By  on December 26, 2000

LOS ANGELES -- Not many realize that designer Eduardo Lucero is on his 64th wedding.

That is, the couturier known for slinky gowns and elegant cocktail suits has created wedding dresses for 64 bridal customers in the past three years. It's a business built on word of mouth -- and brides are swiftly advised by Lucero that he doesn't do "meringue" skirts.

"As soon as they say 'princess bride' or mention 'fairy tale,' we say, 'No that's not what we do,"' said Lucero.

What he will do, though, is sell his gowns online. The designer has signed a deal with e-tail site ItsEWonderfulLife.com to offer his wedding gowns online. The site is the only Internet outlet selling his ready-to-wear.

Four bridal styles are slated to be available for purchase on the site starting Jan. 15, including a drape-neck column dress, a spaghetti-strap dress with illusion lace bodice and a silk bias-cut dress that ItsEWonderfulLife.com founder Dina Tevas-Ingram has dubbed "the Jean Harlow."

"It's silver screen glam," said Tevas-Ingram. "It makes the buttocks look great."

Lucero said he's also planning to offer bridal separates such as a beaded camisole paired with a full -- not poufy -- ballskirt. The set is similar to one in Lucero's ready-to-wear line, but in ivory.

In wedding gown terms, the retail prices are reasonable -- $1,500 or less -- and the delivery is a speedy six weeks for a made-to-measure gown. Tevas-Ingram said she will post specifics on the 10 measurements brides need to submit with orders. Lucero said he plans to cut each dress a bit larger than the measurements, so a local tailor can do the final fittings.

Since Angelenos can walk into Lucero's boutique and order a wedding dress in person, Tevas-Ingram and Lucero said they hope to develop a customer base from other markets, including Dallas, Denver, Chicago and Charlotte, N.C.

"There are these little sections of incredibly wealthy people in those towns who are bored with their set of shops, and they don't want the same things as all their friends have," said Tevas-Ingram.

She noted that several women in the Twin Cities area registered with the site after an article in the St. Paul Star Tribune mentioned that Laurie Ann Coleman, wife of the mayor of Minneapolis, is a fan of Lucero's designs. Coleman models several of the wedding gowns on a preview currently posted on the site.

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