When reflecting on our next muse, Emma, our Creative Director Stephanie knew she wanted to create an entirely unique and fashion forward bridal look to complement our muses natural beauty. The creation intended on drawing attention to our muses' gorgeous face and natural textured hair, stripping the design back to elevate it’s elegance. 

Emma’s SANT ELIA look featured our signature boned and sheer bodice, overlaid with silk chiffon to create a high neckline detail. The back bow feature tied at the neck acted as our muses veil element, ensuring Emma still had her bridal moment whilst maintaining the understated and playful vibe. 

The skirt design featured a multiple layered tulle texture, with crinoline edging to create a lightly sculpted effect. We adored this almost rebellious and expected detail for Emma’s skirt. 

We recently sat down with Emma to understand more about her journey to the altar and her experience as a SANT ELIA bride. We are excited to share this story with you today, as well as an exclusive look at some of our muses most cherished images from her special day. 

Tell us about the journey that led you to SANT ELIA?

A friend of mine was a long time fan and client of SANT ELIA and she invited me as a guest to her final fitting, where I met Stephanie and it just snowballed from there. I didn’t intend on trying wedding dresses that day as I was only very recently engaged, but Steph has this wonderful calm and open personality which encouraged me to try on a few styles. The shop was so stunning inside and out and the dresses were all so beautiful in such different ways, how could I say no?

What was your initial bridal vision and how did that change? 

During the first meeting Stephanie talked me through some very simple stylistic preferences and asked what I envisioned for my wedding day. I told her that I wanted a very sleek, classic, simple, chic style, mermaid dress with some detail but not too much. As we talked through some of the things I was looking for, Steph looked a little sceptical to say the least. 

This was my first hint that she knew much more than me when it came to picking a suitable style for brides based on their personality. I ended up trying a range of column style mermaid dresses and hated every single one! She suggested a full princess style skirt with a separate halter tied corset bodice from her couture collection. I would never have put that dress on if Steph had not given it to me. As soon as I put it on, I knew it was the one. 

What design elements drew you to your dress? 

The wonderful freedom of movement that I felt when I put the skirt on. I could dance and walk and do anything in my dress. Above all I wanted to feel comfortable and free in my dress on the day and that's exactly how this dress made me feel. I also loved that it was a two piece, which meant I could wear the individual elements again if I wanted to at different events. Lastly, I love the halter tie up, the classic but slightly daring look of the bodice which tied in perfectly with the ribbon detailing on the skirt. This dress was pure me. 

Tell us about the process of selecting the accessories for your look including the head pieces and shoes?

When I came in for my final fitting I had different hair to my initial consultation so I was looking for a headpiece to complete my new look. I knew I wanted to wear something like a crown or a wreath because my hair was so short but also quite unique. The dress was already such a statement so part of me was not sure how to accessorize. In the end, it was Stephanie who came to my rescue again and suggested the beautiful jewelled hair piece from the studio and I ended up wearing it on the day. It was perfect and ended up complementing the garden setting of my wedding so well. The shoes. Well, they speak for themselves and I am a shoe person so of course I had to have these shoes. Who doesn't dream of princess shoes for their wedding?

How did you feel on your wedding day in your custom SANT ELIA Couture? 

I felt absolutely amazing and so special. I felt as if Steph and her team at SANT ELIA honoured me as an individual and as a bride. I felt like myself, only more beautiful. I couldn't wait to tell people where I got my dress and the care and commitment that went into making it. I know that Stephanie has a special connection to every bride she dresses and I felt it on the day and every time I saw her. I could not have been happier with my choice of designer.

You were one of our brides who had to postpone your original date and you also live interstate, tell us a bit about your experience and how you overcame these challenges? 

It was a challenge, mainly because I knew how hard it was for local vendors and designers like SANT ELIA. Originally we had a much larger guest list planned but we ended up settling for a smaller party to make sure that everyone we were closest to could make it. Stephanie and the team were incredibly accommodating and communicated so well throughout the process, which took a lot of stress off my shoulders. In the end, I don't think I could have managed everything if Stephanie and her team had not been so understanding, helpful and flexible. 

Do you have any tips for brides as they etch closer to their big day?

Try to relax as much as possible and don't bite off more than you can chew! Prioritize what is most important to you and aim for that. If you do need to be flexible, try to let go of things you cannot control and focus on making sure your loved ones are looked after and enjoy themselves. 

If you could reassure your past self of anything about your wedding, what would it be?

It is going to happen, your dress will fit, your flowers will arrive on time, your photographer will be able to make it, and everyone you love the most in the world will be there!

Do you have any feedback or comments for Stephanie and the team at SANT ELIA? 

Keep up the amazing work. The creativity, drive, passion and commitment you show everyday is truly inspiring. 

We thank our bride Emma for joining the SANT ELIA Muse Series. Her incredibly soft and warm nature is something we love about this muse and could not be more proud to have created her couture bridal look. 

To become a SANT ELIA bridal muse and enquire about our custom couture service, please click here

Gown and Headpiece @santelia_sydney
Photo and Video @fullhearts.co
Makeup: @lilamarvellmua

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