Need an impressive party dress for the holiday season? Consult London-based bespoke clothing designer Ralph & Russo, which specialises in beautiful cocktail dresses and stunning gowns.

Since the Australian design duo Tamara Ralph and Michael Russo founded the haute couture brand in London in 2007, Ralph & Russo has been a favourite among international royalty including HRH Sheikha Mozah of Qatar, HH Princess Ameerah Al Taweel from Saudi Arabia, and A-list celebrities such as Beyoncé, Angelina Jolie and Chi-Ling Lin.

The silhouette of Ralph & Russo is feminine, chic and exquisitely elegant. “Every client’s personal aesthetic stirs me to create unique one-off designs that embody their individual style. Whether it’s a long flowing hand-embellished gown, a slim-line cocktail dress with peplum detailing or a structured trouser suit, I’m inspired by 1940’s Parisian glamour, the intricacy of embroidery work and the striking structure of geometric forms.”

A Ralph & Russo couture gown is created from a hand-drawn illustration designed especially for each client by Tamara Ralph, a fourth-generation couturier who sold dresses to Sydney’s socialites as a teen. Highly skilled couturiers then drape, cut and pin the gown to the body before diligently stitching and sewing each panel, crystal and embellishment. “Every piece is painstakingly handcrafted and can take hundreds of hours and up to 30 pairs of hands to create. The lead time for a piece usually ranges between four to five weeks from illustration to finished product”. Their product can cost up to US$ 500,000.

“Couture is investment; an investment into timeless craftsmanship which will last a lifetime and can be passed down from generation to generation.”

And they have increasing presence among Asian high societies, too. “Our Chinese clientele are very discerning, and they value quality and craftsmanship above all. For us it’s important to work on a personal level with each and every client allowing us to create a gown and a journey unique to their individual needs.”

(BELOW) Carina Lau at the 8th Asian Film Awards in Macau, China. Wearing a red French Chantilly lace one shoulder gown with silk gazar draped flower from Ralph & Russo’s critically acclaimed Spring/Summer 2014 Haute Couture collection.

Carina Lau, 8TH ASIAN FILM AWARDS, 28th Mar 2014

Carina Lau at 8th Asian Film Awards, 28th Mar 2014

…More stories like this are available in Quintessentially Asia.