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Alice Temperley Talks Trajectory at Victoria & Albert Museum

The designer was in conversation with Edwina Ehrman, curator of the V&A’s “Wedding Dresses — 1775-2014” exhibition.

TALKING TEMPERLEY AT THE V&A: Alice Temperley took to the stage at London’s Victoria & Albert Museum Tuesday night, to chat about her trajectory from growing up in England’s Somerset countryside with “matted hair and hand-me-down clothes,” to staging runway shows in the British Museum and counting the Duchess of Cambridge among the fans of her Temperley London label. The designer was in conversation with Edwina Ehrman, curator of the V&A’s “Wedding Dresses — 1775-2014” exhibition, which spotlights Temperley’s Jean wedding dress as one of the show’s exhibits. And Temperley admitted that her bridal business is one of the highlights of her work. “It’s nice that it’s not as fast as the other seasons,” she said, noting that she still designs a small number of bespoke bridal creations. Temperley recalled designing one dress for a bride in Abu Dhabi, whose wedding marked “the first time [her future husband] was ever going to see her, so we had to do a dress for that,” said Temperley, noting that the embellished piece was “a very heavy, beautiful gown.”

The designer, who launched her business in 2000, described her label as “real, tactile and colorful — it’s about creating very beautiful clothes that transcend time,” said Temperley, noting that she plans to branch into more categories that exemplify a “British luxury lifestyle.” And on the subject of Brits, Temperley described the times she’s dressed the country’s Duchess of Cambridge in her designs as “a massive compliment.” “It’s extremely flattering and a pleasure working with her — and apparently the Queen likes our book too,” she said, referring to “True British,” the coffee table tome she released with Rizzoli in 2011.