Wedding Dress DesignersIn the world of wedding fashion, your name is your trademark. From couture one-of-a-kind dresses to breezy ready-to-wear styles, these five up-and-coming designers represent the next class of high-style designer names to remember. Move over Ms. Wang...
The Island Fashionista - Tamara Catz
Peering from the panoramic window of her ocean-side studio on the island of Maui, it's easy for Tamara Catz to understand that a sweaty, satin-and-tulle-encased bride isn't a great look for a beach wedding. Instead, she envisions the kind of dress that can "make a girl want to walk barefoot in the sand with the man of her dreams - flowy, feminine, simple." Catz, 36, modeled her line of romantic, bohemian-style wedding dresses after her breezy sensibility.
The Custom Duo - Miosa Bride
"Miosa" combines two names: Michael and Sanea Sommerfield. Miosa Bride combines two visions: that of a husband and a wife to craft couture of the highest quality in a surprising location. Based in Sacramento, California, Sanea, 42, brings her business expertise and insight into the female psyche, while Michael, 46, draws from experience gained sewing outdoor wear at his father's store and running a Sacramento tailor shop. "Sewing is like breathing to him," Sanea gushes. "I am still amazed most of the time at his understanding and knowledge."
The decision to stay in Sacramento despite a zip code that lacks an obvious couture culture was in part an effort to bring high style to the capital city, but it was also a personal one. "We had four children and did not want to move the family," Sanea explains. "Family comes first, so we had to build a business that could function here." Their exquisite fabrics and design techniques have earned them a local following, and now that the kids are grown, the duo plans to begin branding nationally this year.
The consultation phase is an integral component in the process of creating their gowns. The team takes detailed measurements to draft an initial pattern that accurately mimics the bride's body with respect to her level of comfort. They then gather information about her and her wedding so they can weave her personality into the dress, whether soft fabrics for a romantic or a daring silhouette for a sophisticate. Pieces of the gown are then individually cut and sewn in-house, often using 100 percent silk fabrics imported from Europe. The result is a couture gown inspired by the natural aesthetic of the woman wearing it.