Destinations Magazine

Hangout with The Wedding Dress Designer: Heather from Leeds Bridal

By Juliet Siu @Lacenruffles
Hangout with The Wedding Dress Designer – Heather from Leeds Bridal

Being a wedding dress designer must be one of the best jobs in the world.

It’s a profession for making childhood dreams come true, and creating magical moments with a most cherishable dress of a lifetime.

Ever wonder what goes behind the scene of the life of a wedding dress designer? I recently met Heather who’s the mastermind behind Leeds Bridal in UK. I was pretty impressed with their personalised approach, including giving the bride a free sketch of her wedding dress and private consultation in their homes with a biscuit and nice cuppa – isn’t it a cute idea? I left my pretty soiled dress in my Parisian apartment after our wedding shoot, it’d be so wonderful if I had the design sketch to keep!

Driven by my curious soul, I spent a few minutes with Heather to explore what inspires her creative mind and uncover some insider tips for finding your perfect dress! Read on and thank me later. :)

Hangout with The Wedding Dress Designer – Heather from Leeds Bridal

I have the best job in the world because…

H: Every woman who has been through the process of having a wedding dress made by us is over the moon on the day they collect their dress. We make people really happy and excited for their big day.

There’s nothing more rewarding than making someone that happy!


What is it like to run a family business? Is there any valuable lesson your family has taught you about the industry along the way?

H: We’re a really small family team and incredibly close so it works very well. Between us, we have 100 years sewing experience so we’ve made variations of almost anything. The best advice I can give family businesses is to have work mode and life mode and to be very clear about that. Without it, you end up living and breathing the job.

Hangout with The Wedding Dress Designer – Heather from Leeds Bridal


Who, what and where inspires your design?

H: Our inspiration always comes directly from the brides. Although we keep a very close eye on bridal trends and fashion trends, our brides usually know exactly what they want, picking up visual references to dresses of time gone by. Pinterest has transformed the way brides come to us equipped with exactly what they want.


Your favourite era of bridal style?

H: Personally, I’m a huge fan of the hippy dresses of the 60’s and 70’s, which are coming back in a big way for summer 2015.


Hangout with The Wedding Dress Designer – Heather from Leeds Bridal

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For the indie brides who don’t go by the wedding rulebook, what are some fabrics and styles you’d recommend?

H: What’s happening right now is a lot of brides want colour variations, with lots of blush, blue and nude colours. If you’re truly indie, you’ll want to stray away from even that crowd! Indie brides should look to fabrics that aren’t normally reserved for bridalwear.

We’re seeing an increased use of spandex, lurex and dancer-like fabrics for indie brides.

Alternatively, looking at heavily detailed fabrics such as brocades is massively underrated for winter weddings. The crowd is going for tulle, tulle, more tulle, and lace. Indie brides could get back to the shimmering glistening silk satin in any colour you can think of and stand out from the sea of similar.

Ballarina bride

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Best tips for brides when they come in for fittings?

H: Always bring the shoes and underwear that you’re going to wear on the big day. We literally can’t do anything without those. Expect to be standing up awkwardly for a rather long time (sometimes 2-3 hours!) and don’t expect the dress to look like how it will be when it’s finished. Having a dress made for you requires some imagination.


A bride is most beautiful when…

H: She’s comfortable. Seriously. Whilst not the most glamorous answer, I’ve been to so many weddings where the bride is being crippled by her dress or constantly hiking it up. I don’t believe in “no pain no gain”.


Most classic wedding dress you’d like to recreate?

H: We’ve created so many dresses inspired by the classics – Kate Middleton, Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn (and Kim Kardashian) but I’d love to recreate Kate Moss’s wedding dress after seeing it at the V&A in London. It took my breath away – the photos could never do it justice!


Hangout with The Wedding Dress Designer – Heather from Leeds Bridal

Image credit: (left) & (right)


My wedding dress will look like this…

H: I literally have no idea. Seeing so many different styles and ideas is bamboozling. Honestly, it’ll probably be very simple, that I don’t mind if it gets muddy.


Finally, can you reveal any style secret that makes any wedding dress look magic?

H: I have to say this, but it’s true.

If it fits the bride perfectly, there’s nothing that can make it more magic.


Thank you, Heather!


So tell me my fellow lovelies, what are some of your own learnt and tested tricks to find the dream dress? Do you have more questions for Heather? Feel free to comment below or tweet them to me @Lacenruffles and I’ll try to get them answered for you!

Until next time, stay gorgeous.

Lace n Ruffles Juliet S

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