During her extraordinary life, actress Elizabeth Taylor walked down the aisle a total of eight times in a variety of memorable looks. But it’s her iconic non-bridal style that British-born designer Jenny Packham is honoring in her latest collection, Wonder by Jenny Packham, for David’s Bridal.
“The collection was inspired by her opulent and eclectic jewelry collection and effervescent style,” Packham tells InStyle. “This season we added some simpler, less embellished gowns accented with statement waist belts and clusters of embellished motifs.”
With a muse as fabulous as Liz Taylor, it’s no surprise that Packham’s latest collection is geared to the fashion-forward bride—someone with a “contemporary, elegant, and feminine” vibe. Rather than busy, all-over bling, these silhouettes are delicate and flowing with small pops of embelishment. Some of these accent clusters are reminiscent of Taylor’s famous accessories—take the belt on this dress below, for example, which from the front could be an homage to her many tiaras, and from the back, her larger-than-life necklaces.
When we spoke to Packham last season during the debut of her David’s Bridal collaboration, she revealed that comfort and fit played a major role in her creative process—and that certainly hasn’t changed this time around.
“How the bride looks and how the bride feels wearing it is always at the forefront of my design process; considering the way the cut, draping, and beading will best enhance the bride,” she explains. “To create a wedding gown that the bride feels beautiful and confident in is my ultimate challenge and I find it very rewarding.”
With bridal trends shifting to embrace a mixture of modern and time-honored elements, it’s becoming increasingly easier to find a dress that feels authentic and gets grandma's seal of approval. Packham has noticed an uptick in classic trains as well as contemporary exposed backs and plunging necklines—though she does feel some things should be “left to the imagination” on your wedding day. And we have no doubt that Elizabeth Taylor would agree.
Wonder by Jenny Packham Spring 2017 collection will be available in late December 2016/January 2017 at David's Bridal stores and davidsbridal.com.