'I want our brides to get that heart-stopping look from the groom as she walks down the aisle'
Even after a decade and a half in weddings, Kat Corpus still says the moment a bride first fits her final wedding gown will always be her favorite. Tears are sometimes shed, especially from the bride’s family members, when they first lay eyes on the brides-to-be.
Kat’s story begins with sketches as a young girl and creating designs where she could, as part of the cheering squad and for prom. After studying fashion, she then started designing for TV, magazines, newspapers in 2007 and her creations have been worn by celebrities and politicians.
Weddings hold a special place in Kat’s heart. “Being a designer for weddings is such a great blessing. Not only can I do what I love most every single day, but I get to be part of their love story and their wedding journey."
Below, Kat shares with Inspirations.ph how her creative process and her tips for brides and grooms:
What got you interested in fashion and weddings?
Ever since I was a little girl, I’ve always been fascinated with dresses, gowns, and how fashion trends change over time. Even as a young girl, I would always sketch and do doodles on my sketchbook and design outfits for school plays, our cheering squad, and even my prom. It has always been a dream to become a fashion designer.
I’ve always seen fashion as a form of self-expression and art. I get excited to see the process of how my ideas turn to fruition. My passion for fashion even intensified when I took up fashion design in Fashion Institute of The Philippines. It expanded my outlook and perspective on different techniques and hand-crafted details. I have always had a soft spot for wedding gowns, the intricacy of its details, the different cuts and silhouettes, and how you make sure that you turn your bride’s dream wedding gown to reality.
Tell us about your style when it comes to creating for weddings.
I like dreamy, romantic and timeless designs. I like creating my own pattern and details; hand-crafted floral appliques, laser cuts, intricate beadwork, combination of different laces and hand woven embroideries. I love working on intricate details.
My style, I would say would still depend on the bride I’m designing for. Every bride is unique and I want to make sure that her personality exudes in the dress she’s wearing. May it be a sleek clean cut or a dreamy princess gown, it has to be unique and elegant and not too overwhelming. We make sure that every gown is created with love, time and effort. I want our brides to get that heart-stopping look from the groom (and the guests) as she walks down the aisle.
What do you enjoy most about being a fashion designer for weddings?
There’s always something magical about weddings. It is like the “happily ever after” of a fairytale. Being a designer for weddings is such a great blessing. Not only can I do what I love most every single day, but I get to be part of their love story and their wedding journey. Creating their gowns and suits doesn’t really feel like work at all. I enjoy the process. You get to meet their families and actually be part of their families’ special events and milestones. I love how I see my brides and groom grow and build their own families. The smile and happiness on the couple’s faces, even their families and entourage is the most rewarding and gratifying feeling.
A wedding dress isn’t just like any dress. It is the most special dress a woman will wear in her life. It is something that she will keep and can even pass it on to her daughter. And to be the one to make that for a bride, it is like leaving an imprint on their hearts as well.
When it comes to the creative process, how do you start creating for your clients?
It’s very important to get to know your client, her personality, what she wants, and also her body type. I always start with an initial meeting, may it be face to face or via zoom. I want to get to know the client/bride first. Knowing your client’s body type is very important so you can see what silhouette best suits her.
Then we talk about what she wants, her dream gown, or pegs if she has any. From my initial conversation with our bride, I get to know her and see her personality. Then I can already start with the design process.
The client is actually the best inspiration when creating a design. As a designer, you also have to be versatile, you have to also consider what your clients want and need. After which, we have the sketches and swatches presentation. Once the client picks the design, we then proceed with the creation process. For our first fitting, we don’t only let them fit the lining, but we let them fit the gown itself without the hand stitched details but with the base lace already, if the garment has one, because we also want them to see and feel how it will turn out. Then we proceed to the detailing, which is my favorite part.
Detailing a gown requires intricacy and perfection. You have to give every piece the same amount of passion, time and effort.
Any tips for brides and grooms when it comes to creating their wedding wear?
Choosing what to wear for your wedding day is very important. You should feel good to look good. You should consider the venue of your wedding, if it’s hot or in a cold weather place. Being comfortable in your wedding attire is very important because you will be wearing it the whole day. Always dress comfortably and appropriately. You will enjoy the ceremony and the occasion more if you feel elegant and comfortable.
Deciphering what to wear for your wedding isn’t always easy. The bride might have a lot of ideas in her mind and it can really be confusing. Follow your heart when choosing what to wear. It is also good to have a good relationship with your designer. You should be comfortable talking to her and never be afraid and timid to ask questions. You will be working with her for quite some time and after all, your designer will be your fairy godmother for your wedding. It does not matter whether you have 500 or 50 guests, what’s important is you are wearing your dream wedding gown and you feel good. Remember that your wedding day is the most special day in your life.
After all your years in the wedding industry, what would you say is your most favorite moment/part about weddings?
Seeing them fit their finished gowns and suits. I would even see tears in my brides and sometimes their parents, when they see their daughters in a wedding gown.
The heartwarming thank you messages and appreciation from your clients keep us doing what we love to do. Especially when you see the bride walk down the aisle, that is such an incredible feeling. And all of those things are the most priceless reward for me and my team.
See Kat Corpus’ Intimate Wedding Gown Packages at The Philippine Wedding Summit until July 25.
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All photos courtesy of Kat Corpus