Behind The Scenes
It's 1 PM on a Sunday. At first glance, the studio that we booked seems like a clean, minimal, and peaceful space. Until that is, our team floods in, taking over with racks and bags of clothes and accessories prepared for the shoot happening. Within 10 minutes, the studio became an efficient workspace, as everyone seamlessly fell into their roles for the day. I was in charge of taking videos of each item from the collection, so as I set up my camera, I observed the organised chaos that was unfolding in front of me.
Desiree, our team’s latest addition, took charge of the items on the rack, making sure that all the outfits were in the right order that they were supposed to be shot. From across the room, I watch as she sets up all the accessories on a small table next to a full-length mirror and arranges the multiple pairs of shoes below it. At the same time, my boss, Jolene, is running around the studio, doing her final checks and making sure everything is ready to go. Dorcas, who was in charge of filming the Instagram reels, is setting up her tripod in a corner. Time seems to fly by, everything is in its rightful place, and it's now time to begin the shoot officially.
Francesca, our model for the day, was at the front and center of it all, looking effortlessly gorgeous as she shows off different poses in our collection’s items with experienced precision. For this launch, we had ten looks to go through. The shoot went on smoothly, with our photographer Qi Hui and Francesca working together like a well-oiled machine. She snapped full length pictures of the dresses, shots of their details, and some back-view ones as well. The ease at which the shoot proceeded speaks to the many months worth of shoots that this particular team has worked together on.
As ever, this week’s collection has all the touch points of Ohvola's signature style: sophisticated, and elegant, with classic silhouettes that aim to be a staple in women’s wardrobes for years. “We love the excitement, strength, and anticipation we experience from dressing up,” Jolene, the co-founder, says. “From 2007, we envisioned creating a brand that provides women with outfits that expresses their individual dynamic personalities and confidence.”
From what I see, rather than fashion, Ohvola has always been more interested in lifestyle, in the life lived in the clothes, which has undoubtedly resulted in the following of loyal customers to the brand over the years. Instead of following the ebb and flow of trends, Ohvola has always focused on pieces of quality and timelessness that can be worn for multiple occasions and throughout a long period of time. It reminds me of a quote by Ralph Lauren, “It’s not about newness or oldness, it’s about timelessness and the way you wear it that makes it better.” Personally, I feel that this philosophy can be seen clearly in the items in this week’s collection, which presents dresses of classic silhouettes.
One of my tasks for the week is naming the items in the collection. At first look, I was immediately struck by the inspiration to name each item after a greek goddess. It seemed like a no-brainer as each piece was strikingly beautiful, and the classic timelessness of it reminded me of the revered beauty of the greek goddesses for centuries. The names Athena, Aphrodite, and Hera were chosen, for they each represent the goddesses of wisdom, beauty, and women, which I felt were particularly fitting for the brand. As the last item, the Tiara Pleated Maxi Dress is a piece from the past that we are bringing back in different colours, we decided to keep its original name.
A Deeper Look Into Each Item
Perhaps when you think about off-shoulder dresses, you might picture someone frolicking along a beach, wearing prairie blouses in a full-on boho style. This collection’s two off-shoulder pieces, Athena and Aphrodite, give off a totally different vibe. They feature a crisp, collarbone-baring neckline with a slim-fitting silhouette that hugs the body in all the right places. I think that it’s a chic way to show a little skin if plunging necklines aren’t your cup of tea. The overall vibe and look of these dresses fit seamlessly into a romantic date night with someone special or a night out with friends. The sophistication and elegance that these two pieces exude truly make the wearer look dressed to the nines, even with minimal styling.
The Hera Bustier Midi Dress features lined details, reminiscent of a corset. It lends a romantic and sultry silhouette, and there’s a sense of charm and poise in this piece that I find particularly alluring.
Even though corsets in the past were uncomfortable, especially with how tightly they cinch the waist of the wearer, I enjoy how modern iterations like our Hera dress sculpt the silhouette without constricting the body. Truly, I feel that it's a piece that radiates femininity and sophistication due to how it sits on the curves of the body, acting almost like a second skin.
