Be it urban, rustic, boutique, historic or coastal, your venue sets the tone for your special day… make sure your dress is in perfect harmony!
As wedding planning goes, what’s the first thing we brides-to-be think of mere moments after saying yes to that certain special guy…? ‘What dress am I going to wear?’ (If you’re anything like us, in fact, you’ve had an idea of ‘the one’ even before The (other) One popped the question…). But consider: with many spectacular wedding venues now taking bookings of upwards of two years in advance of the big day, increasingly, securing the venue is becoming a couple’s number one on the ‘to do’ list. Many brides assume their choice of dress will set the tone for the entire day. But if the venue has been chosen first, where does that leave the dress?
It might seem obvious. The venue and the bride’s dress ought to be in perfect harmony; one complementing and completing the other, a beautiful simpatico symphony (much like the bride and groom themselves, in fact!). And in many cases, an overall theme will draw together and incorporate both. But occasionally, dresses and venues clash and compete for attention. Having been present at a beach-themed wedding in a tipi with the bride tightly bound in a heavily structured fishnet-effect gown, I can assure you, ‘twas truly a confusing affair.
So here’s our guide to making sweet, sweet music and harmonising two of your most important big-day elements: your venue and your dress…
The Rustic Wedding
Rustic weddings are playful, outdoors-y affairs, full of a kaleidoscope of colour and with the emphasis on a celebration of the beauty of nature. The details and decor don’t typically include anything too structured or deliberately ‘matching’ so mirror this more relaxed and carefree attitude in your dress of choice. More bohemian styles with lose, tousled hair work well here, as do soft frills and flowing tulle.
The Urban-Chic Wedding
Love the idea of marrying in iconic style? If you’re joining the glitterati and marrying in a sophisticated city setting, reflect this slick, polished and uber-cool vibe in your dress. Think subtle sparkle, a seriously structured silhouette and even a sharp trouser suit. For ultra glam effect in a town setting, opt for monochrome and ask you guests to wear black tie.
The Boutique Hotel Wedding
The great thing about a boutique hotel venue is that they tend to be unique, curiously quirky and inimitable in their own sense of style. This gives you free license to chose a gown that best reflects the venue’s holistic ‘feel’. Tea-length dresses work well here in the summer time, or, if the venue calls for it, chose a vintage-inspired or even ‘indie’ dress.
The Historic Castle Wedding
Sweepingly majestic statement venues can carry off impressive trains and skirts a-plenty! Think traditional sweetheart necklines or layer upon layer of tulle. A hint of sparkle looks decidedly delicious in this setting and befits the overall grandeur (after all, you are a princess!). Bardot-style necklines will enhance the sheer romance of an historic venue.
The Coastal Venue Wedding
People go to the beach to have fun and your dress needs to capture and reflect the same carefree attitude – after all, your guests will take their lead on the day from you. Be creative and expressive in your choice of dress; nothing should feel too restrictive or ‘done up’. Keep hair lose and accessories to a minimum, and chose lighter fabrics for a soft and sensual, ethereal look.