An Interview with Phase Eight

We talk bridal trends and new collections with Phase Eight's bridal designer Phillipa Barnett


The latest wedding collection from high-street brand, Phase Eight, certainly caused a stir in the style stakes this 2017 with its unveiling. Inspired by the beautiful, natural textures of an English rose garden, we were swept away by the high-street brand’s incredible bridal designs and amazing price points.


READ MORE: 29 Things You Need to Know Before You Go Wedding Dress Shopping 

The bridal line includes fabulously vintage techniques, including handcrafted embroidery, intricate beadwork and embellishment, inspiringly contemporary silhouettes, a romantic approach to it’s designs and much, much more. All in all, this is an ideal collection for 2017’s modern bride-to-be. Prepare to fall in love!


Tell us a little about the history of Phase Eight’s bridal lines. When did the first one launch?

“It started in Spring 2009 as an extension of our premium evening wear line Collection 8.”

Who is the Phase Eight bridal woman?

“What makes the Phase Eight collection unique is that she can be whoever she wants to be. The collection has something for everyone and at an affordable price, without compromising on quality. We cater for the classic bride to the contemporary bride, the young bride to the mature bride, a gown for the main event or an evening dress.”


What can brides-to-be always expect from Phase Eight’s bridal collections? What is signature to the brand and its bridal designs?

“Ribbon tape work is something the brand has been doing for many years and continues to be a strong signature. The tape work on every garment is created by hand so each dress is individually crafted. Hand beading is another key feature of the collection, each piece is carefully considered, from fabrics to beading and the use of subtle colours to highlight the detail.”

If Phase Eight could have a particular celebrity or person to be the face of the bridal brand who would it be? Who embodies the Phase Eight bride in their style and personality?

“Felicity Jones. She is a classic English rose, beautiful, feminine and delicate yet confident.”

Tell us about the design process for a new Phase Eight bridal collection. Where does it begin? Where does the inspiration for a new line often emerge from? Are you inspired by the trends for instance?

“It normally starts with a piece of textile, a beautiful vintage piece of beading, or a gorgeous lace. Trends are so important to us too, even subconsciously we are affected by them, so we always look to them and apply what is relevant for the brand. While bridal can be more classic, more than ever people still want to feel like themselves, as opposed to choosing a dress they think they should wear.”


We love the details – particularly the intricate embellishment and silhouettes showcased in the brand’s latest 2017 collection. What was the inspiration behind this particular line? Where did it emerge from?

“We were inspired by all kinds of things; patterns in nature, fabrics and vintage swatches, as well as imagining the kind of person that would wear the dress.”

We particularly love the embellishment and style of the collection’s Cadie gown. What do you think it is about this gown that brides-to-be will love? What type of bride do you think this gown will suit most?

“It’s for a strong stylish woman who wants to make a statement. It’s quite demure as it has the high neck and sleeve, yet the open back and embroidery make it very sexy and alluring at the same time.”

Would you say there is a gown for every type of bride within the collection? For instance: the traditional bride? The fashion-forward bride? The bohemian bride? The vintage bride?

“Absolutely, we always use a range of fabrics, styling and silhouettes to suit a range of aesthetics and body shapes. The Chelsea or Candy dress are great for a city wedding and you can imagine the Clarabella or Cathlyn in the sunshine, perhaps on a beach for a more bohemian style wedding.”

From your experience, when it comes to brides searching for ‘The One’ in dress terms, where should they start? What should they be thinking about?

“Research is key, get on Pinterest and start pinning images you like, it’s important to consider what suits you as well as what suits the venue and the styling of the wedding.”

What does Phase Eight offer in terms of a bridal experience in-store? What will brides-to-be discover at Phase Eight that they won’t find anywhere else?

“So many bridal brands charge for an appointment and limit you to how many pieces you can try. If you book a free of charge appointment at one of our Phase Eight bridal stores, we make all our brides feel welcome and special. You will be offered a glass of champagne, and welcomed into a beautiful fitting room with our bridal specialist on hand to help you choose your dress. They know all the styles inside out and can advise you on the dress that’s right for you as well as alterations and styling.”

After the big day what would you suggest brides do with their wedding gown?

“It should be a special piece that represents a very special day, so it should be kept and savoured to remind you of the memories.”

What can we expect from Phase Eight’s bridal lines in the future?

“Pushing the boundaries in terms of techniques and fabrications, continuing to make relevant pieces that give a nod to a trend but are also classic and timeless. We will continue to respond to the customer, always trying to create a special and exquisite garment at an affordable price.”


Are you still searching for your dream wedding dress? Don’t miss our bridalwear section – filled with thousands of gorgeous wedding dresses and a list of your local stockists.