The Love Desire and Riches exhibition is a sensationally decadent and delightfully ornate wedding exhibition, showcasing a glorious array of wedding fashion from Haute Couture, film,television, and pop culture through the ages. This beautiful exhibition is held at the divine Rippon Lea House and Gardens, a hugely popular wedding venue in itself. What results is a sincerely lovely marriage of stunning gowns and romantically perfect surroundings.

Love, Desire and Riches weaves its way through the vintage halls and grand rooms of the Rippon Lea Estate. Historic fashion of yesteryear, adorned in fine laces and exquisite silks are the dreamy gowns that begin our journey through the exhibit. Bridal wear, photography, curious and quirky wedding related items from various time periods, all have their moment in the spotlight. The exhibit’s period installations offer us a window to the past and also inspire the modern bride to steal an element or two of their design and beauty for the future.

The Modern Haute Couture gowns on display create a wondrous juxtaposition in this period setting. The drama of Alex Perry, the structure and silhouette of Collette Dinnigan, the whimsy and ease of Akira Isogawa, all seduce and allure. The contemporary gowns are enough to make any girl drool, and for those of us who have had their wedding day already, you will battle with the desire to do it all again- only better!

One of my favourite moments in Love, Desire and Riches is the couture workroom installation- The Anatomy of the Dress. Being invited to see the bare bones and starting structure of bespoke gowns is a real treat. Mariana Hardwick gives us a sneak peek into the world of the seamstress and embroiderer, allowing us an understanding of the artistry and workmanship that must combine to create a couture piece. The pattern paper Akira Isogawa prototype for me was a highlight- paper never looked so good!

The exhibition also offers some enjoyable gems for the literature and film inclined amongst us. The gowns of some classic female characters such as The Bride of Frankenstein, Miss Havisham, Emma, and Tess grace the Rippon Lea halls, some with an eery melancholy in tow. Even some Australian iconic television wedding moments make an appearance! The exquisite paper couture dress by Christina Re is truly breathtaking, as are her innovative and architectural creations that regularly appear throughout the exhibition.

The Love, Desire and Riches exhibition is a true romantic feast of lace, organza, beads, crystals and chiffon! From simple chic to gem encrusted grandeur, there is a little something for everyone at this event. A modern bride to be can certainly be sure to leave the magic of Rippon Lea inspired and excited. Get the girls together and make a day of it!!

The exhibition runs from 1 July to 30 September, 10am-4pm and Friday evenings 6pm – 8.30pm (fortnightly from 4 July) at Rippon Lea House and Garden, 192 Hotham Street, Elsternwick. Head to their website for more information!