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Best Wedding Dresses of 2020
In a year filled with such turmoil, changed plans, postponed and virtual weddings, it could feel odd to be focusing on fashion. But with every story, we found that looking at the positives and focusing on the beautiful elements that make up a wedding day was always present. And that includes the wedding dress.
Choosing a wedding outfit is such a milestone in the wedding planning process, that even the couples who chose to scale down their celebrations didn’t skimp on fashion. Whether it was opting for a sublimely chic lace shift dress instead of a traditional ballgown, showing some whimsy in a pouf-sleeve mini dress, or just saying “to hell with it, I’m wearing the dress anyway!”—2020 brides were up against a lot of challenges and showed tremendous creativity and resilience as they plotted a new course.
Whether it was for a pre-COVID blowout, an ocean-side micro-wedding, or an at-home elopement, this crop of brides were just as fashionably epic as the last year’s—and they had a lot more to deal with!
Ready to see our favorite wedding dresses from the craziest year of weddings yet? We rounded up 30 of this year’s most fashionable looks.The 2021 Wedding Dress Trends You Need to Know01of 30
A Custom Made Gown
“I bought my first dress prematurely,” Upile Chisala admits. “It took a few months for me to regret the purchase and that is when I emailed my dear friend Syreeta and asked her to make me the real dress of my dreams.” Together, Upile and Syreeta spent weeks going back-and-forth, going from an ivory mermaid style to the final masterpiece: a stunning satin ballgown made of a nude-pink material that the bride found on Etsy.
“She [Syreeta] singlehandedly made this heavy dress in Maryland while I was in South Africa! I only tried it on once and my sister, Ngawina, brought it with her to South Africa. It had its own suitcase on the plane!” she admits with a laugh. “This dress was very mine not only because it was custom and Syreeta let me participate as much as I could, but because it was the result of love and came together because of so many people and cultures.”
Her advice? “Please do not buy a dress on your very first trip to the dress shop! If you love a dress, go home, and have a think about it before swiping your card. Sit down and be honest about how exactly you envision yourself on the day. “https://3ca75955d7967ae53aa08bc1fd204244.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-37/html/container.html02of 30
Fringed in Willowby by Watters
“I was always waiting for the right look, and it just so happened that my wedding dress was that look,” Sydney Connor says of picking her Willowby by Watters
A Custom Lehenga Choli Created by a Friend
On the second day of their wedding celebration, this couple threw a mehndi party, where guests were adorned with henna. The room was decorated with South Asian lanterns and antique lamps to evoke the Lake Palace, then accented with cascading orange and pink flowers. For this party, Monis Alam opted for an untraditional look: She wore a magenta lehenga choli, customized by Pakistani designer Ali Xeeshan.
The designer has been a friend for years, so Monis knew that she would wear one of his conceptions. After narrowing it down to three outfits, Monis sought her father’s advice, someone who has long shared her love of fashion. “When he suggested I go for the third look, I knew he was right,” Monis says of her final look, which included a custom dupatta.
A Meaningful Lace Sari
After the couple’s Western ceremony, Kelsey Maher exchanged her Vera Wang gown for the French Chantilly lace sari that Pra’s mother wore on her wedding day.
