Modern Wedding Dresses are the New Chique

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with modern wedding dresses you want to be today's modern couture bride -someone who will wear the latest fashions with verve and elegance. 

Who are the designers to watch?  What are they showing this year?  

Giorgio Armani created the wedding apparel several years ago for the Tom Cruise-Katie Holmes union.  The bride wore an off-the-shoulder design rendered in layers of silk and lace, embroidered and embedded with crystals.  The couple exchanged vows in a castle in Italy.  Armani remains popular today.

Vera Wang categorizes her brides, although every woman contains elements of several types.  If you are a traditionalist, you will embrace the style of Grace Kelly or Jacqueline Kennedy.  A modernist will reach out for the unusual, possibly offending some but ultimately impressing everyone.  If you fall under the romanticist label, you seek to weave your fantasies into your daily routines.  The individualist goes for a look that no one else has ever worn.  And the minimalist believes in simple elegance, yet appreciates that true simplicity requires just the right touch. 

David Tutera came to fame and fortune in his work as wedding planner extraordinaire, and then commissioned Dress House Faviana to create a line of gowns based on creations worn by celebrities on the red carpet.  He believes that every bride is a celebrity on the day of her wedding. 

Oleg Cassini is showing many A-line styles with chapel trains, which descend about four feet from the waist, or sweep trains, that just brush along the floor.  The waist band is celebrated with a variety of embellishments, and the flowing skirts features 3D or hand-detailed lace appliqués.

Contemporary French wedding dresses from Cymbeline Paris, without further comment.

Those are just a few of today's designers.

No matter who your personal favorite is, expect with modern wedding dresses a variety of features:

The short gown, which reaches knee length and shorter, incorporates a high amount of structure into the dress.  Perhaps it's long on design to compensate for being short on fabric!  Many of them have a 1950s look to them.  This season's mini dresses are using lace inserts freely.  Asymmetry is popular on shorter gowns, with both the neckline and the hemline slanting in point-counterpoint. 

The longer gown shows a soft, flowing, draped look.  Expect a Grecian charm to its lines-something you would see on a goddess!  Pick-up skirts-picture tiers of fabric-allow for texture interplay.  Soft fabrics such as crepe and silks-Chinese and dupioni are most popular right now-fall softly so that the body is gently encased.  The hem just reaches the floor and trains are minimal.  We are seeing some ball gowns with the traditional full skirt, but, again, pick-up layers are used to update this timeless silhouette. 

Ruching and ruffles are used sparingly. Many designers are using ruching only at waist level, or embroidery diagonally across the torso, from the bosom to just below the waist.  Crystals, pearls, and beads are very popular with modern wedding dresses. 

Necklines come in many varieties on modern wedding dresses.  You can opt for the sweetheart neckline-anyone remember Angelina Jolie at 2009's Oscars?-or a deep, plunging V-neckline.  Many necklines are asymmetric, and when the cut across the décolleté is slanting it enhances the Grecian effect. 

One design aspect that sets modern wedding dresses apart from other styles is the huge amount of attention paid to the back of the dress. Designers are featuring cutouts, which mean just what you think -strategically placed to pique interest. We are also seeing lots of asymmetrical cuts, and back panels are also displaying intense use of sashes and bows.

Today's modern wedding dresses are almost universally strapless. For those brides getting married in churches that require sleeves for modesty, boleros or wraps are featured in tiny lacy patterns or thick lustrous satin. Gloves have made a huge comeback, particularly long gloves to coordinate with the strapless look.

Glitz is de rigueur on today's bride. Along with that strapless, long-gloved look, expect to see lots of diamonds and then more diamonds. Dangling earrings, once verboten on brides, elevate the element of glamor.

Gold or silver wedding dresses with according color of shoes work well with today's styles.

Today's modern bride who is also a shopaholic is happily embracing a new trend: The bride chooses two dresses. One is worn for the wedding ceremony, and the other for the reception.

This new tradition originated when the bride was forced to wear a family dress or something picked out by a relative; it gave her the opportunity to showcase her own style later on at the reception. But more and more often, brides are picking out two dresses just because it's their day to look beautiful and they want to dress up!

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