Edinburgh designer makes dress made of chocolate

Model Fiona Bitmead strikes a pose in the chocolate dress. Picture: contributed
Model Fiona Bitmead strikes a pose in the chocolate dress. Picture: contributed
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Award-winning designer Lauren Smith has combined two of her loves to create a mouth-watering masterpiece – a chocolate dress.

The velvety number was commissioned by chocolate makers Lindt to celebrate national chocolate week.

It took two weeks to make, 24 hours to hand paint and weighs a whopping 50kg, said Lauren, 23, a masters student at Edinburgh College of Art, who was asked to come up with the design in collaboration with its master chocolatier Stefan Bruderer.

He said: Fashion has never looked so tasty.”

Lauren was head-hunted to work with him after taking the top prize at the Graduate Fashion Week earlier this year and had no hesitation in agreeing.

“It was such an exciting opportunity being able to create my first ever chocolate dress,” she said. “Lindt sent me lots of chocolate from their excellence range for me to start experimenting with. It was far too much chocolate for one person!

“I started to think of colours and what I wanted to add to the design. They wanted something that would be really feminine so I started playing around with simple shapes. They wanted something quite 
fitted too.

“I wanted to make it simple but bold so I decided to go with this A-line shape skirt and bodice.

“What I had in mind was the elegant diamond chocolate – which is the symbol of Lindt excellence – and I really wanted to use chilli and orange segments as they were some of the raw ingredients in the chocolate.”

It was entirely made by hand with several hours spent perfecting the intricate detailing and embellishments before she spent a day completely covering it in the chocolate.

The dress was officially unveiled at Salon du Chocolat’s world famous fashion show in London and will go on display in an exhibition if it survives the heat of the lights.

Lauren, originally from Currie and now living in Slateford, said she thought it looked as good as it would taste. She said: “It’s beyond what I thought was possible. I think it looks amazing.”

Mal Burkinshaw, programme director of fashion at the ECA, said Lauren continued to flourish after winning a contract with Asda’s George earlier this year. He said: “Lauren demonstrates the breadth of creative ability and imagination that our students go into the industry with. She is one of many talented graduates from Edinburgh College of Art.”