On Thursday night, the designer transformed Saint Bartholomew’s Church in Manhattan to a spectacle with outfits for brides, grooms and wedding guests. “A part of the ceremony will feature the singing of a chorus and real brides walking down the aisle.” To see her vision come to life, Acra enlisted the help of Preston Bailey. Floral columns adorned the runway as six flower girls dressed in pink gowns embellished with the words ‘Keep Dreaming’ and ‘Love’ opened the show. “I think it’s important to give back,” Acra notes as she explains how the flower girl outfits will be auctioned off for a non-profit organization, Tamanna that helps children with critical illnesses in Lebanon.
In another first, the designer has collaborated with Lebanese designer, Joseph Abboud for a collection of menswear. “We made custom-made suits, I embellished and gave them ruffles and made them unique. We also made two suits for women.”
The Reem Acra bride is a woman of the world. “She is not one specific bride, whether it’s a simple bride that just wants to walk down the aisle in a very traditional American way, a French bride, a Spanish bride or even a Brazillian bride. I’m infusing a little bit of my Middle Eastern background into the collection.” For this collection, inclusion played a key role. “We thought about people from all over the world and how they envisioned their weddings. It’s kind of like a ‘thank you’ collection. It’s a festival of emotion, collaboration, and inclusion,” she says.
40 years after she wrote the note, what does Acra who has designed for Hollywood stars and royalty have in store for the future? “I could have done many things differently,” she reflects on her 20-year-old career. “It’s just the love of what you do that makes you unique and helps you succeed. You never know what the future brings.”