Love Me, Love Me Knot - Phillipa Lepley

Dresses

Love Me, Love Me Knot

Phillipa Lepley x Rachel Trevor Morgan – a special couture collaboration.

A look into a very special collaboration between two iconic female-founded British brands: Phillipa joined forces with Rachel Trevor Morgan to create a bespoke ‘Constance Spry’ rose garland, styled on a finely draped satin chiffon gown.

Having a renowned passion and love for flora and fauna, Phillipa took inspiration from David Austin’s ‘Constance Spry’ English rose which grows abundantly in her garden. The rose takes its name from the pioneering florist, Constance Spry (1886-1960), whose beautifully organic and wild displays revolutionised floral design.

A softly draped, strapless ivory silk chiffon gown is adorned in the hand-crafted silk ‘constance spry’ rose garland that grows organically across the neckline. Using the Phillipa Lepley cupped corselette base, the dress is lightweight with loosely hand-draped chiffon and lots of movement in the skirt. A softly pulled knot is seen at the strapless ‘petal’ neckline, radiating out to the waist and flowing to the floor in chiffon. A light train puddles at the feet. 

Reflecting on the beginnings of her love affair with flora and fauna, Phillipa recalls sewing fresh flower garlands of roses and gypsophila onto a bride’s dress the morning of her wedding: ‘This was the start of the inspiration of having flowers on the dress, I just think it’s so bridal and feminine. I’m madly in love with Constance Spry roses, and I knew Rachel could make some silk roses to compliment one of my designs.’ – Phillipa Lepley

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Using traditional millinery techniques, each silk rose was hand-crafted from bud to bloom. 

Phillipa particularly fell in love with the roses for their graduation in colour, beginning with a dark pink bud in the centre before diffusing into a soft rosy hue for the outer petals. A mix of natural fabrics such as silk taffeta, habotai silk and organza were hand-dyed in graduating colours to replicate this – a process which took many weeks in itself. ‘We worked for quite a while together to get the tones just right – when you get the mix correct it makes my heart sing.’ – Rachel Trevor Morgan. 

With multiple sizes of roses that make up the garland, each one took many hours of work to handcraft. Every petal was individually cut out and hand-rolled and tooled using traditional, heated flower irons. The fabric was then tightly rolled into buds and the rest of the petals were fed together to create the finished design. Organza leaves in a pale green are nestled amongst the roses.

‘It’s truly wonderful when you are fed wonderful inspiration, which you have to turn into something beautiful. We do a lot of silk flowers on our hats so it felt natural to create the roses for Phillipa’s bridal collection.’ – Rachel Trevor Morgan on the collaboration.

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I would style this dress incredibly simply, you don’t need any necklace, however you might just want one or two little constance spry roses woven into your hair. The organic garland of roses softly graduating down into cascading, draped bias chiffon has a beautiful and feminine ‘gardeny’ feel with lots of movement – lovely for a wedding in the height of summer.’ – Phillipa Lepley 

A couture collaboration made in heaven, the ‘Love Me, Love Me Knot’ dress and bespoke silk rose garland is the beautiful result of two British and female-founded, London-based Ateliers that have come together, preserving their craft to create exquisite couture.

The bridal look was complimented on set at the Radiance campaign shoot with stunning florals by Shane Connolly and jewellery by Kiki McDonough.

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Phillipa Lepley is recognised globally as a leading British wedding dress and eveningwear designer, renowned for bespoke couture dresses of the utmost luxury. Her wedding dress shop in London, Chelsea, has over 50 dresses, all of which have been made in England from start to finish at her Atelier.