The first Australian to be invited to show at the official Haute Couture week in Paris, down-under design sweetheart Collette Dinnigan is best known for bridalwear and flirty, feminine gowns fit for the red carpet. Dinnigan dishes on the wedding perfect dress, making yours a day to remember, and adding a sexy twist.
After 23 years in the dressmaking business, Collette Dinnigan knows a thing or two about searching for the perfect gown. When it comes to the perfect wedding dress, the rules are much the same. “The important thing for us is that you look at those dresses up close and you can tell the quality of the fabrics is amazing,” she says of the attention to detail she pays to designs like the ones recently launched at Sydney’s Watsons Bay Hotel’s new wedding venue, the Sunset Room. “We spend a lot of time working on it.”
Now that the bridal side of her business is in full swing, she’s more than qualified to be dishing out advice. Her top wedding-day tip? “Do not invite too many people you don’t want to talk to. It’s not a PR exercise. Enjoy the moment. I have so many brides tell me they can’t even remember the day, it just flew by, and I guess my wedding was such a contrast because we made sure we lived it.” Dinnigan ensured her own wedding in Italy’s Positano two years ago was low-key and relatively stress free.
The respected designer’s trick is to keep things modern. “We’re a fashion brand, we’re not a bridal house and we’re not just trying to cater to a bridal market. It’s still a fashion-forward bride,” she says. Dinnigan explains her bridal aesthetic draws heavily from her ready-to-wear collections. “It doesn’t feel like a fairytale. It feels like a very strong confident woman who’s actually quite sexy, too.” Cue her new range of hosiery, available exclusively at David Jones and featuring back-seamed pearl-encrusted stockings in ivory or noir. Sexy indeed.