Disclaimer: This dress was provided free of charge by The Apricot Rose. All opinions are my own, and you can find my full disclosure policy here.
Today I'd like to introduce you to a brand called The Apricot Rose, which is run by Italian designer Manuela Grenata. Manuela trained as a fashion designer, pattern maker and seamstress at the Instituto di Moda Burgo in Milan and specialised in the design and production of wedding dresses. The Apricot Rose supplies made to measure and ready-made day dresses, occasion dresses, and wedding dresses.
All the clothing for The Apricot Rose is designed and created start to finish by Manuela in her studio in Alessandria. The styles are romantic and retro, inspired by vintage, rococo and classical ballet. In particular, Manuela draws inspiration from the clothing of the 1950s and is inspired by stars such as Audrey Hepburn, Grace Kelly, Sophia Loren and Jackie Kennedy, and designers such as Dior, Givenchy, and Sorelle Fontana. She also finds inspiration in the history of art and costume, as well as contemporary and street fashion.
To design clothing for The Apricot Rose, Manuela begins with a picture, idea, or figure, then makes the pattern for the item. Next, she cuts the fabric and sews the clothes before adding decoration which is all hand finished and can be customised according to your preferences. You can also contact her to have designs made up in a specific colour or fabric of your choice.
I'm wearing this beautiful floral-pattern 1950s style dress which Manuela has custom made to my measurements. It's fully lined in a beautiful pink satin and features a beaded appliqué at the neck and a lace trim around the bottom of the skirt. The skirt itself is a full circle so there's plenty of material for twirling. I've chosen to go without a petticoat for these photos because the skirt hangs very nicely without, but it would easily take a petticoat or two underneath if you wanted the extra volume.
The details in this dress really help to set it apart from the kind of offerings on the market from a lot of repro companies, not to mention the quality. With it being made to measure it of course fits perfectly, which is something you don't often find with off-the-peg items. This particular style is somewhere in between formal and casual: I went for a smartish look for an afternoon out but I could easily dress this up even more for a wedding, for example, or pair it with a more casual pair of flats and a comfy cardigan for something a bit more casual.
Don't forget to check out The Apricot Rose's website for the other styles available!