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  • Afternoon Tea for Two at the Empress Hotel

    Published Apr 26 2023 in #canadianfashiondesigner, #cherryvelvet, #pinupdress, #pinupstyle, #plussizedresses, #Victoria

    Tulips at the Empress Hotel in Victoria BC CanadaSuch a special treat! My girlfriend Barbara and I took the ferry over to Victoria BC for the weekend. Together we decided to dress up in our Cherry Velvet dresses and splurge on Afternoon Tea at the Empress!

    two ladies dressed in Cherry Velvet dresses in front of the Empress Hotel in Victoria BC People come from all over to enjoy the famous Afternoon Tea in the beautiful grand Lobby Lounge of this 110 year old hotel. The finest, ethically sourced tea and exquisite treats are served on special hand painted china originally picked out by Queen Elizabeth and King George VI in 1939.

    Cherry Velvet designer and her friend enjoying afternoon tea at the EmpressBarbara wore her favourite Diane dress in the Petalicious print and I wore the new Sookie Dress in 'One in a Melon'. Both of us are wearing Fluevogs and managed to squeeze in several visits to the Victoria store as well.

    Empress Afternoon Tea china and treats enjoyed by Cherry velvet designer Diane Kennedy

    Our 'Lady Londenderry' choice of tea was served in a big pot for each of us along with a timer to perfectly time the tea. First course was a delicious scone with clotted cream and jam. Next we had finger sandwiches; cucumber with dill, egg salad, curried chicken, ham w/cheese, and smoked salmon. Saving the sweet treats for last; a Lemon macaron, Cherry Mousse in a chocolate cup, lemon pound cake, and chocolate fruit gelee. Our whole assortment was gluten free and it was fresh and delicious!

    Plus size woman wearing a Cherry Velvet dress called Petalicious

    Cherry Velvet designer Diane Kennedy wearing the Sookie dress in One in a Melon print

    After tea we took some time to enjoy the floral fireworks! They sure know how to plant tulips in Victoria! 

    Hopefully one day you'll get a chance to enjoy afternoon tea as we did in this incredible historic hotel! 

    XOX Diane

    Tulips at the Empress Hotel in Victoria BC Canada

  • What’s the True Cost of your dress?

    Published Apr 21 2022 in #canadianfashiondesigner, #cherryvelvet, #fastfashion, #madeincanada, #slowfashion, #truecost

    It’s Spring and that means it’s party time and you’re shopping for a new dress (or two)!

    Before you go online to swipe, click and answer the door to another fast fashion disappointment that will likely end up in a landfill; ask yourself how much better you would feel in a cute cotton dress that fits your curves and is locally made with quality?

    Cherry Velvet brand proudly shows off their Made In Canada label

    What’s in it for Me?

    Wearing a dress that's made in Canada is something to be proud of. Your choice to order a dress that’s already in North America means that it gets to you faster so you can enjoy the compliments sooner. Look at how cute and conscious you are! 

    Also, remember that Cherry Velvet dresses are limited editions so you are wearing a unique design that’s one of a few. Sometimes only as few as 8 dresses are made in a print so you can rest assured you are not likely to see someone else in YOUR dress. 

    Pay it Forward

    Yes, you're wearing a beautiful dress but did you know that you’re also a local hero? Your dollar will turn over ten times because you spent it in North America. Once your money is spent overseas it’s never coming back. By shopping locally your support makes a big difference. Also, you can feel better because the women that make your clothes are treated well and paid a fair wage (this is NOT the case when you buy cheap fashion).

    What’s holding you back?

    Is it the price? A Cherry Velvet dress can range in price starting from as low as  $69 (depending on the sale, season, and offer codes applied to your order). Be sure to sign up for the newsletter here to know about sales and new arrivals first. 

