Dressing for your wedding is about a lot more than just your wedding dress or gown. While the wedding gown is where most soon-to-be bride’s attention usually goes, don’t forget that your wedding day is about an entire look too. From head to toe, your wedding day is your opportunity to shine and showcase your personal style.
One major tip I have for brides to be, especially those on a budget, is to buy a simple dress then supercharge their wedding day outfit with DIY or custom accessories. Most online retailers sell dresses which can pass for wedding attire but supercharging your look with DIY or custom accessories will really amp up things in the style department.
Here are more of my tips for supercharging your entire wedding day outfit and saving your sanity in the progress.
1. Add sleeves, shoulder straps or a mesh bodysuit to the mix.
Adding sleeves or shoulder straps to your wedding gown can not only change the style lines of your gown but give you an approachable way to add coverage to your arms.
This is an especially practical option if your dress was originally better suited for warmer weather or if you’re shy about showing off bare arms during the ceremony. Various types of lace, diamanté mesh appliques, embroidered tulle and beaded tulle are great for add-on sleeves since they can be made to match nearly any style or color and are easy to find on sites like Etsy or in your local bridal boutique.
Mesh bodysuits are popular these days too, especially for large busted and plus sized brides. These are usually quite decorated around the shoulders and neck and can be worn underneath your gown.
2. Bling out your neckline, waistline or hemline.
A statement necklace adds a nice touch to most wedding outfits and can be a family heirloom or a lovely piece of costume jewelry. You can also add bling to your outfit with a DIY sash belt or one get one on Etsy.
Embroidery is underrated by many wedding gown designers today if you ask me. Done right, embroidery is beautiful, timeless and can turn a boring hemline into a “look at me” stunner. Ask your local seamstress if she has the machine to handle an embroidery project and create your own design for your hemline. This is also a great project to attempt on your own if you feel comfortable and have the right machine and stabilizer.
3. Shorten or lengthen your hem.
Sometimes all a gown needs is a change in length to really make it pop. Think about cutting off a few inches to showcase a sultry pair of heels. To lengthen a hemline, add lace or silk chiffon to a lightweight gown. Gowns made from a heavier material may require length from a fabric layer underneath the outer layer and attached at the waistband.
4. Pull a Meghan Markle and add a dramatic veil.
A long, dramatic veil says a lot about your style – it’s great for brides who take the phrase “go big or go home” seriously. A cathedral length gown measures 110 inches while a royal cathedral length veil measures 110-120 inches in length.
You can also add drama to your veil by adding lace around the edge of your veil, getting a veil in a non-traditional color or even by skipping the veil all together and using a colorful flower crown instead.
5. Hairstyles can add drama or chic, understated elegance.
A lot of wedding advice out there will tell you to wear a hair style “suitable” for the neckline of your dress, but throw caution to the wind I say, and wear what makes you feel beautiful. Go dramatic, or simple and chic, just make sure however you wear your hair you love it.
Hair jewelry is a great way to jazz up a rather simple outfit too. Jeweled combs, headbands and headpieces can be found in crafting stores, bridal shops online and local bridal boutiques – all easy ways to supercharge your outfit on your big day without all the fuss!
6. Make the exit just as good as the entrance.
Simple dresses don’t have to be boring! A modern, draped front teamed with a mid to low back always looks timeless and can score big style points. All the visual interest in your outfit doesn’t always have to show in the front, nor does it have to show during your ceremony. Add a (faux) fur stole, metallic cape or soft and flowey capelet to your outfit if the weather permits.
7. Shoes make the (wo)man.
Don’t forget your shoes ladies! The right pair of stylish loafers or heels can supercharge a monochrome pant suit or other nontraditional bridal outfit.
All images courtsey of Unsplash.