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How to Be Sophisticated in a Black Wedding Dress

Written by    Last updated: March 24, 2016

If you’re looking for something daring and different, and the thought of wearing white on your wedding day makes you yawn, here’s how to be sophisticated in a black wedding dress.

Black dress by Vera Wang |

Image courtesy of Vera Wang

Black is a strong look for your wedding day. It takes a bold bride to rock this look and for every one of those bold brides there’s a scared one who would love to do it but is worried she’ll look like she’s going to a funeral! My message to you is this –  if you want to wear a black bridal gown, you’re not superstitious and you don’t mind what anyone else thinks – go for it.

There are two main ways to wear black on your wedding day without colour: on its own for stunning simplicity of style; or with white, grey or ivory for an unusual combined monochrome bridal look.

The benefits of wearing black

It’s well known that wearing dark colours can give the appearance of a slimmer silhouette, so if you’re looking for a shade more flattering to your figure than white, black could be just what you’re looking for. You will also not have to worry so much about walking around outside in a black gown and might even be able to get away without dry cleaning it after your wedding day.

Black dress by Pronovias |

Image courtesy of Pronovias

The slinky Gothic bridal gown

The most striking of black wedding gowns is perhaps those of Gothic style, with smoky eye make up and deep dark painted lips and nails. The dramatic silhouette of this figure-hugging black gown with puddle train and lace detailing certainly makes a statement.

Black dress |

Image courtesy of Pinterest

The full-skirted Victorian ballgown

To give the illusion of an hour-glass shape, the full-skirt ballgown with its nipped in waist will turn heads and not just because of its colour. A gorgeous Victorian-style corseted bodice will give you a smaller waist, naturally accentuating the curves of your bust and hips. This is a very flattering style of gown for all body shapes and looks even more striking in black or black lace overlay than an ivory or pastel shade gown.

Black dress image courtesy of Pinterest

Image courtesy of Pinterest

The black and white look

If you can’t decide whether you want to wear black or white on your wedding day, wear both. This Justin Alexander design features a dramatic black bridal coat with long sleeves, an elegant Edwardian style high neck and split skirt to reveal the white bridal gown beneath.

Black dress by Justin Alexander |

Images courtesy of Justin Alexander

Where to find a black wedding dress

As black is still an alternative colour for bridal gowns, apart from the designer collections, you should look for bridesmaid and cocktail dress styles such as these by Pronovias.

Pronovias black and white cocktail dress |

Image courtesy of Pronovias

Black dress by Pronovias |

Image courtesy of Pronovias

It doesn’t matter that the black gown you wear on your wedding day is not strictly a wedding dress, with the right accessories and attitude anything goes.


This article was written by

Kate Thompson
Kate Thompson is Confetti's features editor and wedding expert, and has worked in the wedding industry for 15 years. A widely published lifestyle writer, she has made BBC television and radio appearances discussing wedding trends in the UK.


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