    Less is More

    We’ve all heard that expression and it applies to your wardrobe too. By shopping for a locally made dress that was not shipped from overseas you are making a big difference towards the greater good. If you focus on quality over quantity, you would be helping save the environment from toxic fast fashion and have more closet space. It’s a win win!
    cheap fast fashion clothes in the landfill
    Do you know what your dress is costing you, women just like you and the planet? The True Cost is higher than you may know. Fast Fashion is a beast that is responsible for devastating effects on our planet. This polluting problem snuck up on us quickly and isn't going away on its own. It’s time to slay the beast. 

    XOX Cherry Velvet


  • A Library of Dress Designs: Chapter "E"

    Published Mar 24 2021 in #10yearanniversary, #1950s, #canadianfashiondesigner, #cherryvelvet, #dressdesigns, #ellymayday, #history, #ovariancancer

    This post is all about our beautiful dress designs that start with the letter "E". A word of advice, you may need a box of tissues handy. I have a heartfelt story to tell you about one of our models and the dress that was named for her.


    The Elizabeth dress was first released in the Fall of 2013 and then again in Fall 2018. It has a similar cut and fit to the popular Chrissy dress. These first prints; as modelled on lovely Bianca Bombshell and Ruby Roxx were made from a beautiful stretch cotton sateen. 

    Cherry Velvet Elizabeth Dress

     Cherry Velvet Elizabeth Dress

    Cherry Velvet Elizabeth Dress

    In our later release of the Elizabeth dress we switched to our regular 100% cotton in these stunning prints:

    Cherry Velvet Elizabeth dress

     Cherry Velvet Elizabeth Dress

    Cherry Velvet Elizabeth dress


    Of all of the dresses I have written about so far, this one is the hardest to write. These photos bring back memories of a young 25 year old girl that was diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer, the same disease my own mother died of when I was 12 years old. I know most of you remember Elly Mayday (aka Ashley Luther) she was a Cherry Velvet model for a number of years. At the time of this photo shoot she was very ill and had lost all her hair from chemotherapy. She is actually wearing a wig that I bought for her in these photos. I imagined how I would feel as a 25 year that had lost all her hair and my heart went out to her. 

    Elly Mayday modelling the Cherry Velvet dress that was named for her, the Elly

    Elly Mayday modelling the Cherry Velvet dress that was named for her, the EllyThe Elly dress was designed and made especially for her, for an event called Strut for a Cause. It happened the night before she was scheduled to go in for major surgery. Since the blog about this event was on our old blog (and no longer accessible), I will repost it for you to read about if you wish as next week's blog.

    Elly Mayday modelling the Cherry Velvet dress that was named for her, the EllyThe eye-catching wingbust design of the Elly dress was a vintage design inspired by the dresses of a very influential 1950's (and beyond) designer; Alfred Shaheen. I am launching a much anticipated remake of the Elly dress that will be ready for release in summer 2021. The prints are inspired by the original Elly dress with some updated additions (the original fabrics are no longer available).

    Elly Mayday modelling the Cherry Velvet dress that was named for her, the Elly

     Cherry Velvet Elly dress named after Elly Mayday

     Cherry Velvet Elly dress named after Elly Mayday

    Cherry Velvet Elly dress named after Elly Mayday

    Cherry Velvet Elly dress named after Elly Mayday


    Released in 2015, the Emma dress was made only once for our Spring 2015 collection at the Hycroft Manor photo shoot. The most popular print was predictably "Cool Cats" as modelled on Ruby Roxx.

    Cherry Velvet Emma dress  Cherry Velvet Emma dress


    This was an extremely limited run of dresses. Only a few of these Eva Lace party dresses were ever made. 

    Cherry Velvet Eva dress

    Cherry Velvet Eva dress

    Cherry Velvet Eva dress I hope you all understand why I wanted to share these memories about Elly Mayday with you. I feel it was important to honour her memory in this post; by sharing some of her images and story with you. She was certainly an important part of our history and I will never forget her and the lessons I learned while working with her.

    XOX Love Diane