A year defined by change, by the fluid, ever-moving tides. A time that has asked loud questions, answered by darkened silence. In space, in solitude. Fleeting, in slow motion. A time settled by the hope between and the personal navigation of the now and not yet, regardless of where we watch our setting sun.
For Prea James, 2020 has been a year that has alighted salty tears, awaking reflection, and refinement, and ultimately, a chance for evolution. Unwittingly forced to dive into and reconnect with the darkest depths of her identity, Prea’s latest made-to-order bridal collection In the Midst explores the notion of finding serenity amongst the storm. Sleek, minimal cuts that we have come to know and love from Prea James have effortlessly matured into 10 unexpected, sculptural and multi-functional silhouettes alongside 6 interchangeable separates. Here, each piece is poetically anchored in her signature understated ease and fluid fabrications, yet elevated with finesse to ever-align with modern woman’s shifted values, mirroring her own.
“This year, I think for many of us, we have been forced to really reflect on what is truly important to us. It made me consider on a deeper level what is truly important to me & the direction I wanted the brand to continue in.”
Unconventionally turning within to seek out new forms of inspiration, In The Midst has resolved in a wholly unique, authentic collection for Prea, abandoned of all preconceived trends and outwardly expectations. Each piece, artfully designed to compliment the feminine curve, with wearability and versatility equally essential to aesthetics – echoing the modern woman’s shifting values.
Collectively compromising of 10 unique gowns with the ability to style up (or down) with 6 interchangeable pieces, the collection allows brides the unique opportunity to effortlessly transform their bridal look from ceremony to reception, and without breaking budget no less. Here, draped tulle sleeves detach from silk slips, delicate mesh tops nestle under crepe gowns and full organza skirts layer with cropped separates, all discerningly featherlight in touch to harmoniously balance with any chosen silhouette and effortlessly elevate a look into fashion-forward realms.
What once was reserved as a subtle and steady introduction into her collections over time, Prea has unabashedly embraced florals this season, exploring texture and eclectic varieties in a wholly unique way for the brand. Artisanal embroideries inspired by the Australian eucalyptus bloom from the Metilda gown (an exclusive collaboration with a Parisian textile designer), while abstract buds adorn burnout organza with the Amelie. Italian satin sourced from sustainably managed plantations used throughout the collection is a further testament to the considered approach rooted within this evolution that has masterfully elevated the new collection beyond just ‘simple cuts’. An evolution we’ve been privileged to share with Prea as she navigates these changing times – a vulnerable invitation for all women and brides to be to allow themselves the time to set sail, and return to shore, evolved.
“Ultimately, I always have this natural, carefree but very strong woman in mind when I am designing.”
Less is more. There is a beauty in being understated, authentically simplistic and confidently owning it – abandoning all extravagant adornment. We love the lustrous and fluid forms of the Malene gown dancing in the wind for an oceanic wedding. Style up with the pearl veil or a pair of baroque earrings, come evening, layer with the Mia Mesh top for a contemporary, 90s inspired look.
For something a little more romantic, opt for the Amelie gown, a bold and wildly new silhouette for Prea James. Perfect for a Spring induced soiree, embrace the soft, billowing silhouette and style with a bouquet of single white blooms, tousled locks and kitten heels.
See the full collection and upcoming trunk show details via the Prea James website.
Photography / Matt Godkin
Creative Direction / Karissa Dalton @ The Lane
Fashion / Emma Westblade @ The Lane
Fashion Assistant / Liana Gow-Killingbeck @ The Lane
Model / Michelle Bagarra @ Priscillas
Hair & Makeup / Stojanka Bulic
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