Choosing Your Wedding Gown - Secrets of the Well-Dressed Bride
By Juanita Benzer
Your fiancé has proposed. The date has been set. You've decided how formal or informal the occasion will be, and you've found the ceremony and reception sites to match. Now, among the dozens of other decisions left to make, it's time to choose your wedding gown.
And the bride wore . . .
From the day of your bridal portrait, to the moment you take your first step down the aisle, your gown ensemble will be one of the focal points of your wedding. It will make a definite statement about your style and taste and is often what many people remember most about the event.
Choose your gown carefully, you will see your gown every time you look at your wedding photos, and you will likely keep the gown as a treasured heirloom. With so much emphasis placed on this one aspect of the wedding, it bears repeating – choose your gown carefully.
So many choices – where do I start?
One glance through a bridal magazine will reveal what lies ahead. You will see a perplexing spectrum of choices: long straight sleeves to no sleeves, Victorian to contemporary silhouettes, high necklines to off-the-shoulder looks, a defined waistline to an unstructured sheath, full bouffant skirts to slim A-line skirts, floor length to above-the-knee, the smooth, understated elegance of plain satin to elaborate lace and beading.
Here's yet another twist to the process. There are literally hundreds of shades of white: cool white, blue-white, antique white, ivory, candlelight, and a whole family of pastel kissed whites. Maybe you'll decide you want to wear a colored gown – ask your bridal salon to show you the designers that carry the beautiful, vibrant red wedding gowns.
It can be a real challenge to choose the precise color and shade that best flatter your natural skin tones under a variety of lighting conditions. If you haven't already done so, you may want to have a color analysis done to determine whether your complexion has warm or cool undertones. This knowledge can make the critical difference between choosing a color that makes you glow versus choosing a color that makes you look tired, washed out, or too "made up."
All this is enough to boggle the mind of even the most seasoned, fashion-savvy wedding expert, but read on to further your pre-shopping knowledge. Keep in mind that there may be several excellent choices. Your mission is<