British lingerie designers have got it all figured out. Many of the same labels that, ahem, played such a key role in your courtship have designed special bridal collections to help keep the sparks flying during your honeymoon.
The UK boasts some of the most erotic and romantic designer brands in contemporary lingerie — and don’t for one second think they tone down the va-va-voom in their bridal offerings. In fact, viewed as a group, British designers are producing the most wildly sexy, original and amusing bridal lingerie on the planet today.
We’ve rounded up some of the most jaw-dropping, heart-stopping pieces designed to bring out that inner minx on your wedding day. But this is just a sample: you’ll find many more bridal ideas from leading UK designers by visiting online shops like Fox and Rose or Mio Destino (both of which will ship overseas)!
Agent Provocateur: Penelope Corset ($650)
Leave it to AP to produce some of the most titillating bridal wear. Case in point is their latest Penelope corset with its bust-boosting balconette cups and mesh and white scallop lace. Oh, and can we just take a moment to examine the back?! If those laces alone don’t beckon to be undone at the hands of your hubby, I don’t know what will.
Tallulah Love: Blue Birds Bra, Brief and Suspender ($68-128)
Catering to the ‘something blue’ adage, Tallulah Love has created a very regal Marie Antoinette-inspired ensemble. The balconette silk bra with limited edition blue birds print features delicate ribbon slot lace trim and vintage-inspired gold TL monogram. Style with soft curls for a modern take on this set fit for a queen.
Ayten Gasson: Abigail Collection ($70)
Ayten’s super-sweet silk bridal set (shown in the photo at the top of this post) offers a new twist on the “something old, something new, etc.” tradition. The Abigail knicker/garter/eye mask collection incorporates something old (Nottingham lace), something new (silk), something borrowed (design from an earlier AG collection) and something blue in the net trim. But make him figure it out. (For last-minute brides, check out Ayten’s sale on previous bridal collections. The Grace skirted knicker in the photo above is only $32!)
Fleur of England: Icing Silk Playsuit ($279)
Okay, so not everything has to be in-your-face raunchy to be considered sexy. Sometimes it’s the simpler pieces that exude understated sex appeal. From Fleur of England’s new Sweet Nothings range comes this very feminine stretch-silk playsuit with delicate eyelash French lace trim. This sophisticated nod to ’70s romanticism would look especially chic the morning after or on a romantic honeymoon.
Mimi Holliday: Rossetti Collection ($60-120)
Damaris Evans should get a thank-you note from every one of her customers who found themselves on the receiving end of a gushing marriage proposal! Now, the celebrated designer has added a super-frisky bridal range for her SS2011 Mimi Holliday line. The Rosetti range is constructed from porcelain white French lace and comes in a variety of knicker styles, boyshorts, two bras, a suspender and a sheer, low-cut bodysuit that is as sweet as it is naughty.
Ell & Cee: Snowflake Sparkle Playsuit ($125)
For those brides who love comfort but don’t want to sacrifice sex appeal, Ell & Cee’s Snowflake Sparkle Playsuit offers a flattering cut high on the leg and a daringly low front, all fabricated from comfortable silk chiffon. A delicate dusting of crystals on the side makes it ideal for the much-anticipated night of, or for a honeymoon getaway.
Gilda and Pearl: How to Marry a Millionaire Bra ($109)
This bestselling bra from Gilda and Pearl could give Patti Stanger of Milionaire Matchmaker a run for her money. And even if this beautiful oyster and cream, silk and lace bra doesn’t hook you a 7-digit partner, it will surely make you feel like a million bucks (and your hubby too).
Seems like only yesterday that we were writing about the newest push-up bra from Victoria’s Secret; in fact, it was three weeks ago. Don’t these people ever take holidays?
Hot on the heels of its newly revamped Incredible collection, the irrepressible retailer is back with its latest concoction, the Gorgeous. Or, as tweet-talking teens everywhere will surely call it, the Gorge. (As in, “Are you wearing the new VS bra? OMG it’s so g-o-r-g-e!”)
The Gorgeous, which can be worn in low-back, halter, crossback and standard configurations, provides the same kind of oomph and silhouette as its sister lines, the Incredible and the Miraculous.
What distinguishes Gorgeous from other VS lines is the styling: peek-a-boo embroidery, small decorative details, and a print piping on the smooth satin versions. For girls seeking a bit more glamor than is found in the Miraculous line — which this season has been taken over by animal prints — the Gorgeous offers an attractive alternative.
Prices are around $50, the same as most Victoria’s Secret bras.
Ironically (but not surprisingly) the “G” is not available in a G cup! Like so many VS products, size ranges are limited; in this case, the Gorgeous ranges from 32A to 38D.
One might ask why the company continues to develop new style ranges for the same market, rather than expanding size ranges for its current catalog to include more girls and women? Doesn’t everyone have a girlfriend or friends who “can’t shop at Victoria’s Secret”?
Below is the Gorgeous TV commercial (directed by Michael Bay) which debuted last night on American Idol.
