One of the best parts of my job is getting to check out new catalogs of bridal and bridesmaids styles before they are available for the customers. Even though I already have my dream dress, it doesn’t hurt to look at other styles. However, going through one of the recent issues of The Knot, I saw a dress that could have given my dress a run for it’s money. The thing was, it wasn’t necessarily a wedding dress. Recently, a girl brought in a dress she had found online for her wedding, but needed the right undergarments for it. (Trust me, the right bras, slips, etc, really do make all the difference.) It wasn’t a “wedding” dress, either.
I think the most important thing about finding “the dress” (or whatever you want to wear) is whether or not it makes you feel like a bride. You could be wearing the most glamorous, expensive gown in the store (like I did when I was looking for my dress), but not feel like that’s what I was meant to wear on my big day. So, I found a few dresses that aren’t necessarily “wedding” dresses, but could be just right for somebody.
Corey Paige Sleeveless Embroidered Dress
Price: $40, available in sizes 4-18.
According to the website, this “intricately embroidered eyelet trim on our solid cotton dress proves basic is beautiful.” Perfect for an outdoor summer wedding, this dress features a delicate floral trim.
Bisou Bisou Belted Strapless Maxi Dress
Price: $40, available in sizes 2-16
Also coming in at the low price $40, I can easily picture this second dress from JCPenney accessorized with fresh hibiscus flowers for a pop of color for a tropical destination wedding. The bold print is broken up with a black belt to accentuate your waist in a flowy maxi dress.
Adrianna Papell Three-Quarter-Sleeve Lace Dress
Price: Originally $189, on sale for $123! Available in sizes 14W-22W
So it’s not white. Who cares? Blush is huge right now for weddings, and I absolutely adore the lace sleeves on this dress. It features an exposed zipper in the back, which is also very on-trend right now. (And it’s available in blue!)
Trina Turk Steffi Dress
Price: Originally $380, on sale for $230! Available in sizes 0-10
The block pattern on the overlay of this dress caught my eye. The boatneck cut of this mini-dress is very flattering, and would look lovely with a simple up-do and a pair of chandelier earrings.
Nanette Lepore Madrid Dress
Price: $298, available in sizes 0-10
From Youngstown’s own Nanette Lepore, this white and black dress has a retro silhouette with a hard edge for a rocker chick. I’d like to imagine this dress on a girl with sweet nautical tattoos and brightly colored hair.
Eileen Fisher Sleeveless A-Line Midi-Dress
Price: $318, available in sizes 1X-3X
Designed by Eileen Fisher for Nordstrom, this “crinkled Irish-linen dress converts to a shorter, flouncier look with inner ties that tether up the hem.” Top it off with a wildflower crown for a beautiful hippie-chic wedding.
Lilly Pulitzer Harwin Dress
Price: $468, available in sizes 00-14.
This all-over lace column dress from the queen of fun floral prints, Lilly Pulitzer, features a dramatic side slits and a beaded pattern at the neckline. One of the reviewers included a picture from her beach wedding, for which this dress is ideal.
David Meister Sequined Lace Cocktail Dress
Price: $548, available in sizes 14W-24W
Let me pick my jaw up from the floor. I can’t find a single fault with this dress (although, I’m not crazy about those shoes, and… is she wearing white tights?) The “intricate floral lace is embroidered with gold sequins” on this dress, and I would probably wear it everyday if it wasn’t impractical to do so. Vegas, anyone? The longer version of this dress, which is no longer available, is featured in The Knot, describing it as “bohemian luxe,” and I would have to agree. Since I couldn’t find the feature anywhere on their website, I resorted to a phone pic, so, don’t mind the quality…
Can you see why I went crazy over this dress? Barefoot glamour. This is what they included on this photo of Beth from Pittsfield, VT and her wedding dress:
“Originality was everything for this fashion-forward bride — her only style mantra was to forget all the rules. Beth started out looking for gold dresses for her bridesmaids, but when she saw this David Meister gown, she know it was “the one.” So she decided to flip tradition and put her bridesmaids in ivory gowns, while she wore gold. To keep her accessories minimal, Beth added three gold pavé bracelets and a beaded headband to complete her look.”
So many of these dresses would be perfect for a courthouse wedding, a second dress for the reception, or a destination wedding. It doesn’t matter what the label or retailer says the dress is meant for; all that matters is that you feel like a bride on your wedding day.