Summer Trend Alert: Waist High Splits

Image courtesy of

Image courtesy of

One of the hottest trends for summer 2014 is dresses and skirts with thigh to waist high splits. After spotting this trend on the runways of New York, Milan, London and Paris last fall, dresses and skirts with waist high splits were front and center at the Much Music Awards that took place recently in Toronto.

Kendall Jenner at 2014 Much Music Video Awards in Fausti Pugli. Image courtesy of

Kendall Jenner at 2014 Much Music Video Awards in Fausti Puglisi. Image courtesy of

Kendall Jenner wowed on the red carpet with waist high split in Fausti Puglisi. She made us all do a double look at this daring, leg baring, double split all the way to your pelvis, gown. With the newly, coined phrase “pevage” combining pelvis and cleavage, lets see what we have to look forward to.

Leave it to the Italians to lead the charge on what’s sexy, fashionable and cool. Fausti Puglisi debuted this trend in his s/s 14 collection. While American designer, Donna Karan also showing this trend in her s/s 14 collection with splits just a little less revealing, Donna Karan also incorporated diaphanous sheer fabrics with this trend.

Donna Karan spring/summer 2014 images courtesy of

Donna Karan spring/summer 2014 images courtesy of

So how should shoppers wear waist high splits? For those fearless fashionistas who are brave enough to include this trend in their summer wardrobe consider wearing this trend either go completely commando (no underwear) or with a barley there On Gossamer g-string.

If you love this trend but the waist high splits are too risqué, try Donna Karan’s version with splits a little more demure. With this version you can wear something a little more substantial underneath without the fear of being totally exposed.

However you decide to rock your splits make sure you are doing leg lifts, squats, sprints and other leg-toning exercises. You are going to need it!!

—Renessta Olds

Trend Report: Show a Little Skin with Crop Tops

Image courtesy of

Image courtesy of

With the summer heat finally blazing and the mercury soaring after a long, cold winter, it is time to show some skin. Why not follow the temperatures lead and raise your shirt up a bit, but not too high. Try a crop top.

One of the hottest trends that made it from the runway to the retail racks is the crop tops trend. Tommy Hilfiger, Tracy Reese, and Diane von Furstenberg all showed this trend on their runways for spring/summer 2014.

This trend is not for shrinking violets or timid types. Remember, this is a trend for those ladies that know what an inside of a gym looks like. There is no way to camouflage that extra body flab around your waist with crop tops.

Still, there are ways to wear this trend, even if you not in super tip top shape. Have no fear there are levels to this trend and Fashion Reverie is primed to show you all he variations on crop tops.

Vera Wang and Diane von Furstenberg images courtesy of, respectively

Vera Wang and Diane von Furstenberg images courtesy of, respectively

1) Diane von Furstenberg and Vera Wang presented a completely abs baring – paired short bra tops with hip-high floaty skirts leaving the midriff completely free. So if you weren’t in the house all winter long and doing your cardio tapes in between blizzards, this may not be your best option.

Tracy Reese spring 2014 images courtesy of, Joie spring 2014 images courtesy of Joie

Tracy Reese spring 2014 images courtesy of, Joie spring 2014 images courtesy of Joie

2) Tracy Reese and Joie presented a top that was a little bit longer with a higher waisted skirt that speaks to a more mature, cosmopolitan woman in fabulous shape! There is not as much midriff exposed and for a woman who’s not as confident or just wants an extra boost of self assurance, pairing this look with a flesh tone one-piece Lycra undergarment will pull you in that much more and look like second skin.

Images courtesy of

Images courtesy of

3) Balenciaga paired his belly button grazing midriff tops with short shorts. Keeping in line with a sportier, weekend look for a more casual approach to this trend. Balenciaga also showed a sportier version of this trend in lilac and purple on the runway.

From chic, sophisticated looks to sportier, casual combinations, there are lots of options for wearing crop tops this summer. Go ahead take the plunge!!

