News » Cherry Velvet Dresses
On October 4th and 5th this year, we hosted an event at our Vancouver studio, called "Halloween is Brewing".
Although it was quite a bit earlier in the month than these celebrations would usually be, we figured it would be a fun opportunity to get in the spirit of the season and shop for themed outfits. After all, for those who wait for this holiday all year, it's never too early to spook things up!
We decorated our whole studio with bats, spiders, monsters, and all things ghastly. Our dress forms were beheaded and bloody just for the occasion. Upon arrival, we had a special spot for all our flying guests to park their brooms. Diane's inspiration truly came through on our (perhaps intoxicated from too much of that "brew") witch splattered in a corner.
And so many hilarious captions were made for this by some of you!
We also had Kelly, the Booze Witch with her flavour enhancers for sampling. These interesting elixirs and shrubs are made with vinegar and unique flavours such as Elderflower and Strawberry Black Pepper. Just a few drops of these delicious concoctions will add amazing flavour to beverages, seasonings, and of course, cocktails!
Logan, our photographer, set up an eerie scene with a moonlit path and gate backdrop. He expertly positioned a light from the back, so the glow was as ethereal as it was actually real.
We were also equipped with a smoke machine, for that extra freaky foggy effect that made you feel lost in the woods on a cold October night - just like Halloween should be!
Standing in front of this set, it seemed anyone would be inspired to give out a cackle or two...
As seen on the left, some may have really, really enjoyed the smoke.
It was so much fun to see our customers come and have a great time at our ghastly studio, taking photos in our Halloween dresses and props. I think we can say we successfully stepped right into the spirit(s).
Please enjoy these pictures, and if you still need your freaky frock for the spooky season - pay us a visit this week. Our studio is still decorated (although no photo area anymore, unfortunately) and we have a selection of Halloween dresses on sale - also available online!
Thank you all who joined and hope to see you at our next Studio Shop this weekend!
Friday, October 18th - 2pm to 7pm
Saturday, October 19th - 11am to 5pm
1635 Powell St. Vancouver, BC (Free parking by the Flag Shop or right out front)🚗
XOX Cherry Velvet
By Cherry Velvet Designer + Creator, Diane Kennedy.
My wonderful customers, if it wasn’t for you, Cherry Velvet wouldn’t be here. I know that’s a bit of a cliché but it’s the honest truth. It's what gets me up in the morning and is a constant reminder that I'm truly blessed...
My favourite time of year (fall) makes me remember that I am literally living my dream. I knew I wanted to be a designer and make beautiful dresses for women of all sizes when was I just a little girl. Being able to fulfill that dream and continue to make my clothes exclusively in Canada makes it even more special.
I'm especially thankful for my staff; the hardworking people that support me every single day. Logan Rudrum, my Media Director, has been my rock and unfailing support for the past 6 years. Barb Wilkins, in Customer Service, is the lovely lady that helps me take care of all of you. Julia Leal, my new Social Media Coordinator, is fitting in very well with the team. And, I'm thrilled to say, my marketing assistant, Tracy Po is getting better every day and scheduled to return to us very soon. (She was recently back at our studio for the first time during our Halloween is Brewing Event!)
I'm also grateful for the support of my sales agent and model, Leah Tuttle. We just finished a beautiful photoshoot with her that I'm looking forward to sharing with you.
Thanksgiving is important. Giving thanks and feeling gratitude for what you have; a simple concept and yet we often forget to feel grateful. Whatever you do to celebrate this time of year, may it bring you happiness and contentment.
Did you know that September is the awareness month for Ovarian Cancer - a much less talked about, but very serious type of women’s cancer? Unlike other more well-known types, there is no screening test for cancer of your #ladyballs. (This may be a somewhat controversial name for your ovaries, but it does require both knowledge and guts to beat this difficult to diagnose disease.)
It's important for our designer, Diane, to spread awareness, as not only did this condition take her Mom at a very young age, but her Sister-in-law as well.
You may have heard the story of one of our early models, Elly Mayday, who at the age of 25 was diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer too.
We're pleased to join Forever Yours Lingerie's #Onehellvawoman High Tea and Fundraiser in honour of Elly's life and her wish to spread awareness about this difficult disease. We are proudly offering five "Dress of Your Choice" vouchers for the auction, which will raise funds for ovarian cancer research.
"Please spend a few moments learning about ovarian cancer, as discovering it early enough improves your chances to treat it effectively and survive" ~ Diane Kennedy
There is no one specific symptom for ovarian cancer, and the symptoms are generally vague and often mistakenly attributed to other causes. It’s called "the disease that whispers" or the "silent killer", as it tends to be overlooked and under-diagnosed.
