Short Stuff and Pretty Pinks: Fall ’14 Bridal Breaks The Mold-------
Leave it to Vera Wang to electrify the Fall ’14 bridal season with a veritable rainbow of high-impact pink gowns. “It was very ironic, I thought, to show pink for winter, and I wanted to explore ultimate femininity—but with an edge,” offered the designer of her blush, rosebud, and coral wares. Wang, who in the past has shown bridal looks in bloodred and black, was influenced by the “glamour of old Dior,” but she modernized that concept via strictly draped bodices, thoughtful beading, and blossoming origami flower embellishments, which sat on the skirts of full tulle options or mermaid silhouettes.
Carolina Herrera also turned out a nontraditional collection—though hers broke the mold in length, not hue. “I got married the second time in a short dress,” said Herrera. “I’ve been going to a lot of weddings lately, and I see the brides wearing long gowns for the ceremony, and suddenly they change into a short one. So I thought, why not short?” she said of her knee- and tea-length frocks. Don’t mistake short for simple, though—sequins, elaborate floral appliqués, lace, feathers, pearls, and moonstone all made an appearance in the range, as did pockets, which gave the dresses a fresh, youthful feel. Don’t fret, traditional brides; most of the gowns are available for order in full-length styles as well.
Short cocktail dresses turned up at Marchesa, too. Inspired by The Secret Garden, Georgina Chapman and Keren Craig’s Fall outing was positively enchanting, and included scads of chantilly, point d’esprit, handmade floral appliqués, and pearl-studded tulle. The pair also offered longer gowns with trumpet skirts and delicate lace sleeves, which were terrific options for those wanting a classic look.
Alice Temperley kept her playful ready-to-wear customer in mind while designing her Bridal collection, and introduced new shapes for brides who aren’t afraid to experiment. Highlights here included a voluminous A-line swing coat and matching skirt featuring allover rose petals, as well as an embroidered strapless number with a high-low hemline.
Contrastingly, heirloom and vintage were the buzzwords at Monique Lhuillier. “They are, of course, very elegant but appear to be more storied with lots of antique threadwork,” said the designer when asked about her Fall gowns. While there was plenty of frothy tulle here (which looked nice in a smoky violet-gray), what really caught our eye were the more pared-down silhouettes, including a delicate, puddling slipdress and a clean, strapless column gown with a dramatic bow train.
Meanwhile, Naeem Khan and Zac Posen both made their wedding collection debuts this season. Khan, who’s best known for his intricate red-carpet-ready eveningwear, designed each of his gowns with a different city in mind. Our favorites were (obviously) New York—a Chrysler Building-themed column that featured his signature allover beading—and the strapless tulle Granada number.
Zac Posen has a wealth of experience creating custom gowns for well-to-do brides, but his latest project—an ongoing collaboration with David’s Bridal dubbed Truly Zac Posen—makes his fantasy frocks decidedly more accessible. Considering their immaculate details (think Posen signatures like boned corset tops, sunburst pleating, sculpted silhouettes, and lace and pearl embellishments), the dresses’ $850 to $1,350 price points were somewhat unbelievable. The gowns, which will hit stores in February 2014, can be ordered in sizes 0 through 26. “For lots of women, their wedding is the one glamorous, red-carpet moment that they get to dream about,” said Posen. With this team-up, he’ll no doubt make plenty of bridal dreams come true.