Adriatic Amara by Vinka Design

Vinka Design embarks on a captivating journey back to their roots in Croatia to capture the essence of their latest collection, Adriatic Amara.

It has long been a dream for the team at Vinka Design to return to their origins in Croatia, the home of their founder Vinka Lucas MNZM, and capture their gowns amidst the beautiful backdrop of the Adriatic Sea.

Nestled close to Dubrovnik, the picturesque coastal town of Cavat provided an idyllic canvas for capturing their latest collection, Adriatic Amara. The crystal-clear waters, radiant sunlight, and cobblestone streets adorned with the vibrant hues of bougainvillaea blended seamlessly to frame each gown.

The Adriatic Sea and the Croatian coast of their heritage played a big influence on this collection’s inspiration; fluid textures, sculptural silhouettes, and dramatic detailing.

“Like the Croatian coast that has adapted and transformed over time, we have designed this collection to be transient in nature. Staying true to our aesthetic, many of these gowns can be worn different ways, honouring each bride’s unique sense of style and individuality.” – Anita Turner, Owner & Designer at Vinka Design.

Explore the curated assortment of gowns in the Adriatic Amara collection below, each one a masterpiece in its own right, framed by the breathtaking beauty of the picturesque Croatian surroundings.

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Above: The Marija gown. Regal and romantic, this gown features a subtle scoop neckline and corseted, draped bodice that cinches the wearer’s waist. For added fun and functionality, Marija’s statement look is paired with detachable sleeves and a dreamy detachable bow. Crafted with voluminous layers of dazzling dupion silk that spill from the bodice into a dramatic, sweeping train.

Above: Rosanna – A timeless look that captures romance and modernity, the Rosanna gown is the epitome of understated elegance. It features a dreamscape of satin organza crafted with artful folds on the strapless bodice, masterfully draped to cinch in the wearer’s waist. Luxe layers of the dreamy organza satin cascade from the bodice into a dramatic, sweeping train, with the added features of a concealed side split, and hand-crafted rosette adorning the waist.

We shot this gown after finding a treasure trove of bougainvillaea sprawling over an entranceway on our location scout.

Above: Bianca – A vision of double-layered silk organza and printed botanical silk, Bianca, balances a bold ball gown silhouette with the fragility of feather-light fabrics. It features a plunging V-neckline that tapers into a basque, accentuating the wearer’s waist. Bianca’s dreamy, textured look is captured by the weightless essence of the silk organza that cascades into a dramatic, sweeping train. For added fun and functionality, the Bianca gown is complemented with voluminous detachable sleeves. 

Walking through the narrow streets of Old Town Cavtat, we stumbled upon some apartments with a striking wall splashed with grapefruit pink paint. The steps leading up into the doorway created added drama for our Bianca gown.

Above: The Nika gown – A contemporary gown with a playful edge, Nika is perfect for the bride seeking the drama of detail. Featuring a sculptural, structured, scoop neckline bodice, with a relaxed fit skirt that falls gently from the waist. Hand-beaded lace with pearls and delicate silver beads make a striking feature of Nika’s design with the added fun and movement of feathers that dance across the hem. 

Burnt orange paint and afternoon sunshine made the perfect duo for our Nika gown.” 

Above: The Vanesa gown – A harmonious balance of opulent simplicity, Vanesa features sculptural, clean lines with a square neckline and spaghetti straps. A basque cut bodice accentuates the waist, flowing into a slimline fit and flare skirt with a front side split. Crafted in a luxurious stretch crepe with a low back adorned with self-covered buttons. For the bride with an appreciation for modern minimalism and understated elegance.

Above: Kata – An ode to 60’s glamour, Kata is a modern icon by design. It features a high neckline with a statement wide collar on a relaxed fit silhouette. The hand-applied, botanical lace is embellished with iridescent beads that catch the light with movement. Crafted on a luxe satin base.

The wind on the other side of Old Town combined with the striking sun created some difficulty for us initially when we sought to photograph Kata. We decided to explore the other side of the marina, behind the historic architecture of Cavtat’s main street, and found the perfect spot to shoot outside Konoba Ivan.”

Above: Petra – An artistic gown that emanates modern romance, Petra is perfect for those seeking a contemporary, statement look. Architectural by design, the hoop skirt is structured with boning adding volume, detail and drama to Petra’s silhouette. Crafted on a luxuriant Japanese fused satin base, with a strapless bodice and enchanting laser-cut botanical embroidered lace. 

Another bougainvillea beauty! After we photographed Rosanna here, we could not resist doing another!

Above: Vita – An artisanal bridal gown that balances opulence and modernity, Vita is the essence of timeless elegance. Featuring a softened, scoop neckline highlighted with weightless silk tulle on a heavyweight silk satin, fit and flare base. The striking simplicity of Vita’s design is accentuated with a structural, corseted bodice and light draping on the waist. Detachable, double-layered, ruched silk tulle sleeves with delicate pearl detailing completes the look.

