Join us as we continue our pictorial history of 10 years of Cherry Velvet dresses, this chapter all about names starting with the letter "B".
The Barbara was the second dress style we ever made in 2011. It was named after a former Cherry Velvet employee, Barb Wilkins. The Barbara came in a whole range of prints with contrast banding around the neck and sleeves. Can you pick out which prints were the most popular?*
Betsy debuted in the Summer of 2016. Another employee Dawn modeled these for us as well as Charlotte Doering at our Hycroft Manor shoot.
The Bianca dress named after our model, Bianca Bombshell, was the wiggle dress version of the wingbust Elly dress. The wingbust style was popularized by a designer named Alfred Shaheen in the 1950's. It's a name used to describe the petal or wing shaped accents on the dress bodice.
Our most popular dress of all time is also the one that we made the most of by far, is the Brigitte dress. Named after the gorgeous starlet, Brigitte Bardot, she was first released in the Spring of 2013. The following is only a small selection of the prints that were made in the Brigitte dress. This first image is of Model Elly Mayday photographed by Pin-up Perfection Photography.
The Brooke dress is a really special dress with a full-circle skirt. She needs the most fabric of all our designs, taking a whopping 4 yards of fabric in some of the bigger sizes. This photo is from our January of 2013 Hycroft Manor photo shoot.
More exciting 'C' dresses to see next week...
XOX Cherry Velvet*P.S. The most popular prints for the Barbara were "Good Luck Tattoo" and "Polka Party", although once we introduced the Sugar Skulls, that one quickly became the most popular print for the Barbara dress.
Later this summer Cherry Velvet will celebrate it's 10th Anniversary! Can you believe it!? We've been making beautiful dresses in Canada for you to love and having a blast doing it!
We're starting to mark this milestone by reminiscing on these past 10 years. We thought you would enjoy seeing a complete pictorial history of all our dress designs. You'll get to revisit each of the names, designs, favourite prints and all the lovely women that have modelled our dresses for you to collect over the years.
Let's begin our journey down memory lane with the letter "A"....
Named after the famous singer songwriter, the Adele was an elegant wiggle dress we could imagine the woman Adele actually wearing. She made a one time only appearance back in June of 2013 here on beautiful and curvaceous Ruby Roxx.
ADALINEInspired by the movie and beautiful dresses from The Age of Adaline, the Adaline had a vintage inspired, 1940's appeal. She made her appearance in 2015 at our photo shoot at historic Galbraith Manor on Ruby Roxx and Kaleigh Almond. Adaline's unique cutout neckline sure did turn heads.
ALICECroquet anyone? Models Veronica Belle and Ruby Roxx show off the Alice dress while playing lawn games at beautiful Momiji Gardens at Hastings Park. The Alice dress featured several hidden animal prints by fabric designer Tula Pink. The Alice was released only once in the summer of 2016.
The Angelina made her first debut in the Fall of 2015. She's a style we've since repeated many times. With a longer, more natural waistline, Angelina is a great choice for average height to taller girls. She features a stunning back detail; two straps twisted in the middle to make your exit as memorable as your entrance! She's a long time favourite of many customers and is still available to this day.
Our very first big official photo shoot was at the historic diner, Savon Meats with photographer Shimona Henry of Pin-up Perfection Photography in January of 2013. This was also the very first ever photo shoot for our patternmaker Genesis Hiles and model Elly Mayday. The Annette dress made an unforgettable apperance with her unique U shaped Peter Pan collar and a lovely open back detail all accented with contrast piping.
Annette came back once more in Spring 2018, but this time with the addition of a full skirt.
In all these years of making dresses, we've only made one actual velvet dress called the Audrey named after our designer Diane's Mom. For Holiday 2012, it came in three colours of sumptuous rayon velvet; royal blue, dark green and midnight navy.
Named after the Disney princess from Sleeping Beauty, this dress was certainly made for a girly girl. It had a mock wrap, pleated bodice, short puffed sleeves, a very full skirt and a generously wide tie belt to tie in a bow. We made it in cotton prints but also in several solid special occasion fabrics too.
Named after the elegant 1940's star, Ava Gardener, the Ava was the only peplum style we ever released. She was an early style that debuted in 2012. This was Danielle Keil first photo shoot with us, she was a Cherry velvet employee as well as a favourite model.