Do you do a breast self-exam every month? What about going for an annual pap test? Although these simple steps could save your life, when it comes to taking care of your #ladyballs, it's not as straightforward.
We hope we’ve inspired you to catch up on any tests you haven’t taken lately, and brought attention to symptoms you should pay attention to. Please share this post with all the important women in your life so that they’ll be aware, too.
XOX Cherry Velvet
Just so you know our designer Diane is 53 and believes that you should wear fashion that makes you happy no matter what your age. It's a form of self-expression/art that you carry around with you wherever you go. Cherry Velvet dresses are made to fit many sizes and body types so that women of any age can enjoy wearing them. That's the whole idea! Wearing dresses that make you feel fantastic and look amazing but also are the foundation for your own personal style.
"I designed Cherry Velvet as dresses that I want to wear and feel good in. Age or body type doesn't come into this equation because I make clothing to be fun and beautiful no matter how old you are or what size you are." ~Diane Kennedy
Recently we received an email from a customer from Montreal asking us if 60 years was too old to wear one of our dresses. Absolutely not! We assured her that we have customers of all ages and even sent her a couple of photos of one of our favourite zoomers that absolutely ROCKS our dresses. She ended up buying the Norma - Magical Garden - Fairy Dress with a Purple Samantha Shrug and matching purple crinoline and plans to wear it to her niece's wedding in a few weeks with her lilac shoes and matching jewelry. We're hoping she'll send us some photos. We LOVE getting photos of our customers in our dresses!
~Photo and Fashionista credit to one of our most inspiring customers, Terri from Louisiana.
There are so many rules out there about what women can and can not wear and to them we say HOGWASH! Well, more to the point we feel like society should stop telling women what is appropriate to wear based on their age or their size for that matter. After all, a woman knows very well who she is, what looks good on her and what makes her happy. This is an earned right and no one else really needs to weigh in.
Just the other day we had a woman come into our studio to shop for a dress for a special occasion. The first dress she tried on looked amazing on her and fit like a glove. She stood looking at herself in the mirror for a long time and then I noticed she was tearing up. She assured me that she wasn't a big crier but she was so surprised by the emotional reaction she had by just finding a garment that she felt was made for her size, that included her and made her feel like she was beautiful. At her age no less. Imagine that!
Diane is wearing the Norma - Midnight Beauty Dress.
Diane loves to watch customers reaction when they come out of the change room. When you see a persons face just light up at their own reflection and especially when they dance or twirl in the mirror, it's obvious they are in love with the way they look. She never gets tired of hearing people say, "OMG I need this dress because I look fabulous!"
XOX Cherry Velvet
Find your perfect dress this weekend at the Studio Shop:
Friday August 23rd from 2pm-7pm.
Saturday August 24th 11am-5pm.
@ 1635 Powell Street, Vancouver B.C.
We'd love to see you!
We've come up with our best tips for getting the fit of your online dress purchase right the first time. More than anything we want you to be thrilled with your Cherry Velvet dresses! Not only do we want you to LOVE the style, print, and colour, most of all we want you to love the FIT! Because whether you're a new customer or a tried and true Cherry Velvet girl, your complete experience is truly important to us!
“I truly feel like I’ve done my job well when a curvy girl finds THE dress, and her face lights up when she sees how perfectly it fits and how beautiful she looks” Diane Kennedy, designer.
- Please measure yourself!! We can't stress this enough! Our sizes and fit are different than many other brands. Our sizing is very accurate to both regular (missy) size and plus sizes but that is a very subjective statement. What it means to us and to you is often not the same thing. Measurements don't lie though. Please don't guess! Measurements are the best chance for getting the fit right. Really!
- Please read the fit notes for the style you are buying. We've have been working on a revamp of this area on new styles and really hope that you, our customers will read them. While most of our dresses fit consistently there are a few rogues out there...Angelina is one or any style with stretch (spandex) We've been adding size charts to new styles as they come in.
- Please measure yourself and compare those numbers to the size chart. If you've never measured yourself before, don't worry it's easy! Here's our How to Measure Chart or you can watch this short, informative video.
- If you are unsure of your size PLEASE measure and then e-mail your measurements to us so we can help you. We are sweet little mature plus size ladies, we don't judge, we are here to help you. Our ONLY goal is to help you get the best fit. period. no judgement. ever.
We want to help you!
Email us here: cherryvelvetplus@gmail (dot) com
XOX Diane and Barb
P.S. Of course if you're local to our Vancouver studio, we're also happy to help you get your perfect fit in person. More info here
Published Aug 08 2019 in Best fit, Canadian Designer, Canadian Made, Cherry Velvet Dresses, cotton dresses, Did you know?, Facts, Garment care, Limited Edition Fabrics, Made In Canada, Made in Vancouver, Pockets, Vancouver-designed, Washable Cotton
We love our customers and it makes us so happy when you love our dresses (and us) back! We're very proud of the way we do business and wanted to share with you a few facts that you may not know:
Diane Kennedy is the designer and owner of the brand. If you ever come by the studio, you'll most likely meet her and she'd love to meet you too.
