Most people, when they think of weddings, think of dinner, dancing, and the wedding favors. Certainly, this is true, but soon one realizes this is only the tip of the iceberg. The word “fashion” doesn’t usually coincide with weddings, but those involved (mostly the woman) quickly discover that this process will include many decisions that correlate with fashion.
The first and most important fashion element is the bride selecting her “statement” dress. —Her bridal gown! This is THE dress. Not just any dress. This dress says so much about the woman wearing it. Is she a princess (full circular gown)? Is she a mermaid (gown that contours the body and flairs out at the knee)? Is she a ballerina (full circular gown with layers of tulle) Is she more contemporary (slip gown that contours the body)? Or, is she a green goddess (vintage gown bought in a chic L.A.store or borrowed from mom)? This statement dress certainly defines her as a woman and showcases her personality. Anything goes. No rules, just allowing her to express herself through fashion.
Second, the bridesmaids dresses. What color? What style? What length? What fabric? Oh, the possibilities! This, too, describes the fashionista behind the maids. Is she regal (full length dresses)? Is she modern (short dress)? Is she casual (dresses selected by the maids themselves)?
The third fashion decision is selecting her rehearsal dinner dress. The festivity itself will define what is appropriate to wear. Is it a casual affair on the beach? If so, a shorter, less constricted, and casual dress with flats or sandals works best. Is it a simple and elegant dinner at a restaurant? This situation calls for a cocktail dress with heels or satin flats. Is it a wedding before the wedding? In other words, if the groom’s parents are spending as much on this party as the wedding itself, then you are required to sink some dough into a sophisticated, tailored dress and heels.
Fourth and sometimes the hardest, the mother of the bride dress. Oh boy is this a tough-y. The mother of the bride wants to look youthful and sexy, yet appropriate. Try finding a dress that foots this bill. Many mothers complain how the selections weigh heavy on matronly or the opposite, super sexy with plunging necklines. Well, this isn’t what we want to convey, is it? The mother of the bride should look contemporary and confident, youthful and playful, sophisticated and elegant. She should select a dress that is figure flattering, yet not too revealing. She should never match the wedding flowers instead compliment the color palate.
Fifth and final, the men’s attire. The tone is set by what the groom decides to wear and speaks volumes of his personality. A tuxedo? Automatically the dress code is elevated. Are we talking “black tie”? Maybe, not always. Is he considering a suit (lovely option for beach weddings in San Diego)? Or did he decide that the Southern preppy look is the way to go (tan slacks with blue blazer)? –Oh so chic. The groom doesn’t always get to participate in all decision making (nor does he wish to), but this choice of attire certainly scripts out the formality & casual-ness of the affair.
So the next time someone says, “We’re getting married!!” Congratulate them and wonder what fashion decisions they will make. Then suggest that they hire a wedding planner & stylist that can help them with all the elements of this affair –- including these complicated yet fundamental fashion choices.
Just like clothing, when you layer it, you immediately add more visual interest. I often talk about the third piece: most people just wear a first piece, a top, and a second piece, a bottom. The third piece adds dimension, personality and lots of optical excitement. Add a third piece to your neck, ears or hands, too!