5 Minutes With Bridal Designer Karen Willis Holmes

Established in 2000, the Karen Willis Holmes brand is synonymous with elegant, modern and luxury design. Creating timelessly handcrafted gowns for the bride of distinguished class and style, it is no surprise that we are endlessly lusting over the brands dreamy designs. As a leader in the Australian Bridal Fashion Industry for nearly 20 years, Karen Willis Holmes has gained international recognition and demand for her refined offering and we are incredibly excited to have the full collection available to view at One Fine Day Bridal Market this October. In anticipation for New York Bridal Market, we took a moment with Karen Willis Holmes to learn all about the highly anticipated 2020 collection and what we can expect from the KWH brand in the coming months.

What was the inspiration behind your 2020 collection that you will be showing at One Fine Day Bridal Market?

“Our 2020 Wild Hearts collection is all about clean modern lines, a subtle blend of sensual shapes to enhance the feminine figure and show the bride off in an understated and stylish light. It is a beautiful combination of simple crepe gowns, bohemian lace two pieces and an incredible sheer pearl tulle skirt as a highlight piece! A lot of the gown shave he option to remove the sleeves - we love providing our brides this flexibility.”


Who is the bride that this collection is aimed at?

“The fashion forward bride for a destination style wedding.”


What are the key pieces from your 2020 collection that are ‘must haves’ for every buyer?

“The Wild Hearts gowns, we have several gowns in plain fabrics for a stylish minimalist look and then the complete opposite with our LUXE collection of stunning beaded gowns.”


How do you choose the perfect boutiques to carry your pieces and what is important to your brand in developing new partnerships with buyers/boutiques?

“We have questionnaire we get the stores to complete, reviewing the stores aesthetic by looking at their website and social media, have a look at the location and read reviews online, and then off course meeting at market you know if we are a good fit for each other – naturally it has to work both ways.”


Tell us a quirk about your business, what makes you unique/something you are proud of?

“We have a large beautiful space, in a converted flour mill in Sydney which is our head office and workroom space. We make many of our gowns here. We are also one of the few businesses who are completely integrated, we design, manufacture, wholesale to other bridal stores, plus we have 5 retail stores of our own in Australia and New York, therefore we understand the market from every single level. Having the ability to work in our own stores, we have direct feedback of what a bride wants and expects.”


Describe your overall brand aesthetic in 3 words.

“Fashionable, modern and stylish.”


What is the best piece of small business advice you’ve received and often find yourself sharing with relevant businesses?

“Work very hard!”


What can we expect in the coming months / next for the brand?Any exciting projects or collaborations?

“We have some great photoshoots and videos coming out soon.Our marketing strategy has really ramped up online so we can be reaching every bride!”

We cannot wait to view the collection this October at One Fine Day Bridal Market, if you’re a buyer interested in stocking Karen Willis Holmes at your boutique we recommend booking your appointments with the KWH team here.