Unlike a good cocktail dress, which is designed to be a workhorse in a woman’s wardrobe, a white or cream-colored wedding dress need only dazzle its audience once. Unless, of course, it's a used wedding dress, either passed down from a beloved relative or picked up at auction or from a favorite vintage shop.

The trend for white wedding dresses started in 1840, with the union of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. Prior to Victoria's wedding, most brides wore whatever fashionable hue they wanted, since they were likely to wear the dress on other occasions. Breaking with tradition, Victoria selected an elaborate white dress featuring a long train, a bridal veil, and a crown of white blossoms. Victoria's choice of white was viewed as quite conservative since it was historically the color for mourning (decades later, Victoria would make black the defacto mourning color when her beloved Albert died). However, mass-media coverage of her wedding made her style an instant sensation, influencing brides to this day.

At the beginning of the 20th century, with the Belle Epoque in full swing, Edwardian brides were cinched into tight corsets, which were covered with wedding dresses made out of chiffon, lace, and taffeta. But by World War I, the practice of squeezing women into hourglass shapes was giving way to more natural looks. After the war, wedding dress hemlines had crept far enough off the ground to reveal a bride’s ankle.

Hemlines continued to rise throughout the 1920s, producing wedding dresses that were relatively revealing in the front with a flowing train in the back. Dresses got long again in the ’30s, were generally straight, and for the first time were equipped with a detachable train, which allowed a bride to take her solemn walk down the aisle but then cut a rug on the dance floor after.

The 1940s was a schizophrenic decade when it came to fashion, and wedding dresses were no exception. During the war years, wedding gowns followed the overall trend of boxy, broad shouldered, military silhouettes. By the late ’40s, though, all bets were off as miles of previously rationed fabrics were lavished on wedding dresses and gowns. In some cases, wedding dresses were even made from silk salvaged from surplus parachutes.

Wedding dresses returned to full femininity again in the 1950s, with tight waists and full skirts below. Sleeve styles ranged from full length to almost none at all, while necks could be left open or collared. These varied looks remained consistent into the next decade, except for those adventurous brides who chose to be married in short numbers that ended well above their knees. By the 1970s, some women dispensed with the wedding dress altogether, trading tradition for the sophisticated look of an Yves Saint Laurent white tuxedo-jacket suit.

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)



The history of 20th-century women’s fashion largely played out in the pages of magazines such as “Harper’s Ba… [read review or visit site]

Fashion Columbia Study Collection

Fashion Columbia Study Collection

The Fashion Columbia Study Collection (FCSC) is the digital home of the Columbia College Chicago’s fashion archiv… [read review or visit site]

1960s Fashion and Textiles

1960s Fashion and Textiles

Put on your go-go boots and check out this wavy, groovy tribute to 1960s fashion and textiles, courtesy of the Vict… [read review or visit site]

Vintage Fashion Guild

Vintage Fashion Guild

While primarily designed to steer buyers to online vintage clothing shops, this blog is chock full of interesting, … [read review or visit site]



Bursting at the seams with content, this site contains hundreds of pages of fashion and costume history, including … [read review or visit site]

