We love the sentiment of wedding traditions: the rings representing eternal romance, the vows that have been shared by generations of lovers, the cake, the honeymoon lingerie…The Dress. And of course, there are the “somethings.” You know, the something old, something new…the something Lela Rose. Bear with us while we swap out some of the traditional borrowed and blues for something effortless, ethereal, and elegant. Because when we dropped by Lela’s studio the other day (y’know, NBD. Just your typical visit to your designer crush to see her confections in touching range. The usual . . . ), we couldn’t help but sigh over the gatherings of tulle and embroidery, nod in agreement when we chatted about small weddings, and covet those custom-designed, lime green Lela Rose bikes complete with saddle baskets perfect for her pup Bobbin, who was killing it with some serious Blue Steele action. You can see why we’re swapping out some of those traditions— an update is sometimes necessary— for something Lela all the way.
What drew you to designing wedding dresses?
Designing bridal was a natural progression for the brand as we are focused on an entertaining lifestyle and a wedding is the ultimate in entertaining.
Describe the most amazing wedding you’ve ever attended:
I have been to some very extravagant weddings with all of the bells and whistles. My favorite wedding, though, was a very simple affair where we all were led in procession to a tiny church in Connecticut to the ringing of church bells. I find intimate weddings so much more special and memorable.
Which influences your designs more: Your Dallas upbringing or NYC lifestyle?
I feel that both are influences. Growing up in Dallas, I loved that the women there were always dressed and the casual lifestyle of workout clothes as daywear did not exist. My sense of color has also been influenced by Texas and the outdoors. Living in NYC is a different inspiration. I find ideas just biking around town and taking it all in….it is amazing how experiencing the city at a biking speed allows you to see so many details and flourishes that you might otherwise miss.
Where else do you find inspiration?
I was a sculpture and painting major in college. Working with textiles is another form of sculpting. Artists have long been inspirational and I love to see the world through their lens.
Any tips for brides-to-be?
Take a breath, put on a smile, and take in the joy of the day. Once the day is upon you, it is set, so just enjoy it and enjoy your guests. In preparation, I find that the small details have more impact than the grander ideas— pay most attention to those. Most importantly, have fun!
Rumor is you are quite the foodie, where are your favorite NYC spots to indulge?
We have dinner parties as much as we eat out. NYC has an abundance of amazing restaurants and some favorites are Estela and Camille Becerra’s Café Henri. Dan Kluger is coming out with a new restaurant very soon and he has long been a favorite chef.
Any romantic getaways coming up?
My husband and I just went to Blackberry Farm in the Smoky Mountains. The food is beyond delicious and has inspired many of my upcoming dinner parties. We are also headed to The Point in the Adirondacks later this summer— that’s another favorite place for food, serenity, and the great outdoors.
What is one thing you would never be caught without, and one you would never be caught with?
I hate not having my bike with me— it’s a quick exit when necessary!
I would never be caught with canned soda or fast food.
When you aren’t designing, you can be found…
Cooking and entertaining at home or upstate!
When a woman wears one of your garments, she should feel…