Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Eliana Ben-Zeev

Designer Eliana Ben-Zeev displays one of her designs at the Le Meridian Hotel on February 23, 2004 at Beverly Hills Red Carpet Oscar suites, in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/ Getty Images)

Eliana has worked as a costume designer for the film "Spark" (1998) starring Terrence Howard and is a wedding dress designer. According to this article, she is based in L.A. Her website does not have any info on it, so I'm not sure if she is still in this line of work.

Eliana Ben-Zeev inspired by Hollywood of the past

By Sharon Mosley
Copley News Service

DESIGN DIVA -- Designer Eliana Ben-Zeev creates a look of sultry romance in “Marlene,” a bias crepe satin-charmeuse gown inspired by Hollywood’s golden age. CNS Photo courtesy of Eliana Ben-Zeev.
Whether she’s designing for divas on the opera stage, actresses parading down the red carpet or brides walking down the aisle, Los-Angeles based designer Eliana Ben-Zeev finds inspiration for her unique dresses in her artistic background.

“I love the feeling that I’ve interpreted an idea -- be it from a piece of art, a song or even a random object or pattern -- and turned it into something that others feel beautiful in,” she says.

Ben-Zeev, who launched her couture eveningwear and bridal collection in 2002 to “fill a void in the market with dresses that were different but still timeless and beautiful,” grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area. She attended Clark University near Boston, where she received a bachelor’s in business management, and later graduated from The Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in Los Angeles.

Before starting her own design house, Ben-Zeev worked in costume design, construction and styling in opera, theatre, film and television. Her unique bridal gowns reflect her passion for historic stage design -- especially “Old Hollywood” that evokes a modern elegance when she combines the glamour of the past and then adds her own artistic expression developed from years of experience. (She also has a new cocktail-dress collection for the mother-of-the-bride.)

“Old Hollywood is a time remembered with style and glamour, and it is really impacting the bridal industry,” says Ben-Zeev, who has consistently worked with various historical time periods to make her dresses distinctive.

“I bring together various past eras with a contemporary twist,” she says. “That’s my concept overall.”

A gown in her spring collection, “Irene” is influenced by a combination of the 1880s and 1950s Hollywood, while another bias crepe satin-charmeuse dress, “Marlene,” is influenced by the 1930s.

Ben-Zeev’s passion for historical detail is expressed in her sophisticated gowns that are enhanced with unusual detailing.

“For example, I use beads, Swarkovski crystals, fresh-water pearls, semiprecious gems all in a unique way,” she says. “I implement them into the gown more as jewelry than embroidery accents.”

On several gowns in her current collection, necklacelike strands of crystals and pearls become part of the dress. Gowns retail for $2,000 and up; cocktail dresses begin at $800.

Color does play an important role in Ben-Zeev’s design work. After all, historically, many brides have had a colorful past.

“I love using a hint of color as an accent to bring a gown to life,” she says, “and I’m glad that American brides are beginning to explore the beauty of color.”

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