Do you swoon over classic love stories? Are you a hopeless romantic who uncontrollably turns on the waterworks over such tragic lovers as Dante and Beatrice, Romeo and Juliet and Lancelot and Guinevere?
If so, Claire Pettibone has your number: she creates ethereal bridal wear and lingerie to help you embellish your own fairytale romance. Who says wanting to be princess has to stop at a certain age (tell my niece that someday she’ll have to remove her Snow White gown and she’ll go into hysterics)?! Luckily for you eternal love story junkies, Pettibone is of similar thought.
Growing up on a 19th century farmhouse in rural New York, Pettibone spent her days playing in the nearby creek allowing her to indulge day after day in her make-believe world of castles and fairies. Encouraged by her parents, who are both professional artists, Claire’s earliest memories of catching the design bug are of filling her sketch book with drawings of regal wedding gowns fit for a princess.
Displaying a natural disposition for design, Pettibone studied fashion design at Parsons School of Design in Los Angeles, and to this day still credits her childhood ballet training as an aesthetic influence.
Pettibone launched her eponymous brand in 1994 with her husband Guy Toley, and the label has grown to receive mass acclaim for its luminous couture wedding gowns — but it doesn’t stop there.
CP also offers three distinct lingerie and loungewear collections which, although not marketed as bridal wear, are clearly meant to complement the brand’s wedding wares.
In particular, the Claire Pettibone luxury lingerie collection features intricately fabricated separates for the hopeless romantic — and altar-bound. Delicate lace and sensual chiffon and silk meld together to give the collection a whimsical air, without teetering into costume territory.
The collection features pieces that can be hard to find elsewhere: lacy, full-length sleeping gowns, boleros, bed jackets and whisper-thin chemises like the Coquette (above). Yes, you can definitely opt to wear the more Guinevere-inspired Athena Robe lace dressing gown with bell sleeves, but there are also more casual pieces to romp around in the morning after the Big Day.
In addition to the main luxury collection, Claire Pettibone offers two diffusion lines, Butterflies and Beau Clair which veer away from the brand’s uber-romantic signature (and its reliance on the brides market).
With a celebrity following, the Butterflies range consists of babydolls, tanks, chemises, hipsters and thongs in beautiful, exotic prints and a rainbow of hues. Less youth-oriented but equally compelling is the Beau Clair collection of lounging pieces in an assortment of bright prints. You don’t need to be a bride to enjoy these collections, but either range offers trousseau staples for a memorable honeymoon!
Below are some pieces from CP’s luxury lingerie line. Visit clairepettibone.com to see more if you want to feel like a modern-day princess on your wedding day.