Vintage-inspired in Galia Lahav
Jessica deRoquancourt flew to New York to search for her wedding dress—although she already knew she wanted a Galia Lahav creation. “When I put it on I fell in love,” she says of the bridal designer’s vintage-inspired, off-the-shoulder “Thelma” gown. “I just knew it was it. I didn’t try on any more dresses after that.”06of 30
Opting Out of a White Dress
Emily Sullivan Canova skipped the white dress, opting instead for a hand-beaded, peach-colored gown, and John donned a cravat instead of a bow tie. Their dear friend, Tinker Hatfield, head of footwear design at Nike, officiated the ceremony but also hand-painted sneakers for the couple and their children to wear during the reception.https://3ca75955d7967ae53aa08bc1fd204244.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-37/html/container.html07of 30
A Custom Two-piece Creation
Josiane de Fatima Gomes Monteiro knew exactly what she wanted in a wedding dress so she e-mailed designer Luis Carvalho to make it happen. “Luis was amazing! I emailed him some pics of what I wanted, he made some drawings, we had a couple of fittings, and it was perfect,” she says. Ultimately, the gown was made with two pieces: a detailed underlay—that Josiane rocked on the dance floor later—and a long-sleeve draped wrap dress as a topper.https://3ca75955d7967ae53aa08bc1fd204244.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-37/html/container.html08of 30
Pretty and Springy in BHLDN
Jenneh Bockari knew this dreamy BHLDN number was “the one” before she tried it on. In fact, she’d been eyeing it long before she even went dress shopping. “[I] tried on three dresses,” recalls the bride. “This dress was one of the three. I tried it on last, just to give the others a fair shot.” Between the plunging neckline and back, floral appliqués, and tulle skirt, Jenneh says it “was just the perfect amount of interesting—and was so comfortable.”
A Lehenga Fit for a Princess
When Harneet Sidhu first tried on her seafoam green lehenga she couldn’t stop twirling around in the garment—a clear sign to both her mother, grandmother and her that it was the one! “It made me feel like a princess and I didn’t want to take it off,” she admits. The bride paired the elaborate pastel and floral-patterned gown with a pink chunni (veil).10of 30
Show-stopping in Spina Bride
Michaela Almqvist admired the feminine and flattering details of her Liz Martinez gown that she found at Spina Bride. “It is a truly unique gown with a show-stopping appeal,” she says of its peplum top, 3-D appliqués, and tulle skirt.
A Stone Cold Fox Dress Made for an Elopement
When the couple opted for an elopement, Jill Lavoie knew just what to wear: a lace Stone Cold Fox mini-dress that she had originally planned to don for the wedding’s afterparty. She added a cathedral veil from Made With Love Bridal, a pair of Stuart Weitzman heels, and pearl earrings from Wwake. As an added perk, she adds that she got her first manicure-pedicure since February, when nail salons shut down in D.C., for the big day.12of 30
Whimsical in Odylyne The Ceremony
“My theme was ‘Queen of Hearts’ meets pregnant bride,” wardrobe stylist Macy Orlowski admits. While specific, she found the perfect attire to accomplish her vision in the “Caspian” gown by Odylyne The Ceremony. “It’s playful puffy sleeves always resonated with me especially being a 90s kid that grew up watching ‘Alice and Wonderland,'” she says. The dress was originally intended to be her after-party dress. “But once I found out I was pregnant and our wedding was postponed due to COVID-19, I knew immediately this should be the dress I elope in and announce our pregnancy with,” she adds.13of 30
Laid Back in Azeeza
“My style is very laid-back and a little bit traditional, so when I saw this beautiful white Azeeza dress on Instagram, I knew I had to have it,” says Daniela Garcia of her midi dress, which is made of raw silk midi dress and features an empire bodice, gathered skirt, and puff sleeves. “At the time, I didn’t know if we’d have our micro wedding or not, but I figured I’d be able to use the dress for one of the pre-wedding events whenever the big one took place.”14of 30
A Dress Fit for the Ceremony, Reception and After-party
Alice Usanase-Lalui knew she wanted a wedding dress that could work for the ceremony, the reception, and the after-party. “I knew it was the one because I just felt at home in it,” she says. “The detail of the leafy ruffles reminded me of the outdoors and it was just perfect for an outdoor wedding. I can’t describe the feeling but when you know, you know.”15of 30
A Modern Take on Tradition
“I wanted a Xhosa wedding dress with a more modern design and silhouette,” says Sandiswa Sotashe, revealing she took her time dress shopping. The ultimate winner was an off-white Duchesse satin creation by Asanda Madyibi with Xhosa beading and black stripes.16of 30
A Timeless Berta Gown
Candice Wilson-Olensky, who is a film and TV producer and head of development and production at Kevin Hart’s Laugh Out Loud Network, found her Berta gown before visiting a bridal salon! She originally saw the dress in an image promoting an upcoming trunk show, and, of course, made an appointment. (Her mom even flew across the country to join her!)
