Relationships

Four Amazing Wedding Looks

Four Amazing Wedding Looks

Even though my own wedding was approximately one million years ago, I love looking at wedding photos, especially when personal stories are behind them. These four couples wore amazing looks that captured their personalities…

Four Amazing Wedding Looks

“The first dress I tried on was actually the one I went with,” says Roxanne, of the dress she found at Happy Isles, a vintage bridal salon in L.A. “It felt 1970s and timeless, imbued with a bit of romance without being precious,” she explains. How did she know it was the one? “The moment I saw myself in the mirror wearing it, I got choked up.”

Four Amazing Wedding Looks

“It was important that whatever I wore allowed for a whole lot of dancing, and this dress fit the bill perfectly,” Roxanne says. Florist Doan Ly had brought a bunch of baby’s breath, and stylist Jalise Wright worked her magic. “She took one look at the fresh sprigs, whipped out a pair of scissors, and arranged them into a beautiful partial halo that was beyond anything I could have imagined.”

Four Amazing Wedding Looks

When Lisa and Jason eloped to New York’s City Hall last October, she hoped to wear something that felt like her. “I wanted it reflect my general style, not a one-day look and then back to regular programming,” she says. So, Lisa paired a blue velvet dress with her favorite leather jacket and clogs. Another sweet consideration? “I also happened to be five months pregnant, so it needed to work with, not hide, my growing bump we were so excited about.”

Four Amazing Wedding Looks

The groom’s Happy Socks came in a two pack, one for him and one baby-sized matching pair. “I can’t wait until they both wear them!” Lisa says.

Four Amazing Wedding Looks

Actors Kyle and Eddie got married last summer in Summerland, California, and both wore floral shirts. “We got married in July, on what had to be the hottest day of the summer. The temperature was in the hundreds!” Kyle says. “The jackets came off pretty quickly after the ceremony because it was crazy hot, but all the better to rock our floral patterns.”

Four Amazing Wedding Looks

How beautiful are those colors? “We wanted to match but not be carbon copies of each other,” says Kyle. The grooms enlisted their stylist friend, Scarlet, to help put together the wedding party’s looks. “Everyone looked radiant. It was one of the most joyous days of our lives.”

Four Amazing Wedding Looks

When Carolyn got married, she had a very specific vision. “Growing up, I always loved my mom’s work outfits, including a wool crêpe wrap skirt from Anne Klein II,” she says. “For my wedding outfit, I wanted to wear something that made me feel strong, so I thought about my mom getting ready for work in the 90s. Thankfully, my mom had kept her skirt even after retiring.”

Four Amazing Wedding Looks

Over the decades, moths and curious kittens had taken their toll on the hem, says Carolyn, so with her mom’s approval, she carefully took apart the skirt and created a new pattern with the help of sewing expert Jennifer Serr. “I made a new version of the skirt with a few small updates (goodbye 80s Velcro closure, hello finished seams!) and was able to reuse the hook and eye clasp from my mom’s original skirt.”

Four Amazing Wedding Looks

Here’s Carolyn, wearing the finished product alongside her mom. How incredible is that?

What would (or did) you wear? I picked a dress from J.Crew!

P.S. A casual NYC wedding, and 11 wedding dos and don’ts.

(Roxanne and Lisa’s photos by Sylvie Rosokoff. Kyle’s photos by Cara Robbins. Carolyn’s photos by Chani Bockwinkel.)

  1. Elizabeth says...

    Any way I could learn where those awesome floral shirts are from? We would love to get those for our groomsmen!

    Thank you!

  2. Jess says...

    I wore a white halter jumpsuit and couldn’t have loved it more!

  3. Emily says...

    What have you done with your wedding dresses? Mine is a beautiful frothy dream and it takes up a lot of room in my house. I wont wear it again and doubt my daughter would prefer my dress to picking her own, but giving it away or selling it doesn’t feel right.

    • Mims says...

      After seeing women trying on wedding dresses at the Goodwill, I promptly went home and donated my 100% silk dress, that I sewed myself with help from a dressmaker friend. I had held onto it for 10 plus years. I do not have a daughter, and really thought it was just a burden to keep it hanging in the closet, even though I am happily married and cherish the memory of that day. But that is exactly what I cherish: the memory of the wonderful day I married my best friend, not the dress itself. I have never regretted giving it away. I like to think someone had an equally beautiful day of their own, and splurged on great food or a live band instead of expensive dress.

  4. Emily says...

    OMG! Remember when you used to do this every Friday? That’s how long I’ve been reading your blog! :D Loved seeing this.

  5. Amoreena says...

    I love all of these! Also, so fun to see Summerland, CA get a mention. My mom lives there and it’s sooo tiny you never hear about it!

  6. Ella says...

    I’m getting married in October and just decided to wear a yellow gown with embroidered flowers. It feels like a very bold choice but also, finally, the right choice. After buying two wedding dresses I changed my mind about (something I never thought I would do) I’ve found the one!

    • Ellen says...

      YES!!! I wore a dark dress with a huge floral print on it for my wedding in 2014. NO RAGRATS.

  7. Kait says...

    My favorite part of my dress was the veil and lace topper I wore in the Cathedral. The topper was lace and handmade from an Israeli designer on Etsy. It was delivered to the wrong apartment and took me months of arguing with USPS, the apartment building, and the neighbor to get it back! I cannot imagine what on Earth a middle-aged man wanted with my wedding dress topper but he was very attached to it, and yet the package was thankfully unopened when I finally got it days before our wedding. https://imgur.com/biKjfvI
    Pro tip: Get married around a holiday and get free flowers at church!

  8. Gabi says...

    I got married this past October and wore the first wedding dress I ever tried on. It had so many layers of tulle and felt so good just twirling around that I pretty much twirled for two hours straight at my wedding. A close family friend told me later that she kept looking at me and just saw me as a 5 year old, twirling away and having the time of my life. I didn’t want to take it off at the end of the night, and I’m still trying to think of excuses to wear it again (I day dream of putting it on and just walking around downtown with my husband in his tux).
    https://scontent.fphl2-1.fna.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/fr/cp0/e15/q65/43393924_10104105485925092_35040340360560640_o.jpg?_nc_cat=103&efg=eyJpIjoidCJ9&_nc_oc=AQlFxRo12bGpdQyJzQXDFXhLBsIfFrsxwGQKdELy66VE0XJjMN5T7oDcTv8Sd-wO5lo&_nc_ht=scontent.fphl2-1.fna&oh=a720f537b852018bb1b5d6f1a45bd1bc&oe=5D4533A2

  9. Allyson says...

    I wore a $12 Old Navy maternity dress. It is maroon. My mother and sister in law were running around town trying to buy us all the stuff they thought we needed for our same-day wedding and the only thing I asked them for was a bouquet of blush pinks and deep purple peonies. They brought me sunflowers and daisies. ha!

  10. Elizabeth says...

    Man, now I wish I’d gone with a 1970s-inspired gown—I love it! When my husband and I planned our elopement to CO, I found a dress I loved but had been sold out for several seasons. I chose a dress, and it worked, but a week away from our elopement, I found the dress I wanted on eBay of all places! I bought it for $138 even though its transparent fabric was a horrible choice for a snow-covered glacier, and I have never felt lovelier. :)

  11. Love all of these! I really like the idea of keeping wedding outfits in keeping with your regular style. I always knew I wouldn’t be a big white dress type.

    We ended up eloping to the Caribbean with our 9 month old baby, I just picked up a pale blush ruffled sundress from Topshop the week before we went :) I wrote about it here – https://themumandthemom.com/2017/01/18/reasons-to-elope/ it was a really lovely, intimate, relaxed and happy day. (And I think my mum has just about forgiven me, a decade later!)

    • Sasha L says...

