Friday, March 25, 2011

Sample Sale

Next Thursday 31st March and Friday 1st April Karen Willis Holmes is holding a sample sale for Timothy Godbold’s Fall/Winter Samples at our Paddington, Sydney store.

Tim’s philosophy reflects the fluidity and freedom of the ocean and boasts precise finishes and superior structure influenced by architectural lines.  The collection presents a luxurious attitude, a restrained hand and a eye for exquisite detail.  Timothy Godbold’s designs are sleek, function, versatile and elegant – perfect for the modern women!          

Run don’t walk to this event!
Check out his collections on his website
Karen xx

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Real Wedding… Kate and Michael

Introduced through mutual friends, Kate and Michael hit it off straight away and as simple as that the rest shall we say is history.  Michael surprised Kate with a beautiful hand designed diamond ring made by Bill Hicks. “We were packing to go away to visit our family before Christmas and in my usual way  I  was double and triple checking I  had packed everything I would need.  Michael said to me “There is one thing you forgot to pack” and pulled out the white ring box.”

Kate and Michael were married on the 9th October 2010 at Rose Bay Park, a small harbor beach followed by a lunchtime reception at Pier Restaurant in Rose Bay, a short walk from the ceremony.  Pier Restaurant was a great choice for the couple who share a love of fine food and an intimate and private waterside setting for their 40-guest reception.  The couple finished the night with one of Adriano Zumbo’s spectacular V8 cakes.

A regular visitor to the Paddington area, Kate had often passed the Karen Willis Holmes windows.  She tried on three dresses but the ‘Daisy’ gown featuring delicate embroidered tulle overlay was the one.  Kate made her look individual with an accent chocolate ribbon tied at the waist and a brooch from Karen Willis Holmes completed her look.
“I like many of the KWH gowns it had a timeless elegance, I believe they are the type of dresses that never go out of style.”

Kate wore shoes from Spanish shoe designer Pedro Garcia and her bridesmaid’s wore dresses by Alex Perry.  Michael and his groomsmen wore Paul Smith suits.

Kate’s flowers were from Tulipanna Flowers, Bubsy Hair in Bondi did her hair and Marika Miettinen did her makeup.  Bill Hicks who designed Kate’s engagement ring also did the couple’s wedding bands Andrew Burns from Imajica Photography captured the day.

 Instead of the usually colour palette you would associate with a beach wedding Kate and Michael choose a combination of chocolate and very pale pink reflected in her colours sash and his outfit and incorporated shell details into their stationery from Wills Quills Calligraphy to compliment their beachside ceremony.

“Essentially, we wanted our wedding to be a small and intimate celebration of our love and lifelong commitment to each other.” - Kate

All photos by Imajica Photography 

Karen xx 

Friday, March 18, 2011

Gown Style...

Strapless Ball gown

A classic and ever so popular style is the strapless ball gown style – great for highlighting the waist and show casing the décolletage and shoulders.  To make these silhouettes individual and unique it is all in the fabrication and detailing.
The ‘Sophia’ gown is our quintessential strapless ball gown.  It features a French Chantilly lace detail and a tulle circle skirt.  Complete the look with a diamante belt at the waist or the detachable tulle shoulder collar.

Karen Willis Holmes – Sophia

Steal the spotlight in our ‘Felicity’ gown – a corset bodice with over the top silver embroidered and beaded bust line motif.  The full tulle skirt features multi layered draped tulle pieces creating an exaggerated ball gown silhouette.

Karen Willis Holmes - Felicity

We have all fallen in love with the ‘Madelyn’ gown and we think you will too.  With a draped silk georgette bodice and full tulle skirt this gown is elegant and feminine.

Karen Willis Holmes – Madelyn

Our ‘Paige’ is a bustier gown with sequin bodice fitted to waist with an organza & tulle circle skirt, finished with velvet ribbon tie belt.
Want to create an impact?  Karen has designed a dramatically pleated and detailed organza overlay to sit over the ‘Paige’ gown.  The overlay also defines your silhouette with its ruched waist.

Karen Willis Holmes – Paige

Also get inspired with some of our Real Brides who chose our bodice and skirt options for their day.  Naomi is wearing the Chantilly bodice with silver lace detail teamed with the Margot tulle Skirt.  Melissa also wore the Margot skirt but wore it with the Ribbon Bodice Corset featuring top stitched ribbon detail.

Karen Willis Holmes – Real Bride - Naomi

Karen Willis Holmes – Real Bride - Melissa

Karen xx

Friday, March 11, 2011

Infinity Photography

This week, Desiree from Infinity Photography sent us these gorgeous shots of our Real Bride Diana on her wedding day that we just had to share with you.
Diana is wearing the Karen Willis Holmes ‘Roberta’ gown, a ruched strapless bodice with bias skirt and three tiered ruffled hem in powerloom silk.  Diana finished off her look with a cathedral length veil and jewelled headpiece.

