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Discover Your Bridal Style With Halfpenny London

Discover Your Bridal Style With Halfpenny London

Discovering the perfect wedding dress is a pivotal moment for every bride-to-be, filled with excitement and possibilities. In our interview with Kate Halfpenny, founder of Halfpenny London, we uncover invaluable insights into the art of bridal fashion. From initiating the dress search to personalising your wedding attire and embracing sustainability, Kate shares her wisdom garnered from years of experience...

Finding a wedding dress can seem overwhelming at the start - what tips do you have for those who are just beginning to think about their dress?

Firstly, for those recently engaged, huge congratulations! This is such an exciting time and you’re at the start of a wonderful journey. The key to finding your perfect wedding outfit is choosing a style that makes you feel like the very best version of yourself. Research designers which fit your aesthetic and seek them out, and have a think about the clothes you already own which make you feel amazing. What is it about those pieces you love? Your own wardrobe is a great starting point! After that, it’s time to make some appointments at your favourite boutiques.

How do you want a bride to feel when they wear a Halfpenny dress?

Incredible, empowered, beautiful and like the very best version of yourself. Your partner fell in love with you for you so show up in all your glory! Choosing a wedding dress can be an emotional time for some and I’m in such a privileged position to work with so many amazing women on what is likely to be one of, if not the most special outfit of their lives. It’s a wonderful feeling when a bride finds the dress that she feels great in and can’t wait to wear.

Much like a signature fragrance, a wedding dress is a completely personal choice - are there any tips you have for making a dress feel utterly your own?

I advise my brides to ignore all the trends and go with their heart. Layering or separates are great options for creating looks totally unique to you and my brides have always loved experimenting within my collection with overskirts or detachable sleeves. Feeling bridal has nothing to do with a particular style of dress, but everything to do with the emotion wrapped up in that garment so be yourself, whether that's in a ballgown, trouser suit or mini dress. I love a twist on tradition so a jumpsuit worn with a sheer overskirt, or a beautiful draped edgy corset worn with a Mikado skirt with pockets can have that fashion sensibility and give a nod to tradition but in a totally modern way. Also, veils aren't for everyone but I really encourage women to try them as a veil can instantly transform even the simplest dress into an epic wedding look.

How does Halfpenny London factor sustainability into their designs, manufacture and beyond?

As a brand, we design with a conscience and are committed in our quest to become more sustainable. All of our bridalwear is made to order so there is never any surplus stock or anything like that and we try to be mindful everyday of the little decisions we make which add up to significant change. For example, I was brought up to find the beauty in even the tiniest scrap of cloth and we’ve been repurposing our off-cuts for years into the most beautiful embellishments. Any offcuts we can’t repurpose are donated to schools and universities to inspire the next generation of designers. I think, for me, it’s all about consideration. So many of our pieces can easily be re-styled after the wedding and worn again outside of the bridal context so we encourage our brides not to think of their wedding dress as a single wear item, but instead an heirloom garment made to last a lifetime and enjoyed again and again.

Do you have any other words of wisdom for a 2024 bride?

My biggest advice for fashion and life is just be yourself. Whatever you want to do on your big day, just go for it! Couples are using their weddings to show the world who they are as a couple, and also who they are as individuals, and I wholeheartedly encourage this. I love seeing all the unique personal touches couples are adding in, like their favourite fragrance, for example. How wonderful to choose a scent that will forever transport you back to that special day every time you spritz it.

At Miller Harris we seek beauty in the everyday for sources of inspiration - as a designer, how do you find inspiration and encourage creativity?

I’m so inspired by nature and architecture, art and the unending beauty of textiles. I don’t take any notice of what’s on trend and design from the heart for every collection. My brides constantly inspire me, as do my family and the wonderful individuals surrounding me, both at work and in my personal life. I carry a sketchbook and pencil with me everywhere I go and love doodling away on my commute and discovering something wonderful on the page. My environment is hugely important. I’m definitely a maximalist and have filled my home, studio and boutique with art that I love. On the days when I’m not in London, I try to get in a long walk around my workday in my home studio, enjoying the wildness and unpredictability of mother nature during seaside dog walks with my husband and son. I completely agree, the world is full of inspiration everywhere you look, you just have to lift your head.

View some popular Miller Harris bridal scents here