Clubs & Associations

Most watched eBay auctions    

50s Vintage Norman Original Wedding Shelf Bust Bow Marilyn Wiggle Bolero Dress MAntique 1900s Edwardian Victorian Boho Lawn Tea Afternoon Wedding Dress BohoTrue Vintage Victorian 2 Piece Batiste And Lace Wedding Dress XsRare Antique 1920's Vintage Wedding Bridal Wax Blossom Bouquet Tiara Crown VeilExquisite Antique French 19thc Tiara Wedding Crown Porcelain Flowers Silk Ivy Women's Vtg 70's Hippie Boho Gauze Indian Gypsy Festival Wedding Lame DressVtg Vanity Fair Lace Wedding Trousseau 40s 50s Gown Nightgown Sz 34 Sheer PleatsVintage 70s Party Garden Wedding Boho Festival Hippie Lace Empire DressVintage 1970s White Mexican Crochet Lace Hippie Wedding Boho Maxi Dress XlWill Steinman Vintage 1950s Wedding Dress Tulle Sequin Leaf Pattern Vintage/antique Wedding GownVtg 70s Gauzy Cotton Draped Crochet Bell Slv Hippie Wedding Boho Maxi Dress Xs/sBeautiful Original Vintage 1950s 60s Blue Coat & Dress Suit Wedding Uk14/16Vintage/antique Romantic Boho/shabby Chic Wedding Gown/dressVtg 1950s Christian Dior Robe Chiffon Bridal Peignoir Lingerie Gown Seafoam S-m Vintage Aria Sheer Lace White Bohemian Wedding Party Maxi Dress Sz 7/8Vintage Oscar De La Renta Lace & Poly Dress Ivory 8 70's Sash Wedding UnderskirtVtg 60s 80s Sexy Pencil Fitted Wedding Cocktail Party Pin Up Joan Wiggle DressVintage Wedding Lace Dress Coin Purses Gloves 1930's Era Brown Co., Oh Sz SmallVintage 50s 60s Wiggle Mod Wedding Dress XsVintage 70s Ivory Chiffon Wedding Dress Edwardian Long Sleeves Lace Bodice1950s Ivory Stunning Lace Off Shoulder Full Skirt Wedding Dress True VintageVtg Robe Double Chiffon Sheer Peignoir Babydoll Bridal Baby Pink 120 Sweep~s-mVintage Tosca Wedding White Frilly Sheer Chiffon & Lace Nightgown & Peignoir! MVintage 1970s White Mexican Pintucks & Lace Boho Hippie Wedding Dress Xl Vintage Ivory Wedding Dress 60s Boho Maxi Hippie Long DressVintage Radcliff White Nylon Robe & Night Gown Wedding Bride Everyday 32Vtg 30's 40's Pearl Lace Train Satin Floral Long Sleeve Wedding Dress Gown S Vtg 1950s 60s Peu De Soie Lace Pearls Bow Full Train Wedding Dress -back ButtonVtg 60s Bridal Wedding Dress Boho Mod Cape Capelet Maxi Vintage 1960s Vintage Retro 80s Gatsby White Lace Scott Mcclintock Wedding Garden Party DressVtg Antique 50s 60s Ivory Tiered All Lace 3/4 Sleeves Wedding Dress Sweetheart!Vintage Wedding Dress Gown Long Sleeve With Mantilla Juliet Cap VeilVintage Teal Floral Dress - Summer Festival Dress - Wedding - Teal Floral 12/14Vtg 1960's Cream Silk Shantung Jacket And Skirt Suit Bridal Vintage 30's Style Sheer Silk Organdy Fairy Dress Boho Wedding SmAuthentic Vintage Wedding Dress 1970sGorgeous Vintage Batiste Wedding Gown White With French Ruching & Lace Size 8-10Vintage 1930s Liquid Silk Bias Wedding Dress Gown Size X-small / SmallSexy! Nos! W/tag Vtg Kayser Bridal White Nylon Lingerie Skirt Teddy! Size Large!

Recent News: Wedding Dresses

Source: Google News

Express yourself with style and grace
Toronto Star, July 3rd

Some of my family members live south of the border, so each summer I recognize their big national holiday: Independence Day. And since it comes close on the heels of Canada Day — and Pride Toronto — the atmosphere of celebration hangs in the air...Read more

Harnaam Kaur: Woman With Excess Facial Hair Does Vintage Wedding Dress ...
The Inquisitr, July 2nd

Harnaam Kaur: Woman With Excess Facial Hair Does Vintage Wedding Dress Photo Shoot To Challenge Beauty Norms. Harnaam Kaur poses for Louisa Coulhurst to challenge beauty norms. Harnaam Kaur, 23 of Slough, Berkshire, has a condition that ...Read more

Vintage wedding dress donated with touching note sells for £3k on ebay
Yorkshire Evening Post, June 23rd

A VINTAGE wedding dress that went viral after being donated to a Leeds charity shop with a touching note about its previous owner has sold for thousands of pounds. A mystery man donated the 1950's dress a St Gemma's Hospice charity shops in Garforth ...Read more

Sydney's Northern Beaches police post vintage wedding photos online to find ...
Daily Mail, June 22nd

Police have posted black and white wedding photographs on social media in an attempt to track down their owners. Northern Beaches Local Area Command officers have posted the series of five pictures found along Sydney Road in Balgowlah, in Sydney's ...Read more

Vintage wedding dress donated to charity shop with love note sells on eBay
ITV News, June 19th

Vintage wedding dress donated to charity shop with love note sells on eBay. A vintage wedding dress donated to a charity shop with a 'beautiful' love note has sold on eBay for £2,910. Dress with note. The wedding dress with a note. Credit: St Gemma's ...Read more

Vintage wedding dress in eBay bidding frenzy
Yorkshire Evening Post, June 16th

Vintage wedding dress donated St Gemma's Hospice charity shop in Garforth, by a mystery man who left a touching note talking of his happy 56 years with his wife and hoping the future buyer will be as happy. St Gemma's Hospice are now appealing to trace ...Read more

Mystery man donates wife's vintage wedding dress with moving handwritten note
myfox8.com, June 11th

LEEDS, United Kingdom — After putting out a call on Facebook, a charity shop in England was able to track down the man who left a touching, handwritten note on a donated vintage wedding dress. The beautiful ivory lace dress was donated to St. Gemma's ...Read more

15 Places to Snag a Gorgeous Wedding Dress on a Budget
StyleCaster, June 5th

Adored Vintage: If you're hoping to unearth an incredible vintage wedding dresses, take the time to sift through the online offering at Adored Vintage—mostly all the bridal inventory ranges between $100 to $300. 3. Free People: Called FP Ever After...Read more