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My Bridal Fashion Guide to Romantic Wedding Dresses

I recently shot a fashion shoot, styled by Merci NY and was incredibly inspired by the experience and on an emotional high for several days after. Shortly following that, another one of my brides-to-be, asked my opinion about her wedding dress and sent me to the website of I designer I love- Yolan Cris. This all got me to actively think about bridal fashion. I have always been a bit obsessed with bridal fashion- after all, it is always before my eyes and lenses. So, I thought I would write about some of the beautiful creations that I dream about photographing. Perhaps it will be of some interest to my brides and readers. Perhaps it will even encourage them to run out and splurge! (Grooms should not be reading this post perhaps :)). I remember when I got married, the difficult process of picking the right dress. I didn’t know where to start from and had no vision in mind to guide my choice. I was fortunate, after being haunted by indecision and five possibilities that I could not narrow down, that my Mom was there to help make the final critical decision.

I was married over four years ago already! While I am certainly happy about that, I do wish I could do it all over again so I could wear all those beautiful dresses. :) As you can see, some of the dresses that I picked to show are white, but not all of them. I think most of the brides, when they think about a wedding dress, cannot help but envision the traditional gown. However, I think different colors like cream, subtle golds, earth tones, soft pink and blush – can all be very glamorous, romantic, feminine, and possibly more expressive of the bride’s personality.

I especially like vintage looking dresses with all their beautiful details inc. the beading, unique fabrics, the natural flow of the fabric etc. Many of the designers that I mentioned below have had their dresses worn on red carpets, so I bride cannot help but feel swathed in glamour wearing one.

When I take pictures on the wedding day, if the bride is wearing a spectacular or unique dress with beautiful accessories,
it undeniably inspires me to push the limits of my creativity as a photographer. I want to capture her, not only as she is, but as she feels and imagines herself to be.

Jenny Packham

Packham’s regular design presence on the red carpets of Los Angeles infuses the Hollywood crowd with the glamour they adore. Jenny Packham bridal gowns are at the cutting edge of fashion, and are often described as art deco with a real 1920’s & 1930’s feel.

Jenny Packham Website – Twitter – Facebook

Photo by Annemarie King

Photography by Jess Petrie

Emanuelle Junqueira

Emanuelle Junqueira is a Brazilian designer who makes elegant, open-backed lace wedding dresses.

Emanuelle Junqueira WebsiteFacebookTwitter



Elegant eveningwear, inspired by vintage and Asian influences, defines the Marchesa CoElegant eveningwear, inspired by vintage and Asian influences, defines the Marchesa Collection. The beautifully crafted designs fuse high fashion with an eclectic aesthetic.

Marchesa Website – Facebook – Facebook Bridal – Twitter

Marchesa Spring 2011 bridal collection


BHLDN is a Bridal company that produces heirloom-quality wedding gowns, artisanal hair adornments, footwear, lingerie and more.

BHLDN Website – Facebook – Twitter

Buy from BHLDN $3,000

Delphine Manivet

French designer Delphine Manivet is causing quite a stir with today’s young fashion conscious brides to-be. She studied fashion design in Paris and worked for Rochas but very quickly realized that she wanted to open her own fashion house which she did in 2004. Since then Delphine Manivet has become an international name and brides around the world are able to enjoy wearing her whimsical and romantic ‘boho’ style that is her signature.

Delphine Manivet Website – Facebook

Sarah Seven

With a deep desire for the romance and the simple decadence of a bygone era of femininity, Portland, Oregon designer Sarah Seven is able to create unique pieces that are vintage inspired but decidingly modern. Her bridal, special occasion and ready to wear collections are a rare glimpse into the perfected and intricate arrangement of blossoming ruffles, delicate fabrics, and flowing layers.

Sarah Seven WebsiteBlogFacebookTwitter

Sue Wong

Sue Wong’s designs are as timeless as they are romantic. Flattering, lyrical, Sue Wong’s fashions work a kind of magic; drawing on a potion of mystique and seduction, the clothes take on a power of their own. Alluring and evocative, a Sue Wong design often echoes period style while remaining modern and utterly of the moment. 

Sue Wong Bridal Website – Facebook – Shop – Twitter

Collette Dinnigan

Collette is one of Australia’s most iconic fashion designers. She shows collections in Paris and dresses many international actresses and celebrities.

Collette Dinnigan Bridal Website –  FacebookTwitter

Collette Dinnigan Bridal 2011 collection

 Gwendolynne Burkin

Gwendolynne Burkin is a rising star of Australian fashion. She launched her own signature label Gwendolynne in 1997 and has established a reputation for beautifully executed clothing with a strong European flavour. Gwendolynne’s designs: have won Fashions on the Field at the Dubai World Cup; were exhibited at the Powerhouse Museum Sydney; appeared in Mercedes advertising campaigns; featured in international Nokia and Sony advertising campaigns; have been commissioned for the Australian Ballet; are showcased at The Salvador Dali ongoing collection in Milan and have been seen on countless celebrities at red carpet events.

Gwendolynne Burkin Website – Facebook – Twitter

The Vintage Wedding Dress Company

Renowned Stylist Charlie Brear has brought together her years of experience in fashion to create The Vintage Wedding Dress Company, showcasing to her customers a unique and enviable collection of wedding dresses and accessories.

