In 12 months I have created 3 of my favourite wedding dresses. Unsurprising, as I believe its a natural process to continually grow and improve in your work, in your art. But it was particularly special creating my own wedding dress in April and than my twin sister's earlier this month (you might also remember the beautiful dress I created for Christine last November - featured here) Each unique in design and how I approached them, but all a product of a labour of love. Beading featured strongly in each, and while it is particularly tedious and time consuming, I enjoyed every moment, right down to those late nights before the Big day. Beading is my art, and to this day Ive never "completed" a beaded work - always feeling I could use another 6 months on each. But thats the beauty of it. Like paint to an artist, it can be layered and changed by adding more.
We decided on a little impromptu photoshoot while on our picnic last week. The weather was crisp, the scene was amazing, Sahana was in her element playing amongst the pebble beach, Saci was wearing her GloTatts, and just happened to also have her favourite Spell & the Gypsy Collective bikini on hand - this is the result. Our muse, Ariel, wished for legs so she could be with her prince
There's no other feeling in the world quite like the feeling I had waking up on the morning of my daughter's 1st birthday. I didn't realise the gravity of this milestone until it was here. And for the first time in a year, I really stopped to reflect. I'd made it! with (most of) my sanity intact, and a wonderful little creature that had suddenly become her own little person. She is no longer an extension of me, like a limb, but a bubbling, smart, determined and curious little girl. Her little fingers ran over every detail when opening her presents, from the paper and sticky tape, to the shapes and colours of every new object. She has a seriousness to her that makes me laugh, and in turn of hearing my laugh she lets out a squeal of delight, or a fake giggle, either, but never without an reaction.
We have been hard at work designing and creating Mini Rada Priya Designs - Baby versions of our Collections, past & present. We have opened a store on Etsy: www.etsy.com/au/shop/RadaPriyaDesigns and we are slowly adding styles as we make them. Please find us on Instagram @MiniRadaPriya for instant and more consistent updates
Next week Sahana turns 1 (insert dancing shoes) and her party Tribal Theme has inspired a whole range of feather headbands - which will also be available soon.
My sister's at GLO TATTS (Metallic Glow-in-the-Dark Temporary Tattoos) are having an instagram GIVEAWAY So, if you haven't tried GLO TATTS yet - It's COMPETITION TIME
Win GLO TATTS 'Indie' Pack
1. Like their INSTAGRAM competition post (http://instagram.com/glotatts)
2. Repost ANY GLO TATTS pic on Instagram
3. Tag @glotatts AND hashtag #glotattsgiveaway
4. Enter as many times as you like
Winner be will be drawn on Sunday 10th Aug at 8.00pm
Planning a wedding in just under 2 months, with a 5 month old baby should have been more challenging, but everything slotted into place as if it had been mapped out in our own little destiny handbook.
I knew I wanted it low key and intimate, not just because it was my second trip down the aisle, but that we already had the greatest prize to symbolise our devotion - our daughter Sahana.
Since meeting Julian 4 years ago, it has been a journey unlike any other. I would describe it as I still feel it today, as if we took each others hand and stepped out into the darkness, only to have it light up as our feet touched the floor. I've never known what was ahead of us, and through it all I have learnt a great deal about trust. I know that Julian would tell it very differently, but that is only a testament to how vastly we contrast each other.
Deciding on all the wedding details was mostly easy because Julian was collectively very cool in leaving it my capable hands ;)
Red Hill is like our little slice of Tuscany down under, so naturally we were inclined to choose a winery for the ceremony and reception. We married at Tuck's Ridge Vineyard on 4th April, surrounded by 30 of our closest family and friends. Sahana cooed and smiled throughout the ceremony, but leaving her for our interval photoshoot amongst the vines proved to be too much for our little lady, and thus the remainder of the evening I spent half naked in the powder room trying to comfort her! It is to be noted here, that I did indeed make my own wedding dress, fully aware that our 6 month old daughter was still breastfeeding - I don't think I could have designed a more inaccessible dress… I blame it on severe sleep deprivation. I had given myself a mere 50 hours over 8 weeks to create a style I would feel comfortable in my post baby body (I spend about 300 hours over 6 months for my clients - just to give you an idea). I didn't quite finish it, but wore it anyway (actually, half wore it for best part of the day!)
3 weeks ago, my twin sister Saci, came to me excited about a creative concept her and my eldest sister Kat were brainstorming up. The artistic gene runs strong in all the sister's, and we have been blessed that we have been able to exercise that creativity in our day to day lives.
