Anne Barge Bridal Fall 2019

Two things can be said about Anne Barge, her bridal collections are ideal for brides that are looking for traditional gowns and her collections always have a strong story. That is not to say that Anne Barge’s bridal collections don’t contain the occasional trending bridal pieces; however, Anne Barge, for the last couple of decades, has established her bridal brand as the go-to bridal brand for modern brides that want traditional fare.

For fall 2019, Anne Barge looked to powerful architecture and photography that has depth and perspective for inspiration. With bridal gowns named after Franklin Lloyd Wright, Frankie; the Eiffel Tower; Windsor Castle, hence the Windsor; Pei, conjuring images of the memorial in Washington, DC, etc.; there is no doubt that creative director Shawn Jacobs is tapping into well-recognized powerful architects and their structures to be embodied in garments that have a strong architectural aesthetic with clean graphic lines and craftsmanship.

“The Anne Barge fall 2019 bridal collection is full of mystery and surprise. Past the clean, graphic lines of the collection lies layers of rich detail and meticulous craftsmanship,” explains Jacobs. “This season, inspiration is taken from perspective photography, with each dress open to interpretation base on the viewers’ lens.”

While Anne Barge has set a standard for traditional bridal gowns with a touch of that special charm that exists below the Mason-Dixon line, for fall 2019 Anne Barge has opted for more timeless gowns with a contemporary appeal. This is a very smart move for the brand; particularly, in a bridal market that is becoming increasingly more saturated with new bridal brands or ready-to-wear brands attempting to capitalize on the multi-billion dollar American bridal market.

Photos courtesy of Dan Lecca/ODA PR

Standout looks this season includes the (Foster) bateau neckline princess seam trumpet gown of Mikado with V-back neckline accented with bow; (Ellis) off-the-shoulder gown of Mikado scuba with pleated bodice and full skirt; (Windsor) square neckline long sleeve trumpet gown of Mikado scuba accented with orgami pleating and notch at neckline, and (Paxton) demi corset drop waist bodice with 3-dimensional floral embroidery and manipulated textured tulle ball gown skirt.—William S. Gooch

Watters Bridal Fall 2019

Watters Bridal 

There is more than just one kind of bride. Every woman isn’t going to go for the classic princess ball gown, especially younger women who want something more modern, eclectic, and unique. For that woman who wants something different, there is Watters bridal collections.For their fall 2019 collection, Watters presented three collections, their main line, Wtoo by Watters, and Willowby by Watters. Each spoke to a different type of woman, from the classic bride to the new age bohemian. Watters was classic with their main line, which featured lace bodices and illusion sleeves, minimalist A-line designs, and embellished bridal veils. Off-the-shoulder necklines and strapless bodices were key details of this collection, too.

WToo Bridal

Wtoo played to the whimsical. There were many oversized skirts that said Disney princess chic, bowing to the fairytale wedding aesthetic. There is still that idea of Prince Charming and living happily ever after, and that all begins with the wedding gown and the bride walking down the aisle.Willowby by Waters was a call to the millennial demographic, because yes, despite all the commitment phobia jokes, millennials still get married. Between halter style bodices and crop tops paired with denim jackets, this was a collection for a new age bride, the kind of woman who thinks outside of the box and dances to the beat of her own drum. She’s opting for a wedding at a resort or in a forest, foregoing the traditional church or country club.

All images courtesy of Coded PR

While many outside of the bridal industry often ask, “how many white dresses can you see?” There is so much more to bridal than that. There is a multitude of brides that need to be catered to, especially in an era where style has become more individual. Watters exists for the modern bride as a one-stop shop.—Kristopher Fraser

Justin Alexander Signature Bridal Fall 2019

Inspired by modern women who live in diverse cities and diverse cultures, Justin Alexander used this inspiration to explore graphic silhouettes juxtaposed with soft textures and floral embroideries, creating a modern collection that transcends tradition.

By naming each bridal garment after a specific international city, Justin Alexander solidly designated what each garment was suppose to conjure up. Not an easy task, but Alexander rose to this challenge.

In this collection Jason Alexander had the arduous task of finding that delicate balance between keeping the collection market viable and expanding his design aesthetic beyond just beautiful bridal gowns. In an ever-expanding bridal market that is faced with over saturation, bridal designers are challenged to increase their bridal demographic while at the same time staying true to their vision and core audience. With this fall 2019 collection, Justin Alexander does just that!!

This collection was very sophisticated, exquisitely designed and combined the classic with the cutting edge. And one has to add, that the styling in this collection was of the highest quality.

Though Alexander has elevated his design aesthetic in this collection with several bridal looks that caused bridal editors hearts to quicken, there is a concern that this collection might not have as much market value as previous collections. Still, there were some garments that will have wide market appeal. And because this was a fall/winter collection, Alexander appropriately include some fur or fur-like embellishments.