Finally, the Tiara Pleated Maxi Dress has been one of the brand’s best-sellers over the years. This collection features this item in three new colours, considering this its third version. Keeping the adjustable shoulder straps that were an improvement made in version two, this dress features a detachable sash that can be used to create two different silhouettes. I love the versatility of this dress, and how the pleated details form a breezy, move-with-you style that adds to a sense of elegant ease. Personally, it’s a style that I gravitate to when I want to find something that offers dressed-up comfort.
Curious to gather more thoughts and opinions about the collection, I asked the team to share what their favourite items are and this is what they had to say:
“It’s tough to pick a favourite from this collection of elegant dresses. They are made in different silhouettes that would be appropriate for various occasions. What stands out for me is the Athena Off-Shoulder Midi Dress. I always have a weakness for off-the-shoulder pieces. I love that they are made to flatter the collarbones while concealing my arms which I get a little more conscious of these days. The other details that I like about this dress are a rounded neckline that creates a softer look and an anti-slip band that lines the inside to give more security. It also comes with a back slit at the hem to facilitate more movement and concealed back zipper for a seamless look. The fabric is also made of a smooth polyester blend that does not seem to crease easily. It’s inner-lined as well, making it not sheer even for the lighter colours.
I also love that I can be more creative with my accessories to elevate the simple neckline of this midi-length dress. Here’s how I would style the different colours. Let’s start with the Tea Green, a refreshing shade from our usual colour palette. This muted tone would make it a great piece to attend wedding luncheons. I would pair this number with a simple, thin necklace and dainty pearl stud earrings. For shoes and bags, I would go for softer colours like pastel hues or white to match. Athena Off Shoulder Midi Dress in Sky Blue is a great alternative for those who prefer a cooler tone. For a different look, a jewelry option could be a pair of classic drop earrings. To add, a pair of strap nude heels and a small-sized clutch will be ideal. Keeping the best for the last, my favourite colour for this dress is the classy and understated black. I would wear this to a date night styled with a choker necklace or big, statement earrings. Shiny shoes and a bag to match. To make it work appropriate, I would wear this dress with my arms out of the sleeves, layered with a tweed blazer and a brooch. For more mileage, I can even try switching up the outerwear to create different looks for the week. A must-have in my wardrobe, it seems!”
“ My favourite item from this launch is the Hera Bustier Midi dress. I’ll pick a bustier always as I’m a sucker for them, I love that it enhances the bust and this cutting accentuates the collarbone too. I can also easily go from workwear to date night with the zipper slit. There are so many ways to style this, so it’s hard not to love this dress!”
“I think that the Aphrodite Off-Shoulder Mini Dress is my favourite item from this launch. I love how the dress is easy to dress up or down. It helps to elongate your legs, and it also hugs your waist nicely, thus giving me a flattering silhouette. I also love how it has an anti-slip band in the bust area so that it will fit my body securely and comfortably.”
“My favourite item from this launch would be the Aphrodite Off-Shoulder Mini Dress. I always love mini dresses as it’s a cute and comfortable length. As compared to rompers, this item has no shorts, so I find that it's more convenient for me as well. I love the off-shoulder detail, as it adds a slightly classier look to this dress, and I think that it's suitable to wear to a dinner date. The material is comfortable and cooling, not too thick for Singapore’s humid weather. Lilac colour would be my pick, as it gives off a feminine look.”
“My favourite item from this launch would be Aphrodite Off-Shoulder Mini Dress. I love the off-shoulder design and how this mini length looks like a fun piece that can take me to different occasions. Not forgetting the best seller Tiara Maxi dress in new colour-ways, I already own 2 shades of it previously and I’m pretty tempted to keep one more because it’s just so fuss-free and easy to wear!”
All in all, I guess the consensus is that we all are in love with this collection’s items. Truly, I agree with everything my colleagues have shared and I believe that each piece, even though they are on the dressier side, are versatile pieces that are a must-have in every woman’s wardrobe. I look forward to seeing which pieces you will pick up, how you style them, and where you will wear them to. Remember, you can always find us on Instagram (@ohvola) to ask us questions or just interact with us! We love hearing from you. Thank you so much for reading and we hope that you love the collection as much as we do.