Spain’s bridal gowns are world renowned – and with good reason. Here, Clare Thompson of London and Birmingham bridal store The Wedding Club unpicks its design DNA by highlighting four favourite labels that show the rich diversity of Spanish bridal talent
Photos courtesy of Barcelona Bridal Fashion Week
One in ten of the world’s brides choose to wear a Spanish-made wedding gown and a visit to Barcelona Bridal Fashion Week – which ranks alongside New York as the must-visit for bridal buyers – shows how huge the industry has become. The Wedding Club’s Clare Thompson, who is a regular at BBFW says: “Spain’s twin traditions of exquisite tailoring and grand weddings have certainly helped cement ‘made in Spain’ as a mark of quality bridalwear, while the opportunities presented by the scale of the industry means lots of hot new designers can emerge”. Here are four favourite designers that Clare believes show the range of talent and the craftsmanship of Spanish bridalwear design.
Spanish bridal star Pronovias
The chances are everybody has attended a wedding where the bride wore Pronovias – it is Spain’s largest bridal gown exporter and with over 50 years of heritage. Clare says: “It’s a familiar name, but that’s because it is universally recognised for exceptional quality, and with looks to suit every style of bride. Atelier Pronovias, offered at our Birmingham store, is made using haute couture processes for perfect fit, and we admire the extraordinary care the Barcelona company’s seamstresses put in to hand-making each gown”. While you will always find timeless designs – almost the archetypal image of Spanish bridal style – there are also much more edgy elements in its vast and impressive collection. Clare says: “In 2017 brides can expect unusual lace and embellishment with a strong emphasis on sleek, body-lengthening lines”.
Boho and fresh YolanCris
Fellow Barcelona label YolanCris was founded by sisters Yolanda and Cristina Perez in 2005 and is a stellar example of Catalonia’s talent for finding new interpretations of the Spanish bridal look. Clare says: “We always advise brides who want something edgy or boho to consider YolanCris. There’s a strong 1970s influence – think Studio 54 glamour with a contemporary edge – as well as superb reworkings of street trends as bridalwear”. For 2017, Clare says you can expect emphasis on belts, floaty layering and glamorous fringe and scarf details.
Elegant and refined Rosa Clará
Sitting alongside Pronovias as a global force in bridalwear, Rosa Clará has a quite unique brand signature. Clare says: “I’ve always loved Rosa Clará’s impeccable style and the quality and finish of the gowns. I’d characterise the look as refined – the on-trend details never overwhelm the feminine and elegant lines”. For 2017, Clare says, there are fabulous textured gowns with 1950s-style details, along with exquisitely tailored slimline gowns that are perfect for a sophisticated bride.
Edgy romantics Marco & Maria
While Barcelona is epicentre of bridal, the holiday island of Tenerife has produced one of the most exciting Spanish bridal labels – arguably one of the most exciting labels in Europe. Marco Marrero and María Díazstyle (aka Marco & Maria) started out as a small design workshop in Puerto de la Cruz and have attracted a huge fan base over recent years. Clare describes the look as contemporary fairytale – always romantic and with trademark sheer fabrics and intricate appliqué. For 2017, says Clare, the focus remains body skimming shapes and ethereal transparent overlays, adding: “There are some truly gorgeous marine colours – from greys and taupes to blues and turquoises – along with lovely details such as pussy bows, metal chains and angel-wing effects at the shoulder. This is definitely a label to consider for a romantic summer or destination wedding, and with some really grown-up gowns in the mix”.