“I tried it on and fell in love immediately. I knew instantly. I felt beautiful and timeless in it,” she says of the dress, adding that shopping was “100 percent better” with the company of her mom, who made the experience feel like playing dress up.17of 30
A Sparkling Sari
Isha Sathya and Suraj Philips flew to India together to pick out their bridal looks, including Isha’s Sabyasachi sari. She wanted to honor her South Indian roots and wear a sari, and she was elated to happen upon this tulle number from an archival collection.
“When I stepped out of the fitting room with the sari draped perfectly, I knew it was the one,” Isha says. “The sparkles gave it the perfect amount of glamour without being over the top. It was edgy, modern, with a hint of sensuality.”18of 30
Minimalist in Alexandra Grecco
“I love it because it’s an upscale and more glamorous version of the types of things I typically wear,” says Clare Stone of her minimalist Alexandra Grecco crepe silk gown. To create the illusion of a slip dress, she added thin, delicate straps—a task that was completed mere minutes before the ceremony began. She adds, “There’s something so powerful about feeling like yourself on your wedding day.”19of 30
Simply Elegant in Reem Acra
“I couldn’t stop thinking about it and was comparing all the other dresses I tried on to that one,” says Megan Roup of her silk chiffon gown by Reem Acra. However, while Megan knew the dress she wanted, she says saying “yes” wasn’t entirely seamless—she had to go dress shopping by herself thanks to COVID-19 restrictions!20of 30
Goddess Vibes in Sophie et Voila
Dulce Martin’s dress shopping experience was an international one. “I tried on dresses in Mexico, Los Angeles, Nashville, London, Paris, the Netherlands, and Spain,” she admits. “I also did it all by myself, as I wanted to hear myself think and decide according to what felt perfect for me, and I also wanted to surprise everyone, including my mom. Nobody saw the dress until I walked down the aisle.”
She ultimately chose two dresses: A custom-made gown for the ceremony and dinner by Sophie et Voila, and a second for the reception by Cortana Brides. “Both of them felt unique, they were both very comfortable to wear, and most importantly, they felt like me—or a very elevated version of me,” she says with a laugh. “They reflected two very different sides of who I am. One is classic, elegant, with a goddess vibe, while the other one is a little rebellious, and slightly sexy but simple and classic too.”21of 30
THAT Amazing Oscar Dress
“I had no intention of wearing a strapless dress,” Amanda Greeley says of her Oscar de la Renta ball gown made of silk and cotton lace. “I almost didn’t want this dress to be the one. I had seen it on the runway.”22of 30
Modern in Adam Zohar
When Danielle Moson went shopping at The White Dress bridal boutique in California, two Adam Zohar gowns caught her eye. “I literally couldn’t decide,” she admits. “One was super geometric and edgy—what I always thought I’d wear—and the other was beautifully soft and romantic—not my personality at all.” But when she came back to the boutique the following morning, her dress choice was clear: She had to go with the latter, a light-weight long-sleeve chiffon gown with intricate floral details.
A Last-minute Day of Switch
“Up until the day of the wedding, I thought I was going to wear a sage green collared shirt under my white blazer even though I never really loved the way it looked,” revealed Laine Strickland. But, she made a last-minute switch the day-of, wearing a floral 7Diamonds collard shirt with her white J. Crew suit instead. “I am so glad that I did and Kaila loved the whole look,” she says.
Kaila Strickland tried on several dresses before slipping into this strapless Pronovias number. “I loved it instantaneously,” she says of the gown, which featured a deep sweetheart neckline and lace overlay.