By 'old-fashioned', we mean personal. It's very important to us that you get the help you need. In-person, by email or by phone. We are always here to help you!
We understand fit is a big concern when purchasing online. If you ever need help with sizing, please send your dress choices and measurements via e-mail so we can help you find your best fit.
If you call during regular business hours, a real person answers the phone. We are here Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm, Pacific Standard Time.
Our amazing prints are hand-selected and 95% of the time are limited edition. We make almost all of our styles in small runs of 10-40 dresses. We have new styles and prints every season.
We have a very talented photographer on staff who photographs all of our local models and creates all of our official photos and videos.
We use high-quality cotton fabrics that are very easy to care for and are made to last. Our dresses are machine washable and hang to dry. We suggest smoothing out the wrinkles and the pockets when you hang your dress. Most of our customers do not iron their cotton dresses, but you can if you wish.
While some companies outsource, we design and make all our own patterns in our studio in Vancouver BC.
It can be difficult to ensure fair pay and proper treatment standards when manufacturing clothing offshore. That's why we only use local Vancouver-area factories for our manufacturing. Diane regularly visits the various factories to oversee the production of our dresses.
Definitely one the best facts...All of our dresses have POCKETS!!
XOX Cherry Velvet
Meet our #girlboss Diane at the Studio Shop this week in Vancouver:
Friday, August 9th from 2pm - 7pm
Saturday, Aug 10th from 11am - 5pm
1635 Powell Street in Vancouver, BC.
Free parking on the street (*please mind the parking signs for times) or in the parking lot beside the Flag Shop.
With our pattern maker away on maternity leave - our designer, Diane, found herself back in the sewing room - For the first time in years!
Diane has always been very hands-on when it comes to all facets of our dresses' production. As a seasoned fashion designer, she closely manages the pattern making and fittings, as well as monitoring production at our local factories.
Diane's background in sewing started at very early age. Fun fact - She made all her own clothes during her high school years and often sewed for other people. In grade 9, her sewing teacher actually paid her to sew for her! With style constantly on her mind and proven "clientele" at such a young age, she knew she found her calling and has been designing ever since.
And so, years later, with our Doris dress going into production once more, Diane wanted to make an adjustment to the pattern to improve fit. After all, even a classic can use an edit once and awhile.
The shoulder straps, while designed to go over a bra, were fitting too wide on somebody with a narrower shoulder. Diane administered a fit correction to the pattern and took the opportunity to sew herself a new dress in our Spinderella print, so she could test out the correction.
After this most recent session at the sewing machine, Diane was so delighted to remember how much she loved to sew - even after so many years! It's true; you never forget your first love ❤️
"It's such a wonderfully satisfying feeling to be able to design, make the pattern and complete a dress from start to finish". - Diane Kennedy
Diane's style of designing dresses has always been this kind of old-fashioned, "use all the best ingredients" approach. From the 100% cotton prints she carefully chooses to the YYK zippers that are a well-known industry standard, Diane's passion can be seen in her commitment to her designs.
Cherry Velvet's mission statement has always been to create a line of classic garments with exceptional fit and we hope this behind-the-scenes peek at our designer's process has helped illustrate her devotion for design!
XOX Cherry Velvet
...We interrupt your regularly scheduled blog post for an ANNOUNCEMENT!
Ever since we started holding regular open studio shop weekends, we've wanted to make sure ya'll can Save-The-Dates on our events as soon as you can. We understand how busy life can get and want to ensure everyone has a chance to get some retail therapy in. #selfcare is a thing, after all 😉
Have a peek at this month below & bookmark our new Events Page!
Can't make it out? Can't wait? :: Book a Personal Shopping Appointment with us! ::
We can't wait to see y'all! ♥️
XOX Cherry Velvet
BLOGGIN' NEXT WEEK :: PART 2 of our customer spotlight on The Snow Family.
There is a buzz of excitement here at Cherry Velvet headquarters. The rumours are true, Ms. Tracy Po has returned to the Cherry Velvet fold and we couldn't be happier. Tracy is fulfilling her new role here as the Social Media Manager for Cherry Velvet so stay tuned for some very fun, and creative content on our social media pages.
Tracy brings an intimate knowledge of our brand and buckets of positivity and enthusiasm. Diane, our designer describes her as a (t)whirling dervish of energy. Tracy comes in like a wrecking ball of sunshine and has been quoted as saying "In all honesty, I'm the kind of person that turns lemons into lemon vodka and would rather look forward with my eye on the horizon than look down behind me."
