There’s never only one way to go when you’re working on a collection. Sometimes inspiration strikes right away and before the weekend’s over you have a fully developed line. Other times it takes months to hone an idea. When I started developing this collection it was the beginning of December. It started as all others before, with a Pinterest board crowded with lots of sections and a sketch notebook. As I was working on it, my living room started looking like a Pinterest board came out of the screen and vomited all over my apartment floor. I must admit, it was interesting for the first few days at least. Not so much the weeks that followed though. While I was feeling like the mad professor, trying to wrap my head around a single concept, categorising different piles of sleeve types, skirt lengths and necklines, suddenly it dawned on me that although we’re in 2022, style wise we are all reliving the 90s, even the low rise is having a comeback. So I thought who better to capture their essence than a 90s child aka me. And that’s when my pen was ready to strike. All of a sudden thick straps, ruffles and asymmetric details started appearing on pages, as my hand scribbled the lines of the designs. What I knew beforehand was that this collection was going to be dedicated to all the modern day brides and their guests, even though it’s not bridal, nor is it particularly meant for a bridesmaid. It’s dedicated to every woman whose dance skills makes her a murderer on the dance floor, someone who’s wild and free and is not afraid to take chances. It’s a collection of pieces you can wear multiple times, instead of discarding them as soon as that wedding’s over.
As thrilling as designing is, sometimes fabric hunting is much more fun. Granted, it’s not the most glamorous thing to do, as oftentimes you’re spending hours in a warehouse with bad lighting and boxes everywhere where chaos is all around with nothing but piles of discarded fabrics just laying around. But for me, it’s meditative, I go back to that time when I was a shopaholic, I get excited and I completely lose track of space and time. I jump from pile to pile, pull out fabrics like a professional lifter, getting excited with each pattern and silky smooth surface I discover and touch, concocting ten thousand images of potential designs in my mind. And on top of it all, documenting the entire journey for you girls is just simply thrilling. Of course, oftentimes there’s disappointment too, as I find a material I really like, but then there’s not enough meters for multiple designs. But I learnt to embrace it as it’s all part of the process. In a way I feel like this enabled me on a personal level to let go of things easily. So that’s an added bonus, wouldn’t you agree?
Anyway, not to make this long story even longer, let’s dive in on what we managed to salvage this time. Usually, I really don’t have a preset colour palette that I follow and the reason for this is mostly because it’s really hard to find the colours you’re looking for in a pile of discarded fabrics. It’s simply just not happening. So I learnt to wing it. However, this time around I had a pretty good idea of what I was going for. As the theme was the famboyant, but classy and always minimalistic 90s, I had plenty of colour options to choose from, but what I was hoping and secretly praying to find were those 90s pastel purple hues, something with tiny florals, olive shades and soft baby blues. As I was roaming through warehouses trying to stick to the colour palette, I stumbled upon a roll of this delicate brocade beauty of off white silk with such pretty embossed intricate floral patterns that sparkle when touched by sunlight or any light for that matter. I got so excited that I forgot to take a photo of it. Sadly, there was only 5meters of it, but it really spoke to me, so I just went for it. We only have enough to make 3 dresses out of it, so if you’re the type of person who wants unique one of a kind dresses, I highly encourage you getting this, as it’s quite special in its own way. Imagine being one of the only 3 people who will ever have this in the entire world. Talking about feeling special on your special day, am I right?
After that, luckily for me, one by one, fabrics started popping up in the exact same shade I had pictured them in my mind. I found an amazing lavender cupro silk, an exquisite olive satin silk and drumroll please, a tiny English floral print cotton with olive, baby blue and white details. Speaking of attracting things and universe stuff, huh?
I knew the direction I was going for was to dedicate this to the modern day bride and her most intimate circle of friends, while at the same time create timeless pieces our clients could wear over and over again. With that in mind, I armed myself with sketches and headed over to our head seamstress to start working on the patterns for each item.
First, we started working on developing the patterns for the Lucy Dress. I wanted this to be a classic nod to the 90s with thick straps typical for that period, so we began working on the bodice at first, to make sure we position the straps correctly and nail the corset-like look of the torso. What we were aiming for was for the design to preserve that simple, effortless, yet sexy 90s Cali vibe with a modern twist. Below I’ll walk you through the step by step process of what that looked like.
This item was developed by Gordana, our pattern maker and head seamstress. We recently covered her story for the blog, so head over here if you wish to hear more about her story.
While we were developing the collection, me and Elena were looking into ideas for shooting the product photos. We decided to keep it on brand and use the same plain white background we did for our previous collections. I love how this background gives the items sort of like a more upscale feel and more depth then all the rest of the studio backgrounds we had at our disposal. We decided to keep is simple, accessorising the looks only with delicate silver jewellery and 90s square shaped kitten heels. I knew there was only one model who could capture all of the vibes I had envisioned for this collection and that was the always gorgeous Gorjana whose legs for days leave much to be desired for.
The studio we shot in, ran by an amazing human being Zarko Culic is around 100m2 open space with great natural light and equipped with everything you’ll ever need for a photoshoot, from different studio backgrounds, to inspiration boards for models’ poses, paper cups for drinks and even steam iron. I mean this guy has thought of literally everything.
It has that NY — Brooklyn photography studio appeal . It’s on the 5th floor overlooking the city and it just swims/bathes in natural light. The only issue we had with it was the fact that it doesn’t have an elevator, so our lazy asses had to climb 5 floors, loaded with cameras, clothes, hangers, food and shoes, but oh well, at the end of the day it was totally worth it, plus it’s good for our cardio, wouldn’t you agree?
Just like our past three collections, this too was shot by the amazing Elena Vasilevska. Although she prefers analogue camera to digital (you can follow her at (Insta account of edna skazna, if you’re into analogue photography) she did an amazing job capturing Gorjana’s spirit and did all of the pieces justice, if I dare so say myself. I spent two days, trying to make the selection for the site and since I couldn’t get the number down to 8, I’ve sent her 30 photos per piece for her to edit. I’m sure she secretly cursed me.
The Transparency — Pricing
Last year, we decided to go fully transparent and this year is no different. With so much going on in the world right now we feel like it’s our duty to make you stress less. Every piece has a cost breakdown of the exact expenses made when making that item, as well as the exact number of hours it took us to make a piece.
The true cost of the Bea Dress
Well there you have it. If you want to know more about the story behind the inspiration for the designs, dive right in this Behind The Scenes: The Story Behind The 90s Babes Collection article.