I hope you've enjoyed the first chapter from our dress archives as we look back at designs named with the letter "A". Stay tuned for more...
P.S. When the whole library is complete, we'll save it permanently on our website so you can look through it any time.
XOX Cherry Velvet
I always remember this big bodacious plant in our house when I was growing up in the seventies. I hadn’t given it any thought in years, until a vacation when I visited the Hawaiian Botanical Garden on the Big Isle. It was an experience I’ll never forget. This lush tropical paradise had every houseplant I'd ever seen, growing like a shrub on steroids. And there it was. The Monstera plant from my youth, growing up these massive palm trees. Wow!
I’ve never had much inclination to care for indoor plants, but as you know, we’re now spending lots of time at home. And so, a rather large Monstera came home from my favourite garden center one day. It’s got the premium spot by the window right next to where I sit to read or watch TV. Apparently they are very easy to grow and do get quite large. One day, it’ll be that monster monstera that I remember growing up!
"And what's Swiss Cheese got to do with it?", you might wonder. It's one of the common names of Monstera, given because of the leaves. As they grow, they form holes which eventually split open. Pretty cool!
Meanwhile I sit in my spot, gazing out at my little garden, with my hummingbird coming to feed right outside my window. I’m enjoying this little corner sanctuary with my newfound time to nurture.
And if you didn’t already recognize it, the Monstera motif is echoed in our Waterfront dress in Palm print. (P.S. they’re on Sale!)
Recently, we made a post on Facebook asking for your best vintage name suggestions for our dresses. You gave us so many wonderful names that we have tons to choose from for upcoming styles! Thank you to everybody that wrote in telling us your stories as well. We loved hearing about your Nana and how she used to wear gloves and get dressed every day in the 50s. Thank you for the pictures of your pets, your favourite movie stars and those that deserve to be remembered. We appreciate you sharing these suggestions with us!
We noticed that many of the suggested names were ones that we’ve already used before. And so we thought you might like to read a Master Cherry Velvet dress name list...
And now that you know the names of our past dresses you're going to be curious! Right? We're going to expand beyond this Master names list. We want to show you the designs, the photos, the prints and tell you why we named each dress. This is going to be epic! It’s going to be the history of all our dresses. How appropriate as we're coming up to our 10th anniversary later this year!
XOX Cherry Velvet
One of the many things that makes a Cherry Velvet dress special is the assortment of wonderful quirky prints that we use. You may not have thought about this before, but printed fabrics come in either a “one way” direction or “two way” direction. We thought you might like to know why we choose prints for certain dresses the way we do.
Below are two charts where we show you a dress design and its marker, which is the guideline factories use to cut the dress pattern pieces out of the fabric.
A one way print means that all the pattern pieces that make up the dress need to be cut in one direction. For example, two of the prints you voted to see again, Castle Plans and Atomic Kitties, are both one way. You would not want upside down cats or castles on the front of your dress, right? So all the pattern pieces that show on the outside of the dress have to be cut in the same direction.
Alternatively, a two way print can be cut in either direction. For example, one of the skirt panels can be cut one way and the other skirt panel can be cut the opposite way. By the time the dress is sewn up, you have no idea which way the panels went, and it doesn't matter - it's beautiful all the same!
Certain dresses are designed specifically for one way prints. The fabric that we use is very narrow, high quality 100% cotton. It’s only 42 inches wide, so you can imagine that cutting a full skirt out of a one-way print takes a LOT of fabric! That is also why it's rare to see a full skirted dress in a one way print.
Our line-up includes unique dresses that were designed specifically for these special one way prints. They use the fabric in such a way that there is not a lot of fabric waste (more fabric waste = more expensive dresses). The Brigitte, Angelina, Danielle, Marie and the Norma are the one-way dresses we've designed so far. The pieces are fit together on the marker as tightly as possible to save fabric.
In comparison, some of the two-way dresses we make are the Doris, Olivia, Paige, and Shelly to name a few. Usually they have fuller skirts, since the two way print allows for better utilization of the fabric.
We hope you enjoyed learning a bit more about how we make our dresses. Next time you're wearing one of our creations, you'll have a fun bit of trivia to tell about how they're crafted!
Thank you for reading, and see if you can spot on our upcoming releases if they are one way or two way print dresses!