The very first gown we photographed, 6am down at the Old Town marina. The water was so calm and the town had not stirred! We were so lucky to experience the morning’s soft light and serenity uninterrupted by the crowds.

Above: Marta – Floral lace appliqué and subtle beaded detailing give Marta an element of modest romance contrasted by a deep V-back and seductive side split skirt. It features an A-line silhouette, high neckline, and layered tulle collar which flows into folded tulle detailing that graces the back. Marta’s skirt is crafted with dreamy layers of cascading silk-chiffon panels that come alive with movement.

Seeking reprieve from the scorching sun, we snuck off to the back streets of Old Town to cool down. The alleys between houses provided us with a wind tunnel and natural air-conditioning! Not to mention, great lighting to photograph our Marta gown.

Above: Antonia – Anotnia’s corset, semi-sheer bodice features whispers of three-dimensional lace with laser-cut leaves that spill into dreamy layers of pleated, rolled-edged silk. Crafted on a nostalgic ball gown silhouette, Antonia’s look is balanced with a strapless neckline that features dramatic, pleated silk draping that fans the décolletage. For the bride who wants the drama of detail with the ease and movement of feather-light fabrics.

We photographed this striking gown in one of the most spectacular locations of our photoshoot. Believe it or not, it was on top of our neighbour’s garage!”

Above: The Ljubica gown – A vision of three-dimensional lace that evokes a vivid fairy tale, Ljubica defies the rules of a traditional ballgown silhouette with a structured, corset bodice that contrasts the softness of her design. Ornate, off-shoulder detailing balances the boned bodice which is complimented with a sweetheart neckline. Ljubica features detachable billowing sleeves, and full tulle skirt dusted with an enchanting array of botanical lace applique and layers of sparkling tulle.

Above: Adriana –  The Adriana gown captures the essence of regal romance. It features rich iridescent beaded lace, on a semi-sheer base, with a bold high neckline and statement cap sleeves. Crafted on a slim-line silhouette that gently graces the wearer’s hips into a subtle train. Adriana is paired with a detachable overskirt that features voluminous layers of feather-light tulle and satin organza, a belt with beaded detailing and hand-appliqued, beaded lace adorning the train. 

Seeking solace from the shade, we stumbled upon a beautiful, narrow alleyway with a decadent white door. There was no shortage of stunning locations in Old Town Cavtat!

Above: Mara – Dramatic draping transforms this simple, understated silhouette. Crafted in a luxe, heavyweight, Japanese stretch polyester, with a folded strapless, asymmetrical neckline on a fit-and-flare base. Artful folds structure the bodice and draw the eye to the smallness of the wearer’s waist. Featuring a simple, sculpting train that is contrasted with a seductive crossover split.

Above: Franka –  Artisanal, richly beaded lace transforms this simple, understated silhouette. Franka features a traditional sheath silhouette, on a contemporary, semi-sheer stretch base. For brides who love options, Franka can be worn with off-shoulder straps, iridescent beaded gloves, or dramatic puff sleeves embellished with beading. Franka is paired with a detachable overskirt that features voluminous layers of feather light tulle and satin organza, belt with beaded detailing and hand appliqued, beaded lace adorning the train.

Above: Andrea – Andrea’s corseted bodice features whispers of sequin embellished, embroidered tulle entwined with arabesque lines. Featuring a sweetheart neckline that flows seamlessly into delicate off-shoulder detailing makes a striking feature of Andrea’s design. The bodice cinches the wearer’s waist with pleated tulle detailing that tapers at the top hip and cascades into a dramatic, sweeping, train. Crafted on a gentle fit-and-flare silhouette, with layered panels in the skirt that come alive with movement, opening to reveal a seductive side split. 

Above: Gabriella –  For the wildly romantic bride, Gabriella is a dreamscape of enchanting details. Refined floral lace applique accentuates the bodice, trailing into delicate yet dramatic cap sleeves. Pearl trimming creates a clean, sharp V-neckline that contrasts with the softness of the three-dimensional, beaded botanical lace. Crafted on a blush satin organza base, with dreamy layers of tulle that gives Gabriella drama with a delicate edge. It features a striking ball gown silhouette and plunging low back. 

Above: Natalia –  A striking gown that balances opulence and modernity, Natalia is the epitome of contemporary bridal design. Featuring asymmetrical lines that complement the one-shouldered bodice, with dramatic, iridescent beaded three-dimensional lace. Natalia is crafted on a sculptural nude base with a sheath lace overlay, which falls with a real softness to the floor.  

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Photographer: Jemma Gwilliam @jemmagwilliamphotography