—Renessta Olds

Trend Alert: Rose Gold

Collages297One of the hottest fall 2014 trends being flaunted by downtown fashionistas and uptown style mavens is rose gold. It is everywhere!!!! That gold color overlaid with a touch of pink is showing up in accessories from jewelry, and shoes to belts and handbags, even rose gold hair. Rose Gold has also been prevalent  in the runway collections of Alexander McQueen, Michael Kors, Son Jung Wan, and a hosts of others.

Though most trend only last one or two seasons, rose gold is one of the hottest trends carrying over from spring 2013 and fall 2014. Celebrities from Kerry Washington and Mischa Barton to Jennifer Anniston and Victoria Beckham are being spotted on red carpets and high-profile events looking fabulous in rose gold accents.

KerryWashingtonPairing it with prints like Kerry Washington did at the Independent Spirit Awards by incorporating both the floral trend and rose gold trend kept her looks fresh, modern, and sophisticated. Washington’s rose/gold watch, bangle and purse shout “all eyes on me.”

By mixing different shades of green floral with lavenders and white, the voltage is amped up on this killer dress.  Adding a border at her natural waist elongates her frame and turns this look from trendy to classic!

One of Fashion Reverie’s favorite looks for summer is a beautiful white sheath dress. White looks good on all skin tones—from creamy ivory to deep ebony—and with rose gold accessories adds that special summery glow, bringing out the summer shimmer rosy glow of your complexion.

Clockwise images are represented by Sugar Scout rose gold cuff, Brian Atwood rose gold shoe, Lariucci rose gold ring, and Fallon rose gold evening purse

Clockwise images are represented by Lauicci rose gold cuff, Brian Atwood rose gold shoe, Laruicci rose gold ring, and Nina Fallon rose gold bag.

Fashion Reverie dares you to experiment with the rose gold trend. It’s the perfect way to glam up all black, edge out your mundane work clothes and/or take your look from day-to-night. Find a silhouette that works with your body type and add your favorite accessories in rose gold. From retailers with lower price points—H&M and Forever 21 to more pricey brands like Michael Kors and Jeffrey Campbell on board with this trend, there is something for everyone.

—Renessta Olds


Trend Alert: Chic Running Sneaks

Image courtesy of

Image courtesy of

Are you looking for a facelift, of sorts, to your running sneakers? Well, look no further. As of late, running sneaks with an edge seem to be the go-to shoe for anyone looking to add a little bit of flair to their daily look.  From neons, prints/patterns, and different textures and fabrications, running sneakers have gotten the fashion-forward makeover it’s been waiting for! Perfect for men and women, running sneakers are hitting their stride this season with no signs of slowing down.

Ruffian Spring 2013

Ruffian Spring 2013

The mixing of sport elements into everyday wear began a few seasons ago, ending up in the wardrobe of sneaker aficionados. This trend has now caught traction on a commercial scale. The concept began with designers pulling inspiration from clothes that would be traditionally worn to the gym or reserved for outdoor activities. Caps, hoodies, sweatshirts, and sport pants have gotten modified to appeal to a more fashion-focused consumer. With the introduction of Isabel Marant’s wedged sneakers to the runways a few seasons ago, as well as looks from Ruffian’s spring 2013 collection, it has become trendy for fashionistas to add a more casual but rugged edge to their usually glammed up look.

Style-It girl of the moment, Solange Knowles was recently tapped to bring her brand of funk, flair, and fun to Puma as she was named art director and creative consultant for the shoe brand. With Solange Knowles solidly in step with this re-invention of the running sneak, this trend will amp up into overdrive! Now take a look at some of Fashion Reverie’s favorite styles of running shoes:


Topman leopard-print sneakers retail for $100. Image courtesy of top

Hype Leopard Print Sneakers Via TOPMAN

TopMan features these cool, leopard-printed running sneakers in their stores and online. From the orange laces to the vibrant in-your-face leopard print, these sneakers will bring out your inner hipster, giving you style with ease.


Nike Flyknit Trainer+ retails for $150. Image courtesy of

Nike Flyknit Trainer+

These multi-colored Flyknit trainers by Nike are the perfect blend of style mixed with sport! Doubling as a top of the line running shoe, they can be worked easily into any stylish young woman’s wardrobe! From the gym to a day of shopping with your friends, this shoe is the best of both worlds.