XOX Cherry Velvet
It's hard to believe it's been 6 years since we did this catalog shoot for Spring/Summer 2015! So many people came together to carry this out without a hitch: Ruby Roxx and Charlotte Doering were the two stunning models. We were also lucky to have the incredible Glam Queen, Shimona Henry to transform these lovely ladies into Pin-up Perfection.
On shoot day, the models and the Pin-up Perfection team arrived with pin curled hair, curling irons, make up kits and large coffees! There were 40 dresses to shoot; we knew it was going to be a long day. For two models, that's a hard day's work of pose-smile-repeat. Standing and posing in freezing January weather while wearing a summery cotton dress and teetering on high heels is much harder than it looks!
Hycroft Manor was the perfect location; a combination of the classic retro feeling we love and traditional architectural detail. We arrived with a plethora of fluffy crinolines, boxes of colorful shoes, a suitcase full of pretty jewelry, and of course the beautiful dresses.
Hycroft is a magnificent Edwardian mansion, originally built for Alexander Duncan McRae, at the beginning of the twentieth century. McRae made his new home a spectacular show place for legendary parties and masquerade balls. Every room in the mansion is spectacular; like this Art Deco conservatory.
The guest book at Hycroft read like a Who's Who of the 20's and 30's with names of visiting royalty, well-known business associates, politicians and the social elite of Vancouver. It was said to be an honour and a delight to be invited to Hycroft and if you were, you would most likely sit in this stunning drawing room.
The grounds of the manor are as impressive as the inside. We shot outside among these ionic columns with stunning views in every direction.
With my favourite photographer -Shimona- on hand and such a beautiful setting, I couldn't resist getting my photo taken too. I'm wearing "vintage" Cherry Velvet. This one was called the Charlotte; I just love all the beautiful green and blues in this butterfly print.
I can't believe how fast time flies and it was so fun to look back at this blast from the past with you. I hope you've enjoyed these highlights from our epic photoshoot at Hycroft Manor.
Hey guys this is Diane, I sure miss seeing all of you and being able to chat with you in person. So for just a minute try to imagine you've arrived at our studio and we are hanging out, having a visit! Maybe you'd like to know what’s happening here at Cherry Velvet?
The next dress that's coming is a brand new style called Jacqueline named after a very lovely customer. There were two long delays and the fabric finally arrived, 3 months late! Then, we had some computer issues which delayed production another few weeks. (yep that's 2020 for you!) So if you’re wondering why you haven’t seen very many styles lately, that is why.
Remember when you lovelies joined in to name the new prints? Well, you will be seeing them soon. The good news is that the new Jacqueline dress is in production now!
All year I search for unique fabrics and this year is no different. I have a lot of beautiful new prints on order. I'm also considering bringing back a few 'past prints' back. What do you think? Would you like to see one or more of these prints again? If so please weigh in on our Facebook or Instagram post of January 12, we'd love to hear your feedback on these prints.
Right now, I’m designing a brand new style that I think you will love. I’m calling it Isobel named after the littlest Cherry Velvet girl. Isobel is the daughter of two very good customers and she has been coming to visit us for many years. She told me she liked coming to Cherry Velvet better than going to Disneyland! True Story! The Isobel dress will be a sundress style with a front zipper, because of all the great feedback we've gotten about our other super popular front zip style, the Marie.
I'm dying to show you this vintage travel poster print I've been saving for a dress coming this Spring. While we're not able to travel right now, we can dream about it, right?
You may notice that we have been putting new zippers in our dresses starting with the Olivia dress. We heard feedback from some of you it was difficult to get zippers done up by yourself. The only way to solve this issue was to change to a new zipper that allowed the attachment of a zipper helper. I'm interested to hear your feedback about this new zipper. It definitely has a different look, it’s more exposed and visible than the invisible zipper that we’ve been using for many years.
Thank you again to everybody who sent in those wonderful entries for Cherry Cheer. We hope you’ll continue to send us photos of yourself and tag us with #cherryvelvet. We love to see you in your dresses!
So, please keep in touch and stay strong guys! I miss you!
Put on something pretty everyday to boost your mood!
