At the very tender age of eight years old, Maryland native and Allison Nicole Designs creator, Allison Nicole Berger was ignited to create beautiful things. She has always found inspiration from everywhere and everything, especially nature. “I remember thinking about how something so small, starting from almost nothing, grows into this strong flower or plant, full of life, with natural beauty,” Berger said. “I have grown to love nature and things that look very natural.” Undoubtedly, though, her biggest inspiration was her grandmother.
“When I was little my grandmother would always be doing hand-embroidery and painting beautiful things like flowers, butterflies and animals. We have many quilts that were hand-sewn by her. She hand-embroidered and painted beautiful designs on each one. I remember sewing and painting with her and I am so grateful that she helped me and taught me many things. Even though she is not with us anymore, she will always be with me in spirit.”
From the moment Berger was gifted her first sewing machine at 12 years old, she has been keen on transforming two-dimensional patterns into unimaginable regalia. It was serendipitous when she was required to get a design internship after transferring to Colorado State University from Marymount University in Arlington, Virginia. Once she fell in love with Project Runway it was a done deal. From then on, she began interning with a few sewing and design studios throughout high school and college and that led to Berger’s unmatched determination.
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Her internship with a bridal designer in Denver led to her decision to move to the Mile High City. She stayed because she had grown to love the atmosphere, the attitudes and the diversity of the people. Perseverance and determination fuel her and she attained her B.S. in Apparel and Merchandising/Apparel Design and Production from Colorado State University.
In 2017, Allison Nicole Designs was born. The collection specializes in bridal, evening and red-carpet gowns with an elegant yet ethereal aesthetic. “I love to create breathtaking pieces for everyone to enjoy,” Berger said. “I aspire to design gowns for women seeking fairy tale fashion moments in real time.”Allison Nicole Designs unique selling points are excellent customer service, custom quality fit, quality products and their signature delicate pieces and florals. They also offer professional alteration services and a gown rental service.
Once we laid eyes on the designs by Allison Nicole, we had to know the process. “My design process is about transferring my ideas to paper and then actually constructing the piece,” Berger shared. “I start with an idea drawn from my surroundings, the female figure and florals. That leads me to a particular set of fabrics.” She went on to say, “The intricate fabrics I choose help lead me through my journey of design. From there, the fabric transforms into beautiful, intricate pieces with lots of love along the way.”
Berger chose evening wear as her niche because she really wanted to be able to create beautiful, breathtaking pieces. While she knew it would be challenging, she decided that it would be more fulfilling if she did evening wear. The young designer definitely faced some challenges along the way. Many people struggled to take her seriously or assumed she did not have the experience required to be a designer. Berger said, “It has made me feel a little disappointed, maybe even a little frustrated, but I realize that not everyone knows me. People tend to judge others before they get to know them. I try not to let anything get me down so I stay positive and optimistic at all times.”
Ultimately, her desire was to focus on what gives her the most joy — delicate floral pieces. “When I think of designing, I think of the female figure. From soft and flowing fabrics, flowers, colors to things from nature. Something that is pleasing to look at and something that is flattering on the female figure,” Berger said.
Allison Nicole Designs uniquely offers designs and different services to satisfy all of your sewing needs. The ultimate goal is to help women feel absolutely beautiful. They cater to all shapes and sizes because they believe in diversity and not excluding anyone. This brand wants everyone to feel beautiful and special. “I believe that size diversity is important in fashion because it is the reality of the world we live in. Everybody is different. From personalities to the way we are built,” the designer shared.
Mainly, Allison Nicole would love for the city of Denver to know that she goes to great lengths to cater to clients of all sizes and needs. Berger said, “Moving to Colorado has definitely changed my designs and the process. The culture and surroundings have absolutely affected my design aesthetic. The vibes and people here seem very chill and down to earth. Not to mention, I am surrounded by beautiful scenery including the mountains, the beautiful rolling plains and fields of flowers.”
In the next 10 years, Berger hopes to see her designs on women all over the world, bringing beauty and bliss to people everywhere.
All photography by Rebecca Grant.