“candid, natural, timeless... simply beautiful”

Infinity photography is guided by a passion for beautiful photography, an impeccable sense of style, and a natural, simple down to earth approach. I love their relaxed and candid approach - capturing the unique and special moments of the day that you want to remember.

phone - (03) 9500 8008
studio - level 1. studio 10. 95 victoria street. fitzroy. 3065.
by appointment

phone - (02) 9319 4194.
studio - level 1. suite 3. 136 raglan street. waterloo. nsw. 2017.
by appointment.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Get the Look...
– of PARIS - FALL RTW 2011

It is true what they say about leaving the best to last with Paris Fashion Week.
 The sudden firing of John Galliano left a everyone in the fashion world shocked about the future of Dior as well as a stigma on what is to be his final collection for the iconic fashion house.  True to form though Galliano did what he did – rich, lush textures and layering that amplified the bohemian theme.  

Haider Ackermann is another designer whose work I love, and it was hard to restrain myself with choosing only a few key pieces to highlight from his collection.  Focusing on necklines, the belted waist and the leg Ackermann displayed a restrained elegance playing with the masculine and feminine elements.  Looks included wrapped, twisted and draped jackets and coats with leather, suede and silks and standout shade of teal accenting the collection along with thick belts.

Titled ‘World Wide Woman’, Westwood’s said her theme meant “you can wear anything in our part of the world”, and it did from the models in black face paint, slouchy menswear styles walked the runway with tailored suiting, hot pants and ball gown skirts.  I love the sequinned detailed tops and pencil skirt with beautifully draped shirt.

With grey haired beehives hairdos atop the model heads Jean Paul Gaultier’s collection was an ode to the 1960’s and tailored silhouettes.  I love the belted trench coats and jackets in leather and full-length dress looks.

Focusing on his customer the Zac Posen girl is ‘sexy, intelligent and chic’.  I love these gowns – the cut our and sheer panels and featuring a waisted and fishtail silhouette.  The pencil skirt and jacket look featuring matching jacket and skirt front slits in metallic fabrication is versatile and chic!

And finally, the office was full of ‘ooh’ and ‘aah’s’ when we saw the Alexander McQueen collection.  Sarah Burton is doing a fantastic job preserving the design aesthetic and legacy of the brand.  A muted black and white palette featured fur, leather and zip details along with silhouettes quintessentially McQueen.

With the recent buzz that the McQueen brand is designing Kate Middleton’s wedding dress when she marries Prince William in April... we can’t wait to see if this is right because we think this partnership is perfect.
Karen xx

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Vendor Recommendation- - Dunbar House

Dunbar House is the newest destination for your wedding!  Reopened in February 2011 after a multi – million dollar refurbishment this stunning venue harmonises the historic feel of the mansion, built in the 1830’s and located at Watsons Bay with a new decor.

The interior of Dunbar House highlights an elegant colour palette of greys and silvers, beautiful lower wood wall panelling, William Morris wallpaper, Catherine Martin carpets and hand crafted crystal chandeliers.  The exterior of the building has been restored to its former glory with an elegant sandstone colour palette.

Breakfast, lunch and evening weddings are available from Monday to Sunday catering for up to 110 seated and 150 for a cocktail style reception.  Civil ceremonies can be held on site on the Lower Lawn in Robertson Park under the grand fig tree with the magnificent backdrop of Sydney Harbour (or in the indoor ceremony room which overlooks the harbour in the case of wet weather). Following the ceremony, guests can enjoy pre-reception drinks and canapés on the stunning outdoor Harbour Terrace overlooking the view, while the bridal party escapes to the bridal suite for a quick refreshment and touch-up, before making a grand entrance.

The Main Dining Room
Whether it is a sit down dinner for 110 or a cocktail reception for 150, the Main Dining Room can be configured to suit a number of floor plans. Located on the upper level of the building, the Main Dining Room adjoins an outdoor Harbour Terrace that commands majestic views of Sydney Harbour.  The room features hand-crafted crystal chandeliers from the Czech Republic, custom made furniture, Catherine Martin carpets and an antique full-marble fire place.

Guests can look forward to a delectable menu as Head Chef Keith Murray, who trained in Michelin Star mouth-watering restaurants in Ireland and has spent eight years as Head Chef at The Tea Room QVB, puts together outstanding food and wine menus to suit individual budgets and requirements. 

Operated by the Tea Room Group – it joins The Tea Room QVB, The Tea Room Gunners’ Barracks and Sergeants Mess as a premier and impressive wedding venue.
I loves these venues for its fusion of old-world heritage and modern twists and only recently, celebrated my birthday with a high tea afternoon at the Tea Room QVB.

