Vogue: Larimeloom, one of the 8 sustainable wedding dress designers for the eco-conscious bride
Vogue UK has recognised the attention and effort we put into designing and creating eco-friendly wedding dresses in a careful, sustainable way.
They chose us among the top wedding dress designers who “… adopt an ethical and environmentally friendly style to the bridal industry, with initiatives that include the recycling of vintage fabrics, using natural dyes and championing local craftspeople…” and included us in a top eight list that collects sustainable wedding dress brands worldwide.
When choosing a wedding dress for your big day, there are always multiple factors to consider. Do you want a white meringue or a more fitted number? Strapless or with sleeves? Veil or no veil? But for the eco-conscious bride, there’s an additional agenda.
Larimeloom: craftsmanship and eco-friendly designs, for eco-conscious brides
Since the very beginning, we made the choice of creating dresses using natural fibres. This was for a few, compelling reasons.
• They feel good on the skin: be it summer or winter, any natural fibre thermoregulates the body, avoids rashes and irritation and simply feels nice to wear.
• They make the simplest designs look striking: the fabric is alive, vital, and brings character and beauty to the garment. You know that feeling of – yes, it’s pretty, but it somehow feels like I am wearing a costume – ? It’s because it’s polyester.
• Natural fabrics biodegrade completely: at the end of the garment’s life-cycle, a plant (linen, hemp, cotton) or animal based (silk, wool) cloth, when placed in humid soil, becomes organic matter, turning to earth, in just a matter of weeks. When possible, we purchase stock fabrics, which is surplus material from large companies, thus taking advantage of supplies that are already in circulation and giving it purpose and use, further reducing the overall footprint.
• Lastly: we make the dresses. We are a small team, and the entire process is carried out in-house. Feeling nice fabrics flow between our fingers is simply more fun, pleasurable and gratifying!
An often overlooked part of the fashion industry is how a garment is made. Behind the vague, un-specifying “made in xxxx” tag are hidden layer upon layer of human exploitment, human rights abuse, of poverty and suffering. High price tags do not often reflect high production standards, but are usually indicative of the number of middle-men between the maker and the final consumer.
We make all the garments of our collection entirely by hand, ourselves, in our atelier in Reggio Emilia, and we produce exclusively on order. This guarantees a very high level of product quality, extreme ease and fluidity in customising designs for our clients, and no product surplus. Each wedding dress or everyday garment is produced only when necessary for the end consumer, without middlemen, leftovers and waste.
Our artisan approach leads us to choose fabrics and materials that have character, detail, texture. The natural fibers, intertwining and contrasting with each other, inspire us and are an integral part of the artistic value of the garments we make.
Subtle details that become central to the essence of the design.
Our garments are handmade by us, in the same airy open space where we have our showroom.
Our favorite fibres
The go-to fibre of our designs is silk, be it for bridal or casual wear, in it’s original creamy white or dyed in a rainbow of colors: those thin, strong and lustrous filaments that give us a fabric that is soft to the touch, unexpected light that seems to glow from within. Many types of fabric are obtained from silk, so different in feel and look that it seems impossible that they are made of the same fibre. Weightless Chiffon, that floats with every breeze and movement, which seems to have been designed specifically to make air visible.
Organza, with its own ideas on how to most appropriately respond to the force of gravity, filling the movements of the wearer with energy, drama and elegance. Crepe de chine, there is nothing like it on the bare skin, with its softly wrinkled texture, and the delicate drape that reminds me of pouring milk, flowing.
Satin, smooth and slippery like water. All the way through the rainbow of textures to raw silk, thick, strong, like linen.
This extreme versatility of the silk fiber, in addition to the unique pleasure it gives in contact with the skin, make it the undisputed star of our entire collection.
Combined with other fabrics, such as hemp canvas, linen or even wool, it enhances the individual peculiarities of that fiber, creating interesting combinations.
Hemp finds it’s place in many of out designs. Solid, strong and malleable it is an ideal material when you want strength, structure, shape.
We source our hemp in the most sustainable way of all: at local vintage markets in the towns around northern Italy. These precious, antique rolls of hemp canvas were made for the dowry of young women of marriage age, and destined to become sheets, towels, table-cloths, napkins after being carefully cut, embroidered and hand stitched. Often never used, they have been slowly ageing, like good wine, in wooden chests and closets, slowly acquiring the perfect hue of antique ivory.
Unbleached hemp, handspun and handwoven, with a texture and feel that is not achievable with any other cloth.
Many of our designs have the bustier made of this material, and often, even when not visible, it acts as core layer for the bodices and waistbands of our wedding dresses for supple, stable, breathable structure.
Linen, wool, cotton are other materials that we love to use, especially in the casual collection. We recently designed and are about to release a small selection of vegan wedding dress options, including materials that are derived from plants exclusively.
We devote a lot of research to the exploration of natural dye, a technique that allows us to extract permanent color from flowers, leaves, bark, berries and roots. The delicate pastel shades are perfect for the pale hues so popular for wedding dresses.
A collection created with intent
Research and the exploration of new techniques and design ideas are part of our approach, so our collection is constantly evolving: however, what works remains. We do not phase out garments based on fashion and seasonality, when a design is strong we choose to offer it indefinitely.
The custom made model of our business makes every single dress unique and personal to the bride who will wear it. Timeless.
We also offer our customers a service to revisit their dress after the wedding, working on shapes and colors, in order to extend their life, using it for other occasions rather than keeping it relegated to the closet.
Our garments are designed with a Zero waste approach, so as not to produce leftover cuts and wasted cloth. We have a mini-collection designed specifically for the recovery of the remaining fabrics (see Mida, Plume and Amaryllis). We produce very little waste, and what is inevitably left over from cutting we donate it to local associations, schools and artisans who reuse it for artistic, artisanal and cultural projects.
This important recognition of our daily commitment by a giant in the world of fashion such as Vogue is gratifying and stimulates us to continue investing thought and energy in this direction.