Nike Air Max 2014 iD retails for $220.00. Image courtesy of

Nike Air Max 2014 iD retails for $220.00. Image courtesy of

Nike Air Max 2014 iD

What makes the Nike Air Max a cool sneaker choice? Not only does Nike have them in awesome, glow-in-the-dark neon colors, but consumers can color customize their choices online! The personalization of this sneaker makes it an obvious winner for anyone looking to bring their own style to the streets.

Adidas by Stella McCartney retails for $220.00. Image courtesy of

Adidas by Stella McCartney retails for
$220.00. Image courtesy of

Adidas by Stella McCartney

Featuring a textbook-print style, these running sneaks from Stella McCartney are a chic step in the right direction. Comfortable, stylish, and durable, what more could a girl ask for?

Valentiono Garavani Sneaker Hers:$ retails for 795.00. Image courtesy of

Valentiono Garavani Sneaker
Hers:$ retails for 795.00. Image courtesy of

Valentino Garavani Sneaker

In step with this trend, Valentino Garavani have created his and hers camouflaged-inspired sneakers. While the woman’s sneaker features traces of on-trend, neon-colored leathers; the men’s sneaks goes for a subtle, yet colorful approach. By purchasing these sneaks, consumers will feel like they are stepping in style!

Image courtesy of

Image courtesy of

PUMA x Solange Knowles

When it was announced that Solange Knowles had been tapped to be the new art director and creative consultant at Puma, the blogosphere lit up like the Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center. Everyone wanted to know what the shoes would look like and when they would arrive in stores.  Well, the much-anticipated arrival is February 2014 and surprisingly for Puma, the product of his collaborative effort is relatively affordable.

The collection, “Girls of Blaze,” is inspired by Brazil.  Solange worked with three different design teams to get just the right look for her Puma debut. These are a must-have for any young fashionista wanting to bring a little bit of South American spice to their shoe collection.

—John Woody

Trend Alert: Hardware Accessories

Collages178If you are anything like a lot of fashion-conscious consumers, you are in the know and on the pulse of all things fashion, (so at least you think), you probably have been noticing a lot of metal-adorning coats, belts, shoes and purses. Drumroll please … Welcome to the Hardware Trend!


From Diane Von Furstenberg to Emilio Pucci to Ruthie Davis to Tom Ford, designers have incorporated this trend into their latest collections. The Hardware Trend for the edgy, chic girl has everyone taking notice. Guess what? It’s not just for the rock n’ roll or punk chic girl anymore. Paired with a sweetheart ensemble this trend is burning up the runway and sidewalks. You ask how can you incorporate this trend into you classic wardrobe without investing a whole lot of dollars. Why dig into deep pockets when a trend that is here today and gone tomorrow? (I highly doubt that the hardware trend is going away soon!!).  If you don’t have deep pockets, your solution is Accessories, Accessories, and more Accessories!!

Downloads89Here are a few creative ideas on how to get what you want right now. First, scour your favorite local stores for purses, shoes and jewelry that have metal buckles, zippers, and studs. Secondly, have a themed clothing exchange with your favorite fashionistas in the know specifically asking for them to bring these types of items. Last, if all else fails, save your money for the one hardware-trend piece that you can’t live without. Even if this trend goes out of style, so what, you love it! Just hold on to it for when it comes back around.

—Renessta Olds

Trend Alert: Fierce Cat Eyes

Fashion_News_Alert_October29Clothes weren’t the only things setting new trends this past Fashion Week. For Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week, many designers opted for a look with a little more dramatic flare for the runway. From Tory Burch, Kenzo, and Kate Spade, fierce cat eyes was the beauty trend for spring 2014. Fashion Reverie sat down with celebrity make-up artist, Jackie Gomez for great tips on how to rock this chic trend for your everyday look. With fashionable, star-studded clients ranging from the Beyonce to Victoria’s Secret Angels’ Marissa Miller and Candice Swanepoel, Jackie Gomez is the go-to woman for a fierce set of cat eyes that will get you noticed and stop admirers dead in their tracks.

Fashion Reverie: What are your thoughts on the Cat Eye trend? Have you created it for any of your celebrity clients?