      What a beautiful couple!!! I’m already married long ago, with a fairly traditional wedding, and no regrets. BUT, if I was young and doing this today, I would do exactly this! Introvert as well, love the idea of wedding and honeymoon rolled into one, love the relaxed and just plain happy vibe. That being said, if either of my daughters do this, I hope they invite me along 😉

  12. Sarah says...

    Picking out a dress was so much harder than I ever thought it would be. In an ideal world, I would have been able to find an antique Edwardian tea dress in a size 12 (ha), but even a pretty, non-beachy white cotton dress proved difficult to track down. I bought a vintage 70’s gown at the thrift store that would have ultimately needed extensive alterations, and my mom hated it. I finally settled on an unadorned ivory silk wrap dress that is understated enough for me but special enough to make my mom happy. I love that it is so comfortable, and that it has a 1930’s-meets-1970’s vibe without being at all costumey. All in all, as much I I would have been happy in something less formal, it’s not the worst thing to have an excuse to wear something really elegant and special for once!

  13. Ali Tortorete says...

    I wore the same J. Crew Gracie dress! I couldnt Believe when I saw Your photos! Same hair and everything! The look is almost identical! I love that dress!

  14. Steffi says...

    Aaah so many lovely stories! I tried on a lot of dresses (in germany) but nothing was right or too precious or too uncomfortable or too whatever. Fast forward to visiting friends in LA and going to BHLDN, I found the exact thing I wanted. A long floaty skirt (https://www.bhldn.com/bridal-party-bridesmaid-separates/chateau-skirt/productoptionids/fbcaeb8b-b90b-4e9a-9313-32da085940dd similar to this but without the slit) in the perfect rosy colour. Paired with a lacy creme coloured top (nude bra underneath, buttons and a deep v-neck in the back) and white chucks I felt so much like myself. For my pretty short hair I borrowed small chiffon flower clips from my sister in the same colour as the skirt. The flowers were a colourful mix from my Moms garden and it was just perfect, fun and comfortable. I even got to wear both pieces (separately) again :-)

  15. Alice says...

    I wore the BHLDN Aurora dress, and it was perfect. I wasn’t head-over-heels about it when I first tried it on (but I’ve never been one to get that excited about a piece of clothing, anyway), but my mom instantly started crying and offered to pay for it. I liked that it was vintage-y and comfortable, and it satisfied my no-strapless-no-train stipulations, so I went with it. It ended up being so low-maintenance — I could put it on by myself, pee easily, dance like a maniac, etc. — and it felt so much like me, it was perfect.
    https://www.bhldn.com/product/aurora-gown

  16. Ellen says...

    I was a florist when I got married and, (pre-internet, we just celebrated our 25th anniversary on Tuesday!) spent a WAAAAAY too much of time poring over books depicting all sorts of wedding flowers. The moment I saw the photo of a minimally made up woman in a simple rust linen dress with a tremendous crown of flowers on her head I was both blessed and cursed with knowing exactly what I wanted.

    I could NOT find anything close to the dress, but eventually did find the fabric. When my best friend Annie suggested a woman she knew (who had lots of experience making princess costumes for little girls!) to make the dress, I went with it. Not so surprisingly, the dress itself was not quite what I’d imagined, but close enough. The fabric was perfect and I had my HUGE floral crown with amaryllis, ivy and twisty branches. Altogether the effect was magic. Most importantly, it was mine, and everyone from both families supported and celebrated all of our choices. Red dress? Sure! At our house? Great idea! Your friend officiating? Go for it! (3 out of 4 of our parents were VERY Catholic). There was just so much love and generosity of spirit, and we are still riding the tide of those blessings.

    Few few years ago my daughter chose a crimson gown for her senior ball and requested that I make her a big ol’ floral crown. It was truly fantastic. She was radiant, and could not have been happier, and neither could I!

    When you are empowered to make your own choices and are celebrated and supported by people who love you the result is bound to be joy all around.

  17. Molly says...

    One of the smartest things I did for my wedding, now five years ago, was be practical about my dress. I ordered it from BCBG’s wedding shop. It was less than $300 and I just looked today and they have some cute stuff still! I ordered a size up, well ahead of my wedding, and had it altered before the big day. I had it shipped to my mom’s house, though, and we opened it together and I tried it on there first, so we could have that big wedding dress experience together. But it was perfect, practical and stress free! Here’s the link for any brides interested! https://www.bcbg.com/en/bridal-boutique-bridal/

  18. Emma Moran says...

    I’m getting married in May, we are having what I call a mini wedding, something between a wedding and elopement. We are going to have an SF city hall wedding, but inviting our families. I feel like it has given us the freedom to just have what matters to us, like a wedding dress and photographer, but then going out for dim sum after! I’m going to be wearing this: https://www.bhldn.com/product/sinclair-dress and when I was trying dresses on my sister said she knew that was the one because she took pictures of me in each one and it was the only one I was actually smiling in the photo!

    • Lindsay Beck says...

      That dress is AMAZING ! Congratulations :)

  19. nora says...

    I love looking at wedding dresses! And I really, really loved my dress. I wanted to wear long sleeves and couldn’t quite find what I was looking for. I wanted something like Hilary Swank’s Oscar dress. My mom’s friend who is a seamstress ended up making mine. I called it the mullet of wedding dresses – business in the front, party in the back. https://www.instagram.com/nogophoto/p/Bo6ZgL8Fdqd/?utm_source=ig_share_sheet&igshid=3lurs8dggnr0 It was a simple, long sleeved dress, but completely backless. It’s so funny to look back at wedding photos as I’m walking down the aisle and see people’s surprised faces!

    • Sasha L says...

      Wow!! You rock that dress.

  20. AC says...

    I had always wanted to get married in Vera Wang (original, right? :/). And I did! But it was a Vera Wang Bridesmades dress! It was simple and sleek in a champagne color. I didn’t feel the need to be married in white and I almost liked the idea of being married in “hussy white,” a term I heard used in a debutante ball episode of the old cartoon “The Critic.”

    Now my maid of honor and bridesmaids really lucked out. They got to pick whatever they wanted to wear as long as the color could be found in a bird of paradise flower (my hubs and my flower). There are so many colors from cools to warms that you couldn’t go wrong. I even ended up gifting my maid of honor her dress since we found it when I went to try on my wedding dress. Hurray for sample sales!

    I’ve always wanted to re-wear my wedding dress, but unfortunately I haven’t been invited to anything requiring evening wear since except weddings, and I do feel kind of odd about wearing my wedding dress to someone else’s. Oh well. Anyone have a gala for me to go too?

  21. Kelly says...

    I didn’t even pick mine, the stylist at the first store I went to included it as a funky choice. I put it on, and my best friend said, “that’s a good butt dress.” Obviously, I picked it!

    My husband’s tux was bought in a panic three hours before he had a black tie event, but it wound up being his wedding tux too! Two-tone blue with black satin lapels. I picked his whole outfit, and I think it was the first time the engagement really hit him, when he saw himself in the full suit.

  22. Hailey Melander says...

    I just found my wedding dress a couple weeks ago, by accident…I was trying on wedding dresses at a bridal consignment store, just for ideas, and walked past the bridesmaid dress section. Lo and behold, there it was: a strapless, forest green and black sequined number that fit like a dream. Coincidently, forest green was the main color we had picked. It felt meant to be, and my fiancé encouraged me to go for it! I’m so excited to wear it in October at our wedding.

  23. Hannie says...

    I fell in love with my dress, hadn’t tried on ANY wedding dresses, and ordered it immediately same day (my size, brand new, more than half off on eBay!). https://jennyyoo.com/blythe.html Aaaand then reality set in, that I’d be getting married Labor Day weekend (cue sweating). But, I figure since I saved so much on the dress, I have some wiggle room to buy an amazing jumpsuit for dancing :-) and maybe some red lipstick, too!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      Your dress is STUNNING, Julie!

  24. Sarah says...

    I, too, had a J. Crew wedding dress, Joanna! The loveliest! Just went to Google it and looks as though their wedding collection has been discontinued. 😕

  25. Rebecca says...

    I’m getting married this summer and I’ve designed my own dress. I went to some bridal shops for the experience and nothing was right. So I sketched what I wanted and found a local seamstress. I’m nervously awaiting my first fitting now, hoping it looks how I imagine!

