Jennie Ma (@ma_jennie) is The Knot's ultimate trendsetting fashionaista. With her four year anniversary approaching, she has been the mastermind behind many of the inspiring fashion spreads that keep our brides drooling for more. So what exactly is our fashion maven looking for this April? I got the chance to pick her brain to see what trends she's lusting for!
COUTURE: You have access to so many designs and trends! What elements are you looking for when organizing a photoshoot? JENNIE: What I’m really looking for is that special detail that will grab the reader’s attention. For example, in our upcoming Summer Issue, we have a fashion spread on elegance. Now that can clearly be interpreted in many different ways but in order to tell a story I was looking for details that would be inspiring to our brides. Pearl encrusted embellishment and sheer capes may not be for everyone but conceptually they are extremely compelling when telling a visual story.
COUTURE:Editorial vs. Sellable. Is there a difference and is it possible for designers to “marry” the two?JENNIE: Many designers send gowns down the runway that they know may be not be a best seller but that will create buzz around their brand and designs. Last season there were a handful of completely sheer gowns on the runway but many of the designers ended up lining the gown when it went into production. But it's not all about creating provocative gowns to get people's attention. I think both editors and real brides equally appreciate a beautifully crafted gown.
COUTURE:What trends from Spring will we still be seeing again this Fall? JENNIE: Ethereal Glamour! I think we'll still see a lot of sheer details (from necklines to skirt overlays) but I think the reemergence of opulent details is going to dominate as well. It’s all about balance.
COUTURE: Do you think we’ll see any Ready to Wear trends from this Fashion Week translated onto the bridal runways? JENNIE: Absolutely! I think brides today are looking for fashion elements to set themselves apart. Many bridal designers even have their own ready to wear line and the lines often overlap conceptually. That's why it's always exciting to view both collections since you get a sneak peek of what to expect in the world of RTW and bridal. We have to also remember that live in a celebrity driven society. Award show red carpets are often the first place brides are looking for fashion and beauty inspiration.
COUTURE:Who is your bridal style icon and why? JENNIE: I love both of Audrey Hepburn's wedding gowns—they are both timelessly chic and reflective of her personality. I think that it very important detail to remember. A bride should look special but her own style needs to shine through.
COUTURE:Think of yourself as a new designer. What professional advice can you give them to catch your eye? JENNIE: Find out who your bride is and stay true to her needs. Brand DNA is extremely important but do not be afraid to push the envelope in a strategic way. Keep the bride and editors stimulated without losing your brand's core identity.
COUTURE:What current trend do you for see becoming the next bridal collection “staple”? JENNIE: Illusion Necklines are universally flattering and the best of both words! You can show skin and be sexy while still being appropriately covered.
COUTURE: Bridal Fashion Week is a whirlwind for you girls but you always make effort to attend to COUTURE. What brings you back each year? JENNIE: What I personally love is the intimate feel of the show. As an editor it is important to experience the actual dress. At COUTURE we get to personally meet each designer and touch and play with the designs. I love hearing the inspirations straight from them and hearing the passion in their voice. It’s very rare you get to experience that and it's my favorite part of bridal market!