Here at Wedding Ideas we’re dedicated to helping you find your dream wedding dress, and who better to help you than the designers themselves? We chatted with some of the UK’s biggest names to give you some insider knowledge about choosing the perfect gown…

Sassi Holford 2013_Annabel 2

Sassi Holford

Sassi Holford makes wonderfully romantic wedding dresses with a very English style. Brides love her frocks because of all the subtle details, the expert construction and fit and the fact that they are specially made in the UK.

What are the most popular styles of bridal gown being asked for at the moment?

Full sleeves are certainly popular at the moment, as is a soft sweetheart neckline, but more and more brides are looking to accessorise their dress so it can be restyled through the day -with a jacket and maybe a sash for the ceremony which can be taken off for the evening.

I think silk is the number one fabric choice for the coming year; it’s the different the ways in which it can be woven that make it so attractive – chiffon, duchesse, dupion, organza or crepe – all timeless.

While many of my designs are available in colours other than the traditional ivory, it’s that shade that remains very popular – it’s a classic choice.

Do you have any particular advice for brides?

Yes – avoid buying your dream dress online! The counterfeit production of wedding dresses is an on-going battle and I implore brides everywhere to go to a bridal boutique so that they can see exactly what they’re getting from the outset. I am very proud of the creativity of companies designing and making here in Britain. We deliver exceptional value for money and if a bride is happy to stretch the budget for her gown then she won’t be disappointed.

How do you think bridal fashion has changed in the last 20 years?

To a certain extent bridalwear exists outside of ‘fashion’ in that it’s all about reflecting the personality of the individual. I would say that the fashion has not changed so much as it has responded to the way in which brides have altered over the years. They’re more confident in their own style nowadays and much less likely to be swayed by friends, relatives, or family tradition into something that’s not really them.

Ian Stuart

Ian Stuart is another award-winning wedding dress designer based in the UK but with a completely different style…

If you’re looking for colours, drama and a touch of the silver screen then this is the collection you need to investigate. Stuart specialises in dramatic dresses and if you’re searching for a gown with a bustle then he’s your man. You’ll find some fabulous details on his dresses like oversized flowers, patterned fabrics and use of colours. Take a look at his catwalk videos and you’ll see what we mean.

We asked Ian a few questions about his wedding dresses…

Ian Stuart's dresses boast colour and details

Are more brides asking for dresses to wear to a destination wedding?

Within each collection I always design a number of dresses (for example Midsummer Dream and Jakarta) with a destination wedding in mind as it’s becoming an increasingly popular option, particularly with women getting married for a second time or later on in life. I think about how the dress will travel there, the mood of an exotic place and the ‘breathability’ of the dress.

What about colours?

One of my signature traits is colour. I use a pastel palette of chalky blues, pinks, honey and taupe.  Also, as we make all of our gowns to order, we often design dresses in more striking colours; red, bright pink, green, purple – and black is especially stunning!

Celebrities have always had an impact on bridal fashion. They push boundaries, and inspire girls to think unconventionally, and have definitely played a role in the popularity of colour within bridalwear; my personal favourites were Dita Von Teese and Gwen Stefani.

Any bridal gown no nos?

Never wear a watch!

How has bridal fashion changed in the last 20 years?

I have personally noticed bridal fashion becoming more varied, which I think is a beautiful thing; we are in an age that celebrates individuality and self expression. Women today are leading a plethora of different lifestyles that they want to be faithful to on their wedding day, and designers are catering for those niches.

Suzanne Neville

Red carpet chic is a good description of the fabulous wedding dresses offered by this outstanding UK designer.

Lace, buttons and scoop necklines all feature in her collection, as do thigh-high splits, lighter-than-air skirts and waist-cinching corsets.

Suzanne Neville gives us a run down about the latest bridal trends…

Cherish by Suzanne Neville

Tell us about coloured wedding gowns?

We’ve got a dress called Ballet in a soft pink and ivory tulle – which gives an ombre effect. We also offer coloured sashes to add an accent shade.

Any advice for brides?

Be yourself. Don’t listen to too many opinions from others on what you should wear. It’s your day and as long as you and your husband think you look fabulous then that’s all that matters.

Don’t have set ideas on the dress you think you want and avoid trying other styles, a wedding dress is different to any other dress you have ever worn so it’s important to try a host of different styles and shapes.

Once you have cleaned your dress after the big day you may decide to box it up or sell it. If you box it up, make sure you cover it in acid free tissue paper to keep it preserved.

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