  26. Kristie says...

    I sewed my own wedding dress from thrifted bits and pieces, and I loved that I made it, hated that it didn’t fit me too well! But my mum sewed her own dress for her wedding too (and always hated it because it was raw silk and quite plain), so I feel like I’ve carried the tradition along! A few years ago my mum was talking to a friend about hating her dress, and her friend said she had the most gorgeous dress but a terrible marriage, and that made my mum realise that while her dress might not have been amazing, her marriage was. When we were flying home, our marriage certificate got crumpled in a bag search and the airport person told me A bit of a mess to start with is good luck and means great happiness ahead!

  27. Jess says...

    I ended up with a mid length backless stretch dress that cost me under 100$, I made my own bouquet, brown blind stone boots, and it was so cold I ended up wearing my beautiful leather ski mittens until we exchanged rings! It definitely wasn’t what I imagined, but it was so comfortable and natural to me.

  28. Alex says...

    I love to see when people’s attire suits them completely; they look happy and comfortable!
    I was convinced I’d wear head to toe lace ala Monique Lehulier but I ended up wearing an unadorned strapless mermaid in silk (Chloe from Sassi Holford) that suited me and my style so much better!

  29. Jen says...

    Oh my goodness I can’t get enough of all of these photos. I love the first one because I want and will have mismatched bridesmaids and I want an out of that ordinary dress. Each has its own charm and I am far from traditional so the dress I have already purchased fits a bit of all of these styles.

  30. Tenley says...

    Wow! So many self and mom-sewn dresses in this comments section! I love it!
    I have no clue if/when marriage is in my future, but I still daydream! I feel so pretty in long skirts with sequins or sparkle, and I am sold on the idea of a twirly, sparkly cream-colored skirt paired with a soft cropped pullover—me, but extra special.
    Just need to find a guy who wants to wear coordinating wedding sweaters, haha!

  31. Katie says...

    I wore a bhldn dress with a colorful beaded floral top and blush pink tulle skirt. I may look back on it one day and laugh at the lack of timelessness, but I hope I never regret choosing a dress that made me feel beautiful and happy.

    • Lauren says...

      I think we may have had the same dress! <3

  32. Meredith says...

    I’m getting married in May in a jumpsuit I impulse-bought at Dillards for $89, after YEARS of being absolutely certain I wanted a v-neck, elbow sleeve, tea-length dress with a full skirt (and even buying one)! I smile every time I try it on.

    • Libbynan says...

      I love this! My daughter and I were visiting my son in Philadelphia 22 years ago and saw a three-piece pant suit at an outlet mall. It was cream ribbed silk ottoman and fit her perfectly. She wasn’t even engaged yet, but as soon as she saw herself in the mirror she said, “This is what I’m getting married in.” Two years later she did. To this day, when I look at her wedding pictures, I know nothing else would have suited her better.

  33. Emma A says...

    I had a simple, super inexpensive but beautiful bridal gown and my Husband had a traditional “barong” and dress pants, that we ended up wearing for the wedding dinner party/reception (in my parents’ home). This was a few days AFTER getting married in our town hall. Hubby and I didn’t plan to elope but the mayor officiated the marriage on the day we were in his office just trying to schedule the wedding date. So, there I was … a bride in a dress I couldn’t (still can’t) believe I ever owned, in a very unflattering-to-me shade (between ochre and umber)… and my groom, wearing jeans and a black shirt that had “The Animal” printed in neon cyan. LOL Add to that, we had to inform our quite traditional parents and conservative grandparents that we got married without any of them around and that the wedding day “lunch” had to be canceled! Married for 13 years this month though… And by June, we can say we’ve known each other for over 30 years. So, I guess— wear whatever you’re (currently) comfortable with? LOL When you marry a good person— THE perfect-for-you person— every wedding detail (even the otherwise cringe-worthy ones) will just add to your sweet memories.

  34. Moriah says...

    I wore a pink dress embroidered with flowers! I had no intention of wearing a pink dress but when I saw it I just knew it was the one. I got it on ASOS for $125 but I felt like a million bucks. The best part was a mom at the venue came up to me and asked if she could take a picture of my dress to show her daughter because she wanted her to know she could wear anything she wanted. I was teased by girls in junior high for how I dressed, so I hope my pink dress could inspire a girl to be bold with her fashion. I wish all brides would be themselves and wear whatever they want.
    https://www.instagram.com/p/BqASVenBiY3/

    • Heather says...

      Awesome dress!! You look amazing!

    • Amy says...

      These photos are amazing! The setting, the dress & most of all, your palpable joy! Love it!

    • Ali says...

      OMG your dress is GORGEOUS!

    • Ashley says...

      Wow you look SO BEAUTIFUL and so serenely happy! What an awesome inspiration for any bride: just be as authentically “you” as you’d like to be when picking out your wedding dress. It’s so worth it.

    • Molly says...

      OMG, your description of pink dress with embroidered flowers does not do it justice. ITS gorgeous in every way, the colour, the bling! Thanks for linking a photo!

    • pearl says...

      Gorgeous! I hope more women will think outside the box when selecting their wedding attire.

    • Summer says...

      Serious dress envy! I totally wanted to go with color, but felt like it was too late because I hadn’t put anything on the invitation (and didn’t want someone else to accidentally wear my dress, haha). White dress shopping was harder than I ever imagined it to be, and while I didn’t “love” my dress, I have zero regrets – it was fun and I got to marry the best guy ever.

    • gfy says...

      I think we need a beauty uniform from you, asap ; D Great sense of style to say the very least!

    • Luísa says...

      This is the most BEAUTIFUL wedding dress i’ve ever seen ♥♥♥ you look amazing!

  35. Katie says...

    I wore a lilac colored kurta (longish indian style top) over black yoga pants and flip flops and my husband was in surf shorts and a tshirt (we live in hawaii). I was 22 and at the time didn’t really care about the legality of getting married, we always said that we were going to have a proper wedding but 13 years later I think its fair to say we never did. I wish now I had of cared a bit more. We have one photo that was taken with a flash in the dark!

    So why the rush to get married? I am australian and my husband is american – my visa was running out and I was 6 months pregnant so we thought it best I stay in the country… hahaha… but it wasn’t a shot gun wedding, he had asked me to marry him a few years before and I said yes. Everything just came to a head at once and we rushed the wedding.

  36. Irene says...

    I wore a beautiful ball gown my mother picked out. I didn’t care much what I wore, but I did care how I felt. My groom looks at me with eyes of 100% adoration every single day and somehow doesn’t notice the difference between dolled up me, regular ol’ me, and hot mess me. Bless him. But seeing the way my mom looked at me in my wedding dress made me feel proud and beautiful. It made me feel like a million bucks. And really what more can you ask for on your wedding day?

    • Barbara says...

      This is beautiful.

  37. Emma says...

    Thank you Amanda! I was never really into the idea of a wedding but it really was the happiest day of my life.

  38. Ali says...

    I remember being so disheartened while out wedding dress shopping, at the time everything was spaghetti straps or strapless and so not me! And then I happened across THE DRESS on a wedding blog and hunted it down at a local boutique where I found it half price. It was meant to be! Though if I was to do it all over again I would wear something like this- https://www.instagram.com/p/BvbAfnfpEqM/

  39. Julie says...

    What a fun post. I eloped in secret with ten days notice, so I ordered a powder blue lace sheath dress from Nordstrom with the $100 I had to spare at the time, and wore it with metallic gold leather flats from Gap. It was that sixties-looking lace, not shiny or anything. It was six years ago and I still love that I wore “something blue”. If I’d had a big wedding, you bet your bottom I’d have been in a cathedral-length veil a’la the Sound of Music.

  40. Lindsey says...

    I wore a “wedding guest” dress from anthropologie called the Arya dress.
    https://www.bhldn.com/product/arya-dress

    I felt so beautiful and fairy-like, and loved that it was a pretty non traditional dress, while still feeling bridal.