A Self-Portrait Number for an Intimate Wedding
Before changing her wedding plans, Justine Victoria Roach had planned on wearing a Valentino gown down the aisle. But when the extravagant nuptials turned into an intimate garden occasion, Justine opted for this floral lace midi dress by Self-Portrait instead—a look she decided on just five minutes before heading to the altar! She accessorized with her mother’s jewelry, including a diamond and platinum bracelet from 1935, and carried a bouquet of white roses wrapped in silk.25of 30
Green Velvet and Bridal Separates
Katie Hathaway wore an ensemble from Suistudio. “I immediately knew the green velvet blazer was for me,” she says. “My mom also bought me amazing earrings from the Sundance Catalog and sweet velvet lace-up Oxfords from Bruno Magli.”
Lilla Goettler chose bridal separates from BHLDN. “I spent about a month trying the outfit on over and over again before I decided,” she admits. “I really wasn’t expecting to love a long-sleeved dress, but it ended up looking great and keeping me cozy.” She paired her dress with a pair of white sneakers. “The outfit didn’t feel completely right until I tried on the Converse,” she says. “It was a great androgynous touch that made the whole outfit feel more ‘me.’”26of 30
A Designer-approved Choice
Following the ceremony, Maanasa Indaram changed into lace-and-crepe gown by Sarah Seven. “After having gone dress shopping several times in San Francisco, I was prepared to show my mom, mother-in-law, and sister the dress that I was intending to buy while on a trip back to New York,” she recalls. “However, when we walked into the studio, all our eyes caught this dress. It was comfortable but flattering, sweet but also very chic.” The icing on the cake? The designer was in the studio and gave the Maanasa her seal of approval. She says, “Sarah immediately stopped by our group to give me the thumbs up when she saw me in it!”27of 30
Matching Mikado Silk Looks
“I’ve modeled many wedding dresses during my career but never fell in love with any,” Meaghan Garland admits. But, when she tried on her Mikado silk dress by Pronovias, “it became the dress of my dreams!” Meaghan completed her look with a veil, pearl drop earrings, pearl hairpins, and a diamond-and-gold necklace passed down to her by her mother.
Kiyomi McCloskey chose a white suit made from the same Mikado silk material as Meaghan’s dress. “It was unique, chic, and everything I’d envisioned,” she says. She completed her look with personalized cufflinks—which were a gift from Meaghan—as well as a white tuxedo shirt and a white bowtie. Her boutonniere featured plum ranunculus, heuchera leaves, and olive branch.28of 30
A Custom Creation by Brandon Maxwell
Choosing a dress (or three!) was easy for Stephanie Puntillo: She turned to client-turned-friend Brandon Maxwell for everything she wore on her wedding day. “I told Brandon I didn’t want a big princess dress, but when I showed up for my first appointment, the photo I brought with me was of the biggest pink dress from his Spring 2019 collection,” Stephanie says with a laugh. For the ceremony, he created a white basket-weave organza ball gown with a fitted scoop-neck bodice. Stephanie wore her hair in a sleek chignon to match the gown’s clean lines.29of 30
A Hanbok Found on Instagram
“I had seen a hanbok that I just loved on Instagram so when I was in L.A. I went by the shop that had made it,” Megan Rose says. “Even though I knew exactly what I wanted, the process was so much fun, they had me pick the fabric for every little part of the dress.”30of 30
The Jumpsuit of the Year
After dinner, Danielle changed into a second look, a lace-and-silk jumpsuit by Rime Arodaky. “I have followed Rime for a while and love how modern and edgy her pieces are,” Danielle says. “It was fun, playful, and sexy—the perfect thing to wear to the party portion of the day.”
Best Places To Buy Your Wedding Dress Online
Hey, brides! It’s bridal stylist Christina here ready with a bottle of bubbles & oodles of tips to get you started with wedding dress shopping! And as your virtual bridal fairy godmother, I’m here to guide you through all the joys of shopping online.https://11005846a8276a914e0b95b10bcb9a0c.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-37/html/container.html
It’s true we love the experience of shopping in a bridal salon (I work in one after all!) but there’s no denying the advantage of shopping for your wedding dress online. Love a trendy designer from across the globe that’s not carried in your local bridal salon? You may be able to buy direct online. And what’s more, online retailers like The Outnet & Net-a-Porter offer high-fashion, designer gowns off the runway for a fraction of their usual price.