And to learn more how to choose a VS product that’s right for you, check out our popular shoppers’ guide to Victoria’s Secret bras.
A big tease only works if there’s an equally big payoff at the end. And that’s exactly what British women are expecting when the curtain finally rises this week on Boux Avenue, the UK’s newest lingerie retail powerhouse.
Boux Avenue has been tantalizing shoppers for at least six months with a peek-a-boo marketing campaign that has so far revealed very little about the brand while managing to drum up almost feverish anticipation.
The company has been blogging and tweeting like mad for months, running Facebook contests and feeding teensy morsels of info to the British press. Last night, the company held a lavish burlesque-style launch party at a packed London club to finally kick things off in style.
Despite the build-up, only a handful of product photos (that’s one above, featuring brand spokesmodel Jacqui Ainsley) have been released to date — even though the first of six Boux stores and its online webshop are slated to open tomorrow.
Founded by big-spending entrepreneur Theo Paphitis (right) of Dragon’s Den fame, Boux Avenue is being billed as a mid-market luxury brand with a strong vintage component and an emphasis on glamorous, old-Hollywood styles (ie., we know there’s a Harlow collection.)
With pent-up demand from curious shoppers, Boux is expected to make an immediate splash on the crowded UK lingerie market, likely denting sales for mall brands like La Senza and department chains such as Marks and Spencer and Debenhams.
Still, the somewhat tardy arrival of Boux Avenue is being eagerly welcomed by the retail trade: the brand has reportedly taken on up to 1,000 employees and is one of the first new UK retail chains to debut during the recession.
But Paphitis (who cashed out his £100 million stake in La Senza a couple of years ago) is looking far beyond this week’s glittery opening festivities to bigger battles ahead.
Lingerie retailers across the UK are nervously preparing for next year’s opening of a flagship Victoria’s Secret store in London, which is likely to be only the beginning of the U.S. giant’s incursion into Britain and even Europe. And industry watchers believe the deep-pocketed and well-connected Paphitis might provide the strongest bulwark against the coming U.S. invasion of the British knickers market.
Think Boux Avenue isn’t girding for battle? Last week, the company unveiled its sleek pink shopping bag (see photo below), which bears an uncanny resemble to you-know-who’s iconic bag.
But will Boux’s big reveal justify all the pre-launch hype? Time will tell, but the first battle — creating demand for the product — has already been won.
Below are the few images already released showing Boux Avenue’s product line. We’ll have more this week once the brand launches.
Stella McCartney this week released a video to accompany the memorable campaign shoot for its Spring 2011 lingerie collection. No explanation why the vid is just making its debut, four+ months after the images were released.
No matter. The video below, featuring model Hannah Holman, gives viewers a closer look at some of Stella’s scrumptuous spring styles. Enjoy!
Looking for a quick way to add a burst of color to your spring wardrobe? Just try slipping into this super-pretty ensemble from the Something Else diffusion line by Else Lingerie.
The delightfully airy ‘Chick Flick‘ range is a playful candy-stripe pattern that blends shades of purple and pink, and comes in a soft bra, relaxed shorts (above) and a cami (below right). All silk chiffon and flouncy ruffles, Chick Flick will chase away the clouds on those gloomy spring days and gets our vote for this spring’s prettiest print.
Of course, anyone familiar with this up-and-coming designer label won’t be surprised. Since 2007, Turkish-born designer Ela Onur has been handcrafting some of the loveliest bras on the market.
Raised in the family business of lingerie accessories, Ela had access to some of the best materials available. Her knowledge and skill resulted in a sophisticated-yet-quirky collection that is quickly gaining fans around the world.
Made in her native Turkey, each piece is constructed from European silks and lace; to ensure the highest quality, production is not outsourced. And because Ela wants every woman to feel beautiful in lingerie tailored to fit the body perfectly, the handmade bras are available in cup sizes A through G.
Else offers seasonal collections in two lines: the glamorous signature Else collection of boudoir-ready pieces, and the sportier Something Else grouping aimed at a younger, more fashion-centric audience.
The Signature collection boasts pure silk with intricate pleats and draping, and luxurious Chantilly lace adds feminine touches. The balconette bra and chemise stand out as the collection’s must-haves for spring. In fact, the coral underwired bra in stretch lace with double straps (bottom photo) is one of this spring’s prettiest bras — talk about hitting an opening day home run!
The midnight blue Else silk romper is a boudoir staple for Else fans. (Also available in black, for those looking for the LBD equivalent in lingerie.) The over-sized silk bow adds a whimsical touch to the delicate piece.
The scalloped-lace-edged plunge bra and culotte in silver is on-trend and fashion-forward. And for the woman who loves clean lines and impeccable modern design, the black chevron silk chemise is the perfect lounge-or-seduce piece.
Else lingerie has found a home at many of the world’s leading luxury lingerie boutique. Shop to your heart’s content online at Journelle, La Petite Coquette, Frou Frou Lounge and Fox and Rose, and online at Anthropologie.
Images below are from Else’s signature collection for spring-summer 2011.