    • Madison says...

      This dress is so beautiful Lindsey! I need to plan a vow renewal just so I can wear a dress like this.

    • Vero says...

      Wow, I love this and would 100% wear this for my wedding. So different and pretty.

    • Sherry says...

      Oh you must of looked so beautiful in that dress, it is gorgeous. That is a prefect wedding dress and so romantic looking….lucky lady you are indeed!

  41. Lynn says...

    When I was growing up, my mom’s wedding dress hung on the back door of my grandma’s closet in a protective bag. I always knew I wanted to wear that dress. I never even looked at another! When I got engaged, it was, at long last, time to try on the dress. And it was a perfect fit. It was a beautiful, timeless dress. My mom was married in 1959, and I wore the dress in 1985! If I were getting married today, I’d still wear it, no question!

  42. AN says...

    My wife and I had only three days to plan on our wedding after we decided to accelerate having it so Pres. Obama would still be president. We had it on the morning of the inauguration, just before the swearing-in. The night before, at 10pm, after deciding where it would be, who would come, who would officiate, what we’d do about rings, and writing our vows, we looked at each other and said “oh, shit, what are we gonna wear?!?”. I wore a white silk top and black waxed denim. She wore a white speckled sweater and black jeans. We were psyched and felt super-us!

  43. Emma says...

    I wore a long red mermaid cut ballgown by Zac Posen that I bought from Neiman Marcus on my lunch break (http://www.sugarysweetmachines.com/wedding-emma-nate/). It was sale on sale so I could actually afford it. My had mom wore red when she got married and ever since I was a little girl, I had wanted to do the same. It was perfect.

    • Amanda Gwaltn says...

      Emma – so beautiful! Love all the joy and happiness in your photos :)

  44. Madison says...

    My mother is an excellent seamstress so I knew I wanted her to make my wedding dress. Instead of traditional wedding dress shopping, I went to a fabric store to pick out fabric and a dress pattern with my mother and grandmother. Before the shopping trip I asked my fiancé to describe what he envisioned me in on our wedding day and, despite me not being able to picture his description, relayed this information to my mom and grandma. My grandmother almost immediately found a dress pattern that was exactly what my fiancé had described and she and my mom helped me find the most beautiful matching lace and silk for the dress. My beloved grandma passed away one month before my wedding day so it felt extra special wearing the dream dress she had helped create.

    • Katherine says...

      What a sweet story!!

      Also, I feel like we need to see more pictures from Roxanne’s wedding! Her bridesmaids’ dresses! All the colors! ❤️

  45. Anya says...

    I wore a dress from David’s Bridal.. i had told myself that i didn’t want a strapless dress, but when i tried on all the dresses with anything on my shoulders – they all made my skin itchy! So i went with a beautiful strapless dress that I ended up loving! I also bought a beautiful belt to make me feel even more special. I didn’t have a lot of time (we got married about 7 weeks after setting the date!) to pick out a dress but was very thankful to find one quickly and easily.
    I bought a pair of nude wedge heels – which i’m actually wearing today!

  46. Lauren E. says...

    Those floral shirts are EVERYTHING! So much joy in these photos.

    It was important to my mom to go wedding dress shopping (even though I was convinced I was going to buy something vintage online) and when I tried on the third dress – taken off the window mannequin – I was like, Oh. Yeah. This. I feel like a freaking rock star. Everyone cried EXCEPT me but I still knew it was the one.

    It was that simple.

  47. Sasha L says...

    Trigger warning for lost babies.

    Sort of related to wedding gowns……

    My friend is a seamstress and makes absolutely beautiful gowns and little suits, out of donated wedding gowns, for babies who are lost, for photographs and their journey. It’s heartbreaking and beautiful all at once and such a kind gesture to bereaved families. I think there are organisations all over the US and Canada where you can donate and receive if you are in need.
    https://www.nicuhelpinghands.org/programs/angel-gown-program/

    • Sarah K says...

      Thanks so much for mentioning this. I had to order a gown for my lost baby and it’s an unspeakably awful thing to have to do but I am so thankful there are such things available. I know from experience that the mamas who receive those will never forget being able to clothe their precious baby in something beautiful.

    • Sasha L says...

      Oh Sarah, I knew there would be a mama out there reading this. I’m so sorry for your loss. Bless the kind person who donated their dress and the kind person who sewed it so that your precious baby could have something beautiful for it’s journey. So much love to you Sarah.

  48. Kayla Platt says...

    Is there a way to add pictures for these type of questions next time! I want to see all these different dress people are talking about!

    • Julie says...

      Seconded!!

    • Madison says...

      I was going to say the same thing! I would love to see pictures of what everyone wore.

    • Nina says...

      Yes I’m loving the comments where people posted links to their pictures =)

  49. Catherine says...

    I went shopping at only one store (BHLDN) and tried on 6 or 8 dresses that fit my budget. I ended up in the Heather dress (on sale for half the original price!) and later decided to add on a beaded belt from them as well. It was a fairly simple dress but I felt like me in it.

    The only thing that I didn’t take into consideration that I wish I had at the time was the dang undergarment situation… low back dress + thin-ish material = bra/undies nightmare! Just a word of caution for would-be wedding dress shoppers out there. If I had a do-over, I might’ve saved myself the trouble and picked out a dress that I could wear with my ol’ standbys underneath.

  50. Christine says...

    My first wedding was in 1980 – I was a traditional, laid back, gauze shirt wearing hippy kind of girl (albeit a decade or so behind). I know my mom was hoping to go shopping with me – but on a whim, I stopped at the G Fox bridal department. Inside I am thinking ‘ick no – lace and poofy and weird’. I almost gave up and on the way out I found, tucked in a clearance rack, a Mexican wedding dress, all gauze, and lace, in MY size! Best part? It was only $90. And the only one! I immediately bought it. To say Mom was disappointed was an understatement. When she saw me in it with baby’s breath and braids in my long hair – she admitted it was perfect. No heels – just flat ballet slippers. It was perfect. Fast forward 20 years, my second wedding (first one ended 4 months and 10 days after we married when he was killed in an accident at work) I did much of the same thing. Walked into – yup G. Fox – and found on a clearance rack an ankle length off white dress. Not a wedding dress at all – but a lace drop waist top with a broomstick gauzy bottom. It was perfect and so close to the original. I had the jeweler who handmade my first wedding rings set the original diamond (less than a 1/4 carat – we were young and broke) from the first into a dainty necklace with an emerald my current husband gave me. It was so sweet and still brings tears to my eyes.

    • Vero says...

      I would love to see your dresses. They sound so lovely <3

  51. Kayla Platt says...

    Oh wedding dresses! When my husband and I were dating we watched project runway season 1 and I fell in love with the wedding dress Kara Saun creates. Fast forward a couple years to our wedding, a friend of the family was going to make my dress because I’m petite and all the bridal store dresses were so so heavy and over the top. While shopping for bridesmaids dresses with my maid of honor, we stumbled across a wedding boutique in Sacramento, Miosa. I fell in love with a dress very similar to the Kara Saun design, it was handmade for my body (this short waist is difficult to fit!) with gorgeous Italian silk and since it was way out of budget, my stepdad (a carpenter) worked out a deal with the dressmaker to create some display cases for them and do a barter. Loved my dress and pulled it back out to swim in for family photos for our 10 year anniversary. Hoping to pull it out again for 20 years!
    https://thedreamerandtherealist.com/2016/07/

  52. Mary says...

    I wore an Alice and Olivia dress I bought off of Shopbob. The day after it arrived I saw it on COJ weekend links! I wore it with cobalt block heels and Nars heatwave. One year later I wore the same dress with a jean jacket and sandals to brunch on our anniversary trip :)

  53. Kim says...

    I cut my finger getting my dress on, and didn’t have time to soak/dry…so I wore a tuxedo shirt and snazzy dress pants. Not what I’d intended, but not too bad for our courthouse wedding.