Jackie Gomez: Absolutely, it’s what I’m most known for. I have created this look for Beyonce, Zoe Saldana, Lala Vasquez, and Solange Knowles.

Images clockwise are Zoe Zaldana, Beyonce, Lala Vasquez.

Images clockwise are Zoe Zaldana, Beyonce, Lala Vasquez.

FR: What are some great DIY tips you can give consumers who want to make their own products at home to prep their skin before they apply makeup?

JG: A great DIY is to take one spoon of natural honey and one spoon of avocado. Mix them together and apply to the face and neck for 10 minutes. This will rejuvenate the skin and hydrate it, making your skin perfect for makeup.

FR: What are some products you like to use when creating cat eyes?

JG: I love using Make Up For Ever aqua liner. It lasts and it waterproof, my favorite.

cat_eye_trend_05FR: How can we translate cat eyes as an everyday look and a night-out-on-the-town look?

JG: The fun thing about makeup is to play with colors. These runways looks are simple because they add color to the eyes. I recommend concentrating on one feature whether it’s the eyes or lips. Have fun and play it up. For the fall, keep dark plum shades in mind for the lips and a simple neutral eye. This could be a great night look but for the day do a color liner. Try a more natural approach like a bronze or a grey and definitely keep the lips soft and pink.

FR: How do we complete our smoky cat eye look?

JG: Add a coral blush. I love Cargo cosmetics. Try beach blush, it’s the perfect coral with a mix of bronzer. Finish with a beautiful lip color like Nars cosmetics in Biscayne Park satin lip pencil.

You can find these all these beauty items and more at your local beauty supplier or local drug store. Will you be rocking some fierce eyes this fall?

—Dana Givens

Trend Report: Punk Chic for Fall 2013

Search results for givenchyTaking a nod from the Metropolitan Museum Costume Institute’s “From Punk to Chaos” exhibit which opens on May 6, fashion weeks from New York City to London to Milan and Paris in bold statements announced that Punk is back. Gone are the torn tee-shirts, shirts with cigarette burns, safety pins and dirty street urchin references that British designers like Zandra Rhodes and Vivienne Westwood so brightly transferred from the street to runways in the late 1970s and early 80s. This season the nihilistic and rebellious mode of 70s Punk has been caressed into points of view that combine hard and soft, messages of chic individualism and polish, and architectural brilliance juxtaposed against seemingly random compositions. All these polarities have caused consumers to look at the Punk aesthetic in vibrant and innovative ways.

Borne out of political and cultural rebellion against societal norms and oppressive governments, Punk first reared its anarchistic head in New York City in the mid-70s, later spreading to London, and is sometimes associated as an anti-establishment aesthetic in opposition to the austere politics of Margaret Thatcher. Still, the political oeuvre of the Punk aesthetic did not rest  with political protests and outrage, Punk has expanded to embrace an amalgam of expressions in music, dance, theatre, and yes, even fashion.

Downloads354Vivienne Tam

Vivienne Tam mixed images of President Obama, Chairman Mao with asymmetrical zippered skirts and motorcycle jackets. Aptly timed with the Costume Institute’s punk exploration, Tam combined mixed media, color and texture, hardware and street wear, and politics, which is what Punk in its early development, so expertly did. What Tam has forwarded with this collection is smoothing out some of the edges without losing the internal political roots and expressions of Punk.

Downloads356Junya Watanabe

Of all the designers this season that referenced Punk in their collections, Watanabe borrowed most heavily from that aesthetic and stayed true to that point of view without attempting to make Punk’s rough, ragged road smooth. Watanabe incorporated tartan plaids, throwaway fabrics that one might find at a thrift store paired with leather jackets and denim. This hodgepodge of disparate fabrics, textures and silhouettes is indicative of what Punk in its heyday had come to represent. And though Watanabe put his own signature stamp of approval of this season’s fascination with Punk, he keeps the aesthetic fresh and vibrant without watering down the schizoid appeal of Punk.


Donatella Versace has long had an affectation for rock n’ roll and ingeniously funnels her love for rock into collections that are sexy and sensuously flatter the feminine silhouette. This collection was no exception.

