Bridal gowns

I saw this on Etsy and thought how pretty it was – the colour and texture looks gorgeous! Not crazy about the top but the skirt is lovely.

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I didn’t have a traditional wedding dress. I thought of it, but the choice made me blanch and my mother’s one did not fit. She was tiny – much shorter and smaller than I am. I am tall and used to swim competitive long-distance butterfly so I have huge shoulders. Her dress had little pearl buttons all the way up the back but they did not fasten when I tried it on. It was also too short. Still, you can see from the photographs below what a beautiful dress it was. Made for her in 1959 and worn by three brides in my family and one neighbour so far. And it is not fussy or frilly.

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and here is my mom in it. I look very much like her – more so when I get older.

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For my civil wedding I just wore a plain white spaghetti strap dress, hastily bought in Cape Town. With it I wore a black jacket and black stiletto shoes, borrowed from a friend.

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Exactly one year later was the church wedding and I wore a winter white raw silk suit (dress and jacket) with matching slingback stilettos. I couldn’t find the right shoes as it was a winter wedding (November) and the suit was one I already had. As you can guess, going all out is not my thing!

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While traditional wedding dresses are not really ‘me’, I really like Sweden’s Crown Princess Victoria’s gown by Pär Engsheden. It is simple with no fuss or frills and her cameo tiara is my favourite tiara ever (who needs diamonds?)

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I think the most beautiful and flattering wedding dress for a mature woman that I have seen, was the Anna Valentine dress the Duchess of Cornwall wore for the church blessing. I saw it at a wedding dress exhibition at London’s V & A museum last year and it was just as beautiful in real life. It looked way better on than off though, and it really suited her middle aged shape.

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They also had Kate Moss’ Galliano dress

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Dita von Teese’s Vivienne Westwood gown

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And Gwen Stefani’s Galliano gown

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Seeing that most of the marriages that went with the wedding dresses on display had ended in divorce, I wonder why people spend so much on weddings.

I like this African one the best, where the bride and groom could only afford bread and butter. I bet it was a jollier affair than many catered designery ones.

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Author: Janet Carr

Fashion, beauty and animal loving language consultant from South Africa living in Stockholm, Sweden.

6 thoughts

  1. What wonderful dresses. I love your mother’s timeless dress. No wonder it has been shared by many brides.
    How wonderful to see Sweden’s Crown Princess Victoria so happy. I have not seen pictures of European royals in a long time as it is not a popular topic in the US. She resembles her mother so much.
    Brides are beautiful all over the world. I would exclude myself because I never liked any of my pictures taken 38 years ago.

    1. Victoria looked beautiful on her wedding day – she was so happy to finally get her Prince, I think! I loved that her dress was not all frilly.

  2. Oh, Janet! Your mother’s dress is beautiful– absolutely timeless and you look so radiant in all those photos! Thank you for sharing!

  3. You look fabulous! And I’d be very happy to go to a wedding where they were serving bread and butter. I agree with you – I bet it was an amazing party!

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