Lourdes's interest in fashion started at a young age. She learned to sew and knit from her mother and grandmother. She got her first sketchbook (a lined, spiral-bound notebook) at the age of 10, and quickly filled it with daily doodles. Eventually those doodles centered around designing casual clothes, dresses, and bridal.

During high school, Lourdes decided she would major in Fashion Design. Her decision took her cross-country from LA to Philadelphia. During the summers, she worked as a stylist at a local bridal boutique, which is when her love of bridal blossomed. She graduated with her degree from Philadelphia University (now Thomas Jefferson University) in 2009.

Shortly after graduation Lourdes found herself in the midst of wedding planning. Her wedding dress was her first custom creation! Her "studio" at the time was the one-bedroom apartment she shared with her sister. She used her mom's home-sewing machine from the early '90s to sew it all on her days off from work.

In 2021, Lourdes took over as Creative Director and Owner of Edith Élan. When asked about what she sees for the future of the brand she said, "Edith Élan designs will for sure still have that vintage vibe they've always been recognized for. I'm still going to look to the past for silhouette and design detail ideas. But, you'll see a little more clean lines in the collections, which is just me interjecting more of my 'laid-back-SoCal' style."

In her free time, Lourdes loves to: travel (especially to México where she's from), enjoy the company of her cat Mykie, watch F1 Grand Prix races, and compete at autocross races with her husband.

Lourdes Castañeda

About the Designer


We value inclusivity, giving back to our community, and creating high-quality products through ethical production practices. Our size-inclusive bridalwear is available in sizes 2-30. And, every piece is designed and made with love in the United States.

Our wedding dresses, bridal jumpsuits, and accessories are a reflection of our creative soul. We look to the past for inspiration. We create looks that speak to modern brides searching for a timeless, chic, and personal style to wear on their wedding day.

We strive to create timeless bridal styles where each is a perfect blend of modern and vintage.

Our Design Philosophy

Edith Élan Press features


Edith Élan brides possess style and confidence, and exudes a joie de vivre. They knows who they are and what they want. They are unaffected by passing trends. And instead, seek designs that speak to their unique style and that will withstand the test of time.

[a·län] noun
​Energy, style, passion, vigorous spirit, or enthusiasm.

When we say we our designs are "ethically made," that means that we focus on ethical production and manufacturing processes. In simplest terms, it means:

· We care about the health, safety, and fair compensation of workers. Not only for our employees, but also of workers in businesses we partner with for production.
· We care about the effects the fashion industry has on the earth. Therefore, we consciously produce. We reduce our fabric waste as much as possible when cutting patterns. Fabric remnants are either upcycled or recycled.
· We believe in transparency. From the production cycle, to the person who made the garment, to the origin of our fabrics, we can tell you all of that.

Giving back has always been a matter close to Lourdes's heart (both in her personal and professional life). She also understands the importance of creative expression, and a person's ability to have access to resources which allow for that creative expression.

For these reasons, Edith Élan donates 5% of sales to HEART - An Inclusive Arts Community in Charleston, SC. They are a non-profit organization that provides inclusive music, art, and theatre experiences to connect adults with special needs and their communities. They are a "creative and adventurous family of artists, performers, and all-around creative misfits!"

Edith Élan started as a dream in 2008 during college. It was simply a "one day" statement between two best friends (Gretchen & Lourdes) that became reality in 2014. Before launching the brand, the pair held various positions in the fashion industry. Those invaluable and hands-on experiences, along with their unique design aesthetics, became the foundations for the brand.

The name itself is an homage to the place where the dream started, and to an extraordinary woman who, in her own right, was a pioneer in her field. (Read more about the name creation on the blog.)

Edith Élan also a reflection of our brides. We create for the bride with élan.

We create our designs using imported fabrics and trims from all over the world. We also work with an amazing embroidery team in India to create the intricate embroideries.

But at the end of the day, every bridal gown, jumpsuit, and accessory is made with love in our studio in Charleston, South Carolina. This is where we cut and sew the fabrics together. And where the final checks are made before the pieces head out to their new homes.