This post has been on my mind for several months now and I’m glad I have a chance to finally share it with you. Carol Chan Photography captured some amazing pictures at Bridal Fantasy (a bridal show in Edmonton) and one particular set captured my attention - Rooy Couture & Consulting, based in Edmonton & area (Alberta). In addition to getting these pictures, I contacted Lani Van Rooyen, the genius behind the custom wedding gowns, to learn more about what she does. This is for all of you brides who are currently in the process of choosing a gown or just love all things wedding!

Tell me a little bit about yourself -

Growing up I always found myself having to decide between science & math versus art & creativity - and somewhere in between found the great middle road of fashion. I love pattern design (which I do by hand), the study of textiles and costume history in particular. Needless to say I am a very big fan of historical films. I moved to Canada at the end of 2007, following my soon-to-be husband after meeting online (of all places!).

Any random additional facts about yourself?

- I’m South African
- I studied Fashion Design at a private design academy after completing high school in 1995
- I lived in England for two and a half years where I was able to attend London College of Fashion’s Bridal wear and Beading courses
- Did a lot of traveling between a youth exchange program to Europe and working on cruise ships for a year - I love traveling!
- To learn more about the world of business and weddings, I spent a year at hotel school and more recently took the WPIC wedding planner certification course.
- In my spare time you’ll find me running stage lights at church, doing floral arrangements or spoiling friends/family by cooking up a storm alongside my husband.
- It truly is an absolute passion for me to work with brides and to design and create wedding gowns - simply said, I believe this is what I was born to do.

How long you’ve been designing wedding gowns?

About 13 years now. I opened my design studio in South Africa while still a fashion design student in early 1997, designing and creating everything from prom dresses to office apparel to wedding gowns. Over the span of the next three and a half years, I realized my dream of working with brides and focusing on wedding gowns, and shifted direction. In 2000, although exceedingly busy, I decided to change from full-time to part-time design while I pursue further studies and travels to compliment my business goals and aspirations. I was finally ready and ‘re-opened’ R O O Y Couture in March 2009.

What ‘type’ of bride typically chooses a custom-made bridal gown?

I would say a bride who is confident in herself, who knows her own expectations and more often than not has a specific vision - whether it be the type of gown she would like or simply how she wants to look on her big day. The brides I dress have faith and trust in my design ability, textiles and production - something which in a culture of ‘off-the-rack’ gowns could be a bit daunting, especially as you don’t see the finished product initially. As a photographer friend wrote recently: ‘Don’t be scared of custom wedding dresses - They are amazing and you are bound to get EXACTLY what you want.’

A couture gown is like a special journey a bride takes - with memories along the way of how it all came together and the end result of a twinkle in the eye and a gown which represents who she is.

If brides in Edmonton are looking for a custom gown, how long does it normally take to get one designed and then made?

The design and production process takes on average about eight to twelve months, especially if we are looking at a specific fabric or lace which is ordered in from Europe. That way we can also space the fittings and have it as stress-free as possible building up to the big day. However, I’ve designed and made gowns in as little as 4 weeks - I try to assist brides as much as I can.

There’s always brides, like myself, who know what they have in mind and can’t quite find the dress that they’re envisioning. This is definitely the option you should consider. Be sure to check out the Rooy Couture site & facebook for more info.

{all images courtesy Carol Chan Photography}

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Categories: For the Bride, Gowns2 Comments

Comments

Beautiful work!

BeadFloraJewels on May 20, 2010

[…] how you can get a custom gown by ROOY Couture, please read a short interview that I did a while ago here. Support Canadian […]

Wedding Obsession » ROOY Couture Summer 2011 on March 16, 2011

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