Images courtesy of Jason Alexander

Standout looks in this collection include straight clean silk Mikado dress with flare back, ostrich feather skirt ball gown with V-neckline, allover beaded jumpsuit, Venice lace-embroidered ball gown, and bateau neckline geometric beaded fit-and-flare dress with keyhole back.—William S. Gooch

Ines di Santo Bridal Fall 2019

There are too many superlatives about Ines di Santo bridal than can be described. However, without gushing here are a few. Her bridal designs are stunning, innovative, thoughtful, and above all, consumer ready and market friendly, particularly if the bride has deep pockets.

For the fall 2019 bridal season, Ines di Santo pulled out all the stops. There was something for almost every bride, including something for a range of age demographics and sizes. Inspired by the power of storytelling with an East meets West theme, Ines di Santo gave her bride a walk through a modern fairytale. And a fairytale journey it was!!

Ines di Santo enhanced her exquisite bridal collection by launching her first jewelry collection that was made its debut on the fall 2019 runway. Partnered with Ciner, a 125–year old, family-owned jewelry company known for its attention to detail. Ines di Santo’s Fairytale Collection was inspired by illustrations from “East of the Sun; West of the Moon.” The jewelry featured pavè stones, antique glass flowers, and birds freed from their cages on a range of exquisite rings, earrings, bracelets, and necklaces. Additionally, the models in the fall 2019 show wore crystal-heeled shoes, The Diego Dolcini footwear, inspired by Baccarat, the quintessential French crystal maker.

When it comes to the fall 2019 bridal collection, Di Santo left no stones unturned. There were a variety of bridal silhouettes, from mermaid silhouettes, sheath, and fit-to-flare silhouettes to traditional ball gowns, lace jumpsuits and shorter cocktail dresses with detachable trains. Also, there was lots of continuing bridal trends included ranging from statement sleeves, lacy bridal party jumpsuits to bridal gowns in non-traditional colors.

What also can be said about this bridal collection is that the bridal gowns displayed in this collection is for the bride that wants to make a big statement with her gown selection. These gowns in this collection are chosen casually, these gowns should be collected for the bride that is planning a well-thought out bridal ceremony. And there is a reason for that. Ines di Santo’s gowns are for brides that have deep pockets and many of these gowns can be passed on as legacy or heirloom gowns.

Photos courtesy of vogue.com

Standout looks in this collection—and there were many—one-shoulder illusion jumpsuit with lace appliques and separate detachable, exaggerated cathedral train, fairytale sleeveless illusion plunging V-neck ball gown with detachable poet sleeves, dreamy floral embroidered strapless, natural waist corset with detachable off-the-shoulder poet sleeves, batteau neckline, cigarette leg jumpsuit with striking cowl back separate detachable train, and embellished tip of the shoulder plunging neck corset with ball gown skirt and detachable grand matching cape.—William S. Gooch

Gracy Accad Bridal Fall 2019

One thing that can be said about Gracy Accad, she always includes a pretty wide demographic in her bridal collections. And there’s lots of variety of bridal garments for Accad’s ever-expanding bridal customer.

Gracy Accad always has interesting sources of inspiration for her bridal collections. This season Gracy Accad was inspired by the Greek purveyors of art, beauty, sciences, literature, and movement; in other words, the muses. These nine Greek muses inspire mankind creatively to work at a very high level. And that high level of art was most evident in Gracy Accad’s very sophisticated fall 2019 bridal collection.

“Through this collection, I south to represent their influence, whether through sheer feats of craftsmanship, or dramatic re-embroidered laces. Frothy gowns of Italian tulle move like the romantic whisper of a poem, while silk taffeta coats billow as if aerated by a soprano’s bravura,” explained Gracy Accad.

Like bridal designers this season, for fall 2018 Accad sought to include in this collection something for almost every type of bride. There was a lace and metallic chiffon tracksuit for that young hip bride; there was a corded lace peplum jacket and crepe pants ensemble for that mature bride who is probably going down the aisle for the second time, and there were more traditional bridal fare for the traditional bride.

Photos courtesy of Atelier PR

Still, this bridal collection appears to be headed in the correct trajectory of where Gracy Accad is taking her bridal collections. And this trajectory projects how the modern bride envisions her very special day. That said: standout looks in this fall 2019 bridal collection include a beaded lace cage cocktail dress with crystal details an silk taffeta opera coat, guipure lace and metallic chiffon track suit, hand-embroidered silk satin gown with pleated skirt, and silk satin gown with architectural draped bodice and beaded appliques.—William S. Gooch

Rivini by Rita Visnieris Bridal Fall 2019

It was in with the old and out with the new at New York International Bridal Week this season. Bridal often plays on two themes, the beautiful white dress, as is the gold standard, and the whimsical, often creating fairytale like gowns making women feel as close to a princess as possible. Many designers were even inspired by Meghan Markle’s wedding dress when she married Prince Harry this past spring.