    • Kim says...

      If it wasn’t clear (ha ha) I got blood all over the dress!

  54. Lindsay says...

    I got married in a dress my mom found at a boutique. I wasn’t even engaged (or with her in the shop!) when she found it. She was shopping for prom dresses with my sister and sent me a picture. I thought it was gorgeous and dramatic.

    Two months later my husband proposed, and I went to try that dress on. It was exactly my size and only had to be hemmed shorter! I bought it then and there and didn’t try on a single dress more.

    I love that dress so much.

    • janee says...

      There might be something to pre-shopping for The Dress. I am not the frou frou or wedding obsessed type AT ALL but one day I realized that I had never even tried on a wedding dress just for fun and decided to do that asap. Soon I found myself in a really nice local designer’s boutique in a tiny beach resort town and tried on a white beach dress that fit so well I was blown away – having always shopped off mass-produced sales rack’s I was unprepared for how great expensive clothes feel. The dress really looked and felt made for me, and even with a $1200 price tag I almost bought it anyway – shoot, I’d wear it every day! About a month later the man I had a sort of long term relationship with proposed we marry! I said no, (there’s a back story) but I felt sure trying on that perfect dress had something magical to do with it, lol

    • janee says...

      ‘racks’

  55. I wore a J Crew bridesmaid dress in champagne for our SF City Hall sort-of-elopement (I recognize Carolyn’s venue!!) I chose it because it was simple and had pockets. If I did it over again, I probably wouldn’t choose something white-ish. I never wear white, and don’t really like the way it looks on me. Darker colors are much more “me”, and I probably would have felt more beautiful in something plum, blue (like Lisa’s!), or emerald green.

  56. Heather says...

    I love how each of look the brides and grooms picked out perfectly showcase their personality and the happiness and excitement of their special day! My partner and I have been talking about how we want to build the rest of our lives together, including our dream wedding. Although it’s a few years away I would love to find my dress at a consignment store. Easier on the wallet (so we can splash out on good food and a rockin’ band/ DJ!) and the planet.

    Thumbs up to the COJ Team for hitting it out of the park again with another fun and interesting article! Hugs and love!

  57. Ro says...

    My wife and I got married at the courthouse in matching $10 red dresses from Old Navy!

  58. Katy says...

    We were living in San Francisco when we married, and (like everything else in our lives, including our jobs, apartment, and furniture) my dress was a find on Craigslist. It was a strapless silk Vera Wang number with sweetheart neckline and a huge tulle skirt. The juxtaposition of the dress and the backdrop of our wedding photos (Yosemite Valley) is fabulous. Two hours later, we were out of those clothes and into hiking gear. Perfect.

    • gfy says...

      wow, what a craigslist score!

  59. Sasha L says...

    I got married in 1995, right at the end of the very poufy, big sleeve, loads of seed pearls, sequins, satin, long train, over the damn top trend that came in with Princess Diana’s wedding. I was a little girl back in the early 80s watching a real live princess get married in the best princess dress ever and in my Tom boy, overall wearing boyish figured heart, that was my ideal.

    So I said no to every tailored, simple, silk shantung, narrow column, strapless, decidedly un-princesslike dress my mom insisted I try on (I called them mummy dresses and they were incredibly ugly on me). The last dress of the day, a leftover from last season, unwanted because it was already looking dated, a satin sweetheart neckline, big pouf sleeves, sequins lace and pearls, long train, sweetheart waist and super full skirt bargain ringer for THE princess dress, half price sale for $400. I didn’t even need to try it on, but I did anyway, and I came out twirling and giggling. My mom laughed out loud and actually said “you can’t wear that!?!”
    The fuck I can’t. My fiance actually sobbed when I walked down the aisle wearing it (ok, might not have been the dress), and I felt the most beautiful I’ve ever felt in my whole life. Zero regrets.

    My advice for brides YOU DO YOU. Wear whatever the fuck makes you happy.

    • Sara M says...

      Anything that makes you twirl and giggle is obviously perfect.
      Sasha L, this story is the best.

    • Kiely says...

      Ah, this really made me smile.

  60. Daniela says...

    I’m getting married next year and I found a beautiful dress from Lulu’s for $84! I haven’t made the purchase yet because we are just getting married at city hall and I’m torn on whether I may want a short dress. Also it’s a year away – what if I change my mind? Or even (unintentionally) get pregnant!?So I’m probably waiting ;)

  61. Linsey says...

    I eloped at SF City Hall and wore a short Pronovias dress. I wanted something that made me feel like a bride, but also was easy for an elopement. Bonus points: I was able to wear it for our post-elopement party (reception?) two months later with family & friends on the hottest day in June.

  62. Carrie says...

    I wish J.Crew still had a bridal collection! Where did they go? Loved their simple lines! Also, I really like their bridesmaids stuff! Are you reading this J.Crew?!

  63. Claire says...

    I got married last week & wore the white Apolline dress from Sezane. :)

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      congratulations, claire!! that sounds beautiful.

  64. Sarah-Jane says...

    My husband and I eloped in New Zealand (from the UK) in 2017. I knew I didn’t want a traditional wedding dress. I don’t suit white and I’m plus-sized so not the most flattering colour! I also needed a dress that I could pack in my hand luggage and wouldn’t crease (I hate ironing!) I saw the dress whilst shopping with my husband in a department store in Cardiff. I disappeared to quickly try it on, without telling him and it felt and looked amazing, but didn’t buy it. We aren’t traditional at all, but he was adamant he didn’t want to see the dress before the wedding!

    Two weeks later, my mum and I went on a shopping trip to Manchester and we went to every shop imaginable, but nothing looked or felt as good. I found the same dress in a department store there and tried it on again. It was meant to be! :-) I bought it straight away. It was a full length navy dress with just the right amount ‘swish’ to the skirt. It was the perfect dress for our low-key wedding and my husband had a colour coordinated tie.

  65. Rue says...

    When I interviewed for my current job, I planned out my outfits* meticulously. (*Plural on outfits, shoutout to my fellow academics who’ve gone through the multiday interview.) My outfit planning wasn’t because the clothes were the most important part. Clearly my work, interpersonal skills, and potential for development were the most important parts. But knowing exactly what I’d wear and ensuring I’d feel comfortable and confident in those clothes helped me feel confident about the interview itself because my outfits were something I could control in a sea of unknowns.

    I’m not married, but it might be on the horizon for me in a year or two. I imagine feeling similarly about wedding clothes.

  66. Elizabeth says...

    This post made me think of one of favorite lines from Sex & the City then Miranda was choosing her dress, “I said no white, no ivory, no nothing that says ‘virgin’. I have a child. The jig is up.”

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      hahahaha

  67. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to wear white, and tried on a few elegant gowns, but nothing felt right. Then a friend asked me to be a bridesmaid for her and she wanted us all to wear short white dresses (and her wedding was a month after mine). That made the decision for me. I got the Frida dress from BHLDN which is a corset top, straight skirt, and allover lace flowers in white. I also wore a crown with glass flowers (also from BHLDN). When I put the dress on I instantly felt like myself, whereas most of the other dresses I felt like I was playing dress up. I bought the floor model so it wasn’t a huge splurge, so there was a little room in my budget for the crown. That was the piece that really made the outfit feel special. (And then I got to wear my dress again a month later! I’m still trying to find another time to bring it out again….)

    • Lisa says...

      I just googled this dress and it’s amazing. Love it.

    • janee says...

      ditto – gorgeous

  68. Sarah says...

    I ordered a floral tea-length dress off Etsy. It was made to my specific measurements (and tweaked by my local tailor) and made me feel like a watercolor painting. It was perfect for my intimate April courthouse/boozy brunch wedding. I also wore it for a number of years teaching and working, so yay? It was very ‘me,’ budget friendly, and fit our day to a tee.

