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White by Vera Wang Debuts at David's Bridal

  • Courtesy of Vera Wang

    As of February 11, the long wait is over. Engaged girls and bridal-industry folks have been champing at the bit for a glimpse of White by Vera Wang, the haute designer's brand-new collaboration with mass retailer David's Bridal. The line of wedding dresses features Vera's signature mix of ethereal princess with a little edge, but all at down-to-earth prices ranging from $600 to $1,400. If you're done dress-shopping, the line also features veils, horsehair bows, crystal headbands, and embellished sashes, ranging from $38 to $248.

    Merchandise will be available at David's Bridal stores nationwide. And keep your eyes peeled—we hear a bridesmaid collection is in store for spring.

    Here are some of our favorites from the collection:

    This V-neck ball gown with a fully draped skirt and tulle swirls is quintessentially Vera—minus the extravagant price tag.

  • Courtesy of Vera Wang

    The draped bodice on this soft net gown gives it an instant slimming effect—no gym required. The illusion of straps and the sweetheart neckline are especially flattering for busty gals.

  • Courtesy of Vera Wang

    This goddess-inspired Empire-waist halter dress is a little sweet and a little sexy, thanks to a delicate halter neckline and a floral corsage at the bust.

  • Courtesy of Vera Wang

    The contrast of this gown's sleek one-shoulder bodice and dramatic ruffled drop-waist skirt creates a completely irresistible combination.

  • Courtesy of Vera Wang

    This simple gown is all about the details—we love the textured, tucked bodice and the slightly gathered skirt, which just skims the hips. The unfussy slim silhouette makes it a perfect option for destination weddings.

  • Courtesy of Vera Wang

    If it's a hit of color you're after, this blush fit-and-flare gown with a bias-cut ruffle skirt is a standout without being shocking.

  • Courtesy of Vera Wang

    We love the mix of textures (lace appliqué and asymmetrical knife pleats) on this strapless fit-and-flare gown, which gives it a modern and unique look.

  • Courtesy of Vera Wang

    The chic V-neck bodice and the soft flutter sleeves make this fitted gown a sophisticated choice for brides looking for a fresh neckline.

  • Courtesy of Vera Wang

    This organza stunner is a classic ball-gown silhouette with a little something extra—the cutaway top layer of the tulle skirt reveals a cluster of floral corsages just peeking out from underneath.

    —Beth Swanson, BRIDES magazine

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10 Wedding-Day Secrets From Industry Experts


Bruce Soyez-Bernard/BRIDES

BRIDES magazine has rounded up some of our favorite wedding pros and asked them to give our readers their best pointers for the party of a lifetime.

1. To diffuse any makeup stains, blot your dress with white talcum.
Francesca Pitera, Jim Hjelm

2. Bring two pairs of shoes: one for the ceremony, the other to put in the reception site's freezer. When your feet start hurting, slip on the second pair to feel instantly refreshed--trust me!
Nancy Williams, Carolina Herrera

3. On the day of the wedding, apply a skin primer to make sure your makeup stays on all day long.
Trish McEvoy

4. To look instantly refreshed, use an eye cream with caffeine to minimize dark circles.
Dr. Fredric Brandt, Dr. Brandt Skincare

5. To make the most of your cake budget, order a small, custom tiered cake and supplement it with decorated sheet cakes that can be plated behind closed doors.
Ellen Baumwoll, Bijoux Doux Specialty Cakes

6. Make a list of guests' names, assign each a number, then write the corresponding number on the back of each reply card. Guests often forget to put their names on their cards.
Melinda Morris, Lion in the Sun

7. Try to have at least a few photographs shot at sunset, when the light is perfect. That is often the time when I take the most beautiful and intimate images of the day.
Lisa Lefkowitz, Lisa Lefkowitz Fine Arts Photography

8. Wear diamond bracelets or statement cuffs to bring attention to your left hand, which is where everyone is looking.
Paul Tacorian, Tacori

9. Ask one of your bridesmaids to carry travel-size hairspray for you. It will come in handy for touch-ups (even for the groom), especially if you're taking outdoor photographs on a windy day.
Frederic Fekkai

10. If things don't go exactly as planned, go with the flow—if you relax, your guests will, too.
Alison Hotchkiss, Alison Events

BRIDES magazine

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Ballerina Wedding Looks Inspired by Black Swan


Courtesy of Niko Tavernise/Fox Searchlight Pictures (left); Courtesy of Robert Mitra (right)

The performances of Natalie Portman and Vincent Cassel in Black Swan may have garnered the adulation of the film critics, but it's the spectacular visual feast of tulle and tutus that will have brides clamoring for ballerina-inspired wedding looks for the most important role of their lives.