Then there was Rivini by Rita Vinieris. The brand is typically known for their bridal gowns with a twist, and this season they did not disappoint. The traditional ball gown silhouette the brand is known for received a modern makeover with halter top bodices, but still had the brand’s traditional elements like tulle-tiered skirts.

The standout pieces from the collection this season were the graffiti jumpsuits, that were something never seen before from the brand, and looked like they could have fit in right at New York Fashion Week in the ready-to-wear collections of Jeremy Scott and Johnson Hartig of Libertine. This was Rita Vinieris’ bid for a younger, hip customer who goes against the grain. She’s a party girl with a penchant for the colorful, who doesn’t hide her light under a bushel. It was a great creative approach on the designer’s part, without trying to look like she was desperate to court a younger customer.

It is hard to think of jumpsuits as a staple for the bridal wardrobe, but like all other women’s wear categories, bridal has evolved and adapted. Vinieris also didn’t forget the power of a good sleeve either, with sleeve detailing on dresses including traditional sleeves and circular flounce sleeves. For a good wedding dress not to look like another white dress, it needs those little details.

Photos courtesy of chicagobridalweddings.com and nymag.com

Collectively, Vinieris fall 2019 collection was an exercise in new age creativity. The brides’ needs are changing and bridal collections must adapt to the change. As Coco Chanel once said, “Fashion is at once a caterpillar and a butterfly.”—Kristopher Fraser

Rime Arodaky Bridal Fall 2019

For her fall 2019 collection, Rime Arodaky looked to the dance world for inspiration. This has been done before—Gracy Accad looked to the dance world for inspiration for her bridal collection last season, even holding her runway show at the Alvin Ailey American Dance Center.

Still, Rime Arodaky took it further than Gracy Accad or other bridal designers that have found inspiration from ballet and other dance forms. First of all, Rime Arodaky named each garment after famous dancers, choreographers, and ballets—Rudolph Noureev, MargotFonteyn, Emma Livry, Twyla Tharp, Misty Copeland, George Balanchine, Graham, Coppelia, Giselle, etc. And next, Arodaky conjured up images of the ballet tutu and pointe shoes in her collection by employing shoes with ribbon tie-ups and lots of layered tulle and organza.

Where bridal pundits might contend that this collection does not have a lot of retail value because Arodaky centered the collection on fantasy bridal garments over what would sell. Fashion Reverie disagrees. It is true that there were lots of nontraditional bridal garments in this collection, and some are the pieces could be a hard sell. However, there is a consumer for many of the pieces in this collection. And the bridal industry needs to embrace bridal designers that are creating collections that go beyond traditional bridal fare.

There were several very sheer bridal garments in the collection that could be a turnoff for some buyers. But, like Inbal Dror, the sheer garments are for editorial discussions and review and will probably have a layer of fabric added when the garments hit the retail market.

Photos courtesy of Coded PR/Peter Finck

Standouts in this fall 2019 collection are the brand’s crepe romper with fishnet tulle overskirt, crepe jumpsuit with see-through top in graphic roses-patterned lace, bustier dress in pleated tulle, and flounced dress in pleated tulle and graphic ribbon with a blend of white and blush shaded layers.—William S. Gooch

THEIA Bridal Fall 2019

There are several things that standout about THEIA bridal, still there are two primary things that come to mind, the brand always comes up with something new and innovative, and the brand never disappoints. THEIA’s fall 2019 is no exception.

For fall 2019, THEIA, creative director Don O’Neill decided to let brides be true to themselves by giving them lots of options. Truth being the theme of the fall 2019 bridal collection, O’Neill solidly places this collection in the realm of the harmony that exists between the courage and bravery of empowered women and fragile beauty that can be susceptible to the winds of change.

Now, the options in the collection are quite broad. From sequined joggers to a lace boat neck gown with long, statement sleeves to sparkling, fitted ball gowns, THEIA has something very every type of bride. From the guipure embroidery, majestic crepes, or luscious liquid satins, to dreamy tulles or classic faille ball skirts, the choices are almost endless.

And unlike many bridal runway shows, THEIA for the past couple of seasons has included a curvy/plus size model. With this inclusion of a curvy/plus size model, THEIA gave that model lots of bridal gown options—a beaded shift gown, a ball gown, and a scoop neck beaded gown.

