XO group, the mega family of bridal brands, has been featuring events where female leadership share their inspiring experiences as part of XO FoundHERS Speakers Series. A few months ago they hosted Melissa Hobley, the CMO of OKCupid where she spoke about her life experience, and how OKC has become one of the most female friendly and inclusive dating sites. This month’s presenter was way more my speed; Pnina Tornai, the staple wedding dress designer at bridal mecca Kleinfeld, combines my love of fashion, reality TV, and heritage (she’s Israeli, as am I) for an amazing night.
Standing a 5’5″ with 4-inch heels, Pnina wore a striped suit and a smile that could melt Mitch McConnell’s bitter cold heart. She expressed a strong sense of pride in being American and Israeli, but embraces the cultures of all the places she’s been.
The audience had some great questions. “For those not getting married anytime soon who want the Pnina experience, will there be perhaps a power suit line?” A swarm of “oohs” swept the crowd. If Pnina were to pursue this (awesome) idea, I imagine it would be a lacier version of the sensual suiting of La Perla’s jackets.
With full knowledge of what Israeli culture is like, I had to ask about criticism. If, like me, you follow fashion designer Michael Costello on Instagram, you know how picky customers can be. However, she cites the negative criticism she experienced during the beginnings as a designer to be crucial to her success. “I’d rather have an ugly truth than a beautiful lie.”