This season, some of the most memorable bridal designs channel Swan Lake, with dresses featuring corset tops, big tulle skirts, and feather accents. Designers such as Randi Rahm—who named one dress "Odette" after the white swan in Tchaikovsky's famous ballet—and Vera Wang—whose dresses showcase enormous, flowy, light-as-air skirts and tight bodices—allow a bride to live out her ballerina fantasy.

The best part about this style of dress is that it's forgiving to most figures. The corset creates a cinched waist and accentuates beautiful shoulders, while the skirt covers a bottom half that just might fall short of a dancer's physique.

—Millie Martini Bratten, BRIDES magazine

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The Hottest Bridal Looks From the Runway At Retail Prices

  • Photos, from left: John Aquino and Robert Mitra

    From girly minis to vintage Jackie O–inspired frocks, BRIDES editors saw tons of gorgeous dresses go down the runway during the spring 2011 bridal collections. Here, our favorite styles at prices for every bride:

    Soft and Effortless
    Both Kevan Hall and Thread went the effortless route, perfect for the fuss-free bride, with easy, flowing dresses—no restricting undergarments required.

    Kevan Hall ($9,100)
    Thread ($1,200)

  • Photos, from left: John Aquino and Kyle Ericksen

    Textured Blooms
    Lazaro and David's Bridal took texture to a new level with floral ball gown skirts—fit for the bride who relishes being the center of attention.

    Lazaro ($6,600)
    David's Bridal ($1,250)

  • Photos, from left: Thomas Iannaccone and Robert Mitra

    Art Deco
    Talk about glamour—Douglas Hannant and Sue Wong conjured old-Hollywood sophistication with lace bias-cut art deco–inspired gowns.

    Douglas Hannant ($5,500)
    Sue Wong ($549)

  • Photos by John Aquino

    Knife Pleating
    Marchesa updated its signature swirl with knife pleating, and Watters infused its version with the modern twist of a tiered ball-gown skirt.

    Marchesa ($6,995)
    Watters ($1,200)

  • Photos, from left: Thomas Iannaccone and Kyle Ericksen

    Jackie O
    Amsale's structured ball gown, J.Crew's classic slim dress: These silhouettes (both finished with a wide bow at the waist) hark back to the timeless feminine elegance of Jackie O.

    Amsale ($5,700)
    J.Crew ($1,000)

  • Photos, from left: Thomas Iannaccone and John Aquino

    Froufrou Minis
    Shorter hemlines dominated this season—specifically in the style of frilly minidresses. With their tiered, ruffled frocks, Peter Langner and Simone Carvalli showed the trend at its girliest.

    Peter Langner ($10,186)
    Simone Carvalli ($1,600)

    —Beth Swanson, BRIDES magazine

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BRIDES Magazine's Predictions for Katy Perry's Wedding Dress

  • Photo by John Aquino/WWD

    When it comes to red-carpet dressing, pop sensation Katy Perry is no wallflower. (Who could forget the gown with built-in LED lights that she rocked at this year's Met Ball?) Since the word understated is clearly not part of her vocabulary, we are eagerly waiting to see what the soon-to-be Mrs. Russell Brand will wear for her upcoming nuptials in India. Whatever she decides, we're sure it will be a showstopper.—Beth Swanson, BRIDES magazine

  • Photo by John Aquino

    If she does take the white-wedding-dress route, there's no doubt she'll go all the way—like in this over-the-top tulle-and-beaded confection from Pnina Tornai. If anyone can pull off a gown this frilly, it's girly-girl Katy.

  • Photo by Kyle Ericksen

    We could also see the singer sporting this short-and-sweet Jenny Packham frock. The silver embellishment ups the glam factor, but the black bows at the shoulders keep it playful and chic.

  • Photo by Thomas Iannacone

    The singer, who has an affinity for the cinched bodice and exaggerated skirts of retro 1950s frocks, could totally pull off Ines Di Santo's dramatic high-low ball gown. Classic but quirky—quintessentially Katy.

  • Photo by Kyle Ericksen

    If the rumors are true, Ms. Perry may end up in an original gown she's creating with Lebanese designer Reem Acra. But if she decides to go with one of Reem's own designs, this peach number could be just the ticket, complete with a tucked skirt and a crystal-embellished bodice.

  • Photo by Kyle Ericksen

    It might not be as shocking as the turquoise-and-hot-pink flamingo-printed minidress she wore during a concert last summer, but Katy would definitely make a bold statement if she swapped a solid-colored dress for Carolina Herrera's floral pastel creation. (We wouldn't be surprised if she decided to sport the feather hat, too!)

  • Photo by Thomas Iannacone

    She's not one to pass on sparkle, so Katy may not be able to resist Monique Lhuillier's ornately embellished slim dress. All eyes will be on her—and her va-va-voom curves—in this body-hugging gown.