All of this means: you don’t need to visit stores in real life anymore to find your perfect wedding dress!
With this online wedding shopping guide, you can find your ceremony dress, reception party dress, eloping dress, or anything else you’ve been searching for to complete your wedding looks. We’ve curated our top twenty favorite online shops that make wedding dress shopping easy, at every price point and for every style.Gown by Mywony Bridal available on EtsyGown by Mywony Bridal available on Etsy
Price range: $150+
Etsy has a little bit of everything: non-traditional, colorful, whimsical, vintage, and plenty of embellishments. Even more, you can find ready-to-wear gowns & custom made pieces= in just about every price range!
There are bold laces for the bohemian brides, blush tones or blue colors for the playful brides, and dainty lace details and beading for the unique bride. We love just how personalized these pieces are, handmade with love.
Are you a wild bride looking for a little color? Shop our 20 favorite romantic wedding gowns on Etsy in dreamy colors. You can find our 10 favorite Etsy wedding dress designers here.
Price range: $200 – $3,000
BHLDN’s style is playful and modern with an air of something heavenly. We love their featured capsule collections with some of our favorite designers (like current collaborations with Jenny Yoo and Theia!) and you can even find affordable Watters label gowns listed on their site.
If there isn’t a BHLDN location near you then shop online and take advantage of their easy 30-day return policy. Pieces start at only $200, making it a great way to shop for any price point.
Price range: $200 – $5,000
This site is the best bridal shopping for new AND preowned wedding dresses. Filter through options that are important to you like price points, silhouette, and designers. Whether that means you find your perfect dress that has been discontinued, or you score a designer piece for a major discount, you can customize your search.
You can even shop their collection of jewelry and accessories for a complete bridal look!
Price range: $200 – $10,000
This is the dream shopping site for the bride wanting a high-fashion designer piece for a major discount. Find something glamorous for your wedding and even a stylish and cute piece for your bridal shower!
Search by specific designers or by style to narrow down your vision for your wedding day, or check out their wedding shop for some of the coolest designer white dresses (many gowns at 50 percent off or more!)
We’ve even crafted a list of editor’s picks from the site’s current selection of discounted designer gowns.
Visit SiteChiara Ferragni in Dior photographed by David Bastianoni.
Price range: $40 – $400
ASOS is a great option for the bride swept up in the romance and ready to elope.
We’re loving the size-inclusive styles, with options for curvy, tall, and petite shapes. They have pieces that range from more trendy statement-making looks to classic and clean pieces. But regardless of design, everything about these white dresses has an element that feels playful.
These dresses tend to be more affordable and budget-friendly which means an outfit change may be in order!
Price range: $200 – $500
Another modern online shop we love, Reformation makes wedding shopping for you and your bridesmaids effortless. Their pieces are ideal for a cool city bride, a casual backyard wedding bride, or any bride looking for high-style and simplicity.
Visit their “Wedding” section for classy and timeless pieces, and coordinate with your bridesmaid besties for other colorful flowy styles. We love their uncompromising quality, natural silk fabrics, and focus on being eco-friendly in a fast-fashion world.
Price range: $170 – $29,000
For the little girl who old-school cut & paste fashion collages from Vogue magazines as a kid (like our editor, Claire!), you’ll want to take a look at the gowns listed on runway-ready MATCHESFASHION.
Featuring feather-adorned Saint Laurent minis, lavish Valentino gowns, ultra-cool Rodarte separates & radical Alexander McQueen bridal suits – this online retailer offers high-end & fashion-forward wedding gowns. Avant-garde brides will rejoice over the collection of cool shapes & textiles. After all, you’re not the kind of gal that does the traditional salon shopping anyway, right?
Price range: $500 – $5,000
These ready-to-wear gowns and designer pieces are all beautifully curated for the sophisticated bride.
