Talented designer, mother of three, historian and environmental enthusiast… Coren Moore is a lady that does it all! Coren’s unique, chic styles excite brides all over to dress their bridal parties in only the best. The seemingly endless array of fabrics and colors, from shantung and seersucker to tiffany blue and emerald, accommodates any bride’s vision for their big day. Taking a brief pause, Coren shared a little more about how she got her start and even her own high school fashion faux pas…
BB: What do you think has been the most important factor in the success of your business?
CM: Customer service and a high quality product. We make everything in NYC so we can ensure timely deliveries. We put our brides and stores first and do everything possible to help make the day go off without a hitch.
BB: When designing for women, specifically bridesmaids, what are your inspirations?
Coren and her team at the Martha Stewart Weddings party
CM: Classic, timeless American icons of style…CZ Guest, Grace Kelly, Jackie O, Audrey Hepburn, Lauren Hutton, Ralph Lauren, Slim Aarons photographs…you get the idea! I majored in History at Bowdoin College and have always revered American style and spirit. My bookshelf is also full of interior design books for inspiration - Sister Parish, Albert Hadley, Kelly Wearstler, Charlotte Moss, anything published by Rizzoli. I recently heard Carleton Varney speak and love his use of color. Planning a wedding incorporates many elements of interior design - choosing a color palette and overall style that carries through to the many details of the wedding – from the font used in the stationery, to flowers, dresses, linens, reception site, photography style. For brides, planning their wedding and choosing these elements allows them to express their personal style. When I design a dress, my first criteria is to make sure it’s something I would wear! Then I make sure it will flatter different figures, and keep it from being too “bridesmaid-y”. But I always envision the dress in a wedding and how it will fit with a bride’s vision and style.
BB: Was there a specific event or person in your life that led you to begin designing bridesmaid dresses?
CM: I would say planning my own wedding in 2003, as well as being a bridesmaid. Too often, I had experiences in stores where I felt pressured, encountered unhappy or intimidating salespeople, had to order dresses in sizes we had never worn, that came in and weren’t close to fitting. I thought - weddings are about love, friendship, happiness – this should all be more fun and pleasant. Since then, the wedding industry has changed and it’s refreshing to see there are many options for dresses that feature off the rack sizing, made by smaller boutique dress labels.
Jennifer Garner, Image via Gloss
BB: If you could give any famous woman a makeover, who would she be and how would you style them?
CM: Jennifer Garner. She always looks amazing on the red carpet, but for every day I would bring in better fitting, more colorful items.
BB: What high school trends are you embarrassed to admit you followed?
CM: I graduated from high school in 1993, in Connecticut. Laura Ashley dresses were the trend back then, when I look at our group pictures, it looks like we are all wearing floral curtains! Girls today look a lot cuter.
Bella Bridesmaid bridal party in Coren Moore dresses
BB: If you weren't a designer, what career path would you have chosen?
CM: There are so many! On the creative side - Interior Design, Landscape Design, working at Christies, Sotheby,The National Trust for Historic Preservation. On the personal fulfillment side, I would want to do something cause related – a company focused on solving environmental or healthcare problems.
BB: What is your favorite dress in your collection?
Coren Moore's Lauren dress
CM: The Lauren is my new favorite. It is very simple, but with the structured fit, softer boning, and straight skirt… it’s a little bit sexy and a little bit sophisticated.
BB: Any advice for certain styles on different body shapes?
CM: Our signature is our fitted bodice. It is structured and supportive, with boning and interfacing, designed to hold you in and camouflage problem areas. The thicker fabrics that we use, such as faille and shantung, enhance the structure and fit. The bodice cinches in and sits higher up on the waist, flattering the waistline and creating an hourglass figure. This top flatters most body types. From here, you can choose a full skirt for larger hips, or straighter skirt such as the Lauren. What it comes down to is a question of personal style.
BB: What are you carrying in your purse?
CM: Clinique Black Honey lipstick, Essie polish (“Island Hopping”), car keys, wallet, iphone, peppermint gum, jelly beans, scissors, crayons, paper…and many other random things! I have 3 girls, ages 5, 3, and 1 so you can imagine the collection!
Thank you, Coren!