Brides look for wedding dresses with modern details that turn classic gowns into contemporary.
Natural-waist tulle ballgown with V neckline and embroidered illusion sleeves, Ines Di Santo ($9,990). The Wedding Shoppe, Eagle Village Shops, 503 W. Lancaster Ave., Wayne, 610-293-1299
With to-do lists full of invites, catering, guest lists, and flowers, most brides can agree that finding their dream dress is at the top. Whether it’s a beaded bodice or a classic ball gown that tugs at their hearts, this spring, Philadelphia brides are taking their looks up a notch. “Spring is looking to be a bit more romantic,” says Pattie Lamantia, owner of The Wedding Shoppe, a full-service bridal boutique on the Main Line. Taking a cue from the red carpet, brides are emulating stars like Olivia Wilde and Jaimie Alexander. “Many brides are seeking out fuller gowns [and] the plunging V necklines are replacing a lot of the low open backs that we have been seeing,” she says. To get these looks, Lamantia suggests designers Inbal Dror and Ines Di Santo as go-to labels.
One-of-a-kind silk gown featuring intricate leaf detailing and a sweetheart neckline, Nicole Miller ($2,900). The Bellevue, 200 S. Broad St., 215-875-8350; nicolemillerphiladelphia.com
If you’re looking to add a more subtle touch to your look, Abigail McGrath, general manager of The Wedding Pavilion at Van Cleve, suggests incorporating florals or beading. “[Opt for] floral details in headpieces and sashes and even floral prints in bridal gowns,” says McGrath, noting designers like Sara Gabriel and Haute Bride. “Several of our designers are also incorporating a lot of clear crystals and opals into their beading—this softens the look.” At Nicole Miller Philadelphia, embellishments like jewels, lace, and netting add interest to Miller’s signature bridal aesthetic: modern, simple, and body skimming. “Many of Nicole’s bridal gowns are inspired by her collection—she translates that same look into her designs,” says Nicole Miller Philadelphia owner Mary K. Dougherty. “She has definitely taken her design integrity and paired it with a bride’s desire to really shine at her wedding.” Kathy Bado, owner of The Wedding Factor Boutique and Event Studio advises wearing a plain dress and layering in trends through accessories. “A simple, classic dress can have several different looks by adding or removing a detachable train or overskirt, a flowing cape, a dramatic bolero, or a stunning belt/sash, in addition to wearing the dress by itself.” Among the season’s latest trends, Bado names beading as the one to look out for. “That’s huge this year, so expect more sparkle.”