Hera Couture’s Katie Yeung has been at the vanguard of New Zealand bridal fashion for over a decade. Merging traditional artisanal construction with a contemporary eye for design, her work epitomises a distinctly Antipodean approach to wedding dressing. We’ve been lucky enough to work with Katie many times over the years. With summer around the corner and wedding season ramping up, we sat down to have a chat with her about the latest in wedding trends, things for grooms to consider and the little touches that make all the difference.
2021 has been another year with its share of challenges - How have people's approaches to weddings changed over the course of the last two years?
With the world feeling precarious due to the impacts of Covid-19, bridal trends are focusing on more choice, to give women back a sense of control in an environment which otherwise feels unpredictable. Individuality and personal style have become even stronger over the last two years - individualised options allow brides to create their own style and have design input. By doing this they are able to better express themselves, as well as stand out in a saturated social media environment.
How has this affected what people are looking for in terms of bridalwear?
Brides are more confident in themselves and willing to try new things. There is an ‘anything goes’ vibe and because of this, versatility is key. Brides now want a wedding wardrobe that can take them from welcome dinners to the ceremony; from the reception to the after party. Adding pants, overskirts, crop tops, sleeves, capes and jackets allow brides to change up their look on the day and own pieces which can be reused for other events or celebrations.
How have you seen this affect what grooms are wearing?
Having a bespoke look that reflects the groom's individuality and personal style is showing up for the groom's attire as well. Many more grooms are investing in individually tailored suits that not only fit them perfectly but that become treasured garments that are able to be worn again.
Velvet jackets in a variety of colours have made a comeback to match the bride’s statement style. They can be dressed up for a luxe look or dressed down for a more casual affair. Patterns and colour are also showing up in men’s suiting, all of which give a more personal expression of the groom’s style for their wedding look.
What are some of the ways that a bride and groom can ensure that their outfits coordinate and enhance each other?
Weddings are one of the first chances for a couple to show their combined style and whilst a groom might not always know what the bride's dress will look like, the key thing is to both have a sense of the type of wedding, to make sure brides and grooms looks suit the event and the venue. If the wedding is daytime and outdoors, bridal gowns tend to be a bit more casual so grooms’ outfits can reflect that - for example a light linen suit for the groom, paired with a minimal slip gown for the bride. If it’s more formal, like a church wedding followed by the reception in a posh hotel, then outfits can be more formal with tailored suits or tuxedos matched with ballroom gowns.