We were flattered to be asked to create a stunning piece for the Swarovski Gallery at this March’s BBEH. Lots of research and hard work from our design team followed, and now Kelly shares the creation story with us:
The revered Black Swan movie, starring Oscar winning actress Natalie Portman, is the inspiration for the Design team’s recent collaboration. Organisers of the Bridal Buyer Swarovski Innovation Gallery at the recent British Bridal Exhibition Harrogate in March 2011, asked us to enter a piece to be included in their gallery. It had to be as innovative and dramatic as we could think up, and was to be a showcase for Swarovski Crystal Elements.
Our piece, along with other dress and accessory manufacturers, was displayed at the show for the public to view. Our entry was a fully dressed mannequin with full tulle tutu/petticoat, scattered with Cosmojet crystals and feathers. An entirely crystallized fitted bodice, which had been distressed, and feather appliquéd to create the tortured appearance that describes the character of the Black swan. And to finish this glorious crystal creation, an oversized crystal and feather headdress with mask detail that appears to grow into the headdress.
Using over 14,400 flatback stones of varying size and shape, nearly 2,300 fancy stones, pendants and bicone beads, and the bodice constructed of nearly three metres of crystal hematite fabric, this piece is a crystal, tulle and feather symphony!
It took four members of the design team almost a week to construct the bodice, tiara, mask and cuffs, along with the assistance of the petticoat seamstress, and our pattern maker in the making of the tutu. The design process, sourcing of materials and execution probably took in total three weeks, but it was both an enjoyable challenge and a great team building project, that I would hope you agree, displays that British design and innovation is not in demise!
Currently our Black Swan is travelling the world, to be included in the Swarovski Innovation gallery at the First Look and Modatex shows in Holland and Germany on 8-9 May and 25-28 June.
I would like to thank Claire, everyone from the design team and petticoats, for their help with this rather challenging, but fun project!