Over the Holidays, we welcomed you to share your Cherry Cheer with us, in the form of pictures of your precious moments in Cherry Velvet style. We tremendously enjoyed seeing your gorgeous photos (and many furry friends), and now we have reached that moment we've all been waiting for.
Without further ado...here are the winners!
Drum roll please!
Thank you from the bottom of our hearts to everyone that sent some Cherry Cheer our way over the holidays! It was so delightful to see your posts and you genuinely filled our hearts with cheer and happy smiles.
Megan Chambers gets an A for outstanding effort with her clever and beautiful hello to 2021! She'll get to choose one of our new Sophia Shrugs in the colour of her choice.
Monica Benoit clearly needed to be our second prize winner for braving the chilly Canadian winter! We'll be sending her a beautiful Evergreen Cape to help her keep warm!
How lovely is first prize winner Geneviève Parisé, in her Dita dress and victory rolls, in this beautiful retro black and white photo. Genevieve is the lucky recipient of a Cherry Velvet dress and crinoline of her choice!
Random gift card draw
Awarded earlier were our gift card winners, @elizabethkinsey and @kitskt - lucky gals!
And of course, all your lovely entries made it very hard to pick the winners! Browsing through the #CherryCheer tag on Instagram and Facebook has been truly fun.
Plus, we had to make an honorable mention to all the pet friends that made our hearts fuzzy in so many entries ♥️
Please know we appreciated each and every one of you and your beautiful photos.
Thank you for spreading the Cherry Cheer and we hope we brought a little fun and excitement to your holiday season too!
XOX Cherry Velvet
If you’re like our designer, Diane, you love to find new ways to show off your favourite Cherry Velvet outfits. Finding the perfect accessory can complete your look and make it feel extra special. Recently, Diane discovered a unique Canadian connection to one of her sparkly fashion finds.
One day, Diane was browsing at a favourite vintage store when the clerk approached her, full of admiration for the rhinestone brooch Diane was wearing. The enthusiastic clerk told her that the piece was made by Sherman, a Canadian company.
Inspired and intrigued, Diane wanted to learn more about this Canadian brand. Founded in Montreal in 1949, G. Sherman & Company Ltd. had a similar goal to Cherry Velvet: making women feel special.
The founder, Gus Sherman, specialized in the design and production of beautiful costume jewelry, and his work was sold in every corner of Canada. “Jewels of Elegance by Sherman”, his ladies’ collection, offered brooches made from Swarovski crystal in intricate designs and countless colour combinations. With innovative plating techniques and individually hand-set beads, a Sherman brooch was a true reflection of mid-century luxury.
Because of the superior sparkle and craftsmanship of these pieces, Sherman brooches are highly collectable.Many pieces are marked with the distinctive Sherman name, but supposedly there are unmarked pieces like Diane's brooch. While she may never be 100% sure it's a Sherman, it certainly has the hallmarks of quality and sparkle that Sherman is known for. Vintage costume jewelry buffs enjoy seeking out these special treasures – each one is a unique and valued find.
Next time you’re at a vintage store, garage sale or flea market, keep your eyes peeled for one of Sherman’s dazzling treasures. You might find yourself owning a glittering piece of Canada’s fashion history!
XOX Cherry Velvet
Let's show everyone our Cherry Cheer!
In my neighbourhood the lights are up and sparkling trees peek through the windows. Now it’s your turn to shine! We’re inviting you all to decorate yourself with your prettiest Cherry Velvet frocks and show us your socially distant holiday spirit.
Show us your baking, your lights, your trees, and how you are celebrating. We want to see your prettiest eye shadow, your sparkly jewelry, your megawatt smiles and tons o' Cherry Cheer. Be creative, be festive, and share your photos publically on your own social media pages to spread the Cherry Cheer far and wide.
Yes, there's more! We've got an impressive line up of prizes. First prize is a dress and crinoline of your choice. Second prize is a beautiful Evergreen Cape. Third prize is one of our new Sophia shrugs. Plus there will be random prizes of gift certificates and Cherry Bucks too. There's lots of prizes to go around so get creative and enter often!
A few tips: Make sure your lighting is good and your dress looks its best. Please no collages, we want to see single photos. As long as you're showing us your holiday cheer pretty much anything goes.*
Please share your photos using the hashtags #cherrycheer #cherryvelvet
You've got this! Smile for the camera!! And GO!
*Full contest details on our website here