The white wedding dress wasn't always en vogue. In fact, it wasn't until Queen Victoria wore a white gown to her own wedding that it became such a big deal. Not only was it a big deal because the queen wore it, but because wearing white meant one had money. Darker colors could be worn several times without being washed, but soiling a white garment meant it had to be cleaned more often and most people of the time just didn't have that kind of money.
So here we are today, still looking back on those Victorian times for style inspiration and honoring the traditions that still hold true.
If you favor a look that's more elegant, romantic, and dainty, keep reading for some Victorian bridal fashion ideas that will have you feeling like the queen herself.
Victorian ladies were all about up-dos, soft curls, and braids. Most had long hair, as that was considered the ideal feminine look, but even if you have short hair you can pull off some of these styles (think soft waves).
As for hair accessories, the Victorian bride adorned herself with a crown of orange blossoms, a veil, or a veil attached to a flower crown. For something more simple, consider a bridal comb tucked into a braided up-do.
Victorian Wedding Dresses
Like today's brides, the Victorian bride had her own style. Some liked opulent embroidery, flowers, and lace, while others enjoyed more modest styles, like Queen Victoria who wore a simple ivory satin dress.
The wedding dress below, from the V&A collection, shows a typical gown from 1865. The wide skirt is supported from underneath by a cage crinoline.
ieie Bridal has many vintage-inspired wedding dresses, including the Victorian style. Depending on your unique preferences, you can choose from a simple wedding dress with butterfly sleeves, a modest long sleeve gown with a high illusion lace neckline, or a 'daring' short lace dress with flowers and beading.
Victorian Bridal Accessories
Hot items of this era included cameos and brooches, gloves (wrist or elbow length), hair combs, hand fans and parasols (although these were probably more practical than fashionable), silk stockings, embroidered handkerchiefs, and anything with roses on it.
Modern brides can incorporate these pieces into their wedding-day look in a variety of ways, whether they wear them or weave them into the decor. Some examples:
- Have the bridesmaids hold parasols as they walk down the aisle.
- Fasten a cameo to your bridal bouquet.
- Pass out fans to guests for a summer wedding.
- Wear a bridal brooch.
- Use doilies in your table decor.