Their idea: Glo Tatts™ - Metallic Glow-in-the-Dark Temporary Tattoos
It was a great idea, but they had to work quickly to roll it out before the end of summer in the northern hemisphere. So for the next few weeks, Saci sketched hundreds of tattoo designs to come up with the perfect set for their launch.
With my daughter still in her very dependant upon me (9 months, and still doesn't sleep well!), I was limited in ways to help, so I acted as a cheerleader.
Wednesday was their first shoot - which manifested at Saci's St Andrews Beach shack. Models Emily & Shanai were called last minute. We pulled our favourite styles from my collections from the last 3 years, and I managed to get a set built in about an hour - a teepee made of exquisite sari's that Saci bought in India
Saci shot, edited and built the website in hours, with contributions from her best friend Sophie - App queen of Applause Apps
Glo Tatts™ Launched yesterday, and I'm so excited for whats to come
*On a product side note - I got to wear the first ever Glo Tatt, and a week later, writing this post is a little more fun than usual with my metallic hand tatt still sparkling up at me
These are a few of the raw images taken from the photoshoot - see pic captions for tattoo and outfit details
Wearing Cobolt Jersey peplum top - now available to order $75 including shipping. Available sizes 6 to 14. Please email: email@example.com
Arthurs Seat over looking my home of in McCrae - feeling so grateful to call this place home
Valentine's Day was very eventful this year - my beau proposed and we booked our entire wedding the same day! It has been the easiest event I have ever planned, which is lucky as raising our daughter is much more than a full time job.
We had planned to skip this year's Melbourne Fashion Festival, freshly changed to Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival, so when the girls threw me an impromptu Hen's night and chose The National Graduate Showcase runway to host us, it couldn't have been a more perfect. All my favourite girls and one of the most inspiring runways I have seen in a long time.
I was so proud to find Sahana and her aunty favourites amongst the bloggers and photogs outside
full album on Facebook
On my birthday this year I had the pleasure of meeting Christine. That was back in March, and today is her 50th birthday. I have had the great pleasure of getting to know this wonderful woman through the process of creating her wedding dress - never before have I had a client give me complete creative freedom, and because of this I maintained passion and motivation during my pregnancy and first weeks with a newborn. From concept to construction, not once I felt like I was working. Christine and Andrew married yesterday (30th November 2013) - here is a little snippet of the making of -
so its been almost a year since my last collection was released - the large gap was unintentional and unfortunately it will still be awhile before I am able to get my next collection out and available. But this doesn't mean I haven't been designing and sewing, in fact I work everyday on pieces for my individual clients. Its a little harder now, finding time between feeds and sleep, but I am motivated and inspired more than ever. My plan is to re-launch my entire label in the new year, and in the meantime produce one offs - like this cotton jersey jumpsuit with vintage sleeve fabric from the 1960's
For almost 4 months I was convinced I was pregnant with a boy, so when the nurse told me otherwise, I asked if she could please check again. Now with my tiny little daughter in my arms, just over 2 weeks old, I could not imagine a more perfect being to come into our life.
During my third trimester, with my own collection put on hold, I busied myself sewing mini versions of all my favourite pieces (plus some handy baby bibs)
Sahana is far too tiny to fit into any of her collection, but we are in no rush, and enjoying every second observing the world unfold to our precious baby
A few weeks ago, on a windy winter day, Saci and I took the girls (her gorgeous step children) for an adventure at Kerry Green near Cape Schanck - its such a striking place to see. Tame rolling hills covered in tall grass, that reaches out to the wild ocean that cuts away at the shore making steep unstable cliffs. The climb to the bottom is well worth the effort, with clear blue rock pools teaming with life forming amongst the sharp rock beach.
In my ninth month of pregnancy, not much fits but this beautiful silk dress by Californian brand - Daughters of the Revolution
Baby showers are the kind of events you either love, or avoid. Baby talk and no booze, I tended to favour the latter. Great food was all I could think about when my sister began organising my babes shower - cupcakes, pumpkin pie, chocolate brownies, cake pops, cheesecake, berry tarts, caramel popcorn, lemon slice, eclairs, raspberry muffins - and thats just for the sweet tooth. I could not even imagine how fun the day could be, and I really understood the "shower" in baby shower, as I unwrapped gift after gorgeous gift - my lovely lady friends really made me and babes feel so special and loved.
my dearest friend celebrated her 29th birthday this week - begging the 'gift' question. Just about all the most beautiful things I own were gifted by this girl, whom has exquisite style & taste - so when I was browsing one of my fav blogs, Kayture, and saw this image and the striking royal blue coat, my hand went straight to paper. I have no idea where said coat is from, but I found the most gorgeous cashmere wool blend felt at Tessuti's and constructed this jacket from eye just in time for birthday Daniella's party. Happy with the result I may have to construct a pattern and add this to my next collection
framed sketch & coat - thats a (gift) wrap!