From classic looks with simple and clean lines to more avant-garde party pieces with overstated ruffles and sequins, this site is a compilation of our dream luxe designer looks. Their site is updated three times a week, so you can keep coming back to see what else speaks to you and your bridal vision.
Noteworthy designers include Jenny Packham, Reem Acra, Temperley London, Rime Arodaky, Lela Rose and Needle & Thread – with some gowns starting at about $500!
Price range: $200 – $500
While we’ve shared plenty of their gowns on BM – Fame & Partners are a major love on our list because not only are they customizable, but they’re also a nearly zero waste company. These pieces are made-to-order and essential for the contemporary bride.
Shop their bridal section, and keep in mind, nearly every one of their gowns on the site for all occasions is available in “ivory.” We encourage you to play around on their site and start designing your perfect dress.
Price range: $100 – $200
Torrid isn’t only focused on streetwear fashion! Their online wedding section is here for curvier brides wanting a simple and feminine no-fuss gown. Their website even lets you select which fit model you want to see the dress on – which makes envisioning the dress on you even easier.
Price range: $1,500 – $2,400
Fusing together the energy of the headstrong bride mixed with soft and bold details, Daughters of Simone was born.
Their signature style uses scalloped crochet laces, buttery silks, and ribbons and bows in the most imaginative designs. These pieces are truly free-spirited in craft and mantra. Designed with inspired silhouettes of the 1970’s for the independent woman of today, rebellious brides will rejoice in the cut-out details and extravagant silk scarves.
Take a look at their try on at home program and find your dream dress!
Price range: $1,200 – $3,200
Style and comfort are equal partners in this luxurious match made in lace-y heaven. Grace Loves Lace mixes their signature stretchy fabrics with sexy fits at a price attainable for any bride.
The site offers made-to-order and ready-wear pieces, so no matter how long or short your timeline is, you can make a Grace Loves Lace gown your own. Your order is processed along with the help of their expert online stylists to ensure you achieve the perfect fit customized with your exact color and style details in mind.
All gowns are ethically made in their Australian headquarters – just one of the endless reasons we love them!
Price Range: $2,195 – $10,750
With lavish gowns sparking the imagination of brides around the globe, we’re thrilled to share that you no longer have to visit a coveted Galia Lahav stockist in person to shop their breathtaking GALA & Pret-a-Porter collections.
Every season we’re enchanted by Galia Lahav’s inspired wedding dress collections. Always offering brides a chance to make a powerful statement as they walk down the aisle, each and every dress exhibits an attention to detail that is nearly unparalleled in the bridal space. It’s no surprise then that so many celebrities don Galia’s gowns for both their wedding days & red carpet events.
Offering free shipping worldwide on both their GALA made-to-order gowns & Pret-a-Porter styles, you can now be a Galia angel no matter where you live.
Price range: $250 – $4,800
Loho Bride is 100% in a League of Her Own. With two immaculate shops located in California, now anyone can become a Loho bride by visiting their dreamy online store! Here you can find mini dresses, jumpsuits, and the coolest accessories.
Some pieces are made-to-order, giving you the expected lead time, and some gowns are ready to purchase and ship immediately. This shop is perfect for the bride who transcends labels or convention.
It should come as no surprise that the owner, Christy Doxtater, has an eye for style that is unmatched! (Check out some of her expertise from Fashion Week, here!)
Price range: $200 – $2,000
This site features playful and chic designer looks starting at just $200!
These dresses are light and airy, doused in sequins, sparkle, or cheerful bows and ruffles. Go from the courthouse to your reception in any of these polished styles. Their collection of dresses is also ideal for elopements, second looks, or any bride on the go. (With looks from Marchesa Notte and Zimmermann, to name a few!)
Price range: $60 – $500
While this isn’t your standard wedding dress shopping experience, we love their signature rock-n-roll meets laid back style.
