A wedding dress or wedding gown is typically the dress which the future bride wears at a wedding service. The dress’s color, design and social significance will depend on the culture and religion of the wedding guests. Most importantly, however, the wedding dress must be comfortable to wear, both for the bride and the wedding party. When shopping for your wedding dress, it is wise to consider your own comfort level with certain aspects of wedding clothing as well as your budget.
Historically, wedding dresses were white, usually a pure white silk satin wedding dress with spaghetti straps. This was the standard for the majority of weddings up until the 20th century. During those years, however, marriages became more arranged and often included dowries. Because more women were now able to participate in the institution of marriage, the traditional wedding dress was no longer considered “purity” material.
Because more young girls were now getting married, the demand for beautiful brides increased, and in response, the wedding dress started to evolve. In the early 19th century, wedding dresses were no longer pure white; they were typically made of satin with puffed sleeves and full skirts. These dresses, especially those which were worn by young girls, were considered very revealing due to their tight necklines and the sheer amounts of fabric that they could be found in. In fact, these types of dresses were referred to as “naughty bridal” dresses. It was not uncommon for the bride to be asked to stand out from the crowd while being made to wear these dresses in public.
This trend was eventually changed, as many young American women were willing to stand their ground and demand a wedding dress that was less revealing. Leading designer Mary Quant began the tradition of designing wedding dresses for women who wanted them to be less revealing. The dressmaker initially designed a series of dresses that would help a young woman to be both comfortable and beautiful. After her death, this revolutionary gown designer was able to continue the same trend, but in a much more limited fashion. While there were still some puffy sleeves and full skirts available for young girls, the gowns were no longer meant to be skimpy.
After this period, and until the introduction of modern machines and fabrics, the traditional wedding dress slowly evolved into a form that could be found in white. Gone were the puffy sleeves, and the full skirts; instead, the dresses were available in traditional styles, just like they had been in the past. However, this transition did not mean that the style of the wedding dress changed. Many brides still wore white at their weddings today. While the wedding gowns of yesteryear were often considered uncomfortable, in the current day, many brides are looking for comfort as well as beauty. Whether or not a bride chooses to wear white at her wedding is up to her, but she should remember that in the past, when she chose a wedding dress, it could be considered uncomfortable.
Today, the wedding dress industry has finally caught up with demand, and manufacturers have designed lingerie and other apparel meant to be worn under a wedding dress. This is not necessarily a bad thing. In fact, many brides choose to wear these products so that they can wear their old wedding dresses beneath their gowns. If you have spent your entire life in the bridal business, you likely have fond memories of attending dress rehearsals. While this may not really help you decide on a color, it does provide a glimpse into the times when each wedding dress was created.