In almost every culture and civilization throughout history, the clothing worn by the bride at a wedding ceremony has been the focus of attention and effort. Through much of western history, marriages have often been more than the union of a couple; they united families, sometimes large and powerful clans, and have sometimes united great fortunes, business interests and even countries and empires. Brides represented their relatives or their nations during the ceremonies, and therefore dressed as extravagantly and as colorfully as they and their families could manage. Very colorful wedding outfits were once common, not always in white: some countries in the past felt that red was an auspicious color, some favored blue as the color associated with the Virgin Mary and still others, such as parts of Scandinavia, developed the custom of brides wearing black. Princess Philippa of England may have been the first important personage to marry in a white silk tunic in 1406, and Mary Queen of Scots wore white for her first wedding toFrancis of France, even though the French associated white with mourning, because white was her favorite color. Queen Victoria’s 1840 wedding dress, white and incorporating the lace she loved, set the fashion for Europe and the Americas subsequently. However, here are some important issues regarding ball gown wedding dress:
Common features of ball gown wedding dress:
Wedding dresses came in the 19th and 20th century to adopt many features of the ball gown, the most formal women’s attire for social occasions in Europe. These were the events at which men wore white ties and tail-coats, and included state occasions and the opera as well as formal dances. Ball gowns are traditionally full-skirted and extend to the floor, and are usually cut off the shoulder their necklines that are décolleté or low-cut, and reveal the neck and emphasize cleavage. They are usually accompanied by a cloak, cape or stole instead of a coat, full-length or opera gloves and a clutch-style bag, as well as dancing shoes. The traditional materials for them have been silk and satin, with lace and pearl trimming and sometimes embroidered decorations. These are accentuated by ruffles, gathered or pleated strips of fabric or lace, and by ruching, in which some rows of stitches are drawn closer together and adjacent ones are farther apart, which creates small pleats and gives the garment a rippled appearance.
These gowns originally had wide skirts and layers of petticoats, but took on a narrower silhouette by about 1870, and were supported in back by the bustle. The bustle disappeared at the end of the century and gowns took on a bell-like shape, and tended to have an S-shaped curve at the beginning of the 20th century. During the 1920s hems rose and decorations were increased, and gowns became more conservative in the 1930s; in 1947 the “New Look” of Christian Dior reintroduced full-length skirts and nipped-in waistlines to women’s formal wear. Therefore, ball gown wedding dresses take place of a-line wedding dresses
at that time as they are able to meet people’s demands.
Wedding dresses in America and Europe tended to follow the other trends of women’s fashions until the mid-20th century, and were often shorter in front with a train in back and topped with a veil. During the 1960s and afterward full-length dresses again became popular, and it is estimated today that about three-quarters of wedding gowns are full-length and sleeveless, usually in white but increasingly also in ivory or eggshell or pale yellow (écru). There are many options, but for many brides the best wedding design is what her mother or grandmother wore. In a nutshell,both ball gown wedding dress
and a-line wedding dress are the best choice for modern women as they can bring their different personality.