Vintage Wedding Dress Company – Facebook

Ida Sjöstedt

Tasteful kitsch or tongue-in-cheek elegance are two ways of describing Ida Sjöstedts design philosophy. Her aim is to create beautiful, sexy clothes for women who don’t take dressing up too seriously –and who see fashion as something fun rather than as a must.

Ida Sjöstedt WebsiteBlogFacebookTwitter

Rosa Clará

The ROSA CLARÁ GROUP conveys hope and creates a magical environment wrapped up in beauty, elegance and unique style. Rosa Clará has always been in the fashion sector. However, at the beginning of the 90s, she realised that many women were deeply dissatisfied with what was available in the wedding market. There was a new profile of bride: women who had become established in the world of employment and had great fashion sensibility and flair. These brides wanted to get married in a special gown that made them feel unique and wanted their gowns to reflect their unique personalities. They wanted a dress with ‘magic’ that dazzled their partners and made them feel stunning and spectacular.

Rosa Clará WebsiteBlogFacebookTwitter

Anna Cambell

Melbourne based designer, Anna Campbell has created a name for herself through beautifully crafted designs encapsulating an elegant, vintage feel. 

Anna Cambell Website


Temperley London

Alice Temperley’s timeless, feminine designs combine meticulous detail and embellishments with an English eccentricity and personality drawing on everything British.

Temperley London WebsiteFacebookTwitterYoutube

Buy from Net-a-Porter $2,184

Pallas Couture

Pallas Couture WebsiteFacebook

Monique Lhuillier

Monique Lhuillier has become one of the leading innovative fashion houses. The designs are chic, glamorous and always luxurious with the utmost attention to detail and quality. 

Monique Lhillier Website – Twitter – Facebook


Claire Pettibone

Claire Pettibone says about her work, “When I design a collection I strive to make a woman feel as special as the delicate creation she is wearing; take her to a enchanted time and place where women are princesses and magnificent goddesses. In today’s modern world we need to pause and indulge in beauty.”

Claire Pettibone Website – Blog

Photo by Elizabeth Messina

Anna Sui

Anna Sui WebsiteFacebook

Buy from BHLDN – $1200

Catherine Deane

Catherine brings an inspired talent to the world of fashion. Elements of her past and present are brought together in beautiful collections – pieces that bring a sense of femininity and uniqueness to the women who find them.

Catherine Deane Website – Twitter


Buy it from BHLDN – $2,400

Alberta Ferretti

Alberta Ferretti Website – Facebook – Twitter

Samantha Wills


Yolan Cris

(This designer is based in Europe, but brides in North America can buy his dresses from Lelite)
Website2012 CollectionFacebookTwitter

NYC Brides: Gabriella New York Bridal Salon are hosting a Jenny Packham trunk show Dec. 9-11. Be sure to book your appt!

Monique Lhuillier

Monique Lhuillier has become one of the leading innovative fashion houses. The designs are chic, glamorous and always luxurious with the utmost attention to detail and quality. 

Monique Lhillier Website – Twitter – Facebook

Reem Acra

Reem Acra’s designs epitomize global glamour by offering women her innate fashion sense, European style and understanding of American women. A true luxury lover, Acra delights in making women look and feel beautiful. Her regal designs are developed with a modern aesthetic.

Website – Bridal – Haute Couture – Twitter – Facebook – Facebook Bridal


Valentino Website – Facebook – Twitter

Buy from Polyvore – $11,400


J. Mendel

J. Mendel Website – Facebook – Twitter


Ralph Lauren Collection

Ralph Lauren Website – Facebook – Twitter

Carol Hannah Whitfield

Carol Hannah WebsiteFacebookTwitterPinterest

 From Reverie Magazine

Sarah Janks

Sarah Janks WebsiteFacebookTwitterPinterest

Bridal Couture 2013 Collection

Inbal Dror

Inbal Dror is an haute couture and wedding dress designer who’s studio is located in Ashdod, Israel. She puts together spectacular wedding and evening gowns, and takes orders for custom made ensembles that can be designed specifically to the needs of the person buying the dress. Her 2012 wedding couture collection has a Roman inspiration with gowns made of lavish tulle, lace, and fish tail hems.

Inbal Dror Website – Facebook

Corina Snow

Corina Snow Bridal Couture, designs vintage gowns that reminisce the classic designs and elegance of the past. These gowns emphasise a women’s shape and femininity using quality luxurious silk fabrics. Corina’s vast experience in design, coupled with your individual ideas, pictures, and inspirations, guides her to create a gown that not only suits your physical attributes but also complements the overall design and theme of your wedding.

Corina Snow Website

via Style Me Pretty, Photo by Vela Images

Lela Rose

Lela Rose Website  – FacebookTwitter


If you liked these dresses you also might love these bridal designers:
Lela Rose
Claire Pettibone
Tara Keely
Matthew Williamson
Alberta Ferretti
Lanvin Bridal

To see even more designers check out my recommended vendors list.
For some clutch accessories that would compliment these dresses very well, here’s a link to My Bridal Fashion Guide to Accessories.

Here are a few stores that sell beautiful designer gowns in NYC:

Gabriella New York Bridal Salon

Lovely Bridal Shop


The White Gown


Mark Ingram

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