Zurbarán and Caprile in the Palacio of Liria

I love reading gossip magazines when they publish a cover of a famous wedding. I take my time whilst looking at the photos: the dresses, the headdresses, the bags and the shoes… It thrills me to focus on all the details that surround the ceremony. I think that the atmosphere in which the engagement is celebrated together with the bride’s dress, are the two things that most strike my attention.

Due to this, when I saw the front cover of Hola last May with Asela Pérez Becerril and Jacobo Fitz-James Stuart’s wedding, I fell in love.

When I saw this dress together with the Palace of Liria… I immediately thought of Lorenzo Caprile, his bodices are unmistakeable.

I opened up Hola, skipping through the pages (of course) until I reached page 67, where I found the complete report.

The first image that I saw of the dress won me over completely… At that precise moment I knew I was going to write about him.

I wasn’t mistaken; the wizard who had managed the marvellous resemblance was no other that Lorenzo Caprile. The rest was pure coincidence.

A few months after, Lorenzo’s right hand girl, Chiquín Figueroa, passed by our space. Chiquín is down to earth and upbeat. A few minutes later I found myself chatting to her, with my copy of Hola in my hand (I had it safely and well conserved) and expressing my desires to write about this dress to her.

My surprise was enormous when, after a few days, she called me to tell me that we were invited to visit the workshop, meet Lorenzo and to photograph the dress.

Our appointment (20 Claudio Coello Street): a beautiful building from the nineteenth century in the heart of the ‘Barrio de Salamanca’. Lorenzo’s workshop was overflowing, it was the end of July, and everything was being rushed to and fro. None of this flurry prevented Lorenzo and Lola from having prepared Aselas dress’s Toile for us.

Lola entertained herself by placing and arranging the bodice, the train, the sleeves, and the front gathering of the dress so that we could appreciate the piece in its full splendour.

Lorenzo couldn’t have been friendlier. We started by talking about the bride. Asela has an art gallery: Espacio Valverde. Lorenzo told me that she is a woman of exquisite sensitivity. The bride was clear about the type of dress she was looking for. The most important for her was: that it fitted in with her surroundings… nothing more and nothing less that the gardens of the Palace of Liria.

What a marvellous place to celebrate a wedding!

Lorenzo’s inspiration arrived through Asela’s favourite classical painter: Zurbarán. The volume of his dresses, the way his fabrics fell and the grandiosity of his work were her inspiration.

Seventeen metres of fabric were needed. Satin and taffeta both made from natural silk were chosen, the Valencian brand “Catalá” was selected for weaving. Their experience of over more than 200 years and their magnificent weaving machines, unique in Spain, were considered by Lorenzo to be specified for such a delicate delivery. Not in vain, the silks of Infanta Cristina, the Princess of Asturias’ dress had come from their weaving machines, just like the fabric that decorated the Kennedy’s bedroom in the White House.

Who would be more capable than them to make a fabric that would seem as if it had come out of a Zurbarán painting?

It struck me greatly that Asela were to wear a ‘mantilla’ and a veil. Lorenzo explained to me that the idea was his. Asela wanted to wear a ’mantilla’ made from Brussels lace, an antique jewel of more than 2 metres of length that had belonged to his mother’s family for more than 100 years. Due to Asela wanting to enter the ceremony wearing the veil, Lorenzo decided to place the veil covering the face and the ‘mantilla’ just as the bride had dreamed.

The veil would be held in place over the head by a simple loop. Lorenzo cut the veil in such a special way that it would remain light and not take the spotlight away from the authentic jewel that dazzled below it: the nineteenth century ‘mantilla’. Lola stressed to me that the ‘mantilla’ is a jewel, one of the most beautiful and magnificent pieces that they have seen, and furthermore, perfectly conserved.

Lorenzo explained the details of the dress’s tailoring to us:

The border of the bodice was made by Joan Cat, an incredible artisan that has worked for Lorenzo for many years, and who bordered the entire drawing that Asela and Lorenzo had chosen by hand. A floral jewel inspired by the front of the seventeenth century dresses.  

The smallest movement made by Asela would reveal the dresses petticoat, another small jewel finished off with lace edging and “valencien” lace. All of them sewn by hand.

Surrounded by patterns and rules, we enjoyed ourselves with Mar, the workshop’s manager. She explained to us, with all the luxurious details, how Lorenzo’s star piece was made… “The bodices”


Lorenzo’s bodices have between 14 and 16 rods and Lorenzo says that they were the antique version of plastic surgery. With them, women were able to cover their flaws and highlight their virtues.  

We admire the storeroom full of lace, tulles, lace bordering and embroidery that would provide delightful to any lover of high couture.

We saw Ana and Marian pass the lace’s designs from one tulle to the other on a bodice… This is a delicate and hard job. The lace is cut and sewn back again over the silk. All of this by hand, of course.


Two months total of hard work: Isabel, Paco, Fran, Nines, Marta, Mar, Lola… were some of the expert hands through which the piece passed. Each one of them put in hours of work, but over all hours of care… The workshop breathes joy, illusion, professionalism and team work, and all of this is reflected in every one of their pieces. The love and passion with which they explained every detail surprised me. A great team of professionals, of this there is no doubt.

I don’t want to leave out the comments about the details that I loved greatly too: the tiara worn by Asela, a nineteenth century tortoiseshell jewel that belongs to her family; the bride’s bouquet, a small and delicate bouquet of white roses.

The most important thing for Lorenzo was that the Bride trusted him from the very beginning, and it was stressed how the chemistry with Asela was perfect from the very first moment. It is clear that they formed the perfect tandem, and between the two of them they were able to complete the dream of any bride: to be dazzling on the most important day of their life.

