Friday, September 30, 2011

Milan Fashion Week...

Following the London Fashion Week, the Milan Fashion Week was held from 21st September until 27th September and I would love to share with you my favourite collections and designs that have inspired everyone at Karen Willis Holmes

Gucci’s collection reflected a crossover between modern society and the 1920s. Gucci showcased sequined dresses, fringes, pleats, cropped jackets and pencil pants. The collection has a lot of black, gold and white, it is very ‘vintage glamour’ and shouts a bold personality which is what I like about it.

 I also really liked the Giorgio Armani collection, there was a lot of black and dark blue and was inspired by the Sahara.

Dolce and Gabbana’s collection was simply vibrant. It featured lace, cocktail dresses and sequins.

Versace showcased a very structural and feminine collection.

Here’s a taste of what the rest of Milan Fashion Week was like.

Emporio Armani

Salvatore Ferragamo


Emilio Pucci

Milan Fashion Week ended by showcasing new and upcoming designers’ collections.

Sergio Grinko

Mauro Gasperi

Karen xx


Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Real Bride...

Anchen & Cameron

We would love to share one of our real brides' story and pictures with you.Anchen and Cameron shared a beautiful wedding day on 28th November 2010 at the gorgeous Plantation in South Africa. 

Anchen and Cameron first met in Philadephia in 2003 ‘I was playing tennis at University in America, and decided to travel to Philadelphia to coach tennis at a summer camp to earn some extra cash over the University holidays. Whilst there, one of the other coaches (Cameron) from Australia took a keen liking to me and continually asked me out to dinner to get to know me. He was extremely persistent but I kept refusing as I was only there for a few months and I knew nothing ‘serious’ could ever happen. He then invited me to a Bon Jovi concert, which I could not refuse, as he knew they were one of my favourite bands, so I went along with him and we had one of the most amazing nights ever. This was the night of our first kiss, but still we thought it would not evolve to anything as I was travelling home to South Africa in a few short weeks time’.

They both returned home after the tennis summer camp, Anchen to South Africa and Cameron returned to Australia. However, Cameron was determined ‘we could make it work and that it was all worth it so he travelled across the world 3 times chasing me and spending time getting to know me and my family in South Africa. This long distance relationship of back and forth travelling lasted some 2 years until I made the ultimate step to migrate to Australia in late 2005 to be with Cameron’.

Cameron proposed to Anchen whilst they were holidaying in Hamilton Island, when ‘he got down on one knee and popped the question. It was perfect surroundings overlooking the coral reef and beautiful Whitsunday passage.’

The wedding was held in South Africa which is Anchen’s hometown and it was great because this meant that the bride and groom’s family and friends could attend an oversees wedding.

On her special day, Anchen wore ‘Amelia’ from the Karen Willis Holmes ready to wear collection, ‘it was like it was designed especially for me – so elegant and not the “usual wedding gown”- something different!’ ‘Amelia’ has a V-neck with a corset - a beautiful, flowing gown. Anchen finished off her amazing look with a Karen Willis Holmes veil and crystal earrings from Swarovski.

The ring also has such an adorable story! Cameron ‘spent 3 months designing my engagement ring for me without my knowledge, he then contacted a jeweler and had it exquisitely Italian handcrafted based on his design. It is based on an idea I had seen in a shop many years earlier and he remembered me mentioning that would be my perfect ring.’

In creating their perfect wedding, the cake was a divine three tiered Greek Chocolate Mousse Cake and their first dance as husband and wife was Steady As We Go By Dave Matthews Band. Family and friends were thanked with ‘jam jars filled with homemade strawberry jam, tied with beautiful silver and white ribbon arrangement, topped off with a beautiful thank you sticker’ that said “Spread the Love”.

We would like to thank Anchen and Cameron for sharing their great day with us and we wish them a wonderful marriage! Congratulations!!

Karen xx

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Reporting from London…

It’s true. I have been on holidays. It had been 1296 days of Geoff and I not having proper holidays (not that I am counting!) So, I prayed to the gods, crossed my heart and left the workroom, the stores and my office to be run, as it turns out, by the most wonderful and responsible staff!