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BRIDAL MARKET 2010: Vera Wang Celebrates 20 Years


Photo by George Chinsee

After 20 years, Vera Wang definitely knows how to make a bride look her very best and feel unique—and her spring show proved no different. Focusing on movement and draping, the ethereal collection included unconventional gowns that seemed to simply float down the runway. Standouts included a stunning smoky gray number, embellished with silver and gold crystals and cinched with a dramatic black ribbon and a buttercream-colored frock that looks less like a dress than an art sculpture (in a really good way). Suffice it to say, one of these dresses could make even the most traditional of girls want to forgo a simple white wedding dress in favor of Vera's avant-garde creations.

—Beth Swanson, BRIDES magazine

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BRIDAL MARKET 2010: Lazaro Mega Ball Gowns


Photo by John Aquino

Size really did matter at the Lazaro show, where mega ball gowns brought big-time drama. Voluminous tulle-and-organza extravaganzas, most with strapless sweetheart bodices, wafted down the runway. The most breathtaking of the bunch were an organza sunflower gown and an accordion-pleated organza confection that seem to swirl in the spotlight. Lazaro's dresses also had serious 3-D detailing, a trend that has taken over bridal design this season. Other high points: a delightful jeweled fairy-tale frock made from sherbet tulle, and a red mikado corset gown that's great for bridesmaids. At the start of the show, Lazaro dedicated the collection to his mother—without a doubt, he did her proud.

—Terrie Collymore, BRIDES magazine

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BRIDAL MARKET 2010: Alfred Angelo's 7 Disney-inspired Princess Gowns

  • Alfred Angelo has dreamed up seven wedding gowns inspired by the most iconic royalty of all: the Disney princesses. And with prices ranging from $599 to $1,199, there's sure to be a dress to indulge every bride's fantasy—regardless of her budget.—Beth Swanson, BRIDES magazine

  • 1. One of the oldest Disney heroines, Snow White is a princess with lots of gumption. (She'd have to be, to live in the woods with seven dwarfs.) So this fair-faced beauty's gown wouldn't be complete without the motif of leaves and apple blossoms.

  • 2. Delicate and feminine, Sleeping Beauty's Aurora would be the perfect princess to slip into a soft tulle gown, accented with roses at the shoulder and on the bodice.

  • 3. This mermaid dress is a no-brainer for Ariel, the princess of the sea. Inspired by the redheaded daughter of Neptune, this sexy dress may come sans bikini top, but it does feature luscious pearls and sparkly sequins.

  • 4. Angelo imagined Jasmine, the sole princess who wears comfortable pants instead of a constricting dress, rocking a slinky sheath on her wedding day. But that's not to say that Aladdin's fuss-free princess isn't glam—the embellished neckline adds the perfect amount of detail.

  • 5. With its off-the-shoulder neckline and full skirt, this ladylike dress is fit for both a wedding ceremony and an elegant ballroom reception, just like Belle's yellow gown in Beauty and the Beast.

  • 6. Cinderella, the epitome of "princess," was the inspiration for this embellished and shimmering number. The gown even gives a nod to the story's glass slipper, but brides can relish wearing this dress long after the clock strikes midnight.

  • 7. Sassy brides can take cues from Disney's youngest and most progressive-thinking princess, Tiana from The Princess and the Frog. This strong floral one-shoulder gown is complete with a statement-making pick-up skirt.

    Photos Courtesy of Disney and Robert Mitra

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BRIDAL MARKET 2010: Marchesa's Origami Inspiration


Photo by John Aquino

With dress after dress swathed in frills, tulle, lace, texture, and the designer's signature sculptural swirl, Marchesa's spring 2011 bridal show was otherworldly. Standouts included a full ball gown made entirely of pleated origami fans, and a delicate lace number with an oversize cascading front ruffle. But not even these stunners overshadowed their frothy, poufy minidresses—they're just so good, they might even persuade you to wear an adorable shortie for both your ceremony and your reception.

—Beth Swanson, BRIDES magazine

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BRIDAL MARKET 2010: J. Crew's Simple Silhouettes


Photo by Kyle Ericksen

The easy, breezy, sophisticated style of J.Crew continues to be en pointe with the company's spring 2011 collection—think glam garden party. Simple silhouettes are embellished with unexpected details, such as a layer of sequins underneath a fuss-free crinkle-chiffon sheath, a trumpet gown with organza and cotton-pique stripes, and a short ruffled frock with varying tiers of feathers and lace. One of our faves is a slim gown with crisscross straps and a dramatic exposed back. But of course, it wouldn't be J.Crew without a little nod to menswear. Their stylists recommend stealing your fiancé's belt and wrapping it around the waist of your wedding dress—quintessentially J.Crew.

