Her ready to wear collections continue to be huge successes year after year, but now, due to popular demand, Kirsty Doyle is branching out into bespoke Bridalwear too.
This week then, I paid a visit to the first of two bridal shoots that Kirsty, her team of interns and photographer sister, Jessica, are doing to promote the new service...
With the need for a grand backdrop, the first of two locations used was the Liverpool's Walker Art Gallery, complete with its sweeping staircases, marble columns and, of course, tourists with cameras.
In the afternoon, activity moved to the beautiful former Martin's Bank building on Water Street. I might have lived here all my life, but I honestly had no idea it existed! Inside it was practically untouched; I imagine on the day it shut for business, the cashiers packed up their things and left, and that's how it is now. Despite its practical-ness, it has the obligatory pillars and some very intricate floors and ceilings, but still, you may wonder why you'd find a bride in a bank.
This wasn't any conventional wedding shoot though, as this is no conventional wedding collection. Having made her name with origami folds, striking silhouettes and innovative draping, Kirsty wasn't about to start churning out multiple meringues with bejewelled corsets... We'll leave that to Thelma. (Who I do love too by the way... just not in the same way!)
Instead, the pieces I saw were refreshingly different, and in some of them, the only real hint of 'wedding' was their white-ness. There were dramatic frills, but these were pared down with simple silk vests; sleek column skirts were teamed with sculptural tops; and structured short skirts were toughened up with black accents.
To find out the inspiration behind the collection, I spoke to Kerry and Georgina, two of Kirsty's newly recruited interns,who have been working on the design and manufacture of the pieces. They said that initally they researched both iconic dresses and iconic women, think Grace Kelly or Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffanys, then looked at the silhouettes and tried to turn these into wearable wedding pieces.
Breaking the tradition of hats being only reserved for guests, Kirsty teamed her designs with headgear from milliner Laura Apsit Livens, who had created some pieces specially for the shoot. Included in the selection were creations with flowers, feathers and shapes that echoed those of the dresses, as well as others made of plastic. Check back on Parade for more on Laura soon...
Zoe and Charlotte too have been interning, but they've been working in PR and Marketing. They told me the interest surrounding this shoot and Kirsty's new service in general has been huge; local press and websites are calling for interviews and Bay TV came to the shoot to film a sneak preview video which you can see here.
And its no surprise really, this is a capsule collection of pieces for an avant-garde bride who dares to be different, and Kirsty promises that they can change colours, details etc. on these to meet their exact specifications or alternatively work with her to create a completely unique design if that's what they fancy. What more could a modern day bride want?
For more information on her Bespoke Bridal Service contact Kirsty Doyle.
Also see Kirsty's blog for pics and more on the shoot .
P.s. I shall let you know when the final images are released!