BLACKBURN BRIDAL COLLECTION 2016
My obsession with the wedding industry started with the dresses. When I started a wedding blog many moons ago (OK, about 5 years ago) I had dreams of opening a bridal boutique one day. Although life hasn’t quite led me in that direction (yet) one of my sources of inspiration for the boutique I wanted to create was award winning bridal boutique, Blackburn Bridal Couture.
Established in 2005, Blackburn Bridal Couture has developed a unique following of discerning, fashion forward brides looking for a non-traditional wedding dress that is full of individuality and style.
Inspired by fashion, art, vintage glamour and a relaxed bohemian vibe, boutique
Owner Russell Blackburn travels Europe and the US to source new and exclusive designer collections. The current collection includes some of my personal favourites; Anna Campbell, Jesus Peiro, Flora, Catherine Deane, Jenny Packham, Giuseppe Papini, Clinton Lotter and Claire Pettibone.
Russell’s passion for bridal fashion was rooted in a glorious career in the wedding industry with a ten-year career at You & Your Wedding Magazine. So, you can see he really know his stuff about the all important wedding dress. Luckily he is here to share some of that all important knowledge with you lovely lot and showcase the Blackburn Bridal Collection 2016, designed and created exclusively by Russell for style-savvy brides.
Name: Russell Blackburn
Current Title + Company: Director & Owner Blackburn Bridal Couture
City: Blackheath, London
What motivated you to set up Blackburn Bridal?
I was working at “You and Your Wedding” magazine for 10 years as Fashion sales director. It just felt this was the perfect next step for me as I had such a passion for Bridal fashion, having been so exposed to all the designers for the duration of my time on the magazine. I therefore decided to do a business plan that took me in all about 6 months to put together and then started looking to find the perfect location to open my Boutique.
What kind of brides do you work with?
I would say I work with brides who are slightly more fashion forward and looking for a unique dress rather than a typical Wedding dress.
My brides tend to be much more imaginative and creative types and are inspired by Fashion, Art & design and therefore steer more towards vintage style inspired gowns throughout the decades. A Blackburn bride loves her gown to reflect her style and personality so it is of great importance that she finds a gown that captures the essence of who she is!
Designing your own collection is hugely exciting – what made you want to bring your own designs to your brides?
A decade of working with brides was my main inspiration. I am constantly motivated by what my brides tell me they love about dresses each season and from that have created my own collection of gowns. The dresses in my collection are styles I feel the modern bride of today is looking for, using the most stunning fabrics to create a truly beautiful look. It also allows me to use my artistic and creative side which is something I have always wanted to expand on and having the boutique has given that platform!
Who do you respect and admire in the design world?
Vivienne Westwood as she has is a British designer who has been around for a long time and yet continues to inspire & design incredible clothes in the fast paced world of the fashion industry.
What do you think of trends? Do you follow them or prefer to follow your own style?
I think I can say I do both as I cannot help but be inspired by what is current and on trend but yet I am still governed by my own gut feeling, and if I think something is fabulous or beautiful then I will bring this into my designs regardless if it’s on trend or not .
With bridal you can be as creative and cool as you want to be or as classical & elegant, that’s the wonderful thing about bridal design!
What challenges have you set yourself for the next 12 months?
Now that would be telling I have lots of exciting things up my sleeve so watch this space!