  69. Christy says...

    I ordered, tried on, and returned a bunch of J Crew dresses, got frustrated, and decided to make my own. The fabric and sewing pattern cost $37 total :D It was simple and the seams were sort of crooked, but I was SO proud of it. I also made my own veil, and a hankie to cry into (which I needed).

    • Cynthia Miller says...

      I wore J. Crew, but had a friend tailor it to fit me better. I have never worn it again- but I’d like to!

  70. Amanda says...

    We knew we wanted a laid-back, campground wedding, and I always saw myself wearing a simple lace A-line on my wedding day with little to no train. Turns out, the first bridal store I visited had a beautiful ballgown silhouette with all the bells and whistles (lace bodice, tulle overskirt, a corset lace-up back, and a beautiful dusty rose satin underneath) that I tried on and instantly felt like a million bucks in. The price was decent, but it was not at all what I’d envisioned for myself!

    A few months went by, and I still couldn’t stop thinking about that dress. I had tried on more at various stores, and nothing felt right. So I took the plunge and went back. I got lucky – the dresses are made to order in Australia and can take four months to arrive – I ordered mine two days before the cutoff. Phew! I’ll try and attach a pic if anyone would like to see – I wish I had an excuse to wear it all the time! :)

    https://cliftonmarie.smugmug.com/Amanda-Eric-Wedding-Day-180628/Color-Corrected-Jpegs-/i-JvJcfqQ/A

    • Bonnie says...

      Oh, Amanda – what a stunning dress you chose (and what a gorgeous photo – love the composition with the lupine -??- in foreground). Thanks for sharing!

    • Sasha L says...

      Your dress is beautiful!! Adorable dogs too 😍

  71. Lindsay Somers says...

    I wore a $20 spaghetti strap 70s inspired cream jumpsuit fro
    H + M. Paired with borrowed gold sparkly heels. ✨

    • liz says...

      love this!!

  72. Emily says...

    I designed and sewed my wedding dress, with major help from my mom, who is an excellent seamstress. Back story here- My mom always made my church & prom dresses when I was growing up (she was a single mom of 4 kids on a teacher’s salary, so she could sew a dress for less money than purchasing it). Growing up, I did not appreciate the time, effort, skill, and sentimentality of having her make my clothes. I always longed for a dress with a TAG because, I suppose, I felt lower-class or envious of my friends with store bought clothes. My mom always pushed back on us when we complained, and said “I’m sure your friends would LOVE to have custom made clothes!” but my sisters and I didn’t believe her. Looking back, I now cherish the Easter Sunday pictures with all of us in matching hand made dresses, and the fit was perfect. Oh, and my mom was right: once I was in high school (Prom, for example), my friends were always so impressed that my mom could create whatever look I wanted. She would even spend months (!) adding beads and embellishments by hand to complete the look.

    I totally ate my words as a child, for disliking handmade clothes, when I graduated from college with a fashion design degree. I’m sure my mom got a good laugh out of the irony. So when it was time to find a wedding dress, and I couldn’t find that ‘perfect’ dress, I put my design training to good use. I draped the dress first to create the pattern, and then my mom used my pattern to sew most of it (I was in graduate school with no spare time so she did the bulk of the sewing). True to her quality of work, she spent countless hours adding special details to the dress, and she would patiently take-in the dress by 1/8 of an inch or less, until the fit was perfect. It was truly my dream gown!

    • Christine says...

      That’s such a loving thing to do, and have. Very special on a very special day!

  73. Anne says...

    I had two wedding events: an intimate ceremony with our families and later that summer we threw a bigger party with our extended family and friends. I chose separates, and bought a simple ivory skirt with pockets (hooray!) and two different tops. The first top and skirt came from bhldn–I was a bit nervous shopping online, but it worked out great! And the price points fit my budget. For our reception, I swapped out the lace fitted top I wore for the ceremony for a sparkly rosy cropped top from ASOS. I loved both looks and it was fun and easy to change it up.

  74. Sarah says...

    My traditional dress wasn’t cheap, but I have NO regrets. That dress was the one wedding purchase that made me FEEL things that day. Flowers, food, photographer, all fine. But that dress made me feel like a floating mystical cloud goddess, which, I have to say… WAS REALLY FUN. I want to wear more wedding dresses, but sadly my marriage is in excellent shape, so it seems unlikely.

    • Sasha L says...

      😂
      You could always renew your vows, and get to wear another pretty dress?

    • Mrs. M says...

      Same! Totally same. Traditional lace and sparkles cloud goddess here. Make way, everyone, here comes the dress! Mom and I (and later, husband) referred to the dress as “her,” like, “Make sure you don’t leave her in the car for too long in the heat.”

      And also, yes, marriage in fine shape, so not likely to wear another dress any time soon. Husband and I still love her though, so he asks me to put her back on every 6 months or so. Makes dinner fun and the evening more interesting ;)

  75. I wanted to wear my mother’s wedding dress, but she was about 90 pounds when she got married, and I am not nor ever have been 90 pounds (except those few seconds in elementary school!), so I had to let go of the hope. That said, I chose a dress which had the same ‘feeling’. After all, wedding dresses kind of do that no matter what you choose…they give a feeling on a very full feeling of a day.

  76. Suzie says...

    I always expected my mom to make my wedding dress (professional seamstress that she is) but by the time I got engaged, I had learned how to sew for myself and moved across the country from my parents. I went wedding dress shopping with some friends to get an idea of fabrics/design elements/shapes that I liked and was immediately drawn to a dress at the first shop we went to. Un/fortunately, it would have needed major alterations to fit me, suit my style (e.g., I wanted sleeves), and probably wouldn’t be ready by my wedding date, so I had my sister and parents find a lace and lining in NYC that was similar and made my own over the next couple of months. Although I’m so happy I made my own dress, it was also so much fun to experience the “this is the one” feeling in a shop.

  77. Ang says...

    A silvery, knee length, lace and sequins number from modcloth. As a plus sized lady, it was amazing when they started their wedding line with cool dresses. It’s hard to be nontraditional when you also have a nontraditional body type, so the recent efforts to diversify wedding clothes are SO important.

  78. Cailin E Ross says...

    I’d like to have an important conversation about Roxanne’s friend’s red striped jumpsuit. I do.

    • Anya says...

      Yes!! it looks so good on her! :)

    • annie says...

      seconded!

  79. Naomi says...

    My goal: be totally me. a little rock’n’roll. a little classic. I wore a dress (BCBG), which I purchased on eBay and cost less than my shoes (Prada). It was white (classic), and short (before short was cool – to show off the shoes) with ostrich feathers (rock’n’roll) at the hem that bounced as I walked and danced. My husband went classic James Bond – down to the white suspenders and hand-tie bow tie. We looked hot! And I still love love love our pictures.

  80. Cynthia says...

    I just wanted something that I felt pretty in but also in my “super fancy” style. I don’t even remember the brand but it was white, fitted and flared out by my knees. A friend made a hot pink belt with a bow in the back (and one for my flower girl too). I wore pink sneakers with green and pink striped socks. My nubby nails were painted in opi Strawberry Fields (i do remember that). My necklace was this ridiculous rhinestone ordeal that I got for $50 at a novelty jewelry shop on South Street, Philly.

  81. MC says...

    My mom made my dress!

    I was scared about going through a traditional bridal retailer (as a street size 12, I’ve had some bad experiences with mean ladies at bridal stores during my bridesmaid days.)

    We went to Nordstrom and a bridal boutique to try on styles, she did some sketching, we took a day trip to NYC to get the fabric… and with a lot of love and patience, she made my satin dream gown, complete with bow in the back. I topped it with a beaded overlay from the (nice!) bridal boutique and felt like a million bucks all night. Now I want to try it on again.

  82. Rachel says...

    I am getting married next Friday and I am so lucky to have my mom making my dress. She picked the perfect pattern with a slight drop waist to an A-line skirt. We picked the lace and tried different white fabrics until we found the perfect combination. It has been an amazing journey to share with her and watch her make something so special. I feel so honored to wear it.