For fall 2013, Donatella looked to Punk’s sexy-edged fetish aesthetic as evidenced in some of the vinyl pieces in this collection. Still, Donatella didn’t leave her Punk predilection with just vinyl. Donatella brilliantly mixed the hard and the soft by pairing vinyl, studded belts and boots with structured cashmere and leopard coats. This polarity elevated the Punk of yore to Donatella’s current dissertation on Punk’s ability to be sexy, sophisticated and ever fashion-forward.


Though Riccardo Tisci of Givenchy’s fall 2013 collection took more of a nod toward Grunge than Punk, and may have been a mere dalliance or toe dip into Punk’s pool of nihilism and individuality, the Punk aesthetic was still evident. Punk reared its rebellious head in Tisci’s zippered floral motorcycle jackets and plaid shirts, but was more obvious in Tisci’s almost random combination of fabrications, textures, and styles. After all, Punk has always been a smorgasbord tour de force of individual styles and tastes, and Tisci in this collection tapped into that perspective.

Downloads351Jeremy Scott and Libertine

Back stateside, Jeremy Scott tapped into the whimsical, fun side of Punk as seen through the prism of West Coast surfers, skateboarders, and LA punk clubs. This collection was a concentrated miasma of graphic images, bold colors and textures. Scott’s genius was his pairing of hard and soft fabrics and textures. Standouts were his monkey-hair coat with a plaid skirt and digital goth prints combined with sexy vinyl jeans.

All images courtesy of

All images courtesy of

Unlike Jeremy Scott’s fall 2013 outing, Libertine’s Punk reference this season was not front and center. Skull and bones graphic images mostly popped on tee shirts and a few dresses. Libertine chose to incorporate the Punk influence into handwritten messages on jackets and skirts. Punk was never neat, but Libertine’s handwritten “Neat” message implies that, perhaps, Punk can be neat when its message is hand painted on a tailored jacket and slacks.

—William S. Gooch


Spring 2013 Trend Report: High Stepping in High-Fashion Sneakers

Though sleigh bells, stuffed stockings and gifts in shiny wrapping may be on the minds of holiday shoppers, in a just few months retail stores will be packed solid with all types of spring footwear. With that thought in mind there was a noticeable continuing trend on runways during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week that made models a little less tall.

High-fashion sneakers have been featured on the fabulous catwalks of Marc Jacobs and Lanvin for the spring 2013 season. High-end designers Giuseppe Zanotti, Givenchy, Prada, Isabel Marant, and Jeremy Scott also have reinvented this normal causal wear item into cutting-edge, high-end footwear with innovative designs with contrasting themes of glamour and edgy fashion. Alexander McQueen also gives a creative interpretation of the perfect high-end footwear with an exclusive collection collaboration with sneaker giant, Puma.

Givenchy spring 2013 images courtesy of

Unlike the plain, standard fare simply used for the gym or the more rugged-edged footwear collections of athletic superstars, for spring 2013 high-fashion designer continue to combine a more glamorous approach with comfort and ease. Expect to see more sneakers with wedged heels, knockout studs, neon bright colors, and lavish high top dipped in metallic shades.

Giuseppe Zanotti spring 2013 images courtesy of

Now that that some of the runway amazons have traded in their Jimmy Choos and Blahnik stilettoes for trendy sneaks, will fashion-conscious consumers follow suit? And don’t be left out in the cold by waiting for the pile-up this spring. Remember, the fashion bird is always ahead of the curve.

Mark Jacobs, Alexander McQueen, and Isabel Marant spring 2013 images courtesy of

All styles can be found in exclusive fashion-forward departments stores like Nordstrom, Barney’s, and Bergdorf Goodman just in time for the holiday season.

–Dana E. Givens

A Favorite Winter Escape: Leopard Prints

When the winter chill begins to hit Gotham, our natural tendency is to begin not only bundling up, but also hibernating.  And with thoughts of hibernating, some of us also begin, if we’re lucky, planning our winter escapes (on which our minds rest until we’re off on the runway or it’s safe to pack away the woolens).  For this reason, leopard prints have always been a favorite for the wintry months.

