Wedding Dresses
Article thanks to Sue Featherstone Bride Online Columnist

Bride With a Bite! Wedding Dress Alternatives for the Risk Taking Bride


You accepted a long time ago that you were never going to be a conventional bride, the one who walked down the aisle in the quintessential big, white meringue dress. We’ve put together a few non-traditional wedding outfits, for the bride with a rather adventurous fashion side.

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(Courtesy vogue.com)

Casual and Cool

As weddings become increasingly expensive, some couples are breaking the mould by hosting a more relaxed, intimate and significantly cheaper event. Of course if your personality is laidback, and your wedding is firmly in the casual category, then you’ll need to wear an outfit that mirrors the informality of your day.

Will it Suit Me?

You and your partner are shunning convention; you don’t want the voluminous white gown, the long church service or the four-tier wedding cake, your prefect day involves sandals, a sundress and a few quick vows on the beach. As an easy-going bride you want a wedding outfit that’s charming, but comfortable, and you’re likely to pick something that you’ll easily wear again.


Courtesy glamourmagazine.co.uk

Courtesy elle.com
 
Courtesy nymag.com

Separate Intentions

Crop tops are in, and bare midriffs are everywhere, so it was only a matter of time until it hit the bridal business. Separates are becoming a more accepted choice, as they allow you to mix and match your outfit on your wedding day. You can pair your crop top with a billowing skirt for your reception, and change the skirt for something short and sassy for your reception. This makes it a far cheaper alternative for the bride who was thinking of buying two wedding dresses.

Will it Suit Me?

There’s little denying that your grandmother will be shocked at this belly baring trend, but if you like to make a statement, and you follow your own fashion rules, then this bold look is one you should consider. It elongates petite brides, and it’ll keep you cool in summer, but be prepared to do a few more sit-ups, because those abs will definitely be on display.

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Courtesy verawang.com

Courtesy bulabride.com
Erin Grey Couture- Bridal Separates - Skirt and belt styled for post-ceremony or special occasion
Courtesy jmajors.com

Suitable Attire

There was a strong military influence on clothing during the war years, and it even hit bridal wear. Skirt suits were widespread, but they only became famous (or infamous?) when Bianca Pérez-Mora Macias married Mick Jagger wearing a skirt, a jacket, a hat – and not much else.

The bride of today who chooses a skirt suit will usually opt for the blouse, but the jacket and skirt combo depends on the woman. A skirt that grazes the floor is appropriate for a more formal event, and a hemline that just brushes the knees is ideal for a summery, informal wedding, while the tailored jacket adds a touch of sophistication.

Will it Suit Me?

Dresses aren’t for everyone, but neither are pants, and that’s why modern brides need greater choices when it comes to their wedding outfits. Skirt suits are somewhere between traditional dresses and unconventional pants, and they give brides a legitimate and chic alternative for their wedding day.


Courtesy styleandthebride.co.uk

Courtesy oasap.com

Courtesy dhgate.com

Power Pants

Some women love wearing dresses, others prefer pants, so when it comes to your wedding day, you should be able to wear whichever option makes you feel more comfortable. The problem is that the bridal industry is completely geared towards dresses, leaving some brides to shop in the men’s section, if they want to wear pants. Fortunately, this is changing as designers are recognising the need for more androgynous styles, and they’re including bridal pants in their collections.

Will it Suit Me?

If your preference is pants over skirts, then you’ll be happy to know that there are viable alternatives to the big fluffy dress. Whether you choose tailored or tight, slim or capri, the bottom line is that they’re made specifically for women, and this means they’ll flatter your shape. Pants can be as feminine as a dress, you just have to find the ones that suit you.

Erin Grey Couture - Bridal Separates - Top styled for post-ceremony or special occasion
Courtesy jmajors.com
http://www.societybride.com/assets/Pants-Rosa-Clara.jpg
Courtesy societybride.com
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Courtesy style.com

Black is Back

Way back in 1840, Queen Victoria stunned the world by getting married in a white dress – not a particularly practical colour then, or now. She didn’t choose the colour for virtuous reasons, it was a fashion statement and a symbol of wealth. Fast forward to today, where it’s considered unusual to wear anything but white.

Enter Vera Wang. One of the most influential bridal designers, well, in the history of bridal designers. When she debuted a collection of black wedding dresses in 2011, the industry was forced to take notice. Since then more brides have begun to express their individuality, by wearing dresses in any shade.

Will it Suit Me?

Of course you can choose to wear a white dress with black accents, but if you want to leave an impression, consider an entirely black number. It’s a sophisticated and classic colour, but it’s certainly not traditional wedding attire. The bride that dons black is a nonconformist, she’s unconventional and she’s chosen dramatic black because it reflects her distinct style.

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Courtesy hollywoodlife.com
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Courtesy verawang.com
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Courtesy polyvore.com
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Courtesy allforfashiondesign.com

Vintage Verified

Vintage is a wedding theme that never seems to go out of fashion. Dresses are made from delicate lace, they have exquisite workmanship, they’re a complementary ivory patina and they carry a sense of history. It could be a family heirloom, or belong to someone you’ll never meet, but there’s something inherently traditional and reassuring about putting on a vintage gown, that was worn decades earlier.

