Q&A with NYT, Vogue Contributing Bridal Editor, Ivette Manners
It’s Bridal Season!
We had the fortunate opportunity recently to catch up with one of our favorite contributing editors, Ivette Manners. A seasoned bridal editor (formerly with Vogue), she contributes her talents to The New York Times, Vogue and Vogue Mexico (among many others) and somehow still finds time to blog for her own platform, BridesStyle.com.
Ivette generously agreed to answer our pressing questions about the bridal industry, what brides want for 2022, why even the bridal industry can’t escape “Bridgerton” and more!
What are three things bridal brands should be paying attention to right now?
I think bridal brands and designers have been doing a great job at listening to and anticipating brides’ needs. The main thing I think they should currently be paying attention to is where couples are choosing to wed. Gardens and other outdoor venues are very popular for 2022 and I can see they will continue to be popular for 2023. And event planners are anticipating destination weddings to be big again. So, brides will want styles to complement their venues and destinations.
What big trends do you see for bridal in the year ahead?
Multiple looks in one with overskirts, sheer transformative tops over dresses, and detachable sleeves. Puffy sleeves are a throwback trend from the 80s that’s now more fashion-forward. High-low hemlines are coming back, Gowns with one long sleeve I think are going to be big… And I’m curious to see if the square neckline or empire waistline will be a trend with the popularity of Bridgerton.
What is important for a bridal designer to consider when designing a new collection?
Creating gowns sustainably, such as using quality fabrics, low waste, and ethical production and work conditions. And always keeping in mind how the bride will wear and move in her gown. She doesn’t want to worry about slipping out of her dress or any dress malfunction moments. She wants to feel confident and beautiful all day.
How has the bridal consumer mindset changed since the start of the global pandemic?
More brides today care about where they are spending their dollars. They want to invest in the brand or designer behind the dress, not just in the pretty dress. They want to trust and believe in the people creating their gown for their big day.
Do you think in-person press previews are as relevant and important as they once were, for bridal specifically?
While I think the virtual bridal runway has hit its stride, I also believe that in-person press previews are definitely still important. When writing about a collection, I think it’s important to see the dress in person to know how it moves, its fabrication, the intricate details, etc. I think it’s part of journalistic integrity because you’re telling brides that the dress is beautiful or telling them why they might want to consider that dress.
What is your preference for the format to see a new collection? Perhaps you can rank these options in order: runway show, creative presentation, one-on-one appointments
In order—creative presentation, one-on-one appointments, then runway show.
Even before the pandemic, bridal fashion editors liked to schedule appointments after a runway show to see the collection and be able to ask the designer questions. You don’t get a chance to really experience the beauty of the dresses at a runway show and it can be hard to have time to speak with the designer with all the excitement going on. The creative presentation is the best of both worlds—you get to see the dresses up-close and personal and you have time to speak in a more relaxed setting with the designer.
Aside from bridal, what is your favorite topic to write about?
I also love to write about travel and beauty. There are so many different angles you can take with these topics.
Who is the most iconic bride of all time and why?
It may sound cliché, but Princess Diana truly sparked my love for bridal when I was a kid. Her wedding was so grand and dramatic. I’ve loved the royals ever since. But I have to say that Bianca Jagger is the most iconic bride of all time for me because she was so fashionable, cool, and unique.
What cause/s are you passionate about? Tell us more!
It’s more an issue than a cause—ending violence (physically and mentally) against women and machismo. As a Latina (I’m Cuban-America), I’m familiar with male machismo, the exaggerated men’s pride, which often turns into misogyny. I think this used to be a badge of honor for Latin men, but in actuality it just shows how insecure they are and their need to control women. Thankfully, I was raised by a father who respected and wasn’t intimated by women and I was taught that while men and women each have their own role to play in a relationship, they both should be treated with respect. It makes me sad to see a woman get caught up in a bad relationship and that’s often because of her own insecurity. Self-love is truly the greatest type of love. If you don’t love yourself, you can’t love or be loved by anyone else.
Friendly reminder, if you expect journalists to be genuinely interested in your product, you have to be genuinely interested in what they are interested in, especially when it comes to their assignments and beats. Ivette covers a wide range of topics outside of bridal for a variety of outlets and we read her work regularly. Connect with her on LinkedIn and follow her on IG (@bridesstyle)!