Maggie Burns — creator of Marie Margot Couture — is a leader and inspiration to the Denver fashion community. Her exquisite line of exclusive bridal and special occasion couture has turned heads over the years — and will do the same this year at Denver Fashion Week (DFW). As a Denver-based designer, Burns is enthusiastic about Denver’s emerging fashion scene.
“Denver’s fashion scene is evolving and becoming much more sophisticated — with a panoply of designs to choose from. The consumer has more choices from local designers than ever before. Therefore, they can truly communicate their sense of style without resorting to the throwaway fashion that has become prominent. They can support the community by buying local, ” said Burns.
303 Magazine caught up with Burns to learn more about her elegant designs, and what to anticipate this year for Marie Margot Couture at DFW Fall ’19.
303 Magazine: First, tell us a little about yourself.
Maggie Burns: I was born and raised in Colorado where I attended the University of Northern Colorado for an undergraduate degree. Later, I attended Colorado State University for an EMBA degree. In 1986, I began a career in the corporate world — all the while making bridal gowns for friends and family on the weekends. Then, in 2010, I left the corporate world to design bridal gowns full-time. My favorite pastime is traveling to foreign and exotic places where I can submerge myself in another culture and language.
303: When and why did you decide to become a designer?
MB: I always loved designing. I take inspiration from my mother who made prom dresses and bridal gowns for me and my three sisters. My friends and family started asking me to make their gowns and it grew from there.
303: What inspired you to create exclusive bridal and special occasion couture?
MB: My niece was getting married on her family ranch. She wanted a gown to reflect that venue.
303: What are you most excited about this year at Denver Fashion Week?
MB: While I’m always honored to be asked to participate, I’ll be showing in the company of some of Denver’s best designers. My model lineup is stunning, so my gowns will show to their best advantage.
303: What is your process to create one of your handmade designs?
MB: I start with a basic idea of what I want the gown to look like. I then drape the fabric on a dress form and refine the design to communicate my vision. I joke that the fabric speaks to me in this process, however, it’s pretty true. Sometimes, the fabric doesn’t want to do what I think it should. Moreover, I relax and let it drape naturally and it can be amazing. Once I get the silhouette and design to my satisfaction, I draft the pattern and make a mockup called a “muslin.” From this, I can further refine the design and pattern before the fabric is cut. 303: What other designers inspire you? Why?
MB: Of course, the big designers such as Karl Lagerfeld, Dior, Chanel, Yves Saint Laurent and Alexander McQueen give inspiration. However, it’s also the amazing local designers that inspire me for various reasons. This is mainly because I know how difficult it is to build an industry from the ground up in a landlocked city in the middle of fly-over country. We have some of the best — Mondo Guerra, Mona Lucero, DeeDee Korn, Kimono Dragons, Gino Velardi, Topping Designs, Brooks Luby, Anthony Heimann, Ann Marie Designs, Equilibrium, Anna Festa and Kotomi Yoshida — to name just a few. To all those I haven’t had the opportunity to meet or are not listed, I apologize.
303: Can you tell us anything about your most recent creations? What can audiences expect to see at DFW?
All Photography by Adrienne Thomas.