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Vintage Versus Retro Wedding Dresses

by Jade Ottavini
on February 2017
Created: February 2017

Let’s think about the evolution of wedding dresses:

A hundred years ago, your wedding dress covered you from head to toe and your bouquet was 40cm in diameter. Some thirty years later, the style became more refined and plain silk was the way to go. Fast forward to the eighties where huge puffed sleeves, dramatic detail and big hair were the “in-things”. The new millennium, however, sees trends changing every season, and almost anything goes.

 In fact, fashion change so often that international designers find themselves recycling old, stunning trends into newly inspired dream designs. That is why touches of retro or vintage styles will always find their way back into the runway.

The difference between retro and vintage wedding dresses, and how to achieve their unique looks: 

The colour 

Vintage wedding dress designs will almost always be off-white, cream and pale, pearly hues. Retro style dresses, on the other hand, can make a bold statement with stark white and sparkly colours- even pops of colour will achieve a retro imitation! 

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The material 

Vintage dresses have coined lace as the number one material. If you combine the fine detail of lace with simple pearl embroidery, you will get a vintage look. Retro is a loose and fun design style and the choice of material has space for creativity. Although upholstery material is the most popular, any material that gives off the same stiff, structured appearance will do! 

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Look how stunning this Maggie Soterro wedding dress, Hannah, looks with its rigid skirt and metallic thread detailing.

The style

Vintage wedding dresses have a soft tone to it, while retro dresses have stronger style elements that stand out quite easily. If you want hints of vintage in your wedding dress, go for a slim fitting, straight cut design with an extravagant train. A retro wedding dress can have emphasised sleeves, bows and diamante. 

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Aracella is not scared to flaunt glamour- see how beautiful the Swarovski crystal waist belt complements the voluminous tulle. It’s just as beautiful, however, as the dainty Emma with its slim A-line and classy shoulders. Add the right vintage inspired veil in and you will perfect this look!