When Mariana arrived for her appointment at Valencienne, she was very casually dressed, wearing leggings and a loose top. She announced that she was a cousin of a previous client of mine and that she loved her cousins’ gown. She was having a very difficult time finding exactly what she was looking for and decided that custom was the way to go. She said that knowing that her cousin had such a fantastic experience in my store made her feel very at ease and comfortable as well. After the introductions where over I watched Mariana as she browsed through our sample wedding gowns and noticed how well she carried herself. My thoughts were of a gazelle – She was so beautiful, long and lean. Her background is Brazilian and her complexion is flawless. I remember thinking ‘please purchase your wedding gown from Valencienne, I would love to see you in a Valencienne creation’. When we sat down at the marble table to design her dress I did my usual inquires, the never ending questions designed to dig deep into my clients character. I found out that Mariana was a model. She was also crowned our Miss Universe Canada 2009 and went on to compete in Bahamas for the Miss Universe 2009.
I also learned that she loves fashion and has great personal style. She had a very definite idea of exactly what she wanted her wedding gown to look like and how she wanted to feel on her special day. She showed me a picture and said ‘Kim, here is the idea of what I am looking for’. I smiled to myself because the model in the advertisement was not even close to how stunning Mariana was. I thought ‘We can do so much better’ and I could not wait to get started. I had a corseted bodice in the store that was fairly close to her picture – not exactly the same, mine was more elaborate. It had micro beads and silver Swarovski crystal. It was made of a magnificent French corded lace and when she put it on she exclaimed ‘this is stunning, this is it!’ .I sketched that and then created a very fitted skirt that was draped to enhance her very small waist. We decided to make the gown a two piece so that Mariana could wear the bustier again. The skirt was made of peau du soie and was enhanced with a little lavender ribbon that matched the bridesmaids gowns.