—Beth Swanson, BRIDES magazine

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BRIDAL MARKET 2010: Monique Lhuillier Flaunts Floral


Photos by John Aquino

Inspired by the delicate petals of a flower, Monique Lhuillier's newest bridal collection is definitely not for shrinking violets. With whimsical flourishes such as tiered ruffles, ladylike lace, and organza petals, these dresses are for the bride who wants to indulge her girly, feminine side. An extravagant wedding would be the perfect venue to show off one of our favorites: a crystal-embellished trumpet gown, splashed with a sweet lavender sash that's cinched at the waist. And for the bride planning to make a costume change to tear up the dance floor at the reception, the mini number is irresistible.

—Beth Swanson, BRIDES magazine

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BRIDAL MARKET 2010: Badgley Mischka's 3-D Floral Dresses


Photo by John Aquino

Enchanting floral frocks were the stars of the show at today's Badgley Mischka preview. Three-dimensional posies provided the major drama and were lavished on slim, romantic A-line gowns. The standouts among the group were a pearl silk-organza blossom-covered dress and a buttercream charmeuse strapless look featuring a full petal skirt that really fluttered. Of course, no Badgley Mischka show would be complete without some sass and sparkle. Cue the silk-taffeta minidress with a feather shrug (an after-party number if we ever saw one) and the beaded bolero worn over a sexy mermaid gown. We also have to give the designers big props for the to-die-for accessories—that chunky coin bracelet was mega-fabulous.

—Terrie Collymore, BRIDES magazine

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BRIDAL MARKET 2010: Reem Acra's Modern-Day Princess Gowns


Photos by Thomas Iannaccone

Reem Acra's spring 2011 bridal show was a nod to the classics. Inspired by leading ladies in iconic films such as Gone With the Wind and The King and I, Reem took timeless silhouettes and updated them with her signature details—extraordinary beadwork, lavish ball-gown skirts, and delicious fabrics. Perfect for a modern-day princess bride.

—Ellen Heisler, BRIDES magazine

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BRIDAL MARKET 2010: David's Bridal Convertible Wedding Dress


Photo by Kyle Ericksen

There was plenty of romance, plus a few unexpected delights, at the David's Bridal New York fashion preview. A trio of fabulous convertible dresses from the David's collection provided the biggest surprise. With a flick of a few snaps and hooks, or a pull of a zipper, charming ball gowns became sassy knee-length cocktail numbers right before our eyes. It was like fashion magic. Our fave: a voluminous taffeta and tulle frock that transformed into an fun bubble minidress (viva la volume!)—perfect for dancing up a storm at the reception. David's fans will be gleeful to get two fantastic looks for a virtual steal—each dress will retail for under $700. We also have to give an honorable mention to a painterly floral organza gown and fetching bridesmaids frocks done in juicy watermelon and lemon shades. So fresh!

—Terrie Collymore, BRIDES magazine

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Four Fall Wedding Trends

Autumn is quickly becoming the new spring, as a favored time of year to get married for brides-to-be. Here's our hit list of unexpected wedding trends for this season.


Courtesy of The Dessy Group

Bright Bridesmaids' Dress

This fall, short dresses are in, especially in sexy jewel tones. (Think amethyst or teal.) Combine this gorgeous look with a pair of metallic shoes for a stylish statement that can be worn even after the wedding day.

Dress: Lela Rose Bridesmaid


Courtesy of Rosa Clara

Tiered, Sexy Wedding Dress

A racy yet romantic trend for wedding gowns is the corset-top dress, with its flirty and fun attitude. Also popular is the tiered, ruffled dress that's both fancy and classic. Chilly fall day? Try adding a fur scarf (go faux, if you're on a budget).

Dress: Rosa Clara


Photo by Romulo Yanes/BRIDES

Exotic Tablescape

Autumn is the perfect time to think spicy global. A textured, tribal table runner made of ikat fabric is an exotic touch on dining tables, and jewel tones mixed with rich hues in the centerpieces and flowers tie it all together. For the finishing touch, incorporate regal-looking peacock feathers into the napkin holders.

Table linens: Similar style available at Party Rental Ltd.


Photo by Andrew McCaul/BRIDES

Dainty Dessert

We've seen lots of pie served at weddings as an alternative to the traditional tiered cake, but you'll probably be the first on your block if you serve pie in lollipop form. Pie pops come in favorite seasonal flavors, like apple or pear, and can be given to each guest as the end of the meal or wrapped with a bow as a favor (so you can still have your gorgeous white cake).

Pie pops: Peter Callahan Catering

—Taryn Berkowitz, BRIDES magazine

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