  83. Ashley Pannell says...

    This is the dress that I wore (https://www.oncewed.com/used-wedding-dresses/embrujo-5/) and I loved it. The shape is fairly simple but there is beautiful crystal detailing and feathers on the shoulder straps that make it feel so special. Something about it just felt so unique and true to myself.

    • Amanda says...

      What a breathtaking dress, Ashley! Those shoulder details and that scooped back are just so beautiful <3

    • Julie says...

      Ashley, this is truly stunning old hollywood-esque glamour. Gorgeous.

  84. I wore a lace wedding gown that I purchased at a bridal salon. I know I wanted something lace with straps and that is exactly what I ended up with! I got engaged in December and married in May so our short engagement limited my options a little bit, but my favorite gowns of the ones I tried on was ready well in advance of our wedding. I wish I could wear the dress again because I felt SO pretty that day! I included a link to our photographer’s recap of our day.

    https://jstoiaportraitdesign.com/blog/minneapolis-event-center-lisa-phil/

    • Sasha L says...

      Your dress is beautiful Lisa! Lovely day, thanks for sharing pics.

      These comments are so fun.

  85. Veronica says...

    I wore my grandmother’s wedding dress! She made the dress in 1956, and my aunt also wore it for her wedding in 1981. My grandmother couldn’t be at my wedding, so it felt so wonderful to have a piece of her with me. I managed to wear it with no major alterations, my mom just made a few repairs that were needed after two weddings full of enthusiastic dancing. I find it funny that I would never have picked out anything like the dress at a salon, or if my mom had made my dress, which we discussed. My grandmother’s dress was polyester satin with lace and a scalloped peplum; my usual style is plain and tailored. However, I still am so joyful every time I look at our wedding photos.

    I also asked my florist to make me a floral crown reminiscent of the one Duckface wears in Four Weddings and a Funeral. It was very early 90s and over the top, but I loved it.

    • Sasha L says...

      Pretty!!!!

    • Nina says...

      NICE

  86. I tried on wedding dresses with my sister and stepmom and found one that I absolutely loved, but I balked at the price. We had eloped a year earlier and were finally holding a backyard ceremony and reception for family and friends, and I couldn’t justify the cost. My husband told me to go for it, but I got creative and ordered a few dresses online instead. I ended up finding one that I adored (linked below but it’s not my dress for sale) from Ann Taylor. They were discontinuing their bridal line (so sad!) and it was on sale and with a couponI got the dress plus a bolero-type thing for less than $300. I love fancy things but can also be a bit of a cheapy, so this was the perfect compromise. Being on a budget, even if it’s self-imposed, doesn’t have to mean you can’t get the dress of your dreams! Look at non-bridal dresses (Nordstrom online > women > dresses > formal > choose white and off-white to sort) online and order several to try on at home. I still get teary-eyed thinking of our incredibly imperfect but absolutely lovely day!

    https://www.tradesy.com/i/ann-taylor-ivory-cotton-lace-overlay-petite-v-neck-style-344701-vintage-wedding-dress-size-4-s/22172491/

  87. Maureen says...

    I had two weddings, this two wedding outfits. I absolutely loved both my Indian lengha which was hot baby pink and navy, as well as my white lace wedding dress. But when I look at the pictures now, I prefer my Indian outfit. I looked like princess and I kinda loved that! Feels weird to say that as neither terms Indian and princess were something I had been comfortable with in the past.

  88. Hannah says...

    Oh man, I so wish Carolyn’s skirt was available to purchase!! I’ve been hunting for the perfect skirt for a non-traditional wedding and hers is sooo good!

  89. Kerry says...

    I knew the second I tried my dress on — strapless ice-blue satin with a corset-style lace-up back. I would wear it again, in an instant, if I had the opportunity and 25 less lbs.

  90. Lynn says...

    I always imagined I’d wear a short dress, despite whatever type of wedding I had. In the end we decided to elope last year so the short dress made sense! Much like others, I got the first dress I tried on (though that didnt stop me from trying on others for the fun of it). I swung by a second hand wedding dress shop in Paris while I was there for work. It’s perfect and I love it and would easily wear it again for a summer garden party.

    My husband’s South African, I’m Vietnamese American and we live in London…it’s a dress that will get many wears on our wedding tour of the world.

  91. Heather says...

    I loved (and still love) my dress. But now its just sitting in my closet…

    However my husband had the best idea. Instead of renting a tux, he had a beautiful suit tailor made for him. Its classic and beautiful and he has worn it to every single event since (and makes me reminisce whenever he does). It was a great idea and he even got to pick fun fabric for the lining :)

  92. Kelly says...

    YES! All of these looks are beautiful! My fiancé and I are planning our wedding for next June, so for me this post was very timely/inspiring. I’m thinking ivory, wide-leg silk pants and an ivory silk top (think less menswear, more flowy/drape-y.)

    • Michaela S Carroll says...

      Oh gosh, if you can find that I would LOVE to know where! I considered something like that for my upcoming wedding too!

  93. Maire says...

    I had zero desire to wear a traditional white wedding dress, and I knew that I would be dancing my face off for the majority of our wedding reception so I wanted something danceable. For the ceremony, I purchased a knee length, strapless cream and olive green and gold striped dress from Anthropologie, and for the reception I wore blush and gold maxi dress that I’d ordered from ModCloth. I think both dresses together cost me less than $200, and- bonus!- I can wear them again for other events!

  94. Irina says...

    My husband and I got married in Vegas and it was just the two of us, on a budget approximately equal to zero. It was a hot day so I wore a sundress and he wore a short-sleeved shirt and slacks. I continued to wear the sundress after we got married as just a regular dress, although it always felt a little bit special to put it on again. Unfortunately the skirt is now threadbare to the point of being almost see-through in the butt area so I can no longer wear the dress but I still keep it in my closet. Maybe some day I’ll replace the skirt, or cut off the top and make into a tank top, so I can wear at least some part of the dress again.

  95. Lisa says...

    I’m getting married this September – when I was wedding dress shopping there were a lot of dresses I loved, and I remember telling my mom and sister that I don’t think I’ll have that “when you know you know” moment with my dress. But then the strangest thing happened…

    I got to BHLDN, and the stylist was pulling all of the dresses I sent her in advance. She got to one and said “you had this on your list but it’s totally different than the other styles you like and what you showed me you’ve tried on, do you want to try it?” On the hanger, it looked like the saddest dress ever (haha seriously so sad) – I DO NOT remember putting this dress on any of my lists I sent her which is why this is so weird. But I figured I’d try it on anyways.

    Well, the moment I put it on I knew this was the dress for me. It was everything I wanted and absolutely perfect for my Brooklyn wedding (simple, chic, classic with a tiny bit of an edge), and feels SO ME. It got discontinued a few weeks later, and I really feel like it was meant to be. I can’t wait to wear it in a few months at my wedding :)

  96. i wore a dress from BHLD that was on clearance. it arrived on Tuesday, i took it to the cleaner’s on Wednesday and i wore it on Saturday. and every year around our anniversary i put it on and walk around the abode like a weirdo. i also wore it while watching Megan marry Prince Harry. it cracks me up.

  97. Beth says...

    OMG! Roxanne’s bridal party photo is the BEST!

  98. Hannah says...

    I got married this past fall and wore a capital W capital D Wedding Dress. It was a strapless, sweetheart neckline, full-skirted a-line dress with a boatneck lace top over it. Plus, pockets! It was a pretty big contrast to our warehouse/art gallery venue, but I thought it was perfect. When I first tried it on I felt beautiful and special, but what surprised me the most was that when I wore it the day of, I felt powerful. It was probably just that I was the bride and any dress would have had the same effect, but I’ve been trying to recreate that feeling ever since.

    Ironically, the finished product looked almost identical to my mom’s dress, just less 80s. I loved having that connection.

  99. celeste says...