Regents street - London Sept 2011

Big Ben and Houses of Parliament - London Sept 2011

But being of the nature I am, I couldn’t help myself but still be a part of beautiful frocks, if I couldn’t make them… I could certainly admire them!!! And so I did at London Fashion Week. 

I would love to share with you some of the designers I admired at London Fashion week. Firstly Erdem Moralioglu, the Canadian born designer who is very much into lace, which is the exact reason for my respect! His show was in the elegant Savoy ballroom, a perfect setting for his delicate and enthusiastically floral collection.

Next, beloved Burberry, need we say much about this label? Kensington Gore was where it was at, seating the likes of Anna Wintour, Kanye West, Philip Green and Sienna Miller. Now, this is interesting, for the first time EVER, Twitter teamed up with Burberry, ahead of its show to launch the first ever ‘Tweetwalk’, enabling people online to see the collection first before the models hit the runway!

Just looking at these snaps from Temperley’s show at The Royal British Museum makes me want to be on holidays again!!! For Spring, Temperley took hints from Grace Kelly in High Society as well as Michelle Pfeiffer in Scarface (not exactly the same high society). It’s a far more dressed up collection in comparison to her sweet  sundresses.

Hope you adored this as much as I did and more on my holidays in our next KWH newsletter!

 Karen xx

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Real Bride...

Donna and Andrew

We would love to share with you on of our real brides, Donna, who's inspiration for the wedding came from her ‘country upbringing and 22 years of scrap booking pictures and ideas!’

 After 3 years, Andrew proposed to Donna on Melbourne Cup Day at a lake which they had bushwalked to as a result of escaping the cup madness.

Donna and Andrew were married at Mount Macedon Uniting Church followed by the reception at Cammeray Waters in Woodend.‘The country location and the beautiful surroundings’ made them the idyllic venues for the wedding.

As for the dress, the Karen Willis Holmes gowns on display caught Donna's attention and the simplicity, elegance and beauty of the Rebecca gown captured her heart - a strapless, silk gown with asymmetrical draping and a lace-up fastening on the bodice of the gown. Looking immaculate, Donna completed her look with a ribbon and brooch sewn onto her wedding dress and a self-made tulle veil accompanied by a Venetian hair clip. 

In creating the relaxing, welcoming, country and homy atmosphere that Donna and Andrew wanted, there were wooden centrepieces and flowers on each table. As for the music, the couple created their own playlist for their special day. Donna’s grandmother’s Mercedes was the bridal car and Kerryn from Precise Moment Photography was the photographer for the day, in which Donna believes ‘she captured the whole day perfectly.’ 

A wedding close to the home and the heart.


Karen x

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Our top 10 Emmy picks…

The 63rd Primetime Emmy Awards to us means lots of gorgeous gowns on the red carpet! We have to say though; this year in comparison wasn’t as exciting as the past Emmy frocks we’ve seen. Nonetheless, here are a few chosen ones for our lovely brides to be inspired by – we’ve also popped in Karen Willis Holmes gowns which are similar.

Nina Dobrev looked amazing in the Donna Karan strapless fishtail dress.
Fishtail silhouettes were also quite popular on the night - they are similar to Maddison and Angelica gowns from the Karen Willis Holmes couture collection.

When does Kate Winslet ever get it wrong? She wore a bright red fitted gown by Elie Saab.

Sofia Vergara donned the gorgeous Vera Wang mermaid dress while Sarah Hyland rocked a stunning pleated dress by Christian Siriano. Both looked immaculate in their coral, one-shoulder gowns.

Whilst not wearing red, Evan Rachel Wood looked classy and elegant in the black, beaded Elie Saab gown. We also love that the dress has a low cut back.

The low cut backs remind me of Ava from our couture collection.

Katie Holmes also wore a low cut back dress by Calvin Klein

Kaley Cuoco chose to wear a one-shouldered Romona Keveza cocktail dress. We love the illusion one-shoulder neckline. Minka Kelly wore a long-sleeved lace navy Christian Dior dress.

Love the detail in Kelly Osbourne’s J Mendel plum, fishtail dress.

In a white Juan Carlos Obando halter dress, Aubrey Plaza just looked beautiful.

Hope these dresses get you inspired!

Karen xx