Wedding Dresses & Style

Bridgette’s City Meets Country Celebration

posted: 02/26/13
by: TLC
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Bridgette toasts Sam, Kelly and her entourage in her made-over borrowed gown.

New York City fashionista and blogger Bridgette wanted a gown that would impress the audience of her popular wedding blog, Black Bridal Bliss. Bridgette's Mom was hoping she'd wear her gown. The dress and jacket ensemble was extra special since Bridgette's Dad is deceased -- the gown would be a nod to the past. Kelly worked to reimagine the dated design while Sam shopped for dresses that matched the bride's Town & Country wedding theme. Up next, get the experts' notes!

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Bridgette's Borrowed Gown After

What were the basic details of the original dress?

It was a simple, cream, textured shift dress with a matching jacket. Not at all a typical wedding dress.

What were the elements that really dated the dress?

The fabric was awesome! It was textured brocade upholstery fabric. There were three plastic rhinestone buttons that were totally awesome Mod '60s. I wanted to use them, but they just didn't fit in to the design scheme. That said, this looked like a dress Jackie O would wear to a ladies' luncheon -- it didn't look like a wedding dress.

What were the biggest challenges in transforming the dress?

To me, there were no challenges! As soon as I met Bridgette and saw the dress, I knew what I wanted to do with it. This project was a blank canvas, and it was one of my most exciting transformations!

What was your inspiration for the transformation?

Since Bridgette is a wedding blogger, I knew I could go more fashion-forward with the design. After all, she lives, breathes and eats wedding fashion. I was inspired by her height, her beautiful dark skin and the texture of the original dress.

What details from the transformation would you like to point out?

If you really look at the dress, it's very simple. It was the fabric along with Bridgette's amazing curves that made it extravagant and luscious. I did build an old-school corset into the inside of the dress to give the top more structure.

What did you think when Bridgette chose your dress?

She made the right decision! With her father being gone, the emotion behind the thought of her Dad looking down on her wearing her Mom's dress was overwhelming. Even Sam and I were crying. Watching Bridgette and her Mom's entire journey was so touching, and I felt honored to be a part of this story.

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Bridgette's New Gown

How did Bridgette's wedding venue and theme influence your dress choices for her?

Bridgette's venue was set for a museum in the South, and since she lives in the city, she wanted to bring a little bit of that New York flavor to her venue. I would call it a Town & Country wedding. This influenced me a lot in my choice of dresses. I wanted to select something new that was sleek, sophisticated and edgy, but with a dash Southern charm and a whole lot of style. Bridgette wanted something unique and special, and because she's also a bridal blogger, it meant the dress was going to be judged by fans who know and love weddings -- no pressure.

Based on her body shape and personal style, what types of dresses did you pull for Bridgette?

Bridgette knew she wanted a dropped-waist dress that hugged her curves, and her fianc? requested that she wear something sexy. I knew I had to bring the drama on some level to match all the expectations and to find a dress that would wow her guests and online followers. Many of the dresses I chose were fit and flare styles that wrapped and ruched their way down the body and ended with a special bottom. These styles worked beautifully on her tall frame. I added touch of sparkle at the waist to make the dresses more personal.

The dress Bridgette eventually chose as her something new was my wild card: a natural-waist princess style dress with a full tulle skirt and rosette covered bodice. The dress was sweet, elegant and regal. We were all shocked when the dress won her over. It had a high-end, fashion-forward feeling and was almost '50s inspired. I think there's always a little princess inside every bride, and Bridgette totally fell in love with this dress.

Do you have recommendations for Bridgette's hair, makeup and accessories for an overall bridal look based on the dress she chose?

This dress made a big statement on its own and the bodice was quite busy, so the accessories I chose needed to complement the look without taking away from it. In the event Bridgette chose my something new, I selected a simple crystal headband that worked well in her short hair and nodded to the Swarovski beading inside the rosettes. I added a simple veil that had a raw edge, simple stud earrings and a statement bracelet. For makeup, I wanted soft metallics on her eyes, a pop of peach on her cheeks and pale pink glossy lip.

What did you think when Bridgette didn't choose your dress?

There was so much emotion when it came time for Bridgette to choose her dress that I was a bit overwhelmed. We were all crying and really moved by the thought of her father not being there to give her away. When she came out in the borrowed dress, I was just so happy for her. All I saw was a happy, beautiful bride, and I knew my job was done. There were really three very strong dresses that I loved for Bridgette's something new, and any one of them would have been outstanding. The borrowed dress turned out to be amazing, so it was a win for everyone.

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