Aloha! I am posting from the beautiful island of Kauai today where I am celebrating the wedding of my friends Julia Howe and Dekker Dryer. Julia came to me a few months ago and asked me to design her wedding dress with one special feature, it had to light up. Of course, I jumped at the chance to make a lighed wedding dress!
Like most brides, Julia knew what she wanted. She was attracted to the conceptual idea of industrial technology, but wanted a spark of traditional elegance. She decided on an overall color scheme that centered on metallic pewter, which was complimented by hints of burgundy, powder blue, and warm off-white. These colors were in the floral arrangements and feathered hairpieces on the bridesmaids.
It was decided that the dress should honor the metallic look but with a vintage inspired style. To do this, I focused on creating a soft and glowing design that played with the Victorian shape of the dress. The lighting design was intended to be simple with warm and cool whites. There were no flashing bulbs or severe bright spots. The spectacle of a lighted dress is enough on its own, There was no need to over do it with intense changing colors or a blinding reflection.
I used Luminex, a fiber-optic fabric imported from Italy, to give the dress a soft glowing undercoat. It has the ability to light large areas without blinding onlookers.
The final illuminated dress has a soft glowing under skirt with a splash of light on the bodice and finishes at the shoulders with feather-like tendrils. It runs on 4 AAA batteries, which are located in a hidden pocket and for easy removal the underskirt is modular. It is connected with a row of snaps to the interior of the dress so that it can be removed for the daylight ceremony when there is no need to be all-aglow.
I also created a Luminex shawl for Julia to wear to the beach bonfire after the reception.