Wednesday, August 20th 2014
Day is nearly over, it may never return... the sun sinking low into the sky, greeting the horizon, golden and honeyed with the promise of approaching darkness. changing light bookends the brightness of the day, separating earlier personas from the languid endlessness of a beckoning evening, stretching ahead, infinite with possibilities, a night not yet begun....
In fading light, a procession of mermaids trail across the beach, already salty and sun kissed from the day, having retired from the sand only to slip into dresses and evening attitudes of insouciance.
There is a party, invisible but beckoning, concealed behind dunes and between rocks, drawing them silently towards the sounds, the whispers and echoes, following a sirens song... revelling under the changing sky, losing themselves to the approaching night, to the light, they wander through the party, through the evening, every whisper a promise made.
They feel free, desired, unsheltered and unwatched... spinning counterclockwise, each turn robbing the planet of momentum, slowing its spin the tiniest bit, lengthening the night, pushing back the dawn...
“Watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don't believe in magic will never find it.”
Drawing inspiration from some of our favourite writers, words and whisperings…and an endless affinity with the ocean, the colour palette, the scents and sounds of the sea - we'd long dreamed of a salty windswept editorial, weaving magic with light and colour and unearthing dresses that had a mermaid-esque feel.
With a glamorous yet romantically dishevelled aesthetic in mind we searched for gowns full of textured tulles and raw hems, with unexpected details and embellishments reminiscent of a rocky, shell strewn shore. We called in fishtail silhouettes, sea foam coloured lace, ethereal wisps of silk and decadently encrusted bodices...plus one of our favourite sequinned gowns by Houghton (spotted at the Fall 2014 Bridal shows in New York earlier) which moved like quicksilver.
With everything crossed for the moodiness of a stormy day, we shot at Dreamtime Beach in Fingal, whose volcanic rocks took on an ancient, otherworldly quality. Salty breezes whipped around us, bringing to life endless layers of tulle and creating effortlessly wild beach hair.
It was an early caffeine fueled 4am start at The LANE office as we got ready for the first morning light. And perfectly on cue, giant clouds rolled in at sunrise lending a magical dawn light. The skies seemed to be manifesting our creative brief and colour palette, frame by frame. Silver horizons at first light quickly gave way to a golden day and honeyed dusk. At sundown, opalescent colours reflecting from a wet slick of sand drew to an end to a day that felt like magic.
The mood and energy of this editorial evokes for us a wildly free twilight wedding….dancing beneath stars barefoot on the shores until dawn, with vows exchanged and witnessed by only the most meaningful of friends and family.
Completely inspired by the idea of a secret, intimate dinner party held on a hidden beach (brought to life on a grand scale) we imagine the area encircled by billowing muslin sailcloths or ethereally sheer flags, drifting like long tendrils down the sand. Think endless candles and garlands of tiny lights glowing over a party filled with the tinkling of glasses, of sparkling drinks sipped from crystal tumblers and platters of the freshest seafood imaginable laid onto wooden tables, intended for sharing.
Take a look at the full editorial 'Pushing Back The Dawn' on The Guide.
Tuesday, June 3rd 2014
New York can wear you down. Its pace is fast and its energy high. Its modern skyscrapers and glistening city lights, some might say worlds away from the laidback barefoot existence of life on Sydney’s eastern beachside suburbs; where the days are hot and the nights are hotter. Afternoons mean escaping work for a sunset swim and weekends that require nothing more than bare feet and a bikini are the best kind.
Enter the New York apartment of Samantha Wills, bona fide bohemian, global nomad and unquestionably one of Australia’s most successful jewellery designers, located in Manhattan’s trendy Meatpacking District and amidst the madness and mayhem you’ll feel the magically recognisable and overwhelmingly calming presence of an Australian soul.
A 90’s playlist of Alanis Morissette and Jewel float through the loft style space and a barefoot Samantha, effortless in a simple black maxi and loose hair greets us. It is in that moment you see that Samantha and the SW brand might now be on the global stage (recently announcing they will be stocked through US luxury retailer Bloomingdales and that they are designing an exclusive range for Anthropologie), but the Australian soul of the brand remains unchanged. Like Samantha it’s cool, but approachable, warm and unassuming and effortless whist exuding just the right amount opulence; an aesthetic that has created an ardent following of global bohemians who want to channel this enchanting spirit.
While her New York apartment might be a long way from the golden sands and blue waters that saw the birth of the Samantha Wills label, a life of gypsy globetrotting and wanderlust that inspires the brand, has seen Samantha create a space completely reflective of this spirit. A glimpse into her wardrobe, which organically spills into her home workspace and you can see she is a bowerbird in the true sense of the word and embodies her brand in the most organic of ways. Mason jars spill with roses picked up on NYC weekend adventures, antique bell jars are filled with exotic perfumes, framed prints of Vogue covers, sketches from fellow Australian and friend illustrator Birdy and Me and emails from SW fans adorned the walls in soulful clusters, chunks of crystal casually lay on wooden coffee tables and sequin outfit options are thrown over an antique peacock chair. It’s the perfect mix of bohemian luxury and inspires the thought that ones space, both work and home, can say a lot about their loves and inspirations.
Imagine every piece of Samantha Wills jewellery ever created and adorned on global bohemian beauties over the brands history and if you fossil through Samantha’s personal jewellery collection it is likely you will find it. It is a treasure trove of the most special kind. Archived pieces spill out of jewellery boxes and are strung over mannequins, while chunks of stone, crystal and gems that form current works in progress lay on Samantha’s desk. There are iconic Bohemian Bardot rings in every imaginable hue, trays of burnished gold, antique silver and turquoise, boxes of bracelets and scraps of old pieces that have been pulled apart and reworked into new designs. You might also catch glimpses of the anticipated new bridal based collection which will infuse the brand’s signature style with burnished metals, natural stones and clear crystals, all designed for a bride with modern, romantic taste.
Whether it’s a shared love for the laidback lifestyle of the Australian coast or the meeting of a kindred gypsy spirit, we feel instantly at home in Samantha’s company and in her space. If you are a daring romantic, a bohemian spirit or gypsy globetrotter and are looking for accessories to tell your personal story you’ll feel at home in Samantha’s bohemian luxe costume jewellery.
Samantha Wills jewellery collection can be shopped online here.
Tuesday, April 29th 2014
I love to think about the diversities, complexities and many layers of women and their personal style and sensibilities. For me, one is never completely romantic or completely edgy, often at times, a beautiful blend of a number of styles that tell their story.
For a bride often this story is revealed not only in the dress she chooses, but the way in which it is shot. Inspired by this thought, I wanted to use the effortlessly cool westside vibe of Chelsea and the Meat Packing District in New York to give dramatic bridal gowns a sense of insouciance. The boldness of decaying walls and urban backdrops juxtaposed with oversized dramatic bunches of long-stemmed flowers which are the epitome of effortless romance, show that these romantic dresses aren’t just for the girly bride.
If you are opting for a big romantic dress, wear it with a real sense of carelessness. Bold backgrounds and textures, often urban and decaying, or oversized and dramatic, are the best way to shoot these dresses and will help bring an edge and nonchalant to your bridal album!
See the full editorial 'Stealing Beauty' on The Guide.