Honeymoon is the Melbourne bridal label for non-traditional brides

Honeymoon is the Melbourne bridal label for non-traditional brides

“The ritual of marriage and weddings have changed so much over the years, but the process of finding a wedding dress hasn’t really.”

Melbourne’s ongoing lockdowns sadly brought Limb The Label to an end, but the slow fashion brand’s co-founding designer Andria Kiefer is back with a new project and it’s quite a step away from its predecessor. Her new brainchild, Honeymoon, is a bridal label specialising in non-traditional bridal wear.

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The label was inspired by Andria’s own search for a wedding outfit when she realised most bridal wear on the market reflects the days when church weddings were the stock standard and doesn’t reflect modern brides. Honeymoon’s current collection comprises a mix of dresses, sets, separates and accessories, intended to be worn long after your wedding day.

Tell us about you. What’s your fashion background?
I graduated with my RMIT Fashion and Textiles degree in 2012. Since then I have worked all across the fashion sphere. I started out working in fashion retail when I was in my teens and 20s, and after graduating uni I moved to New York and interned for brands like Creatures of Comfort, Araks, Apiece Apart and Proenza Schouler. When I moved back to Australia, my best friend and I started a brand for beautifully designed wardrobe staples, Limb The Label.

After seven years of gaining a foothold in the Melbourne industry, creating a great customer base and learning SO MUCH about local production and the industry in general, we decided to end Limb after the first year of the pandemic. Then I decided to do it all again and start Honeymoon!

How did the label get started? Talk us through the process and the challenges.
The idea for Honeymoon was sparked when I was searching for an outfit for my own wedding and was left feeling a little disillusioned by the options available. I figured there would be a lot of other people like me feeling the same thing. I was seeking something more relaxed, contemporary and down-to-earth, so I created Honeymoon as an alternative to the traditional bridal experience.

I also hated the idea of making something I could only wear once! I want to offer each Honeymooner the option of being able to redesign their looks or overdye their whites so there is an emphasis on re-wearability.

A minor challenge for me is that I have ADHD and I often get a million ideas at once and want to do them all. It took many months of pattern making, sewing and sampling to get to where I am, and I now have over 53 pieces in the core collection. These are a mix of dresses, sets, separates and accessories. I only got diagnosed and started taking medication this year, which was a total game-changer.

What were you trying to achieve from the project at the time? How has this evolved and what are you trying to communicate through the brand now?

I wanted to create a new conversation surrounding bridal and evening wear. For me it doesn’t feel approachable – it feels stuffy and very traditional. The ritual of marriage and weddings have changed so much over the years, but the process of finding a wedding dress hasn’t really.

Traditional church weddings are being replaced with a celebrant in a backyard; a quickie at the registry office; commitment ceremonies; a long lunch with friends; and many people aren’t getting married at all. Rules like, ‘You can’t wear black to a wedding’, are pretty much irrelevant. I want to help celebrate love with people, no matter how they choose to do it. Honeymoon is the answer to that – it’s bridal but different.

Customised colours and fabrics are my favourite things to be able to offer. Not all brides wear white, just like not all people want to be brides. Honeymoon is for those like me, who want a look that reflects their own sense of style, who also might have a cheeky cig in a veil, dance their dress to filth and maybe spill some wine on it throughout the night. It’s about having fun, first and foremost. I hope my customers are messy Honeymoon brides!

How would you describe Honeymoon to someone who’s never seen it before?
“She’s not a regular bride, she’s a cool bride.”
What are you most proud of in your work on your label?

I get a huge rush of pride every time I see someone in their special Honeymoon look on their special day.

What do you wish you knew when you started?

Fortunately for me, I made a lot of mistakes and learnt a lot of lessons in my first label. If anyone knew how hard it is to launch a label and then keep a label running, I feel like nobody would do it! I guess I wish I’d known that I have ADHD earlier so I could have really harnessed that focus earlier on.

Who do you think is most exciting in Australian fashion right now?
I feel like we are finally starting to see a more inclusive space open up in Australian fashion. First Nations artists, designers, stylists, models and photographers are finally getting the recognition they deserve – and it’s about bloody time!

What about the Australian fashion industry needs to change?

Inclusivity. Although this is what I find most exciting about fashion in Australia, we still need to push further. Seeing different shapes and skin colours is so important. It would also be fantastic for there to be a bigger production presence, to make it easier to make more here in Australia.

Dream Australian collaborators?
I’m obsessed with the artist Emma Currie. Honeymoon has something special with her in the works right now.

Go-to dinner party playlist?
I listen to a lot of mix of ’60s and ’70s Latin pop, a splash of Kate Bush and a sprinkling of some ’60s Italian pop. I also listen to my friend Sally’s mixes, So Much So Much, on the regular.

Who is in your wardrobe right now?
I mostly make my own clothes, but the clothes in my repertoire are a good blend of Penny Sage, Permanent Vacation, Limb, FME, and a bit of vintage – I wear my Levis on the daily.

How can we buy one of your pieces?
Online via the Honeymoon website, or you can book an appointment to see pieces IRL at The Honeymoon Suite.
This article was originally published on June 15, 2022.
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