Looking for a wedding dress isn't easy for Covid-era brides. Nobody really wants to be downsizing or changing any aspect of their wedding, but there are lots of things you can do to ensure you keep it feeling extra special and memorable. We asked some of our lovely wedding industry friends for their best tips on how to have the most amazing small and intimate micro wedding...
As a wedding dress designer, who’s just had a very small and intimate wedding myself in September, with many of our own brides opting to do the same or postponing their nuptials, I’m only too familiar with what brides are going through right now. Read on for our best tips on how to have an incredible wedding day.
1. Choose a dress that can be easily transformed to create different bridal looks for multiple events.
We got married with just family in September in a traditional asian wedding, and we'll have a wedding ceremony to celebrate with our friends , and then a large reception with everyone another time too. If you choose a style that can be adapted and styled differently and cleverly, it will save the need to buy sevearl outfits. And if you like a dress, there's been no better time to find all sorts of extra excuses to get to wear it again. A lot of our Sabina Motasem are sad they can't wear their lovely wedding dress again. Choose styles with separates and lace or tulle over-dresses. Our Elsa dress is one of our favourite pieces and is so versatile. It can be worn as a slip-style dress with a silky sash to create a look that could be perfect for a city registry wedding and then can be completely transformed with our Margot lace over-dress for a more romantic, ethereal look.
Photographer: Dan Williams
“There are still brides who want to go ahead with their ceremony. These bride's feel like it's a win win as they're wearing their dress for both events. That way they get to wear it twice!” Sam Walsh at Sass & Grace
2. Consider versatile accessories, like beautiful hair pins and shoe clips which can create looks without costing more and perfect for two different events
Hair pins can be clustered together to create the illusion of a larger head piece or worn spaced apart for a more delicate look. This can be very useful for a bride who may be planning for two very different events. having a number of hair trials. Or who might be doing her own hair on the day and much more budget friendly. Kelly Spence has a great selection of hair pins.
“Covid-era brides are focusing on intimate weddings. They want it to be special and meaningful, but are willing to compromise for something that is already in stock. They are focused on the wedding itself rather than the extraneous details of a larger wedding.” Kelly Spence Bridal Accessory Design
Brides don’t need to buy two different pairs of shoes for two events, they can wear one and change them with different shoe clips. Freya Rose stocks a range of shoe clips.
3. Look at shoe styles with a block heel or mother of pearl heels, perfect for wearing outside on the grass, hardwearing and easily wiped clean.
Freya Rose has a selection of signature pieces featuring mother of pearl heels in her collection.
“The mother of pearl heel is not only beautiful and unique but also quite hardwearing, easily wipe clean to look beautiful for years to come. Boots are trending right now and are popular with city weddings.” Freya Rose
4. Consider buying a sample that would be available at discounted prices.
We always have a range of samples available to buy online and you may have pieces from previous collections looking for beautiful homes. Look at what we have available, it changes regularly, so check back at different times – SAMPLE SALE.
5. More brides are looking for ways they can be environmentally friendly. Choose sustainable that would be kind to the planet as well as make you feel incredible on your special day.
Quite a few designers are now adding eco-friendly options in their collections, due to the increasing demand from brides looking to have a more sustainable wedding. We recently launched The Green Collection of luxe, sustainable and affordable dresses which our brides are loving. Its “ready-to-wear”, off-the-peg dresses perfect for a brides who have little time and have little need for alterations.
Photography by Roger Wooldridge
“We created our debut ready-to-wear range, The Green Collection, of sustainable luxe dresses at affordable prices in the same signature timelessly-chic style, without compromising on quality – so that we can help more brides look and feel fabulous on their special day whatever the size and budgets of their weddings in this ever-changing world.” Sabina Motasem
6. To find inspiration, look at famous small and intimate weddings who made it look so cool and got married their way, including short gowns and suits.
Ask your designers what short styles they do and find designers who have these styles in their ranges. For shorter styles think Keira Knightley who wore a short Chanel gown she’d worn numerous times before to just 11 people, and then had a secret wedding for just friends privately in the woods in a go for broke Valentino gown – so so cool. For suits, why not channel Bianca Jagger or Carrie Bradshaw chic – who all also famously had cool, intimate weddings. Read the first in a series of articles we are running showcasing some of our favourite famous weddings here.
“Some brides are postponing the big party and big dress but not necessarily the wedding ceremony itself. Consider stocking more suits and short gowns for that registry office event.”
Clare Thompson, The Wedding Club
We’ve done a number of short gowns in our collections in the past, and we’re considering adding some to our green collection. If you’d like to see more of the same please let us know, or if there’s a style you’re looking for you can’t find anywhere for your wedding day reach out and tell us!
7. Smaller weddings means more budget to splash out on accessories, widen your search and choose a statement piece to complete your bridal look.
This is a beautiful head piece that I've always had my eye on ever since I did a bridal fair at Eltham Palace with Kelly Spence... its based on Gin Fizz and matches a paisley pattern in my wedding sari. I love it so much, that it seems such a shame to only wear on one day... I can't wait to wear this for our legal civil wedding we have next year as soon as its possible to have weddings again for a larger number than 15. We're designing a new range and I'll be wearing one of my own wedding dresses for this event, with this celebrated piece...
8. Use this time to your advantage to plan your wedding and make it as special as you possibly can.
Sally at Hair by Duboux says, "Get a date in the diary for a virtual trial via zoom, WhatsApp or FaceTime. We can discuss more natural, simplistic, understated hairstyles that you feel comfortable styling on yourself for the purpose of a digital trial. Consider it a lesson of sorts, we can chat about your haircare routine in the preparation to the wedding, including products to help assist with styling, techniques to add texture to your style. We can work together, step-by-step as I guide you in styling your own hair." Sally Duboux
9. The bridal preparations will still feel the same as it would do compared to a larger event, there will still be special moments that you’ll cherish forever.“We can use this time to our advantage, by planning more. I noticed that a lot of brides are saying ‘sod it, we’ve got to do it’. They are so happy, they’re still happy that they’ve had a beautiful day. My experience yesterday, at a bride’s wedding was that it felt absolutely still the same, with all the bridal preparations like it always used to be. Its still beautiful very positive environment. And my brides loved it. Remember that you’ll have a photographer there who will take amazing pics and you’ll have the photos to treasure forever. It might even make it even more special getting married in this environment.” Birute Thomas
10. Create lovely experiences with your groom or your chief bridesmaid at like ‘Make Your Wedding Ring’, jewellery workshops or florist workshops to make a flower crown.
Experiences and creating special moments are everything, no matter what size your wedding is. Take time to find special events out there, the journey you go on to plan your wedding is as special as the day itself. These are moments that will stay with you forever. Involve your bridal gang or your chief bridesmaid or do something extra special with your partner. Marcia is running the MINDFUL JEWELLERY MAKING WORKSHOP (image below) at her Dalston studio on Shacklewell Lane in London. Numbers are restricted to just two people and the cost of the silver is included in the price of £150. You get to make a ring and a pendant. Other places in London who offer similar workshops are Heather Stephens, Orla James, DC Jewellery and the Wedding Ring workshop.
There are lots of florists who run workshops to learn how to make your own flower arrangements, or have hen parties with your girl gang too. Check out the Flower Appreciation Society who have lots of things to choose from on their website.