Brides traditionally wear white to symbolise purity, although variations, including ivory, cream or pastels are sometimes used. Modern brides can choose whichever colour they prefer. For second marriages, the tradition is for the bride to wear lilac or lavender.
The choice of dress style may be influenced by the type of ceremony and the wedding venue. A church wedding might require more formal, traditional attire, whilst a register office or civil ceremony may allow a less strict dress code. As a guide for the rest of the wedding party, if the bride is dressed formally, they should follow suit.
The choosing of the dress is one of the most important decisions a new bride will make when planning her wedding. There are a number of options. Dresses can be purchased from specialist wedding retailers or designers, hired, the bride may wish to design her own. An essential point to remember is to allow plenty of time for fittings and alterations. When buying lingerie for the wedding ensure it complements the lines of the wedding gown. It is a good idea to have a dress rehearsal (including lingerie) in advance of the wedding day.
Headdresses come in a number of styles including veil, tiara, band, bun, crown and juliet cap. Browse magazines to gather inspiration and ideas for hairstyles and headdress.
Some things to remember when choosing your headdress:
· If your headdress includes flowers, remember flowers wilt on hot days. Consider silk flowers as an alternative.
· Ask your hairdresser for advice and take your headdress along to your final fitting.
· Practice wearing your headdress to ensure it is comfortable and isn't going to fall.
The bride's jewellery can often be forgotten or overlooked, whilst great care is taken when considering the wedding dress, veil, make-up and hair etc. This undoubtedly would be a missed opportunity to amaze your guests by adding the finishing touch to the perfect look. The choice of jewellery will depend hugely on the brides outfit. It is recommended that she try several pieces of jewellery and ask the opinion of friends and relatives. Again allow plenty of time just in case the size needs to be ordered.
Bridesmaids wear whatever the bride chooses for them. It is perfectly acceptable for them to be dressed differently from each other, particularly when bridesmaids are of differing agegroups and bodyshapes.
Usually the bride would choose the colour of the bridesmaid dresses. The bride may have decided on a colour scheme for the wedding in advance and would like it adhered to. These colours (perhaps a selected colour from the bridal bouquet) could then be used to co-ordinate with other elements of the wedding, eg. the cake, the decorations/balloons, linen at the reception or maybe even the male attendants ties. Again, it is advised to allow enough time for alterations.
The Bridegroom and other male members of the wedding party would traditionally wear morning dress. For civil ceremonies suits are often worn. Evening weddings are more commonly associated with black tie. It is usual for the ushers and best man to dress the same as the groom. If he wears morning dress then so should they. The bride may wish for co-ordinated waistcoats, ties or cravats to be worn to match the colour being worn by the bridesmaids.
Modern weddings rarely insist on a strict dress code. Male guests would often wear suits even if the wedding party are in morning dress. However guests should read the invitation carefully, the dress code (if applicable) will be stated. The rule of thumb is, the more formal the invite the more formal the occasion. Female guests should wear a hat and a dress to a formal wedding and evening dress to a black tie affair.