In just 6 months my twin sister Saci will be tying the knot with her beau of 5 years. We are in the midst of wedding fever designing and making her wedding dress - which I have to admit has been the most of fun in the sewing room I've ever had. Heavily pregnant now, I rely on her more than ever, as everything takes that much longer and any baby kicks have me instantly forgetting what I'm doing.
This weekend we celebrated the first anniversary of my best friends wedding. Undoubtedly one my biggest highlights for 2012 - the memory might be a little hazy (thanks to the traditional liquor Rakia free flowing throughout the 3 day event) but the feeling of Love still rings loud. Here's a little highlight of that beautiful day 1 year ago (bridesmaids dresses by Rada Priya Designs)
Jeans are already hard enough for me, let alone adding an ever expanding baby bump to the equation. For 6 months Ive been able to get away with body con dresses (when I'm not in oversized nighties or mother Hubbard dresses), but this cooler weather + the energy I've got back now that I'm in my third trimester, means legs free for striding. I searched for maternity jeans online and stores I could find down the Peninsula way, but all were more shabby than chic = DIY
These are a pair of my old favourites that I whipped up. Converting them was a simple as overlocking the top of the pockets out (incl waistband) and stitching in some good quality elastic banding. et te voilà!
[in the background is some samples of the completed/yet to be photographed AW13 collection....sssh]
Instagram has been stealing the limelight more and more nowadays - the pic feed provides me with constant visual refreshment. Overlayed with fun filter apps there are so many available, but i'll take a second to plug my friends app - Instablend. My twin sister esp loves this app, so I thought I would share a couple of my images she has been playing around using this app, aswell as her handy photoshop skillz - most of you will recognise the base images from my first Spring collection
Thank you to my facebook fans for all your support and ♡ more than 400 fans
Finding out I'm carrying a girl was not only thrilling, but a real surprise. For 4 months we have been calling our bump 'him'- so convinced that a son was growing
I have 4 of the most beautiful nieces (& 4 nephews) which has given me years of practice designing and making mini Rada Priya Designs. Just a day after my 20 week scan, my creativity is running wild with ideas for my very own daughter
Pregnancy has, and is a constant adventure providing a sense of peace and purpose that I have never known before. It's a beautiful thing
The lovely twins of FASHIONOXYGEN have been showcasing pieces from my AW12 collection on their blog recently. I love these girls style, and its so exciting to see posts pop up with my designs. Based in Spain, they are 6 months ahead of us in fashion realm, however because I produce my collections here in Australia, my Autumn Winter 2012 collection is their AW13. Be sure to check out their blog
A little post and pre show photo log of what my lovely twin sister wore to the L'Oreal Fashion Festival Red Carpet event. Most in her comfort wearing bohemian style clothing, I added a little chic with two pieces from my collection - the silk top is from the Autumn Winter 2013 collection, and the palazzo pant is from the recent Spring Summer 12/13 collection. The rest of the styling is all her own - including the hair jewellery that she bought on one her many trips to India.
This year the L'Oeal Melbourne Fashion Festival Red Carpet event was all about the ethereal bride. Hosted by Harper's Bazaar Brides, the show was opened by my favourite Australian, Collette Dinnigan. Her signature exquisite lace and hand beaded gowns in youthful feminine silhouettes glided down the catwalk, the models concealed by delicate face veils. Akira followed, pleasantly surprising us with loosely fitted shapes that seemed to float around the body.
Gwendolynne, the only designer to specialise soley in the Bridal field, delivered what the bride-to-be's in the audience came to see - the crowd erupted with coo's of admiration, and the gasps and murmurs of delight and the applause did not cease through Rachel Gilbert or Aurelio Costarella, until the final gown by Toni Maticevski, with its veil the length of the runway and needing 3 groomsmen to assist - I, along with with everyone else was left speechless. A triumph of inspiration