Every year, the bridal industry unveils fresh collections of wedding gowns and a lengthy list of trends. But the truth is that there has not been a significant and lasting shift in what women wear down the aisle since the late 1980s. That was when a young bride, disappointed and frustrated by the mountains of tulle, lace and beading that defined wedding gowns at that time, decided to design her own streamlined dress.
Amsale Aberra, a graduate of the Fashion Institute of Technology, sketched out an elegant A-line gown with a high waist and sheer sleeves. It was 1985, and that dress formed the creative seed for the bridalwear business she founded the following year and that she ran with her husband Neil Brown until her death Sunday, at 64, from uterine cancer.
Aberra, a native of Ethiopia, helped to change the way that women presented themselves on their wedding day. She offered women an alternative to the extravagant fashions of the 1980s. Aberra created gowns that exuded sophistication, sensuality, confidence, restraint and maturity.
She dressed celebrities like Halle Berry, Julia Roberts, Katy Perry and Ariana Grande, and her dresses appeared in the television series “Grey’s Anatomy” and the films “Runaway Bride,” “27 Dresses” and “The Hangover.”
The bridal fashion icon will truly be missed.
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