When choosing your wedding dress, there’s so much you need to consider, and if you’re new to the world of wedding dress shopping it can be tricky knowing where to start! We asked leading bridal trade publication Bridal Buyer – the official magazine of London Bridal Fashion Week – to share with us their key predictions for wedding dress trends in 2021 and 2022.
The Nine Hottest Wedding Dress Trends for the Year Ahead
Chic & Simple Wedding Dresses
“With Covid-19 impacting wedding dates and guest list sizes across the globe, we expect to see a rise in brides looking for a more understated gown to suit their new intimate ceremony,” say the team at Bridal Buyer.
Wedding dress designers have been producing wider ranges of single fabric dresses in their collections, in response to the trend for smaller weddings. The most popular fabrics and key wedding dress trends are crepe, satin and silk.
Shape becomes much more important when the fabric and the style of the dress is so simple – brands like Mikaella Bridal have produced figure hugging gowns like style 2326, complete with understated, elegant horizontal panelling on the bust.
The trend of keeping your wedding dress simple means designers have been more creative with other areas – necklines have become a new hotspot! Without lace or sparkle drawing attention, designers are being more creative with the fabric itself.
Alan Hannah’s Jacqueline dress features an elegant cowl neck – an emerging trend, especially with crepe and silk wedding dresses as the fabric folds so beautifully.
Halternecks have been a creeping trend ever since Meghan Markle wore one for her evening wedding dress look, and the Marie dress by Brighton Belle at True Bride confirms this is one of the wedding dress trends that is here to stay.
If you don’t want your dress to look too simple, or you want the option to mix up your look, consider adding a detachable bow or belt! The E21991 from Special Day is the perfect example of how a bow can add an extra element to an otherwise simple wedding dress.
Boho wedding dresses are the perfect pick for brides who want a laidback, romantic look on their wedding day. The prairie style is one of a few wedding dress trends arriving here from the United States, and we love it!
Mark Loren’s Dusana wedding dress embodies prairie style with its tasselled hem and casual drawstrings, offset with more traditional bridal features such as the tiered skirt and the lace detailing so it’s not too casual.
The experts at Bridal Buyer sum it up: “This is a versatile dress, ideal for those brides searching for a relaxed yet elegant look. The tiered skirt and half-sleeves add romantic flair, making it the perfect gown for a boho bride.”
Inspired by that boho feel, we’re also seeing an increase in statement long sleeved wedding dresses. Bridal Buyer predict that flared and balloon sleeves will be a big hit with brides: “Flared sleeves scream boho, instantly adding a 70s feel to any wedding gown. They give a romantic vintage feel whilst allowing brides to cover their arms without feeling constricted by tight-fitting sleeves.”
Gowns such as the WS8236 by Wedding Societe perfectly embody this – those whimsical off-the-shoulder sleeves add a dreamy aesthetic to the look.
We all know about beautiful floral lace, and the recent trend for more geometric lace on wedding dresses too, but leaf motifs are set to be big over the next few years according to Bridal Buyer.
The 66154 by Lillian West is the perfect example of nature inspiring design. “The bodice, adorned with floral beaded lace, compliments the chiffon skirt to make this a sexy yet elegant choice for any bride. This dress is perfect for boho brides looking for a light and airy dress fit for summer evenings,” explain the experts at Bridal Buyer.
Modern brides want something different and exciting from their wedding dresses, say Bridal Buyer: “Whether searching for a dramatic look or a minimalist design, the modern bride can find all she wants in a contemporary gown. Statement pieces, separates and layering, and an increased focus on sustainability mean that modern bridalwear remains innovative and exciting.”
The Brigitte by Justin Alexander is a stellar example of modern wedding dress trends for 2021 and 2022.
“Environmental issues have never been more pressing, thus the most contemporary of designs are also sustainable,” say Bridal Buyer.
We have rounded up the very best of eco-friendly wedding dresses to inspire you, but the Armya gown by Edwina Arya is a great example of sustainability in the bridal industry. This gown ticks all the trends previously mentioned, with a dramatic neckline and romantic bell sleeves, but also a tree is planted every time someone purchases a dress from this brand.
Capes and Cover Ups
“Capes and cover-ups are the perfect way to create two separate looks without having to purchase multiple dresses,” explain the pros at Bridal Buyer.
With more focus than ever before on your wedding photos and social media, having something to easily switch up your look is a great way to ensure variety in your wedding snaps. The CZ8247 by Cizzy Bridal is an example of a traditional take on this trend – adding a sparkling overlay to a simple gown – but we also love the trend for personalised bridal jackets.
If you want to try your own take on this trend, make sure you read our guide to customising your jacket for your wedding day.