Find white dresses perfect for a beachy bride, honeymoon vacation, or a playful and flirty bachelorette look. Natural fabrics, embroidery, crochet, and drapey elements encapsulate Free People’s dresses. Toss tradition to wind, babe, because adventure awaits!
Price range: $200 – $1,200
Looking for sexy dresses or designer pieces with a twist? Plunging necklines and low backs adorn these pieces in true Revolve fashion – they are for the bride looking to make a statement.
Check out their Little White Dresses section too, to find head-turning pieces for before or after the big day without breaking the bank.
Price Range: $315 – $1,900
How many times has a Kamperett wedding dress sat in my shopping cart until I’ve reminded myself “You’re already married”? Too many times.
Kamperett, the Los Angeles fashion house that marries LA-cool-girl fashion with cottage-core romance, offers brides a chance to buy a stunning wedding dress they can wear again, again and again. Crafting ethereal organza gowns & sexy silk slips, these dresses are for the hopeless romantic ready to dive straight into her honeymoon post-ceremony.
Affordable, re-wearable, ethically-made & wholly sustainable, Kamperett is a knockout in price, style & modern bride values.
Price range: $700 – $3,000
Floravere lets you buy directly online without having to set foot in a showroom (but that’s an option, too!) Here you’ll find high-quality fabrics sourced from all over the world, without the markup of regular retail shops.
The modern brand is now happily size-inclusive from a size 0 to 26! And with a noteworthy Beyond the Ceremony collection, we find where all the pantsuits we’ve ever needed have been waiting.
Know one of these pieces is the one? They are all made to order (to avoid mass production) and take about three to five months to be delivered.
Price Range: $460 – $6,660
German fashion house Kaviar Gauche stole our attention at the end of 2020 with their incredible new bridal collection, Cloud 9.
Aware of the quickly-changing bridal world – with Covid-19-era weddings adding smaller events & garnering a need for alternative dresses shoppable online – Kaviar Gauche created a civil line that allows brides to make a big statement even with a mini dress (and mini budget!)
Find drama with even the smallest of dresses, adorned with twirl-worthy fringe and eye-catching silhouettes. The collection includes all the needs of a 2021 bride: mini shorts and dramatic overskirts, tailored pants and sexy bridal blazers, jumpsuits, midi dresses, to-die-for minis & even a modern ballgown.
Their past collections, also shoppable online, include even more lavish embellishments ready for your bigger event, hopefully soon to come.
Price range: $100 – $2,000
Looking for something wild and truly one-of-a-kind? This perfectly curated online shop is one of our vintage favorites.
Shop Gossamer has a stunning assortment of antique gems ranging from the 1920s to the 1980s in the most lovely ivory and soft blushes or nude tones. Breathe life into something vintage, and let any of these dresses party one more love-filled evening.
And take note – this shop also creates some of their own custom pieces, made to order, inspired by the beautiful styles of yesteryear.
Price Range: $200 – $1,100
Another treasure trove of vintage bridal gems from our friends down under. Arcade Vintage Boutique curates a gorgeous wedding dress collection alongside their everyday wear, from luxuriously beaded 1920s dresses to long-sleeved lace gowns from the 1970s. With new collections of vintage wear arriving periodically, you always have a chance to find a one-of-a-kind wonder.
One thing we truly love about Arcade Vintage Boutique is that they photograph their bridal collection on-location rather than in-studio. We find that often it’s hard to “imagine yourself” in a vintage gown on your wedding day when they’re normally photographed on mannequins or in-studio catalog shots. Arcade goes the extra mile to show you how beautiful & special these gowns will make you feel on your wedding day.
PS: for brides looking for the perfect, vintage cape, this lace bridal jacket has the most incredible train!
Price Range: $840 – $4,500
Budget-friendly AND eco-friendly, LVD Bridal is the sample & consignment sister store from trendy bridal salon The Dress Theory.
If you’re a bride who loves the trendiest designers & gowns of today but can’t quite budget the price of a new, made-to-order gown you might be in luck when shopping on their online store. Selling gently used shop samples & consigning gowns from past brides, LVD Bridal gives brides on a budget (or brides looking to shop in a more eco-friendly manner) the chance to buy their dream gown at a more affordable price.
