Wedding Dresses & Style

Maricela’s Latin Flair

posted: 02/20/13
by: TLC
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Maricela poses in her borrowed dress after its transformation.

Curvy Latina bride Maricela wasn't too sure about wearing Mom's dress. The style was more than a little dated, and she wasn't exactly the same size. While Kelly transformed the gown, Sam showed Maricela that a mermaid silhouette might be her new best friend. Here are their style notes for this bride!

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Maricela's Borrowed Gown After

What were the basic details of the original dress?

This dress was VERY conservative, covering the chest and shoulders with an a-line bottom. It would have been worn for a Catholic wedding. It featured splashes of baby blue in the back of the dress, as well as a baby blue belt, and was trimmed with cream crochet lace trim on the belt and bottom.

What were the elements that really dated the dress?

It was made with organza, which is a very stiff and inexpensive fabric with no flow or drape. And, it was trimmed with crochet cream lace, which, along with the organza fabric, clearly made it a '70s dress.

What were the biggest challenges in transforming the dress?

Well, the biggest challenge was that the dress didn't fit Maricela! You can't magically make it larger, so I had to construct a whole new dress using the fabric and the essence of the original dress. Also, Maricela wanted a dress that was more on the Hollywood glamour side, and her mom's dress was super simple with NO modern appeal whatsoever.

What was your inspiration for the transformation?

I really loved that the dress wasn't white. Sometimes I get overwhelmed by all of the white fabric that comes to me! I felt the freedom to experiment with color, and a bonus was that the original dress had splashes of blue. So I took that concept and ran! I mimicked the blue belt and the blue godet in the back of the dress using the original blue fabric.

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

I want people to understand that if a dress doesn't fit the bride by more than a size, it's impossible to keep the dress intact and make only minor changes. The dress had to be completely redone, keeping both the history of the dress and what the bride wanted in mind and trying to mesh old and new together!

What did you think when Maricela chose your dress?

I didn't think she was going to choose my dress, so when she did, I was ecstatic! And then I went through an entire thought process where I wished I had done more for her. But in retrospect, the dress was beautiful and looked polished and regal on her. She looked like a Red Carpet Fairy.

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Maricela's New Gown

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

I think you have to consider the venue and theme, but you can't let it influence you 100 percent. You have to be open to the right dress, and if that means adjusting elements of your theme and venue slightly to marry everything together, then go for it. Maricela hadn't planned her wedding fully, but she knew she wanted a classic lace dress that celebrated her Latina heritage, and I think I was able to deliver that with her something new.

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

Maricela's curvy body was screaming for some shape and structure, and I really wanted to choose a dress that found her curves and showed them off -- the right way. I know at first she didn't want a fit and flare style, but in the end, the style was perfect suited for her shape and frame. The corseted back allowed me to pull in her waist and create the perfect hourglass, and it also gave her the lift and support she needed for her fuller bust. The lace was romantic and nodded to her Latin culture; the shape was glamorous and spoke to her inner (and outer) Diva. I was thrilled with the choice.

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

There were two ways to go with that dress: polished and pretty, or a little bit sexy. I think because the dress showed a lot of skin up top and celebrated her curves; she needed a veil to balance things out. Also, Maricela was tall, so I definitely wanted her hair down and loose. I'm all about balanced proportions, and that's not just about the dress. Things like the veil, hair and jewelry play into that as well.

I would have kept the hair down and pulled a few pieces back to keep it young and modern, but still romantic. I like a fingertip veil for that dress with lace trim to pick up on elements of the dress and her culture. Statement earrings and a bracelet would have added some glamour, and a special shoe with a touch of bling would have tied it all up nicely. Makeup would have been totally soft and bridal. Just clean and pretty with peachy neutrals and a blush pink lip!

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

In my head, I was 100 percent convinced Maricela was going to choose my new dress. I thought it was perfect for her body type and her personality, and she really seemed to love it. I was totally surprised when she came out in the borrowed dress, but she seemed so happy that I forgot about everything else. Sometimes the dress chooses the bride, and she looked beautiful and romantic in Kelly's remade dress.

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