The journey to find your wedding dress is an exciting time in a woman's life. A dress purchase that is a unique experience that represents the most beautiful garment ever to be worn in a lifetime. Could a designer wedding dress be what you are looking for?
Once designer wedding dress was out of reach for most brides. We could stare longingly at the runways of Paris fashion week and wait for the final look, the 'bridal look' to grace the catwalk but knew it was never for us. Nowadays we are most likely to see designer wedding dresses on our favourite celebrities. Meghan Markle's Givenchy gown was rumoured to have cost around £100,000 and taken an estimated 3,900 hours to design, cut, fit and sew.
But is it possible for us mere mortals to wear a designer wedding dress? Increasingly the answer to this question is yes! The secret is bespoke options and design changes....
Whether you are a bride who embraces the experience and launches a hunt to visit every bridal store to find "the one" or a bride who finds deciding on a dress the hardest part of the whole wedding planning journey, the answer really could be a customised designer wedding dress – without the price tag!
When we take the first steps into a bridal boutique it can be overwhelming when confronted by so many gowns to choose from. What are the chances that your dream gown is hanging in the store waiting for you? Often an off the rack gown might not tick all the boxes. There will be elements, features and fabrics you love but it may be difficult to find all your desired elements in one gown.
This often meant that brides would give up the search and turn to a couturier who would charge by the hour to draw, cut and create a made to measure wedding gown. Now, this could be a winning formula for you but often it is hard to translate your vision, style and fit requirements and you could end up with an expensive, beautiful gown that just doesn't quite hit the mark.
Increasingly wedding gown brands are offering variations to their designs, so customisations are possible to create something unique and truly personal, or should we say "designer"? With a customised designer gown, you still get to have the in-store experience, where you will try on several dresses, so that you have a really strong idea of which cuts and styles suit you best. That experience is then key to you choosing various custom options to make an off the rack gown into a designer masterpiece that no one else will be wearing.
A designer gown can fulfil the wish list of the bride for practical reasons to be comfortable in the wedding location or to make the fit much closer to the unique proportions of the bride. Even brides who have requests for special design elements to comply with religious requirements may now have a designer gown.
The wedding could be held on a tropical island meaning the heat and humidity needs to be taken into consideration, so the bride then works with the design team to create a sheer element or low-back, low-neckline gown.
Or the wedding could be set in a cool mountain setting and long lace sleeves would be appropriate. Rather than creating a couture gown from the pattern to the final fitting, some ready to wear brands are now offering a designer gown by offering bespoke elements from within their collections so that every gown produced fits the bride's brief perfectly.
We are all unique in our personalities, size and appearance and brides are not one size schedule fits all. Differences in height, bust size, hip size and torso length often mean a special measurement is necessary for a better fit.
In the past bridal brands did not allow for special body shapes which made it difficult to alter off the rack wedding gowns to fit. The new generation of designer gowns from regular brands can now accommodate special measurements to create a gown for everybody and every bride.
Weddings are more often held outdoors or in beautiful locations these days but it is still important to many couples to have their nuptials in a church, temple or synagogue. These weddings will often call for the wedding gown to be more modest with higher necklines, sleeves and backs lined rather than illusion details.
Where once this meant purchasing a gown from a brand that specialised in religious wedding dresses, the modern bride now has more choice to find their gown from a brand that offers designer gown elements where needed to adhere to a dress code.
For the modern twenty first century bride it has never been easier to have a designer wedding dress which is everything they ever dreamt of; a gown which is effortless to wear and made to feel incredibly comfortable, helping the wearer feel confident and enjoy the happiest of days.
Photo by Analise Benevides on Unsplash