How to choose a wedding dress for the winter season
Crisp and cool winter days are the perfect backdrop for a magical wedding day full of sparkle, warmth and beautiful moments. When planning your nuptials there are many elements to consider and your wedding dress is just one of them. In this blog post I’d like to share a few tips for choosing a dress that you love whilst making sure that it meets the unique requirements of a winter wedding.
Consider the wedding venue
Before choosing a wedding dress it is always a good idea to consider your wedding venue. Thinking about the practicalities of where you will be on your wedding day might seem an odd place to start, however, it will actually help you make good decisions and make selecting the right
gown a little easier.
Too often I have heard from brides who have had to return their wedding dress because they realised after they’d bought it that it wasn’t suitable for their plans. So before you get carried away trying on styles try to think about the following:
Your ceremony venue
Will you be getting married in a church? What is the heating like in the winter months? Some churches can be draughty and cold despite having the heating on so it’s a good idea to get in touch with your vicar and ask this question.
Also, remember that you will most likely be nervous which can make you feel cold or overheated. Which is more likely for you? If you are getting married at an alternative venue – what can you find out about the ambience beforehand?
After your vows
How much time will you be spending outside? Either for greeting guests or a champagne reception, fireworks in the evening, etc.
How large or small are the rooms of the evening reception?
Will the body heat of your guests easily warm up the place or is it likely to be chilly, at least at first? An intimate setting might be more cozy and could therefore mean being able to wear short or cap sleeves rather than long ones. Getting answers to these questions will help you create a filter when looking at winter wedding dresses.
With so many styles available from a myriad of designers it is good to have a few parameters worked out in advance will help narrow down the choice and avoid being too overwhelmed.
Make the most of being able to cover-up
As a designer and women’s tailor, I have worked with many brides to create their dream dress. Beautiful Ideas can carry you away easily. And you can forget about the practicalities of your big day.
An experienced dressmaker or sales assistant will help guide you and suggest styles that suit you as well as ones that meet the criteria of a winter setting. The more you can include what the overall look and feel of your wedding is going to be the more it allows you to play with the details and have fun.
Here are a few ideas for beautiful winter wedding dresses
Whether you choose sheer sleeves in delicate lace or a solid sleeve to match the rest of the dress, long sleeves will not only keep you warm, they can also make a great statement.
Play around with different proportions and don’t just see the sleeve as a cover-up. If your style is more fashion-forward you might consider an oversized puff sleeve or to keep it classic go with beautiful lace. Choosing a lace that is beaded is a good idea in winter as it will catch and reflect the light.
Illusion sleeves are also a popular choice where the lace seems to float on your naked skin – eye-catching and beautiful at the same time.
Winter weddings are a great way to embrace wedding dresses with higher necklines too. From bateau to mock-neck styles, lace over-layers to sweaters the choices are endless. Think about the jewellery you want to wear and whether you would like it to sit on top of the dress or be framed by your neckline.
If you love lace it’s a good idea to start looking at the types of lace available. Do you prefer delicate designs on a tulle base or do you like the 3d effect of Guipure lace? If your frame is on the small side a more delicate lace will work well whereas larger motifs might swamp you and vice versa.
If you have your heart set on a sleeveless look but you worry about feeling cold you could go for a sheer layer at the top in white chiffon or illusion tulle. You’ll be surprised how much warmth even a thin layer can provide. Choosing a removable lace blouse is another great option. Wear it for your ceremony and wedding breakfast, then remove it for your evening party and to shake it up on the dance floor.
The great news about being a winter bride is that you can go to town with fuller skirts. Where layers and layers of tulle and silk might weigh you down and turn you into a hot mess in the summer, in winter the same style will keep you warm and you can enjoy the delicious rustle of your skirt as you move through your winter wonderland setting. If you’re feeling bold you might add a coloured petticoat or interesting shoes that peak out from time to time. Heavier silk fabrics such as duchess satin, silk faille and even velvet are perfect.
Unless it is pouring with rain you will undoubtedly spend some time outdoors too. Investing in a beautiful woollen cape, white coat or faux fur capelet and muff will not only keep you cozy. They are also great items to wear again to remind you of your wedding day. A snuggly oversized jumper can also do the trick adding a modern relaxed vibe to your look.
How to choose a wedding dress for the winter season? Bridesmaid dresses
When choosing what you want to wear it’s also important to consider the comfort of your bridesmaids and flower girls. Winter weddings are a great time for finding beautiful ball gowns that can also double up as bridesmaid dresses.
Make the most of being able to use darker colours such as sage green or midnight blue. Again – adding a bit of sparkle will help catch and reflect the minimal light adding a festive feel to your celebration. Tulle skirts paired with sweaters can be fun and comfortable and are also very affordable.
In fact, choosing separates increases the likelihood of these outfits being worn again – making them more sustainable and a better investment. I hope the above is helpful in choosing your winter wedding dress.
Above all, I would like to leave you with this advice: Be comfortable and have fun! Your wedding day should be a wonderful moment in time that you look back on with joy and happiness. Remembering a dress that didn’t fit properly and stopped you from dancing and moving freely throughout the day shouldn’t be a part of it.
Have a jig in the bridal shop and make sure you are comfortable with lifting your arms above your head, that you can sit down and generally move in any way you want to. You will thank yourself later!