Cool girl bridal vibes are what designer Aurélia Hoang is all about. The French-born now Toronto-based designer started her career working for celebrated designers including Kenzo, Isabel Marant and Véronique Leroy and started her own bridal line in 2010.
Who is the bride Hoang designs for? “A modern woman, who is free from conventions, and codes,” the designer muses. “She's a confident, feminine and fashionable woman.” We recently spoke with the designer to talk about her 2021 collection Eclipse as well as her thoughts on what makes for a standout bridal style.
What is your design philosophy and signature design details?
“Always be creative, reinvent yourself. These are the fundamentals of my job, fashion designer. I'm looking for values and sense in my designs. I love to highlight the body through simple lines, by playing with the textures, fabrics and elegant details. like buttons, pleats and trims. Sophistication is a signature of my designs with a twist of boldness.”
What makes a wedding dress such a special fashion item? What do you love about designing them?
“I'm always asked ‘why put so much on a dress you'll wear once?’. My answer to that: the day you wear it is one of the most important moments of your life and certainly one of the most joyful. The dress itself has an aura. It speaks to your personality. Designing such a special piece is a something that is very precious to me. I put hours into sketching, designing, selecting fabrics, choosing every detail, sewing it, sometimes redoing it until it matches my vision. So, when a bride-to-be says yes to the dress, an adventure begins. We'll share intimate moments and I am very grateful to the brides who trust me and to let me be part of their happiness.”
Tell us about your current collection and what we can expect for 2021 bridal styles.
“My upcoming collection is called Eclipse. The power of an ephemeral moment that lasts a few minutes but leaves a mark for a lifetime. The elements are so strong. They remind us how much we rely on them; how much we need them. The eclipse is the woman who shines. She's the sun, she's the moon. She stands out naturally with grace, with her inner beauty. The work of the Japanese architect Tadao Ando inspired me a lot with his game of shades and lights, the way light slides on the concrete, giving different perspectives. I played with contrasts in this collection, volume and flowy lines. Shapes can be light, airy or structured with high waists. I went back to the details of my first collections, ten years ago which featured a lot of bows and gathers. You'll see dots and flowers, sleeves and ruffles and open backs.”
A bride wants a standout bridal look…what do you recommend for a statement bridal style?
“Be bold. Elevate your own style, whether it's minimal or bold and graphic. Then enhance it with accessories, the big pieces you would love to wear for a party.”
Most iconic celebrity bride (s) and why?
“Carolyn Bessette Kennedy and her satin slip dress, simple shape and sexy. Recently, I found Lily Allen's Dior vintage dress very pretty and stylish, just right for the mood for her Las Vegas wedding.”
Veil or no veil?
“This is an accessory which can add a bit of fun if short or drama if very long. It really depends on the venue. I do feel strongly that you should accessorize with something on top to crown your look—flowers, a headpiece, hairband or clip. I think it just finishes the look.”
One dress or two?
“Two dresses! One for the symbolic part, the ceremony. It represents the wedding, the theme or the mood. And one for the party! This dress must be ultra-easy to wear made with light airy fabrics.
Pantsuit or jumpsuit?
"Both have style. If you're comfortable with your body, you can go for the jumpsuit. But if you prefer hiding your hips and go for a masculine touch, then the pantsuit is the one for you.”
Heels or flats?
Finish this sentence: "My favourite moment with a bride is...."
“…when she puts on the finished dress a couple days before the wedding and looks in the mirror. It is such an intense moment, between hands in front of an astonished mouth, the rising tears, the laughter, the compliments on the dress, on the work done, and on themselves, because they are beautiful! The emotions are priceless.”
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