Photographs by (portrait) Michelle Russ & (gown) Brooke Ray. Sketch by Brooke Ray
March 7, 2013
What a Winner! Brooke Ray earns the spot as 2013â€™s Emerging Bridal Designer Winner
written by Melissa Bigner
Baker Motor Company Charleston Fashion WeekÂ® (CFW) has evolved into a showcase for budding design talent with nightly bouts of the CFW Emerging Designer Competition: East. This year, CFWÂ® was overrun with entrants who had fashioned bridal gowns, some of which pushed the envelope and others that beautifully reimagined classic styles. Given the onslaught of terrific looks and talent, a separate bridal category was created with its own panel of judges, including Modern Trousseauâ€™s Callie Tein, Fashion Star alums Sarah Parrot (of Bow & Drape) and Nikki Poulus (who produces an eponymous line), Cator Sparks (freelance fashion and design writer for The New York Times, Vanity Fair, The Huffington Post, and W.com), and yours truly, Charleston Weddings magazine editorial director, Melissa Bigner.
Up for grabs? A turn on the catwalk at our always sold-out Charleston Weddings Magazineâ€™s Spring Bridal Show during Baker Motor Company Charleston Fashion WeekÂ®, media coverage, and an internship at Modern Trousseauâ€™s design and dress production headquarters in Connecticut.
Across the board, the judges picked Brooke Ray, a Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) graduate from Marietta, Georgia, as the winner. Her fluid sketches impart a sophistication that far exceeds her 24 years, and sample shots of her real-life gowns reveal her deftness for layering deconstructed fabrics into corseted, full-skirted gowns that radiate femininity without fuss. A peek at her drawings and an idea of her prowess with the needle and thread made giving her a chance in the spotlight a near no-brainer. Weâ€™re not sure who is more excited about what she will fashion for her showâ€”Brooke herself or those who recognize her as a budding and noteworthy talent.
Presented by Gathering Floral + Event Design and held under the tents in Charlestonâ€™s Marion Square on Saturday, March 23, 2013 from 11 a.m.-2 p.m., the fun runs from 11:30am-1:30pm. World-renowned designers Anne Barge and Callie Tein of Modern Trousseau will be on hand to show their collections, two of six stellar bridal runway shows that day, and thereâ€™s taste testing, toasting, and shopping galore. Click here to purchase tickets and for more info.