We had the pleasure of meeting the wonderful Prea James at the Hello May Real Wedding Special Sydney launch recently and wanted to share her latest bridal collection "Halcyon Days" with you. It was a match made in heaven having the talented Phoebe Barrett do hair and makeup on her latest look book shoot.
See some of our favourite looks below and a few insights from the designer herself.
TFM: How did you become a fashion designer and why choose bridal fashion?
PREA: I knew I wanted to be a fashion designer from a young age - as soon as I knew it was a career really. I went on to study Fashion Design at the Sydney Institute of Technology (Ultimo TAFE Fashion design Studio) majoring in Couture. After graduating in 2011, I became one half of a fashion label and also started working part time at Karen Willis Holmes - when the fashion label didn't work out, I started at KWH full time and really loved it! I loved the whole process of creating a wedding gown and all of the skill involved. After making some custom wedding dresses for friends and friends of friends, I decided to continue on my own, which I had always wanted to do.
TFM: What’s your favourite thing about working with brides?
PREA: I love that usually brides can't fully picture how the end result will work out and you can see they are a little nervous. Then at the final fitting when it all comes together, you see how happy they are and they tell you it's better then they could have imagined and that, is awesome.
TFM: Do you have a favourite dress from the current collection Halcyon Days?
PREA: Ooo, that is hard, but I think it's a tie between Eleonora, Chloe or Alessandra.
TFM: What do you think the best accessory is for one of your dresses?
PREA: A huge pair of amazing earrings... with a beautiful fresh hair and makeup look - much like what Phoebe created for this look book shoot.
TFM: What is your dream wedding venue/location?
PREA: Oh, such a tough question, there are so many amazing options out there! What's my budget? haha. Either a big beautiful modern space styled with fairy lights and modern blooms... maybe a little dark and moody with some neon lights... or on a roof top somewhere like Italy or Greece with the sun setting and again fairy lights... they make me happy.
TFM: Top tip for a bride to be?
PREA: I know sometimes you think you need help making a decision, particularly with choosing your dress, especially if you're as indecisive as me - but make sure you bring someone who will also listen to what you want and not tell you they hate the one that you say is your favourite, crushing your dreams and leaving you more confused then ever. It is your wedding! You really can not please everyone so don't try. The only person's opinion that matters is your own and your future husband or wife, unless you're lucky enough to get one that says they just want you to be happy... that's called winning at life.
Photos by Jack Steel