Be sure to follow their Instagram account too as they often announce flash sales that cut retail prices in half and sometimes more!
Price Range: $10 – $30,000+
A more ‘worldwide’ online consignment store, Still White is a massive platform of real brides & bridal salons selling floor samples, preowned & brand new couture wedding gowns.
What we love is how easy their site is to use. You can shop & explore the site based on designers you love, size, silhouette, sleeves, neckline, length, back, colors, fabrics…it goes on and on! You can sort the database by “Biggest Saving” finding gowns literally at 99% off their market price.
Best of all, if you’re looking for a particular dress or designer to appear on sale, you can set up alerts for that designer so you’ll get an email when a new dress is listed.
Price Range: $150 – $545
Whether you’re searching for the perfect Micro Wedding, Minimony or elopement dress or you just happen to be a romantic, casual bride Shona Joy is about to be your wedding dress bestie.
Translating their sexy & effortless RTW silhouettes into bridal stunning fabrics that look like liquid silk, Shona Joy has made the dream wedding dress collection for the fashion-forward bride on a budget. Find flowing, bias-cut gowns with beautiful trains, bridal separates with tie tops & wide-leg pants and a number of midi and shorter styles.
The best part is, all of these dresses could so easily be worn for years and years to come as sexy resort-wear for that Post-Covid honeymoon.
Price Range: $220 – $420
Long been our go-to for wedding guest wardrobes & bridesmaid dresses, Bec + Bridge’s wedding dress edit is just as effortlessly sexy & affordable as their bridal party attire.
Australian-made, Bec & Bridge offers much of their trendy line of minis, midis, separates & gowns in shades of ivory, champagne & white, meaning your favorite Bec & Bridge silhouette comes in a classic, wedding-ready hue.
Price Range: $1,160 – $3,410
Dub this one a “Claire Favorite”, our Editor-in-Chief has been inundating the Bridal Musings group chats with every single gown by The Own Studio. And rightly so! Our latest bridal designer discovery from the UK has the team spellbound by their unique take on the sexy, silk wedding gown.
Not just another bias-cut slip dress, The Own Studio has created a collection of silk wedding gowns that feature one-of-a-kind detail and avant-garde silhouettes. Take Style 023 for example, this would-be-halter-gown features illusion paneling and eye-catching sleeves – a sleek bridal style we truly haven’t seen before. Or Claire’s favorite Style 017, which is a smooth satin silk halter that reveals the most unexpected & stunning scarf tie & keyhole back.
Price Range: $600 – $4,400
The artful & chic wedding accessories designer A.B. Ellie has just launched a section of their online store with exclusive Little White Dresses & separates from some of our favorite indie bridal designers.
While this is likely the smallest shop & most “boutique-y” option on our list, we have high hopes for this edit that includes dresses and bridal looks perfect for the Covid-era of smaller, casual weddings. If you’re a bride who wants something less formal or shorter length for your Minimony but don’t want to sacrifice quality or style you’ll be thrilled by the casual couture options.
It goes without saying we think this handmade silk wrap dress by The Law Bridal would be perfect for your wedding-day look & wardrobe for decades to come.
Price range: $700 – $1,200
Come gasp along with us at these beautifully embellished looks! Vintage lovers, this is your playground – with flounces and fringe and the most decadent beading. All of these dresses are doused in fantastic detail. We love the ombre tones and unique necklines and can see some of these pieces pairing perfectly in a historical setting or with a swanky evening vibe.
Visit SiteNeedle & Thread Gown via The Wedding Gallery
Price range: $300 – $1,000
A new addition to the Watters family, By Watters, is an exclusive collection of gowns in their Ready-to-Ship section.
These pieces are easygoing, of the moment, super wearable and ready for anything. They’re just right for a dressed up bridal shower or rehearsal dinner but have enough detail for the wedding day.