Expert advice about wedding dresses

Here is a selection of Q&As from Your Devon and Cornwall Wedding magazine whether it be about flowers, hair and makeup, fashion, wedding themes, health & beauty, cakes, stationery, legal advice. If you would like your question answered by our experts, please email it to


Say 'yes' to the dress

Say 'yes' to the dress

Q. What wedding dress trends do you see emerging from the bridal designers that you stock for those planning their wedding next year?

A. Caroline Griffiths says: Caroline says: Wedding designers always surprise me with their new collections. Just when you think that bridal couture couldn't get any more flamboyant then designs arrive that do! I envisage even larger, bolder patterns and statement sleeves for next year, with show-stopping florals and even bigger ballgowns! However, I do think there'll be some more subtle, classic styles that will still be very on-trend, too.

Caroline Griffiths,Bridal Gossip


Dress to impress

Dress to impress

Q. We're rescheduling our wedding until spring 2021 so can you give me some ideas for bridal dress trends that look set to continue throughout the rest of this year and into next?

A. Sarah Treble says: Meet the expert: Sarah Treble is a bespoke bridal and occasion wear designer with over 20 years' experience since graduating from Central Saint Martins in London. She spent three seasons working as the head designer for Valentino in Italy, which instilled in her a love for haute couture. Sarah is now based in Exeter, Devon, after moving there from London in 2009, and her dresses are hand-crafted and made-to-measure, combining exceptional comfort with sheer elegance.

Sarah says: Colour still features strongly on the bridal catwalks as an alternative to the traditional white and ivory gowns. Blush, beige and pink have been evident for the past few seasons so expect this to continue, but now expanding into the palette are shades of blue, pistachio, and green. The use of colour isn't limited to subtle tints, instead, bold floral prints and coloured embroidery can also be expected to make an appearance, inspired by nature and romantic painterly watercolours. This artistic, artisanal trend is evident in other forms of fabric embellishments. Large, luscious ruffles, intricate pleating, silk abstract flowers and soft chiffon feathers give an innovative twist to classic shapes, all expected to be requested for weddings taking place in 2021.

The recent popularity of period dramas such as Emma, Belgravia and Little Women has also influenced bridal trends this season. High necklines, lace bodices and long lace sleeves are given a more modern feel with the seductive baring of backs and shoulders. Lace is ever-present, but expect a bolder take on this favourite fabric. Instead of soft delicate Chantilly lace, think heavy, corded varieties and guipure lace that resembles crochet. Upcoming trends will also see cheeky high splits, short asymmetric hems, and the popular monochrome look of black teamed with traditional ivory.

There’s also simple tailoring with jackets, trousers, and jumpsuits all beautifully cut and unadorned, and coat-style dresses and capes. I’d sum up the new season as being strong yet feminine, creative and bold with a liberal sprinkling of irreverent attitude.

Sarah Treble,Sarah Treble Couture


Girl squad

Girl squad

Q. How do I keep all of my bridesmaids happy with the final dress style and colour?

A. Jan Beveridge says: When it comes to your bridesmaids' dresses, it's important to be organised. Put together a budget and timescale and have a chat with your best girls about what is really important to them. Do some research about what's available and don't forget it isn't always necessary to buy a bridesmaid's dress from a wedding dress shop. Many high street shops and department stores offer suitable occasionwear that your bridesmaids can re-use for other occasions. Your bridesmaids are unlikely to share the same body type, height, style and personality. You may even have a mix of women and young girls.
So how can you make sure that they all feel fabulous in their outfits? Depending on your budget, one idea is to have one style altered for every girl. This could be with a different neckline, sleeves or slightly different lengths to suit their body shape. Ensure that each gown is well fitting and that they feel comfortable. You need to remember that not all colours suit all skin tones and so you may want to choose a shade but have different tones for your bridesmaids. Teals and blues are a good example of how to work this – teals look great on warmer tones and cornflower blue on cooler tones. The only colour that suits all skin tones is primary red so choosing accents in this works well.
Encourage your bridesmaids to express their individual personalities through their accessories including shoes, hairpieces and jewellery.

Jan Beveridge


Dress up

Dress up

Q. I'm having a winter wedding and need to choose a dress that will take me from day to night. What can you suggest?

A. Dawn Collins says: Winter weddings are incredibly romantic with crisp weather, venues featuring cosy fireplaces and log burners, and intimate dinners by candlelight. For brides wanting to wow in their dress, they should embrace luxurious fabrics and embellishments at this time of the year that will look great day or night. Layered matt sequins, pearl details and beaded lace are all hot trends for 2019 and 2020 and at Lovely Bridal, we're loving Theia Couture's amazing geometric pearl gown. For added shimmer, brides can change the look of their dress over the course of the day by adding different styling pieces like the sequin over skirts and beaded jackets from designer Charlie Brear.

Whether the chosen wedding dress has long sleeves or no sleeves, brides getting married during winter can add a cosy cover up. This may be worn for most of the day, especially if photographs are taken outdoors, so it shouldn't be an after thought. Investing in a cashmere jumper, a slouchy cardigan from Rembo Styling, or even a stunning white leather jacket to look stylish whilst staying warm is a good idea. It can always be worn again with jeans after the wedding so it's worth splashing out on.

Dawn Collins

When it's time for you look for local businesses to help you with your wedding, take a look at our advertisements below. Most will have links to their own websites. These advertisements are updated regularly so please revisit often and mention Your Devon and Cornwall Wedding when making any enquiries.

Spillers Chauffeur Hire Co
Pengersick Castle
Sarah Chapman - Independent Celebrant
The Corn Barn