To Veil or Not to Veil, that is the wedding question…

A full length veil has been synonymous with a bride and wedding dress for many years.  The typical cathedral veil with it’s extensive length and volume proving the most popular and predictable over time.  With such exciting strides being made with new styles, fusions and creative designs in the bridal couture sector, it is about time that the world of veils and headpieces has received a breathe of fresh air and individuality.

Not all locations or brides suit the full length cathedral veil and importantly, not all gowns suit it either.  So, what is the perfect piece to adorn the head of a bride wearing each different style of dress.1 Blossom with veil LR

For full length, strapless gowns, a waist length or full length veil normally works best to compliment the bare decollage on show.  A cathedral veil, unless a member of the royal family, normally only works best with a simple, less embellished gown as otherwise it can compete with the dress for attention.  With a simple gown it can create a wonderfully impact with it’s 120 inches (up to 9 foot in some cases!).  Look to a pencil edge of scalloped lace edge to achieve that wonderful flow as a bride walks down the aisle. Another option is the chapel veil which, at 90 inches, is shorter than the cathedral but still provides a train and flow behind the bride. NARCISSUS close up

For full length gowns with straps, there are a multitude of wonderful head-wear options that can be chosen and it all comes down to the style of straps and neckline – V-neck, sweetheart, bateau, straight, one-shouldered…  For a slightly more quirky look and to emphasise an embellished bust, straps or waist a shorter veil works best such as an angel cut, mid-back length veil or perhaps a mid-length veil incorporating a bird cage facial over hang or an art deco Juliet cap with side embellishment.  To prevent any interference with the gown an alternative is to go for an elaborate fastenator or perhaps a tulle visor.  This can also work for showing off the intricate embellishment on a dress or a low slung back etc.  For a bride wanting to emphasise a certain are of a gown but who wants a full length veil, it is best to stick with a single layer, sheer tulle veil with a pencil edge detailing.  This will ensure all elements are clearly visible, with a contemporary feeling, still allowing for an element of traditional formality.

David Lane

For a full length ball gown, it can be very hard to find a veil that does not A) catch on the fullness of the skirt, B) get lost amongst the volume of the gown C) interfere with the dramatic look of the gown or D) create a larger, wider appearance of the bride.  There are a number of better choices which should be considered, a waist length veil stops at the smallest point on the gown before the voluminous skirt and, thus, emphasises a small waist.  A flyaway head piece or bird cage head piece can add a dramatic contemporary edge to a traditional look and help to elongate the appearance of the bride, all whilst complimenting and exaggerating the lines of the gown.  An art deco Juliet cap with a mid back length tulle veil also works well if the ball gown has a hint of old school vintage glamour embedded in it.

Tea Length wedding gowns are a wonderful way of allowing a bride to be creative, individual and unique whilst still retaining an element of traditional luxury on the wedding day.  The unique styling of a tea length gown can be vintage, art deco, contemporary, exaggerated or minimalistic and the head wear of choice plays an important role in best positioning the gown still firmly as a wedding gown.  Pill-box hats with bird cage or angel cut veils can be quite contemporary whilst an art deco Juliet cap with tulle veil entangled at the nape of the neck can be dramatically demure and feminine.  Alternatively, in a complete veer from bridal tradition a dramatic splash of colour in a headpiece, think colourful peacock feathers, ostrich feathers, embellishment etc., combined with a tulle visor or flyaway veil work wonderful to add an element to uniqueness to a traditional style.

What is clearly evident is that finally world of unique and individual veils, fascinators and all wedding wear really is a brides oyster!

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