Fall isn’t just for us lowly street style fans – the season’s trends also apply to weddings, and gowns are interpreting autumn’s biggest styles, too.
This year, designers paid homage to the past, while simultaneously cutting hemlines, adding embellishments, and abandoning conventional colour. We took a look at 10 of fall’s biggest wedding trends, and linked them with some of the celebrities who wore them best. There’s room for everybody’s taste here.
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Just because the leaves (and snow) will soon be falling doesn’t mean you need to reserve florals for spring and summer. However, unlike with floral prints, these flowers act as embellishments, as per Claire Pettibone’s Fall 2013 collection, which saw flowers used as crowns, necklaces, and adornments on simple white and cream pieces.
Nobody’s surprised to see lace holding its own in terms of autumn’s wedding looks (don’t lace and weddings go hand in hand?), but in addition to pieces by the likes of Marchesa, Sean Parker’s wife Alexandra Lenas and "30 Rock’s" Katrina Bowden opted for the classic, feminine look. Not that you have to be lace obsessed: even hints of lace worn around the neckline or hemline pays homage to the trend without going overboard, while still making the style timeless. Hey, if it's good enough for the French, it's good enough for us!
All hail Kate Bosworth! Having recently tied the knot with fiancé Michael Polish, the actress donned an ivory strapless Oscar de la Renta gown that was understated, subtle, but at the same time commanding. This season (and in general), wedding gowns don’t have to be over-the-top to make an impact: ultimately, they’re about drawing attention to the wearer, so if you’re not one for big hoops, jewels, or anything too fancy, embrace what will never go out of fashion.
4. Victorian And Edwardian-Inspired
Thank you, "Downton Abbey": when Mary and Matthew got married at the start of Series 3, she set in motion the Edwardian and ‘20s-inspired wedding gowns that we’re seeing in droves this fall. Badgley Mischka’s fall wedding collection did a great job of paying homage to dresses of “yesteryear,” while Sarah Sevens’ pieces embody that dreamlike quality. Keep necklines high, hemlines easy to walk in, and skirts without pleating.
In the ‘50s but more so ‘60s, anything went. Of course, we know that already thanks to parents’ stories, "Mad Men," and, well, history, but in terms of fashion, it also left a lot of wiggle room in terms of wedding style. This season, London designer Sabina Motasem offered rockabilly pieces for weddings tired of the floor-length wedding uniforms, which Keira Knightly took advantage of at her own wedding last spring. This autumn, weddings get to be fun.
On the flipside are dresses that are still fun, but far more formal. Earlier this year, figure skater Michelle Kwan wed her husband in a form-fitting dress with a paisley print, and Vera Wang did the same with her Fall 2013 gowns: corset-style, highly fitted then accentuated from the calf or ankle downward – like Eliza Doolittle’s ascot dress in "My Fair Lady." If it looks hard to walk in, you’ve got an autumn gem (because if designed well, they should be relatively easy to walk in).
It’s time to abandon the myth of the white wedding dress, and thankfully, you can do that this season. While Canadians Shenae Grimes and Avril Lavigne wore black (thanks also to Vera Wang), Mama June (yes – she deserves a shout-out for being herself) wore orange. And that’s the key – weddings are supposed to be about what reflects the people getting married, not what a magazine tells you to wear. So if you’re tired of classic white, embrace colour fearlessly and add colourful embellishments and/or overlays to make your dress yours.
2013 – or more specifically Fall/Winter 2013 – is a great season for demolishing wedding norms. Case in point: short wedding gowns which boast A-line skirts like Amsale, or flapper style dresses by designers like Reem Acra. Again, we can look at Keira Knightly and her champagne-like dress, which was actually paired with a Chanel jacket to keep the look actually re-wearable.
9. Mix And Match
Like most fall fashion, wedding trends play off each other, and leave a lot of room to combine several at once. Jenny Packham’s collection saw jewels, embellishments, 1920s influences, and even full skirts, while Monique Lhuillier topped a slim skirt with a full chiffon overlay adorned with flowers. The key is this: if you like something, there’s likely room for it. Stick to your gut, and don’t be afraid to pick up accessories like bracelets and even – get set – hats.
In contrast to the unconventional, wedding dresses this season still do embrace one of the most tried and true wedding trends – the train. "Breaking Bad’s" Aaron Paul’s now-wife Lauren Parsekian wore a corseted Amsale gown with a train, while Douglas Hannant’s fall collection saw florals, lace, and – you’ll never guess – trains. If you’re concerned about dancing and generally moving around, rest easy. You can button up your train as the night goes on, or you can use the length as an excuse to sit down, drink wine, and sneak in a nap after a very long day.