Sarah Jassir debuted her first bridal collection at New York Bridal Week in 2010 and has swiftly risen up through the rankings as one of the industry’s most coveted designers, thanks to her unique fashion-forward twist on wedding gowns. She turned heads, particularly in the LGBT community, when she broke into new territory by sending a women’s tuxedo down a bridal market runway in October 2011, making a fierce statement for marriage equality mere months after New York passed the gay marriage bill.
It’s because of this statement that we’re kicking off our new expert spotlight series with this talented designer.
Equally Wed: How do you start off your typical day?
Sarah Jassir: Most of my day is spent working one-on-one with brides to create the perfect wedding dress. I enjoy working one-on-one because you get incredible feedback from the bride. I also spend a great deal of time sketching my ideas and working with fabrics and researching fabrics whenever possible. I work closely with my design team creating patterns and draping fabrics. So much of what I do requires lots of handwork and finishing. The process can be painstaking. Like most of the world, I spend lots of time answering emails. But I really love hearing directly from brides. It makes me feel more connected to them. Then the day starts all over again.
EW: What inspires you?
SJ: I am inspired by fabrics, a woman’s body, and history.
1. Fabrics and textiles. They are a great starting point for each collection.
2. The body of a woman. I love making a woman feel beautiful.
3. Historical periods and events. The challenge is to reinvent something new from the past.
EW: If you could describe your signature style in one word, what would it be?
SJ: Innovative ... I always look for ways to reinvent and reinterpret the wedding dress.
'Selene' by Sarah Jassir
EW: How has the marriage equality movement affected your designs and/or business?
SJ: Marriage equality has been a boom to the bridal industry. We have always done same-sex weddings, but now we get daily requests for bridal tuxedos. There is a lot of renewed interest in the overall industry.
EW: If you weren’t a fashion designer, what would you be?
SJ: Since opening my new salon, I have become obsessed with interior design. Finding the right furniture is always a challenge. Interior design allows you to create a lasting impression.
EW: If you could pick a single dress that is the epitome of the Sarah Jassir style, which one would it be and why?
SJ: “Selene” epitomizes the collection. It is sexy, modern, and extremely glamorous. My approach to bridal is very red carpet.
Brittny Drye is the senior editor at Equally Wed, the nation's premier online magazine for gay and lesbian weddings and honeymoons. Follow her on Twitter @BrittnyDrye.
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