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Canadian Bridal Desiger Ines Di Santo On Spring 2021 Dresses, Sustainability & When Your Know You’ve Found The Dress

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Ines di Santo, Bridal Fall 2020, New York, October 4 2019

Ines Di Santo at the finale of her Fall 2020 runway show.

Ines Di Santo is truly a legend in the realm of bridal style. The Toronto-based Canadian designer is renowned for her exquisite, romantic and fashion-forward gowns. The design darling is one of the most incredibly inspiring women you will ever meet and together with her daughter Veronica (who is a managing partner of the company) they continuously wow with extraordinary bridal collections season-after-season.

We had the chance to sit down with Ines and learn what makes her tick and drives her remarkable creative talents and why brides are so near and dear to her heart.

What are today’s brides wanting for their dream wedding dress?
“I find myself less and less willing to make broad sweeping statements about trends in any area of design. The confidence I see in women today defies trends and their styles are very individual. It’s important as designers we recognize there is no longer a standard point of view when it comes to fashion and bridal style.  It’s a fantastic time to be a designer as I am able to work with more freedom and focus on the women rather than the next big thing.”

Who is the Ines Di Santo Bride?
“The Ines Di Santo bride is sophisticated, looking for a gown with femininity, marked by superb fit, originality and inimitable construction. She also enjoys elegance, simplicity and glamour in her fashion choices.”

What are your signature design details?
 “I think my primary signature lives in the fit of my gowns.  I understand the female body in all of its forms and am always working to balance the beauty of the body with the beauty of a gown.”

Ines di Santo Fall 2020 collection.

Your shows are always a highlight of New York Bridal Fashion Week! Where do you find inspiration for your incredible and innovative collections?
“I am endlessly inspired. I truly feel when you live to celebrate life and create art, there is never a shortage of inspiration in the world around you. Whether it comes from my travels, or a movie, or something as simple sitting in my garden, I am surrounded by a world of colors and textures which inform all of my collections and inspire my over the top proportions I’ve become known for. I truly feel when you live to celebrate life and create art, there is never a shortage of inspiration in the world around you.”

What can we expect to see in your Spring 2021 collection?
“For the upcoming season, I was inspired by Makoto Azuma, the Japanese artist and botanical sculptor. I was very inspired by his juxtaposition of florals with modern textures and surfaces he uses when presenting them. I studied the contrast of the high polish lacquer backdrops, the glass luster display boxes, and the grainy textures of the ice blocks that house his color explosive creations.  I developed fabrics to mimic these textures, such as an organza that has structure and shine like glass but remains soft to the touch, and embossed floral jacquards with shaded definition.”

How important is sustainability in bridal fashion right now?
“More and more we are seeing brides and couples prioritizing sustainability and the environment as part of their decision-making process when it comes to their celebration and the wedding gown. This is our challenge as a bridal brand to speak to this emerging audience. Being a couture brand, we really create each gown with almost no waste as each gown is made custom for our brides’ measurements. We are not mass producing, so it is already in our nature to be more sustainable and eco- conscious. This season we are very excited to be introducing some new recycled fabrics into the line. We have one fabric made 70% of recycled bottles, but it is woven at such a high quality that one would never be able to tell upon touch; we are very excited about these types of new developments and plan on launching more and more each season!”

You are also always evolving your brand, most recently adding shoes and jewelry. Why are accessories just as important to the bride as the gown?
 “Accessories are all about punctuating your look. I always recommend you keep your look consistent and classic. What I love about our InesXCiner jewelry collaboration is this collection was designed for brides and beyond; jewels which can be worn on your wedding day and can be worn time and time again to add an unexpected touch to even the simplest outfits.”

Ines di Santo Fall 2020 collection.

Your daughter Veronica is very involved in the business and you are a powerhouse female team. How do you inspire and support each other?
 “When you look at successful design houses, you will often see a husband and wife or a parent and a child working together. I think it is the inherent understanding that flows between these relationships that make them work so well. Trust is significant and knowing my daughter understands my goals—and shares many of them—is everything. We are building something which will hopefully, shine well beyond our time. I run our design room and Veronica is the managing partner. This shared commitment allows both of us to work to our strengths.”

Finish this sentence: “A bride’s perfect dress is…..”
 “… one that makes her feel this is her red-carpet moment. A dress that best fits her personal aesthetic and makes her feel her very, very best.”

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