Leopard prints on fur (and faux-fur) and accessories, when done right, is a classic way to add animal magnetism while maintaining fashion-forward sophistication, during the season when showing “skin” in the great outdoors could mean risking a visit to the hospital with pneumonia.  When we would rather throw on a robe and comforter than a parka, leopard-prints can somehow rouse up a bit of excitement and audacity to venture on that first date or holiday party.  Perhaps through association, as soon as we put on that leopard print, there is a rush of adrenaline, danger—an allusion to or illusion of something wild and hot.

As with prints in general, the key with leopard prints is not overkill.  Leopard can be most alluring, as part of an outfit, when it sneaks upon us subtly, then takes us prey.  Here are some exquisite examples:

JustCavalli winter 2012 image courtesy of

In fashion, animal prints have become almost synonymous with Roberto Cavalli.  In his JustCavalli Collection, Cavalli pairs a leopard-printed fur bolero with fox trim with red garments of different textures.  The leopard print pops against the red, making the red ever more daring.

JustCavalli winter 2012 image courtesy of

In the winter 2012 JustCavalli Collection, Robert Cavalli goes for bold, large leopard prints on a long, slim knit top with contrasting black inner sleeves, and pairs it with a full, rich, black, flowing skirt to create a youthful, yet sophisticated look.

Ruched and clasped at the waist, this hybrid leopard-zebra form-fitting dress by Roberto Cavalli is a killer.

Roberto Cavalli Short Jersey Dress, $876

This charmeuse, ruffled, asymmetric dress by Italian designer Giambattista Valli is a softer, yet still exotic take.  Flowing and abundant ruffles become cinched at the waist, which drops into an elegant pencil skirt.

Giambattista Valli Leopard-Print Charmeuse Dress, $2995

While we may be daydreaming of that exotic vacation, leopard prints can also work in the office or that first dinner with the future in-laws.  This snow- leopard print on Yves Saint Laurent silk tie-neck blouse creates subtle texture and refined intrigue.

Yves Saint Laurent Leopard-Print Tie-Neck Blouse, $1750. Image courtesy of

With exquisite pleating, this shimmery J. Mendel gown can turn a maiden into a golden goddess on the red carpet or at a  holiday ball.  The subtly contrasting shades on the leopard print blends into the pleats, never distracting from the intricate construction.

J. Mendel Leopard Satin Devore Gown, $4490

This woven silk velvet coat by Chado Ralph Rucci is sure to make a grand entrance anywhere.  The only problem is … taking it off.

Chado Ralph Rucci winter 2012 image courtesy of

—Jeanine Jeo Hi-Kim







Fall/Winter 2013 Bridal Report

 Trendspotting in bridal fashion can be a tricky business indeed.

The bridal market is vast to put it mildly. Even within one line, there is a decided effort to present a little bit of something for seemingly every woman, the better to retain a customer whose heart may be set on a certain look, fashion mores be damned. While there seems to be a trend towards gowns with just a hint of beading or none at all, an equal number of gowns could be found up and down the designer spectrum with enough dazzling beading to seemingly light up the entire city of New York.

Similarly, the colored wedding gown trend has slowed down considerably this season though these pale peach, blue and pink confections could still be seen here and there. As one sales representative of a higher end line explained, most brides said they just couldn’t see themselves wearing a colored gown, and salons clamored for versions in traditional white or cream. Cocktail-length and mini dress styles also continued to pop up here and there throughout the collections, though not in the numbers that would suggest a true, overall trend.

Rafael Cennamo fall 2013 bridal images courtesy of, photographed by John Aquino

Yet another wrinkle in bridal gown trends lies in the nature of an industry in which styles shown now are kept in production for a couple of years, and often longer for bestselling styles.That longevity of styles is perpetuated by the unique timing of weddings—items seen on the runways now will only begin to appear in bridal salons next year (these were the fall/winter 2013 collections) for weddings that may be as much of another year down the road, say in 2014 or later. And, no doubt, some of those in the bridal parties or guest lists of those 2014 nuptials will eye a trend or a gown for their own wedding which may be a year or two away.

