“This year, we drew inspiration for the new collection from talented women in creative professions – many of which are often dominated by men,” says Gaby Bayona, Aesling’s Founder and Creative Director. “The contributions that female artists and architects have made to their respective fields have had a tremendous impact on how we see and experience the world, and they deserve to be recognised. Our collections are one small way of saying thank you, and acknowledging that the softness traditionally – though misguidedly – associated with femininity is actually critical to the development of culture around the world.”
The 2024 Collection pays homage to 6 visual artists that used their art practices to create political and aesthetic change, especially for intersectional feminist causes.
"This group of gowns is an ode to the women who used their art as a means of political activism, challenging conventions and paving the way for change,” Gaby said. “For these artists, it wasn’t just about the art – it was about creating a better, more inclusive world. Our gowns are for brides who appreciate the multifaceted beauty of that generous act, and who themselves lead lives characterized by beauty and inspiration.”
Frida is a balanced, elegant gown that conjures Kahlo’s temperate self portraits. The square neck bodice is cast wide, framing the collarbones – the perfect stage for an important, understated pendant. The shoulders, complete with small pads that evoke a straighter posture, lead down into long sleeves which cuff at the wrists. Frida’s back plunges low, and is finished with an illusion button detail along the zipper at the back of the fitted modern mermaid skirt.
Leonora, by contrast, appears to forgo almost all structure in favour of a minimal, body-skimming fit. One of the defining characteristics of surrealism is a sense of movement, always changing and shifting depending on your perception. Like Carrington’s complex and illusory paintings, her namesake gown moves and changes with you – like a different gown one moment to the next. Leonora is finished in liquid satin or crepe and features a structured lining to keep you feeling supported and comfortable.
Adrian gets straight to the point, like Piper’s famous Calling Cards. Adrian is perfect for the minimalist bride looking for an understated gown to wear to the courthouse (though if you’re looking for a little extra something, read on!). The straps taper down into a scoop-necked bodice which is mirrored at the back of the gown. The zipper is finished with illusion buttons that give way to the fitted modern mermaid skirt. We would pair Adrian with statement earrings and high, sculptural heels.
Structured design elements
The Augusta is the most sculptural gown of this collection, a nod to Savage’s masterful renderings of fabric and volume in bronze and plaster, balancing the hardness of her media with the softness of textile and flesh. The strapless sweetheart bodice is ruched at the centre, and drapes down the hips, before falling off into the long, elegant line of the half circle skirt. Augusta’s detachable sleeves sit just off the shoulder, bringing volume to this otherwise sleek silhouette.
Again, by contrast, moving from the hardness of sculpture to the softness of textile, the Louise gown nods in homage to Bourgeois’ textile works. The Louise’s silhouette could be considered one of the most feminine shapes of this collection, with a plunging V-neck bodice nipped in at the waist by a wide waistband and a slim-fitting modern mermaid skirt. Louise’s back features a tie that drapes the length of the gown, highlighting textile’s capacity to be both soft and plastic, a recurring theme in her work.
The Angelica gown features a bodice with architectural seams – the only gown of its type in this collection. This is a visual reference for the corset or bustier, a design element long used to cinch women into gowns for aesthetic purposes (typically incredibly uncomfortable for the person who wore it). But the Angelica subverts the corset, instead using the boning to create a comfortable, supportive fit. A lovely snug silhouette gives way to the fitted modern mermaid skirt for a truly wearable gown. It’s a new, modern femininity.
The 2024 Collection is completed by a number of customizable elements – such as our long pearl cape, pleated cuff sleeves, ruched creppone cuff and bell sleeves, and pearl bell sleeves – so you can realize your own unique vision of bridal perfection (or take your own artistic license, if you will). ∎
Aesling is still committed to setting a new standard for size inclusivity in the bridal industry. The 2024 Collection, like preceding collections, was photographed on models wearing size 2 and size 16, so all brides can see themselves reflected in the imagery we share with the world. This collection is available in sizes 0 - 26, so everyone can look and feel their best in an Aesling gown.
The 2024 Collection is already available from retailers in Canada, the United States, Europe, New Zealand and Australia.