From risque sheer panels to embellished backs and vibrant colours, brides are truly putting their personal stamp on their wedding dresses this year.
“Bridal fashion is changing to reflect what’s happening in high fashion and what celebrities are wearing. Over the next couple of years, we’ll see more funky brides putting their own twist on their dresses, rather than wearing traditional ivory gowns,” explains Lyndel Foran, brand manager at bridal fashion brand, Jean Fox.
“They are looking to make a statement in what they’re wearing on their wedding day. Of course, princess ballgowns and lace will always be in, but people are bringing more of themselves into a gown. Brides are setting the trends these days, not us!”
Since Jean Fox began in 1932 when Jean herself opened her first store, the brand has had its finger on the pulse of the latest bridal trends. It’s now run by Jean’s grandsons and has expanded to include other labels including Only You, Sylvia Rose and Purple Fox to cater for different brides’ personalities and aesthetics.
“I love seeing the smile on a bride’s face when she finds ‘the dress’ that she’s going to marry the love of her life in,” says Lyndel, who has worked at Jean Fox for 15 years. “I also enjoy seeing how shocked the bride can be when she tries a style she wouldn’t normally choose but looks fabulous in.”
Here are six of the hottest trends in bridal fashion for for 2016:
Sexy sheer panels
Brides looking to flash some flesh will love this trend, which was inspired by Kim Kardashian, Jennifer Lopez and Beyonce, who all wore racy gowns with sheer cut-outs on the red carpet last year, says Lyndel.
“It’s quite a sexy look and high splits up the leg are also becoming popular,” she adds.
As they say, if you’ve got it, flaunt it.
This bride’s got back
“Brides realise that when they walk down the aisle and during the day, they’ll often have their back turned to guests, so they love having some detail on their back or perhaps just a low bare back,” explains Lyndel.
Embellished backs may include beautiful beading or gorgeous lace work with a gorgeous sheer illusion panel. Again, it’s another trend that has been inspired by the latest fashion in Hollywood.
Ever since the Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton walked down the aisle in 2001, lace sleeves have been going strong for the past five or so years and they’re not going anywhere soon.
“It’s quite a vintage, boho look – imagine getting married with a flower crown in your hair with no shoes in a slinky gown with lace sleeves. Just beautiful,” says Lyndel.
Of course, lace sleeves are also perfect for brides getting married in cooler months, too.
Short and sweet
Retro styles with shorter skirts have been really popular lately and they’re perfect if you want a vintage look or have a fabulous pair of shoes to show off!
Want to take the 1950s look up a notch? Pair it with a gorgeous beehive or headband, suggests Lyndel.
All the colours of the rainbow
“Brides are no longer afraid of colour and are starting to think outside the box,” explains Lyndel.
If you’re looking for something subtle, you might want to look at dresses in a sweet blush shade or champagne colour. Feeling a bit more brave? Try something in a vibrant red or purple. Another way to feature colour in your gown is to incorporate some coloured lace or embellishment on your gown, suggests Lyndel.
The princess bride
Trends may come and go but full ballgown skirts, tulle and satin box pleats will never go out of style.
“It’s perfect for those brides who want to be a princess and have been dreaming of their wedding for years,” Lyndel says.