You might think that looking ahead to next year's wedding-dress trends is crazy, but let me assure you: it isn't. You see, while we tend to divide the year into two "normal" fashion seasons and predict what's coming six months ahead, wedding dresses are more complicated. Why? Since weddings tend to happen months or years after a couple's engagement, planning ahead is key. And while you definitely don't have to follow trends on your big day, the upcoming trends might give you some inspiration.
The pandemic has changed bridal trends in ways we couldn't have foreseen. Plenty of brides have opted for more pared-back looks to match more low-key weddings. Suits and simple shift dresses have been spotted on plenty of brides. On the flip side, some brides have just wanted to wear something spectacular, regardless of how many people, if any, they were able to invite to their big day.
While the pandemic is undoubtedly still affecting how brides want to dress for their weddings, there's definitely a bit of normalcy in the air now that full weddings are happening again. I got in touch with various experts across the industry, from bridal designers to the founder of Rock My Wedding, and all of them gave me some fascinating insight. If you're planning a wedding or just want to see some pretty frocks, keep scrolling to see the bridal trends that are coming our way.
1. Romantic Silhouettes and Materials
Natasha Knights, the occasionwear designer at Phase Eight, told me that this coming year is all about romance. Think lace, tulle, oversized sleeves and a touch of boho. "It's a bit of escapism from everything that went on with covid. So many brides had to cancel their weddings, some even three times. It's giving them something to feel really beautiful in."
Tadashi Shoji Gretel Dotted Lace Embroidered Bridal Dress (£1287)
Self-Portrait Cold-Shoulder Ruffled Pleated Chiffon Gown (£420)
The Vampire's Wife Titania Long-Sleeved Ruffled Silk-Organza Gown (£2600)
Tadashi Shoji Corbin Bell Sleeve Bridal Dress (£1052)
For plenty of brides, the idea of going a bit over the top is very appealing. Charlotte O'Shea, managing director and founder of Rock My Wedding, says that "following such a restrictive year, brides really want to have as much fun as possible, and therefore silhouettes need to lend themselves to an entire day (and evening!) of dancing and frivolity. As a result, we are seeing the emergence of shorter hemlines combined with frills, flamboyance and statement embellishments."
Halfpenny London Silk-Organza Jacket (£975)
Rosie Assoulin Whoopsy Daisy Asymmetric Ruffled Silk-Charmeuse Gown (£4585)
Brandon Maxwell Cold-Shoulder Twill and Crepe Gown (£3845)
Huishan Zhang Hortense Cape-Effect Feather-Trimmed Crepe Gown (£2995)
3. Short Hemlines
As O'Shea says, shorter hemlines are here, and it's easy to see that when you look at some of the current collections available from brands like Rixo and The Vampire's Wife. Queens of Archive Co-founder Sarah Plunkett tells me that "brides are longing to step outside the traditional wedding dress and go for something different to ensure they feel comfortable in their own skin on their day." While the brand isn't strictly bridal, it's been commissioned to make bespoke silk wedding dresses, which are based on its Patti and Chrissie NYC dresses and come in an ivory-white colour.
The Vampire's Wife Anastasia Ruffled Leavers-Lace Mini Dress (£1800)
Rixo Lara (£395)
Vanessa Cocchiaro Charlotte Ruffled Crepe and Metallic Crepon Mini Dress (£315)
As Knights mentioned, lace is back, and you need only look at the current 2022 collections for proof. Marchesa's 2022 bridal looks all have lace details, and over at more affordable brands like Whistles, the material is going strong. According to Knights, Phase Eight has also included a lot of lace in its 2022 collection.
Rime Arodaky Kiss Embroidered Tulle and Crepe Gown (£3230)
Whistles Rose Wedding Dress (£599)
Christopher Kane Bridal Feather-Trimmed Lace Gown (£1911)
Pace Rabanne High-Neck Lace Maxi Dress (£710)
5. Party Dresses
If Lyst's 2021 bridal report taught us anything, it's that brides are wanting to party, which isn't surprising considering how many brides have had to rearrange their nuptials because of the pandemic. Brands like Galvan have included sequin frocks in their 2022 bridal looks, and there are plenty of other fun, frivolous and fabulous dresses from a host of cool designers, including 16Arlington and bridal favourite Naeem Khan.
Phase Eight Elecia Fringe Wedding Dress (£250)
16Arlington Minelli Feather-Trimmed Satin Midi Dress (£1090)
Naeem Khan Gatsby Embellished Chiffon Mini Dress (£4860)
Tomo Koizumi x Emilio Pucci Ruffled tulle mini dress (£3330)
Next up, the biggest autumn/winter 2021 fashion trends to know.
This article originally appeared on Who What Wear
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