Will it Suit Me?

Do you imagine yourself sashaying down the aisle in a glamourous Hollywood-era 1930s dress? Each decade has distinct characteristics, and this means you’ll be able to find something that complements your own sense of fashion.

The sentimental bride will wear a vintage dress because it was once worn by her grandmother, the romantic bride favours it because it has its own love story, for the eco-friendly bride it’s a good pick because it’s recycled, and for the bride who wants to be unique, by wearing an authentic vintage wedding dress it ensures that no other bride will wear a gown quite like yours.

Made in 1830:

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Courtesy antiquedress.com

Made in 1868:
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Courtesy antiquedress.com

Made in 1940, likely from a wedding veil worn between 1860-1870:
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Courtesy frenchweddingstyle.com

Coat Dresses

Is it a dress? Is it a coat? Is it a droat? If you’re feeling confused, then just have a look at style icon Kate Middleton, who has a particular fondness for this design. Instead of removing your coat to reveal your dress underneath, you can now wear your coat as your dress.

It typically has long sleeves, which makes it more suitable to a winter wedding, but you can choose a coat with a short hemline to show off your shapely limbs during warmer seasons. Matt coats work best during the day, and a belt will help to highlight your waist.

Will it Suit Me?

This unusual, fashion-forward look, is one for the unpredictable bride who isn’t afraid to push the boundaries of wedding wear. It’s unexpected and unique, and as the coat is generally fitted, it gives you a flattering silhouette.

timeless
Courtesy fashionbride.wordpress.com
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Courtesy ashistudio.com
use over short dress for church wedding...then reveal...gosh I love this!
Courtesy vogue.com

All That Glitters

Metallic madness has hit bridal runways, and dress designers around the world are including shimmering gowns in their wedding collections. For most brides who want to add the metallic theme to their day, they’ll wear a white dress and settle for shiny shoes, a sparkling manicure or a bouquet of gleaming brooches, but you’re not like most brides.

Will it Suit Me?

If you love making an impressive entrance, you’re not afraid of the limelight, and you want to leave your guests dazzled, then up the wow factor by wearing a, floor-length metallic dress. It’s glamorous and romantic and it truly reflects your dazzling personality. The really great thing about wearing metallic, is that it works with cool-toned brides (who choose silver or pewter) and warm-toned brides (who pick gold or bronze).

There’s no better time to shine than on your wedding day, so be a golden goddess, a silver siren or a pewter princess, when you wear the season’s most glistening trend: metallic.


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Courtesy polyvore.com

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Courtesy laurenconrad.com
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Courtesy wedsociety.com

Bargain Hunter

Up until the end of the 19th century, it was normal for a bride to walk down the aisle wearing the prettiest dress she owned, as she couldn’t justify buying an outfit specifically for the occasion. Oh how times have changed!
The average cost of a wedding dress in Australia is $2180, and many brides won’t flinch at paying that price (or more!), especially if they’ve been planning their princess gowns since they were little girls. We understand why; it’s one of the most exciting and memorable days in your life, and you’ll never again wear an outfit that’s so photographed, but budget-conscious brides will be relieved to know that there are other, more affordable options.

Will it Suit Me?

If you love a good bargain, then visit the large fashion chains that have begun producing off-the-rack wedding dresses, at a fraction of a cost of their expensive cousins. Or you could hunt for white dresses that aren’t marked “wedding”, as these are more reasonably priced, and have simpler designs, which means you’re be able to wear it again to a non-wedding event.

For the practical and thrifty bride, finding a cheaper dress doesn’t mean you have to compromise on looking gorgeous. You can actually find some beautiful and inexpensive (and did I say beautiful?) dresses for under $150, and that means you’ll be able to save money for other things – like your honeymoon.

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(Courtesy Made With Love)
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(Courtesy Made With Love)
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(Courtesy d'Italia) 

Second Chance

When your heart is set on a designer gown, but your budget only allows for an off-the-rack frock, then perhaps you should consider wearing a preloved dress. There’s a growing tendency for brides to sell their old wedding dresses, it may be to make space in their cupboards, to recoup some of their money, or just to let someone else experience the joy of that spectacular outfit.

They’re called hand-me-downs, gently-used, second-hand, or worn-once, but they all mean the same thing: no matter your price range, you’ll be able to find a wedding dress that ticks all the boxes, and it’s considerably less than its original price.

Will it Suit Me?

Let’s face the facts, some brides won’t entertain wearing a dress that’s been owned before, but if this doesn’t bother you (after all it has been professionally cleaned!), then you could find a far more affordable dress, that’s simply had a previous owner. It’s a common option for older, frugal brides, and for couples who want a sustainable wedding.

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Courtesy wantthatwedding.co.uk
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Courtesy weddingpartyapp.com
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Courtesy stylemepretty.com

The most popular wedding dress is a strapless, floor-length gown in ivory, and while this is undeniably a beautiful dress, it simply doesn’t suit every bride. What you wear has to be an expression of your style and taste, whether quirky, bold, unusual or outrageous. Embrace the fact that you’re not a cookie-cutter bride, and don’t worry, the perfect wedding outfit is just waiting to be found.

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