The phenomenon in bridal helps to explain why for so many years the most popular bridal silhouette has been the strapless A-Line‒sweetheart or straight, cream or white, bedazzled or lightly beaded. Despite the many variations on the theme, the basic strapless A-Line has quietly ruled the American bridal runway for years now.

Ever so gradually, though, new trends are emerging. Here’s a look at some of the most dominant:

New silhouette

After decades at the top, the strapless A-line silhouette may be about to cede its position at the top of the bridal fashion world. The new star: the fit and flare, a gown that skims the body to mid-thigh and then fans out. There are some variations to this theme including more exaggerated mermaid styles (fitted to the knee with a more dramatic pouf of skirt), modified fit and flare styles with are less fitted through the hips. But there’s no doubt that the fit and flare now rules the bridal fashion runway.

Victoria Nicole and Maggie Sottero fall bridal 2013 images, respectively by Ernest Green

Neckline styles varied with sleeveless styles seeming to now rival strapless designs as the most popular neckline. Bateau necklines and surprise back details included beaded spines also were seen in a number of collections.

Waist details have also been a relatively new trend with many gowns now featuring a wide ribbon around the waist or a beaded band. Indeed one group of vendors focused exclusively on beaded waistbands, their heavy traffic offering proof of the popularity of that trend.

Of course, for those still craving a more “traditional” look, designers are certainly still offering plenty of strapless A-Line gowns as well as ballgowns. But, even here in the traditional silhouettes, there were some interesting twists. Ann Barge, for example, offered her brides a two-for-one option—a fit and flare gown with a detachable tulle ballgown overskirt that opened in the front to reveal the skirt of the gown.

Jesus Peiro, Melanie Harris, and Cymbelline fall 2013 bridal images respectively by Ernest Green

High fashion influence

In regular fashion, the fact that an increasing number of designers are going their own way and ignoring trends, is not groundbreaking news. But in bridal, the fact that so many fashion designers are now doing bridal and in their own distinctive way, is indeed newsworthy. After all, it wasn’t that long ago that many designers studiously avoided bridal because the feeling was that bridal, though certainly lucrative, did not carry the same cache in the fashion world.

The overwhelming success in fashion of designers who sprang out of the bridal world like Vera Wang, Monique Lhuillier and Reem Acra, has certainly helped bridge the gap between the fashion and bridal worlds. This season saw fashion-based, ready-to-wear designers, from Rafael Cennamo and Nicole Miller to Douglas Hannant and Badgley Mischka continue to push the envelope in terms of how fashionable bridal can be.

In many cases, these were bridal lines that offered a wide variety of options (including some more traditional visions) but with an overall emphasis on providing women with something different, perhaps more evening gown than bridal gown in some cases.

Cennamo, for example, offered a series of gowns including some that were truly red carpet worthy such as a long sleeved pearl encrusted sheath gown, and a Flapper-esque gown draped with rows of glass beads. “I thought I could have a different point of view and try to offer something more fashion forward,” Cennamo said of his three-year‒old bridal line.

Modern modesty

From sleeves of varying lengths to illusion bodices that cover the chest in a sheer layer of fabric, bridal lines at all price points, are offering brides more options to cover up. Some credit the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton. Others said the trend is the influence of Hollywood stars such as Anne Hathaway who have opted for more covered styles. And some sales representatives said the trend reflected brides’ requests to be more covered up for comfort reasons. Whatever the reason, the trend is undeniable with almost every line showing at least one gown with an illusion bodice.

Sleeves, though less popular than the illusion bodice, also appeared quite frequently, sometimes in combination with illusion bodices, with designers employing everything from lace to beaded illusion.

Jesus Peiro bridal fall 2013 images courtesy of Ernest Green


There was a time not too long ago when only a smattering of designers such as Claire Pettibone and offered full lace gowns. Now, thanks perhaps to the Kate Middleton-effect, lace gowns have become one of the hottest trends in bridal.

Some lines offered interesting twists to the trend such as Anne Barge who offered an ombre lace gown that graduated from dark blush at the bottom to a very pale cream at the top.  Eva Milady celebrated the art of vintage lace. Justin Alexander featured gowns bursting with delicate lace appliqués.

—Karyn D. Collins


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