Last year’s trends for the aisle were all inspired by the drama and classicism of royal weddings; but for 2020, it’s all about new interpretations of those classics, fresh alternatives to ivory and alabaster, and inspirations from decades past that (ironically) feel undeniably forward-thinking.
From the latest wedding-worthy accessories to effortless volume and the new take on bridal’s ever-evolving bohemian, these fresh takes on tailoring, style, and silhouettes are what you should be paying attention to as you plan, shop, and style your 2020 nuptials. Here, the fashion bride’s guide to dressing for 2020 weddings.
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Underwear as outwear is making its way to the aisle—but this time it’s less sexy and more regal than ever before. From exposed boning to other feats of fashion engineering, these new corsets are paired with sheer tulle, gossamer laces, and loads of layering for a vibe that feels royal-inspired, but with a major edge.
From corsets exposed on classic ballgowns to innovative options featuring asymmetric pleating, high-low hemlines, and more, we’re loving this new spin on sophisticated sexiness.
Whether it’s in the form of oversized puff sleeves, collars and ruffles or done as and easy trapeze silhouette or a shirred ball skirt—it’s official: volume is back, baby.
When it comes to this trend, bigger is always better. It evokes an ’80s glam, partnered with a mod ’60s ease, and is for the bride who isn’t afraid to take a fashion risk. Keep in mind, this trend can easily overwhelm small frames, so take note when styling and fitting—you’ll want to insure that proportions are fashion-forward and flattering.
The cool-kid decade responsible for disco is back in bridal, and Saturday Night Fever inspiration echoed throughout some of our favorite designer collections for 2020. Fringe—an accent once thought to be best kept at Woodstock—is no longer reserved for the bohemian bride, especially when it’s employed to funk up a little mini.
From flared pants to shimmery embellishments a la Studio 54, this look merges clean, minimal lines with the ease and party vibes of one of fashion’s best decades. If you’re one to go more traditional for the aisle, channel this trend for your after party or rehearsal dinner.
From fully-feathered ballgowns to chic little minis, luxurious yet lightweight feathers add a glamorous and feminine touch to any look for the ceremony, rehearsal dinner, or after-party. We saw plumes of all variations this season, and when it comes to this embellishment, it seems designers all have one message: don’t skimp.
What might have felt trite or try-hard in seasons past is now theatrical and chic, and 2020 is all about flairs for the dramatic. This trend feels grand and luxe, but also super dreamy—whether its just a dainty trim, via a glamorous shoulder shrug, or a full head-to-toe look for the ceremony.
Meet the the modern day bohemian bride, but she’s more rebellious than ever before. This look is all about effortlessness—with a major dose of attitude and edge. Take an irreverence and laissez-faire attitude to dressing for the aisle, apparently it promises that you’ll look all too cool, without even trying.
From Danielle Frankel’s sheer knits and separates to Dior’s statement-making opener on the Haute Couture runway, an inherent irreverence is causing a shift in the way brides shop for their wedding day wardrobe. It seems that 2020 is the time to take risks—without worrying what any of your guests, friends, or family will think.
This shade was shown in droves during the Haute Couture collections in January, and bridal designers echoed the call on the runways for 2020, with Vera Wang and Monique Lhuillier leading the charge. Wang showcased a range of soft colors for 2020 brides, highlighting a soft green amongst her other macaron shades of pink, purple, nude, and soft grey.
And while blush wedding dresses have become a mainstay since they were first introduced by Vera Wang years ago, champagne, soft blue, lilac, and hints of black have all made their appearance in years past. Now, it’s pistachio’s time to take a walk down the aisle, with options in more than one shade of green to envy.
Suiting is no stranger to bridal, but now these sleek, handsome, and borrowed-from-the-boys options are so ubiquitous in weddings that they’ve taken on innovative approaches. It’s not all about cigarette pants and slim blazers—for 2020, sheer capes, sleeveless jackets, and even jackets that double as mini dresses for a rehearsal-dinner-turns-after-party ensemble are all on offer.
