Weddings have many traditions, some which are permanently infused in what our ideas of marriage are. Others that are extras that are easily forgotten, they might even surprise you. In our modern world, it’s down to the bride and groom to decide where they wish to be traditional and where they decide to be more contemporary. It’s obviously not a decision that anyone else can make. So here are a few examples of traditional accessories and a few contemporary creations that also offer a range of options for the big day.
Traditionally, brides wear a veil to cover their face and extend down their back. This references a past tradition of women wearing their hair long for their wedding day and is also a way of ‘presenting’ the bride at the alter. When – and if – a woman is unveiled during her wedding, it’s usually done by the father of the bride or the groom before the kiss. Whilst veils are still a very common feature of weddings, many brides opt to have their face uncovered when walking down the aisle. This makes them more of a gorgeous hair accessory than a face covering.
Some women love the fairy tale element that veils offer, especially with the need for someone to carry an especially long veil (the pictured Templeton veil is the perfect example from Rainbow Club). However others dislike the traditional origins (having your face covered for modesty). There is also the issue that many contemporary dresses look somewhat out of place with a veil, though there are many designs to choose from so don’t assume that there is nothing that will work well with your dress of choice.
Popular alternatives to veils include flowers in the hair, wreaths and tiaras. There’s also a growing popularity for masks and intricate headbands, such as this masquerade style wire mask from Grin Grimace and Squeak (pictured).
Contemporary alternatives to veils are easier to pair with a non-white wedding dress and seasonal weddings can also offer an opportunity to create distinctive hair accessories, such as fresh flowers that bloom around the same time. Alternatively, keeping your hair accessories as subtle possible, even wear your hair down, to really draw attention to the dress itself.
Earrings and Necklaces
Jewellery you wear on the day is likely to be dependent on other considerations, such as the neckline of your dress. Even if family and friends (or even your groom!) can’t see your jewellery then that doesn’t mean that you won’t feel every ounce of perfection for having worn it. Many a bride has sported an out-of-sight necklace, anklet or earring for remembrance reasons or just because it makes her special, it’s all about what makes you feel happy.
Traditionally, wedding jewellery for the bride is pearls. It used to be conventional for the bride to be gifted a set of pearl earrings by her future father-in-law to represent her purity and pearls are still a fantastic option for a traditional option (pictured example comes from the bridal collection at Fresh Purple). They look classic and fit with a white dress like a dream. If you are a little conscious of wearing pearls that have been harvested then moonstone is a naturally forming gemstone that offers all the the same visual appeal of pearls that still fits well with a white outfit.
As with veils, if you’re looking for a more colourful bridal outfit then there are host of other gemstones and designs that you can choose from to decorate your jewellery. Tying the accessories together for the entire wedding party can really unify your photos, such as the same metal design or gemstone being used in cufflinks, earrings, necklaces and tie pins. Custom jewellery is also an option if you’re looking for something unique that you can treasure forever.
Whether it’s on display or not and whether it’s intended to be bridal jewellery or not, your jewellery is important for your bridal outfit because of the meaning it holds to you.
One of the most well-known rhymes to reference weddings is “Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue” but many people don’t know that the rhyme actually ends with “and a silver sixpence in her shoe”. This is meant to be a ward of luck for the couple and you can purchase yourself a wedding silver sixpence from The Royal Mint if you wish to keep this tradition alive. Of course, we’d recommend some comfortable shoes if you’re intending to wear a coin inside them!
The rise of outdoor weddings has given rise to a distinctive range of bridal footwear. If you’re having your wedding on a beach then you might be more comfortable in these beautiful sandals from Elegant Steps rather than a pair of heels. This could also be the case for weddings with a more natural of bohemian vibe.
Whether you intend for your wedding to be the epitome of tradition or you’re determined to be distinctive and contemporary, there are many options available for an excited bride to make her wedding exactly as she desires.