Offering world-class dining and unparalleled service, a team of dedicated event staff works closely with each client to ensure that every detail of every wedding is meticulously planned. Packages can be tailored to suit individual requirements and budgets, with the Head Chef and Sommelier available to customise food and wine selections.

Dunbar House is located at:
9 Marine Parade
Watson Bay

For more information:
(02) 9337 1226

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Opening Soon
The KWH new– Brisbane Store!

We are so excited to announce that Karen Willis Holmes is opening a ready to wear store in Brisbane this April!!
Located at 2 Latrobe Terrace, Paddington, Brisbane QLD
We will be stocking the ready to wear collection of wedding dresses, accessories
and some of our beautiful evening wear
In the meantime why don’t you check out some of our gowns –
Karen xx

Please contact us for more information for Brisbane store updates
We can then keep in touch with you for the opening and any other information about the Brisbane store.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Best Dressed...

The Night of Nights...
The Oscars 2011

For some the Oscar’s is the most exciting day of the year – the excitement is for the question ‘What will they wear?’, which momentarily overshadows ‘Who will win?’.  With the Screen Actors Guild Awards, Golden Globes and BAFTA’s all preceding the event it is climax event for movies, fashion and Hollywood!

Here are my picks for Best Dressed – and of course some of our gorgeous gowns that will help you recreate the look for your big day.

On what other day are full length sequin gowns except for the Oscar’s (and your wedding day)?  This has definitely been the trend all award season and I am in love with this elegant look from Amy Adams.

Amy Adams in L'Wren Scott

Amy’s gown in deep blue/ purple is accented with the sequins making it memorising like the night’s sky.  Highlighting her red hair the best actress nominee for ‘The Fighter’ accented her look with Cartier emeralds and diamonds for a fantastic look.

This sleek sequin gown with its boat-line neckline and low V-neck back is great for brides wanting to evoke this look.

Gwyneth Paltow in Calvin Klein Collection

Gwyneth looks so chic in the fluid metallic column gown from the Calvin Klein Collection - she is a star.
To create this look try our Keisha gown from the Karen Willis Holmes ready to wear collection. ‘Keisha’ feature a strapless corset and bias skirt in sequin georgette overlay.  At the hip is velvet ribbon detail finished with a brooch – almost identical to Gwyneth’s gown.

Are you after the sparkle but not in a full-length gown?  Than get inspired by Mandy Moore in Monique Lhuillier.  This nude gown with gold sequin detail and tulle skirt is a feminine look.   The edition of these sleeves that work effortlessly with the gown and is a twist on the more traditional cap sleeve.

Mandy Moore in Monqiue Lhuillier

The Karen Willis Holmes ‘Claudia’ gown is from the Couture Collection.  This slimline V-neck wedding gown created from liquid silver sequins. Fullness at the hem from a tulle godet skirt creates a beautiful fishtail effect.

Natalie Portman in Rodarte

The lady of the moment Natalie Portman has had a dream couple of months.  Natalie, who won Best Actress for her role in ‘Black Swan’ looked beautiful in this royal purple off the shoulder Rodarte gown with pleats falling down the middle of her baby bump.

This buster gown with draped and ruched bodice and skirt in silk georgette is a great gown for those brides inspired by Natalie’s look.

Sandra Bullock in Vera Wang

Last year’s Best Actress winner, Sandra Bullock looks every bit the movie star.  Her scarlett Vera Wang gown is a classic silhouette with interesting bust and train detail.  Finishing her look with an updo and minimal makeup I love Sandra’s style.

Our ‘Sharon’ gown showcases the silhouette and mood of Sandra’s gown.  The corset features ribbon and topstitching detail to enhance the corset design and the fitted panelled skirt with train is dramatic and elegant. The ‘Sharon’ is also available at our Ready to Wear stores.

Helen Mirren in Vivienne Westwood

Helen Mirren looks stunning in this Vivienne Westwood pewter gown.  I love Vivienne Westwood's design aesthetic and this is a great look for Helen - this woman knows how to dress for her age and wow’s us every time.

Hailee Steinfeld in Marchesa

Looking lovely and age appropriate is Haille Steinfeld in Marchesa.  Word has it that the 14 year old True Grit and Oscar nominee had a hand in designing the gown and I think this tea length gown is perfect.  A fashionista in the making – can’t wait to see more of her on the red carpet.

Camila Alves in Kaufman Franco

Matthew McConaughey’s leading lady Camilla Alves looked stunning in this Kaufman Franco gown.  The billowing skirt with tulle underlay is dramatic yet simple.  Our new gown ‘Evie’ in powerloom silk features a ruched bodice with spaghetti straps and wrap waist tie.  The full pleated skirt creates the billowing effect your after if Camilla’s gown caught your eye.

For more information about our Couture and Ready to Wear Collections please contact us on (02) 9519 3901