With a passion for all things Disney. (Guys, she REALLY loves Disney!) and a unique and amazing sense of style and upbeat personality, it's kind of like having Mary Poppins join the team.
When she was asked why she was excited to work for Cherry Velvet, Tracy said "I love seeing the delight on our clients' faces when they see how wonderfully our dresses fit them. You wouldn't know it by looking at me, but I have struggled and continue to struggle with my weight. I know how depressing and disheartening it feels to have to settle for a less than perfect dress. I love that Cherry Velvet takes care of confidence-boosting style for our clients. It is incredibly inspiring to work for a brand that promotes the idea of being #StunningAtAnySize!"
Always whistling while she works, she has a passion for customer service. She'll be working at our Studio Shop this weekend. Come say "Hi"!
Friday, May 17 from 2pm-7pm + Saturday, May 18 from 11am-5pm
Welcome back to Cherry Velvet, Tracy! We're all so happy to have you as part of the team.
XOX Cherry Velvet
There’s a part of me that never outgrew the dress-up stage of childhood. Back then it was pretending to be an empress or witch-queen – anything that was equal parts regal, mysterious, and magical.
These days, give me a halfway good reason, and I’ll still spend the better part of an afternoon getting all dolled up for an evening out. It’s a lengthy process that starts, of course, with deciding which dress suits the occasion and my mood. After that, a host of secondary decisions: does it need a crinoline? Which shoes will match? How should I do my hair and makeup? Then there’s jewelry, accessories, a purse, hosiery, and various underthings. It’s dress-up, but for adults: less “witch-queen” and more “grown-up glamour” – but still full of whimsy and pleasure. Admittedly, getting “dressed up” like this can take a lot of time, and most of us wait for special occasions when the extra effort seems worth it. In the meantime, our dresses end up relegated to the back of the closet, on hold until a special dinner, wedding, or some other equally fancy event crops up. But wearing a dress is not always the same as getting “dressed up.” Believe it or not, wearing a dress can be just about the simplest wardrobe decision to make, and the most comfortable and efficient way to get dressed and out the door in the morning.
Everyday Easy Dresses
Without fail, when I wear a dress someplace casual – like picking up the kids after school or having a quick coffee with a friend – I get a compliment for taking the time and energy to get “dressed up.”
But pulling that dress over my head and popping on a pair of shoes was likely much more simple - and more comfortable – than any other outfit I might have chosen. More often than not, the dress was the easy solution. Pants and tops have to be coordinated. Waistbands pinch and pull. Shorts ride up uncomfortably. Trousers rarely fit properly in length or inseam without tailoring. Blouses come untucked, skirts twist around. To be honest, it feels like I’ve cheated my way into this compliment when I get it - and I almost always confess this sentiment to the person offering it. People see a dress and assume it’s taken a lot more effort because we’ve married the idea of dresses to the notion of being dressed up. Or, even worse, we’ve concluded that dresses themselves are uncomfortable and unwieldy – usually because we’ve worn styles that didn’t suit our bodies, made out of unpleasant or cheap material, or were constricting and uncomfortable in some way.
Keep It Simple
Obviously not all dresses will do for everyday wear. Leave the satin and sequins for evening glamour and fancy events. Instead, go for less structured shapes (I like an empire waist because it feels so comfortable for my body type) and try a cotton dress, in a simple colour or with a fun, lighthearted print. Skip the fancy hair and makeup. Pop on a cardigan and wear it with a pair of white Keds, simple sandals, or even flip-flops. Pull on a pair of matching capri or full-length leggings underneath, if the weather is cooler; in warm weather, don’t worry about hose or tights at all. Finish with a ponytail or messy bun. No doubt, dresses won’t work for everything. You’ll still need the right kind of clothing to hit the gym or weed the garden (although I’ve been known to mow the lawn in a simple t-shirt dress). But for almost all other settings and activities, don’t overlook the ease of a dress. It really can be as simple, or as complicated, as you want it to be.
Fancy is Still Fun
Wearing a dress doesn’t need to be a major production – it can be as easy as pulling on a pair of pajamas, but just a lot more fashionable. The notion that a dress is complicated, fussy, or time-consuming is largely a reflection of how we perceive fashion, and the abundance of ill-fitting, constrictive, overly stuffy or too-formal dresses many of us have in our closets. But if you find the right dress, the simplicity will surprise you … and you won’t want to keep it tucked away in the closet for a special occasion anymore. And if even the easiest of easy dresses still leaves you feeling a little bit fancy? Take a deep breath and just go for it anyway: you’re never too old for dress-up, even if you’re only going to the grocery store.