Big multinationals and little ateliers with personal designs rub shoulders in a sector where Spain is an export force to be reckoned with.
According to the statistics which Fira de Barcelona is presenting for Barcelona Bridal Week, one in every ten brides wears an outfit made in Spain. Next month sees the first event of the year kicking off the global bridal calendar, showcasing trends and offering new buying opportunities. More than 10,000 bridal gowns and 2,500 party dresses are set to go on display. We look at the brands that will make you dazzle on your big day.
Two big names have rolled out their designs all around the world. One is Rosa Clará, whose refined silhouettes and lavish detail have won over the hearts of cosmopolitan brides. After fifty years in the business, Pronovias is a powerhouse in the sector. Its collections take in every conceivable bridal style, from classic princess to hourglass silhouettes with bold transparency.
Traditional haute couture gets an update, courtesy of Cristina Tamborero. The embroidery and appliqué that comes out of her studio on Paseo de Gracia in Barcelona are ideal for the mermaid or princess of today. Organza, gauze and crystal appliqué add romanticism to Miquel Suay’s brides. On her arm, in an impeccable satin and taffeta dinner suit, the brand’s groom sports vintage look. Meanwhile, true to his signature delicate understatement, Jesús Peiró reveals a naïve femininity based on volume.
Intricate craftsmanship lies behind a universe of flowing, diaphanous volume, accentuated waists and elegant lines in Hanníbal Laguna’s collections.
Key designers this year include sisters Yolanda and Cristina, whose Yolancris brand has reached its tenth anniversary. This year, they are showcasing an alternative to their boho chic designs, with their first couture collection.
In an ode to intricacy, Inmaculada García mixes fabrics in a collection full of aristocratic notes. Mikado and brocade alternate with tulle in designs by Isabel Zapardiez. Pleating and grandiose volume inspired by the 40s turn her brides into divas.
High-society beacon Basaldúa revisits its original vintage inspiration in delicate dresses with frills, ruffled bodices and natural dresses. The unique gowns of Natalie Capell also have a turn-of-century glamour.
Matilde Cano goes for an exquisite, flowing concept in gauze, lurex thread and damask. In the party segment, satinate fabrics and jewel dresses are her signature designs.
Diaphanous, bold and romantic are the watchwords from Marco & María. Gauze layering makes for a flowing collection based on dusky hues. Ethereal lines, full of movement, characterise the timeless brides of Patricia Avendaño. The cocktail collection adds in beading and couture detail for good measure.
For an alternative vision, there’s Otaduy, with handmade suits inspired by pristine white and the charm that goes with an everyday matter-of-factness. Sabrina Saree also strays from the norm, with Indian clothing pared down to its essence for Western brides. Jordi Dalmau tells a fairy-tale for modern girls, where traditional canons stand up to a bold mixture of colours and fabrics in punk spirit.
For him, the tuxedo has gained star status. Fuentecapala makes them from new-age fabrics on the cutting edge between the classical and unconventional. Meanwhile, elegance and understatement come in all styles, whether white tie, black tie or standard suits, from Protocolo Novios.
The guest dressed by Sonia Peña takes on a mysterious and exotic air, with diaphanous tunics and dresses that bring back warm sensuality.
The great Hollywood dames are Carla Ruiz’s source of inspiration, with refined, sophisticated party etiquette that recovers the charm of the 50s. Ogadenia Díaz shares her fascination for the decade with updates of the looks sported by celebrities of the day in silk, taffeta and lace. Valencian designer Isabel Sanchís instils each evening outfit with sophisticated fantasy, also revisiting red-carpet glamour.
Sensual sophistication is the motto of the Cabotine party collection. Gauze gets strategically opened to enhance feminine charm, while necklines and pencil silhouettes conspire to reveal powerful assets.
Close-fitting waistlines, necklines and other beauty-enhancing elements make up the DNA of Ana Torres. Either monochrome or trimmed with delicate multi-tone brocade, the collection brings a fresher feel to ceremonial etiquette.
The options range from the sophisticated to the bold and contemporary, guaranteed to set trends in and outside Spain.