Last year, Vera Wang caught the fashion world by surprise with her black bridal gowns.Then, for spring 2013, she followed up with red. Are these gowns red hot or too hot to handle?
Vera Wang observed the love affair with the big skirts and the mermaid silhouette, paid homage to the everpopular strapless and acknowledged the current trend of lace, tulle and organza. But last year, she did it all in black. And then followed it with red.
At the time, she was reported as saying that it was all “tongue in cheek”, but later said she was introducing a brand new element that combined mystery and sex.
But it’s really all about business. She is entering the market in China this year, where red is the traditional wedding colour. So 15 spring 2013 bridal dresses come in many shades of the hue.
However, Vera Wang knows her North American market and all those red dresses will also be available in shades of ivory.
When she introduced black, it posed a problem because black is a favourite for bridesmaids. What do bridesmaids wear when the bride is wearing black? White? Pastels? Not likely.
The next problem was that black and red gowns made the veil impossible.
The final problem was tradition. Brides didn’t grow up dreaming of getting married in black or red.
So, we’re not seeing black or red bridal gowns taking off any time soon. The exception may be the older, second-time-around bride.
But Vera Wang is a canny marketer. She caused a fashion furor last year – and that’s exactly what she meant to do.
“The symbolism of red: From dahlia to scarlet, from crimson to vermillion, it is boldly romantic, alluring, seductive and sexy. A celebration of love.”, Vera Wang
Originally published in Today’s Bride magazine, Spring/Summer 2013.