Also, by attempting to dress a variety of brides, O’Neill is expanding the brand’s demographic. The one demographic that the brand has shied away from is the edgy bride. In past collections, O’Neill pulled out all the stops to capture that bride that was looking to make a statement on her very special day by wearing something very different. THEIA has moved away from that demographic. And while that is a loss of sorts, the brand is making that up with its embrace of diversity in all its forms.

Images courtesy of THEIA

Standout looks in the fall 2019 collection includes THEIA’s guipure lace boat neck gown with floor-length sleeves, cowl-back gown hand-embroidered with polychrome sequins, oversized 4 ply silk crepe “Love” top with drawstring, sequin striped track pants, and spaghetti strap slip gown, hand-embroidered with polychrome sequins and hand-embroidered “Love” veil.—William S. Gooch

Inbal Dror Bridal Fall 2019

“To me, the Mediterranean Sea is always so inspiring: its beaches, the freedom, the lightness. I love it so.

—Inbal Dror

For those that are familiar with Inbal Dror’s bridal collection, what is most obvious is Inbal’s penchant for designing beautiful bridal garments that are always on trend, but also expand the proverbial bridal envelope. Though some bridal pundits might be taken amiss or be slightly disturbed by the sheerness of several of the garments in Inbal Dror’s bridal collections, be aware that many of the sheer looks are for runway appeal—in fact, they are an editor’s dream—and that an extra layer or lining will be employed once those bridal garments hit the retail market.

This season there was no shortage of very sheer bridal garments and the sensuality and sexiness of the bridal collection was most definitely front and center. This is not a bridal collection for every kind of bride. Nor should it be. Not every bridal collection need be an “every bride” collection; there are those collections that appeal to a niche bridal audience. And that niche bride is gaining traction in the US bridal market. Though Inbal Dror’s primary market is in Europe and the Middle East.

If there was one drawback in this outing was Dror’s continued use of vintage lace embellishments that can sometimes make some garments look a little matronly. And occasionally those lace embellishments paired with ruffles created a disjointed mélange of an inchoate vision unrealized. Still, the effortlessness and calm and tranquility of the Mediterranean Sea did come through.

Photos courtesy of Atelier PR

Standout looks from this collection include strapless fully sequined subtle high-low ball gown with floral appliques, strapless VIP of beaded embroidered lace with pocket detail, high-neck draped blouson silk gown with lace inserts, short-beaded tulle dress with lapels and pocket details, and spaghetti strap-embroidered sheer tulle gown with ruffle details and lace bralette.—William S. Gooch

Marcel Ostertag Spring 2019

Marcel Ostertag has presented his collections six times at New York Fashion Week: The Shows (NYFWS). Unlike many designers from across the Big Pond that show one or two times at NYFWS and for some reason don’t get the market traction that’s expected and then call it quits, Marcel Ostertag has stayed the course. And this strategy is starting to pay off.

Marcel Ostertag’s ‘MUSE’ collection is a bold, colorful journey with Marcel Ostertag with the muses in his life and the things that inspire him. Feeling “kissed by his muses,” Ostertags biggest muse or influence in this collection is his mother. “My mother’s love and guidance are always present in my heart.  Her unwavering support allows me to design freely and to follow my creative dreams.”  

In this spring 2019 collection, Ostertag was also inspired by the music and fashion style of the 1970s. The high-waisted, pleated pants and sequined bell sleeve tops, as well as the various takes on the ubiquitous wrap-dress in particular give a nod to 70’s silhouette throughout the collection. Although this 70s reference is very strong and quite dominant throughout the spring 2019 collection, Ostertag makes this collection fresh and very current while touches of Ostertag’s signature aesthetic.

‘MUSE’ is a joyful explosion of yellows, blues, lavenders, oranges and nudes that was summed up perfectly in his Rainbow sweater; a cashmere crew comprising of over 24 shades of brightly colored yarn.  Other highlights of the show were the over embroidered and beaded pants, Iris printed charmeuse ruffle tiered gown, and the blush sequined mesh top.  Standouts from the men’s capsule collection were the oversized color-blocked cashmere hoodie and Fuji silk jumpsuit (as well as a wildly editorial, but ultimately niche version in blush micro sequins).  

If there is one drawback to this collection, it would be that this spring 2019 collection is heavy on garments that are more of an industry professionals’ love or aesthetic, particularly fashion stylists, than something that translates well to American consumers. While a decade ago that was a good thing with fashion editors and fashion industry professionals have more of an influence over consumers’ taste, those days have long past!!

Images courtesy of the Bromley Group

Unfortunately, consumers are now left to their path with some direction being given by social media influencers. Still, this was a very interesting spring 2019 collection and if Ostertag can continue to hang in there, market traction is assured.—William S. Gooch

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