Only within the last twenty-five years has the evening gown silhouette become so trendy for brides. Once upon a time bridal gown meant traditional. Traditional as in Tricia Nixon/Lucy Baines Johnson’s Priscilla designed gowns. Though both gowns were top of the line even by today’s standards, there was little variation on the concept of formal from 1960-1982. If you married in anything different than some form of satin, wore a short dress or sported a suit, it was considered informal and you belonged at city hall.The popularity of the evening gown silhouette was clinched when Carolyn Besette wore that incredible clingy crepe-back satin for her wedding to JFK Jr. back in the 90s. Before that the evening gown was around the bridal scene but more as alternative wear; something you donned if you were an outside the box bride getting married in a garden or restaurant. Churches still had issues with clergy starring down into cleavage and guests feasting on bare backs and shoulders during nuptials. After Carolyn’s photos hit the media, designers brought out their own versions of the evening gown from Jean Harlow classics in drapy lightweight fabrics to sheath designs in more structured fabrics like faille. You have to admit, the evening gown silhouette has been one of the most beautiful additions to bridal wear. Below are a few of my own creations . . . .
The ALEXANDRA Dress is actually one of my crossover pieces that can go from Hollywood chic right into Boho. If you look closely at most Boho, with the right accessories and styling most gowns can be worn with all the glam of movie star chic. This embossed silk chiffon confection is lined in silk crepe. The side waist and back shoulder have drapes of flowing silk gauze--a fabric even lighter than chiffon. The piece de resistance is the cluster of hand-rolled florals on shoulders and waist . .
Above: The BIANCA Gown all started with this rare piece of Valencienes lace. A slip dress of 4 ply crepe with the added lace overlay gives a real 1930's vintage feel. Lightweight and drapy, the crinkled surface of this particular crepe has an incredible swathe and drape effect making it a natural for the bias cut evening gown look. Added to the sides and back are silk organza godets that give off a modified mermaid silhouette.//Photo by Sweet Light Studios
Above: The PRISCILLA gown is actually a light weight wool crepe cut on the bias with a cowl neck and brush train. A simple and draped silhouette for women who love the concept of less is more
Above: From The Gatsby's Bride Collection The GEMMA Gown and veil that goes with it look like something right off the silent screen. Dress has silk chiffon over liquid satin linings and a tulle cascade of hand-sewn Chantilly lace bordering up the front of the dress. Covered button closure down the back. Back falls in a sweep train.
All gowns and head chic by Amy-Jo Tatum