Wedding Dresses

The Alternatives to White

Brides dresses that aren’t white are thankfully very much a part of the wedding scene of 2013 – you just have to have noted Jennifer Biel and Anne Hathaway’s weddings to realise that pink is a definite alternative. Consider too that white wedding dresses only became a tradition when Queen Victoria chose to marry in one in 1840, and they weren’t considered ‘normal’ until after WWII.

Wedding dresses are changing, rather dramatically. Their style is influenced more and more by evening gowns and fashion designers are embellishing and playing with little restriction – you only have to look at Vera Wang’s black gowns of spring 2012 to realise that there has been a complete reaction to the white wedding gown, which is really rather (yawn) right now.

But just what colour would you choose?

  • The close to white palette – blush pink, platinum, champagne, apricot
  • The pale shades of pastel – eggshell blue, icy light lemon, violet, mauve
  • The dramatic colours – tangerine orange, blood red, platinum grey, metallic


  • Don’t be frightened to experiment – so often we opt for the ‘safer’ option
  • Let your skin dictate the shade – if you have a blue undertone stick to blue hues, and the same for yellow (for instance, if you really like blue, stick to the grey end of the spectrum if you have a blue undertone to your skin, and head for the teal blue end if you have yellow)
  • Look at what dress designers are doing – see which gowns look best in what shades, then see if those shades suit your skin type
  • Start with a material shop – where you can hold different colour fabrics up against your face without being influenced by the added complication of gowns; once you have a couple of colours in mind, get a swatch
  • Keep your body shape in mind – try on evening gowns or ball gowns and see which shape works for you (sometimes the white of wedding gown boutiques will influence you to settling for white simply because you haven’t seen the alternatives); and take photos so that you can remind yourself

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Happy Wedding Planning!

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