Rehearsal dinners are the time to dress for the fashion-forward side of your bridal personality, while after-parties are all about feeling sexy. A perfectly-tailored suit should have you feeling all those things—and the daring of brides should opt for ceremony suiting. If you do choose to don a suit down the aisle, we suggest styling it with a veil for the ultimate in cool-girl vow exchanges.
An alternative (yet classic) neckline to the staple strapless, V-neck, one-shoulder, and off-shoulder options out there, halter necklines made more appearances this season than they have in the past.
We blame the Duchess of Sussex’s reception dress for this trend, along with its ability to show off toned arms an enviable back. Wear this neckline to suit any style—options abound in fashion-forward, minimal, traditional, and bohemian versions.
Out with the old, in with the new hue. Blush and champagne have made marks in seasons past, but ginger (the happy medium of the two) complements a wide range of styles and skin tones, making it our favorite alternative to the tried-and-true bride in white. This is for the bride who doesn’t feel like she’s at her best in traditional ivory and alabaster tones.
As with blush, this neutral shade plays well with both nude and metallics. Pair it with gold, silver, blush, or bolder tones for a look that feels daring yet romantic—and nowhere near basic.
High Low Hemlines
This hemline has been gracing the Couture runways for seasons, with Giambattista Valli introducing the confection-like tulle variations. This year, evening wear and bridal designers have translated this look for the aisle, offering up riffs on texture, color, volume, shape, and scale.
This look is all about a wow-factor, from the super-long train to the mini hemline designed to show some leg and flaunt the perfect pair of wedding shoes. Our styling tip? Accessorize the look with an equally fashion-forward veil, or skip headpieces altogether and opt for a sleek hair-up look, or effortless waves.
Push past any negative connotations about the color black in bridal and trust us—it’s incredibly chic. Whether it be a touch of black or a daring head-to-toe look, don’t be afraid to incorporate this sultry shade into your wedding day wardrobe. Black dress details make a powerful and refined statement that is tastefully timeless, whether you use the tone at your waist, as a trim, or as an even subtler accent.
Capes may not be groundbreaking in the wedding world, but new renditions of them this past season were innovative and fresh for both the aisle or the after party. Mock-necked capes adorned with lace were all over the Spring 2020 collections, especially those that added a subtle layer for more coverage and made for a striking silhouette that emphasized the gown underneath.
Opt for this look to up the ante on an already stunning ensemble. Whether or not your gown has sleeves, this is still the most dramatic (and one the chicest) ways to cover up.
The ’80s have been making a comeback in far more ways than one—the va-va-volume trend we highlighted above is case in point—and scalloped necklines are just another nod to fashion’s most daring decade.
Sweetheart necklines give the body a sexy curve, while a straight-across strapless or plunging V-neck feels clean and graphic. Scalloped finishes work double duty, feeling fresh while offering the feminine touch that previously only the most basic of bridal necklines could provide.
Since last year’s royal wedding, we’ve continued to see the Markle Effect in the form of clean lines, stiff crepe, long trains—and high bateau necklines. This conservative-with-a-twist style is now more chic than ever as it’s new additions include details such as beaded midi lengths, ruffed tulle, silk satin sleeves, and low backs. From Alaia to Maticevski, we’re loving this traditional silhouette turned cool in the form of architectural shapes and sexy slips.
Not only fit for a lady in waiting, this timeless accessory feels regal and period, yet somehow super modern. These of-a-time extras made a comeback this season in a variety of versions, and we loved them all.
Whether in satin or a chic sheer lace, swiss-dot or floral-printed, elbow-length or wristlets, gloves add that je ne sais quoi quality to any look. They feel outside-the-box yet traditional, striking a balance that’s just right. Expert tip: this add-on gives your look an editorial edge when worn during photos, cocktail hour, or when greeting your guests, but skip them for dinner and the after-party to avoid your look going overtly costume.
Naked, Not Naked.
Sheer never looked so chic. This sexy silhouette of sheer yet fully-covered gowns still leaves little to the imagination, but manages to feel sophisticated. From floor length, long-sleeved, all-over ruffles to embroidery and embellishments, these styles take nearly-naked, sexy bride dressing to a whole new level.
Rock this look with the the under-layers that suit you or experiment with this trend by playing with slips, lingerie, and linings that give the illusion of lightness, without bearing everything.
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