    I love that people are turning to laid-back weddings and I felt like crying at that last one – imagine four parents there for your special day! I’ll cherish my Catholic big family white wedding dress, but some female friends of mine got married this week, each in a white linen pantsuit, at the courthouse with sunflowers, and that was just perfect.

  100. Nadine Hughey says...

    These photos are so fun, but I think I like Carolyn’s ensemble best – it’s American sportswear chic! I’m…thrifty, so went with an orange floral Ralph Lauren from the clearance rack to elope in New Orleans at Audubon Park. It was a wee snug & my undergarment of tubal torture rode up, as well as down.

  101. Ella says...

    I could not love that floral halo more.

    I hated my wedding dress actually and the sky didn’t fall. I went to a million bridal stores and couldn’t find anything that felt right. A week before the wedding I realized I really just wanted an ivory silk maxi skirt and an ivory cardigan, but we were traveling etc and I couldn’t make it happen in time. I wore a kind of basic, traditional dress that was a distant cousins (my mom had taken it in a panic of despair when I said no to my ten thousandth dress). It wasn’t my style, I didn’t love it, I have no idea where it is now and don’t care to. It turns out a wedding isnt really about clothes. Like most really good things in life, it doesn’t seem to matter much what you’re wearing. I so get it and I’m not trying to bash anyone who put a lot of work into their wedding attire. But if you can’t or don’t want to or the cards just don’t play out in your favor please please know that it doesn’t matter at all. You’ll still be married and you will still be blissfully happy and I don’t think a single thing about my marriage would be more fantastic than it currently is if I had only managed to wear that ivory cardigan.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      these are wise words to remember, ella. thank you for sharing. xoxo

      “I don’t think a single thing about my marriage would be more fantastic than it currently is if I had only managed to wear that ivory cardigan.”

    • Twyla says...

      Ella – you are not alone. I got married pre-internet and was at the mercy of whatever local bridal boutiques existed in my small city in the late 90’s (beads & poufs!!). My mom is a seamstress and said she would make my dress, so we went together to try on dresses so I could get an idea of what I wanted, then she would make it. She ended up making a dress that SHE wanted. As she was making it, we went back and forth multiple times and she made many adjustments, but ultimately, my dress was a disappointing mish-mash of styles. But we were broke kids and it was a free dress. I can’t berate myself for not knowing what I wanted back then, or for not knowing how to stand up to my mom, but I can be proud that I made the best choice in marrying my husband. He’s the greatest person I know, and we are still quite crazy about each other after 21 years. The dress didn’t matter in the end.

    • Elizabeth says...

      Such wise advise! I’m in the trows of planning my wedding for later this summer, and keep reminding myself of that very thing. When the florals, or decorations, or whatever seem to be overwhelming, I remind myself “no one is going to remember what the flowers or table numbers look like, my incredible fiance and I will be married regardless of all those details and THAT’S all that matters!!!”

    • Ella says...

      Twyla you are speaking my language. Our invitations should have read ‘We invite you to this wedding of two broke kids trying to make this happen with limited technological reach and an aggressive mom with specific taste.’

      Ten years and three kids in, I wish we had gotten married in an office somewhere and could throw ourselves a wedding now. I am much more deserving and in much greater need of a strong drink and a room full of people who want to tell me how pretty I look.

  102. Kate says...

    Ann Taylor had a wedding line for a hot second and I found my utterly perfect, Grecian-goddess-inspired, less than $500 dress from there and it fit right out of the box! I think it’s tragic that they don’t have that line anymore, because their dresses were all so simple but beautiful and well-made and cheap!

  103. Liz says...

    I will be wearing a strapless dress with a sweetheart neckline, a long train and lace overlay. So traditional – and I’m not a traditional person! As soon as I tried it on I felt so beautiful, like a more elegant version of myself. I can’t wait to marry my fiancé in it!

  104. Katie says...

    I wanted a simple wedding dress reminiscent of Carolyn Bessette Kennedy’s. I worked with a stylist at Nordstrom. Nothing. Next up, was a bridal boutique. Not even close. Finally, I read about this place that made custom gowns. At my appointment, we discussed my vision. She pulled a few samples, one of which she uses mostly as a slip underneath more intricate gowns. When I put it on, I was so happy. Finally, the dress I envisioned, in my price range, made specifically for me!

    My mom, sisters and even the seamstress tried to convince me to add a train. I stood firm. No train for me. It was perfect!

    • Ruci says...

      Carolyn Bessette Kennedy’s dress is my ultimate dream! I’m happy you got the dress of your dreams :)

  105. Taylor says...

    I literally JUST bought my wedding dress and I’m so happy to have it be over. My mom and best friend flew out two weeks ago and we went to four places in one day (do not recommend) and we found….nothing. Well, I tried on a dress I liked only to find out it was $9800!!! WHAT

    Impulsively made an appointment at Floravere inside the Line Hotel here in DC, brought my fiance thinking I probably wouldn’t find the dress and he’d just give me words of affirmation. Found it on the second dress I tried on. Turns out he was my lucky charm! And now I know he loves what I’ll be wearing :)

    I’m a size 10 and every. single. wedding dress sample I tried on was too small for me to get a reasonable sense of what it would look like on me when it fits. I’m straight sized, I truly don’t know what hell bigger girls are going though to find a wedding dress. The Floravere dress fit and weighed like less than a pound and made me want to dance. (It’s the M. Evans dress if anyone is curious!) Now I have no idea what to do for shoes or with my hair but I feel like the dress was the hardest thing and I’m SO RELIEVED the search is over.

    • Lisa says...

      I went to Floravere here in NYC and really enjoyed my experience. I didn’t end up going with any because none were right for my venue but OMG CAN SOMEONE PLEASE GET MARRIED IN THE G .O’KEEFE AND REPORT BACK??? I loved loved loved it – it had a light blue underlay and was so fun and gorgeous – but way too fancy for my wedding.

      Anyways, all this to say, I’m glad to see others are liking Floravere as well! The M. Evans is beautiful.

    • Meg says...

      Ooooh, I had the same exact issue. I’m a 10/12 and sausaged myself into so many horrible samples. Then I went to Floravere (also in DC) and everything fit like a dream. I got the N. Portman and can’t wait to wear it for my wedding in September!

  106. Stacey says...

    I knew I wanted to wear something vintage for my wedding, and after a few shopping trips with no success, my grandma called and asked me to come over. She pulled out her mother’s wedding dress from 1913! It was in perfect condition, and she offered to tailor it to fit me. I wore it with her mom’s wedding ring on a chain around my neck. The fact that I got to wear something that was part of my family’s history was so special.

    • Summer says...

      a 1913 wedding dress!?!?? We need pictures! That is amazing and so, so special!!!

  107. Laura says...

    This is timely for me as I’m getting married in May. I’m a plus size girl on a budget, and it’s been really hard to find pretty wedding gowns in my size for under $300. I ended up looking into bridesmaids dresses and going for a blush colored gown with sequins that will allow me to wear a regular bra!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      blush + sequins sound BEAUTIFUL!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      that sounds so lovely, danielle!

  108. Sandhya says...

    Fabulous pictures. My dress was from J Crew (and several years later I discovered that a husband and wife who had become friends, whose son is three weeks older than ours, were married the same day as we were — and the wife had exactly the same dress) and it’s very simple — ivory silk column. I actually wore it to a party a few years ago. I love(d) it, but I had initially envisioned wearing a red, raw-silk gown, which I simply couldn’t find, even when I looked at bridesmaids’ dresses. This was almost eleven years ago, though, and the selection out there is much better now.

    • Amy says...

      I wonder if we wore the same dress – I also wore a simple ivory silk dress from J.Crew!

    • Meg says...

      I wonder the same thing, Amy. Mine was also J.Crew, ivory, silk and simple. It was a lovely dress and so comfortable.

    • Sheila says...

      Yep, simple ivory silk dress from J. Crew here too.

    • Tovah says...

      Same here! Mine was called “Goddess,” I think. Simple V neckline, spaghetti straps crossed in the back, wide sash. I adored it.