For me this is the most magnificent bridal dress created in 2011.

Many thanks to Lorenzo Caprile, Chiquín Figueroa and all of their team for the care with which they treated us. Our many thanks too to Asela Pérez Becerril for letting us write this report.

If you would like to get to know Lorenzo Caprile better you can visit his website:

Lorenzo Caprile




Will the Tradition for Veiled Brides Return?

The tradition of the bride entering her wedding ceremony with a veil covering her face, so habitual in the Fifties and Sixties, disappeared little by little, until today when we find it extremely rare to see a veiled bride at a wedding.

When this tradition came into fashion it became popular to see the brides entering into church wearing veils. They excitedly walked down the aisle on the arm of their godfather, whilst all the guests contemplated their entry in admiration. Waiting at the altar, you would find the impatient and nervous groom. However, just before handing the bride over to her future husband, the godfather would reveal the bride’s face. The bride, now without veil, would dazzle in her abundant happiness during the rest of the ceremony, the groom being the first to admire her in all her splendour.


At the beginning, the brides kept the veil on until the priest pronounced the two most waited for words to the groom: “You may kiss the Bride”. In this moment, the now-husband would lift the veil covering his bride; he would place it carefully over her shoulders and kiss her. What a transcendental moment for a woman! Can you imagine the amount of times that the groom would have had to be explained how to arrange the veil in order for it to be placed favourably for the bride?

With the passing of the years the tradition changed slightly, as seen as it wasn’t very becoming for the bride to remain veiled during practically the entire ceremony. Her face remained covered and the photographs taken weren’t very flattering.  

The wedding photos that delight me, yet at the same time seem to me to be flattering for the bride, are those in which you see the veiled bride stepping out of her wedding car. This star-studded moment, in which the bride places her foot on the ground as she steps out of the wedding car, unveiling the best kept secret of the occasion: the wedding dress. The moment in which so much dedication and so many illusions and efforts are publicly shown is full of emotion and sensations for all women. In this moment all the brides are brimming with happiness. The photographs leave a record of all the hard work for later, in order to achieve the most dazzling day possible. This is why I love to see the brides entering whilst covered by a veil, for me, this adds a halo of mystery and glamour to the moment.  


I would love to see this tradition come back. On some occasions I have mentioned it to some of the brides that have approached out Vintage space, in search of some special and different piece for such a significant day. I must say that I have had the pleasant surprise in having one of the brides agree with me that it would be beautiful to see the return of this tradition.

What about you, would you like to enter wearing a veil on your wedding day?



If you were Kate Middleton would you sport the Spencer Tiara on your Wedding Day?

There is a lot of speculation happening during these weeks about the possibility that Kate Middleton will wear the Spencer Tiara on the day of her wedding to Prince William ofEngland. A few days ago, even the magazine “Hola” dedicated an interesting coverage to the famous tiara.

Since Princess Diana’s death the jewel has not been seen in public, remaining in the hands of its current owner, Count Spencer in “Althorp House”, where one can admire it in all its splendour.

This magnificent jewel has not been worn as a tiara for all that long. Due to this, one cannot really consider it to be a family relic, as seen as its history is rather recent. The evolution of this piece starts in 1919 when Lady Sarah Spencer, the single sister of the sixth Count of Spencer, gave a beautiful piece of jewellery to her niece in-law, Cynthia, as a wedding gift to her marriage with Albert Edward. Cynthia and Albert would later become the seventh Counts of Spencer, and Lady Diana’s grandparents (on the paternal line).

This jewel, which would be received by Diana’s grandmother as a wedding gift, was a sparkling piece in the shape of a tulip, and it would be the part that would later become the central piece of the famous tiara.

However it wasn’t until 1937 that the tiara was really converted into the jewel that we know today, and that many years later would be sported by Lady Diana. This year, four more elements were added by the prestigious English jeweller Garrard. We know that the cost of this alteration was 125 sterling pounds at the time.

Coincidentally, that same year and in the same jewellers, Queen Elizabeth II subjected the Imperial Crown that she would wear on the day of her coronation, to a few alterations. Would the two tiaras coincide in the hands of the same goldsmith during those days?

Only the two small elements that were decorated at the end of the tiara were truly antique. It is believed that they belonged to a tiara from the French Viscount of Montagu, and that they were inherited by Lady Sarah Spencer in 1875.

It doesn’t seem logical that such a significant day in the English Monarchy’s history, such as the wedding of its future King, the Queen of England would favourably view the fact that the Bride displays a jewel that doesn’t belong to the British crown. It seems fit to wait for the opposite to happen, that the Queen would give one of her magnificent tiaras as a gift to the future wife of her beloved grandson. There by the bride that would one day succeed her as the Queen of England would wear one of the pieces from the Royal House’s collection on such an important occasion.

In the supposed case that William would desire to pay a posthumous tribute to his mother, he would be obliged to ask his uncle for the loan of this famous tiara, as seen as the current Count of Spencer is its legitimate owner.

William had wanted to have his mother present when presenting Kate with the same engagement ring that Lady Di received from the hands of his father on the day of their engagement in February 1981. The jewel is a magnificent ring, with an oval-shaped 14 karat Ceylon Sapphire with a surrounding halo of 14 shining stones, mounted over white gold by the famous jewellers, Garrards. This jewel was chosen by Queen Elizabeth and her son Charles for the significant date. Its price was 28000 sterling pounds.

The Spencer tiara is a truly dignified jewel for a Queen, however it is also true that perhaps Lady Di’s controversial figure should allow Kate to be the protagonist on an occasion this important, if it is finally decided that the same tiara is to be worn as on the day of her wedding.

What would you do?