custom dress and they want something so different then themselves, but I always say; 1, you want to be comfortable and 2, you still want to be you!