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Wedding Fashion, Fall 2007
by: Michael Kabel

    Are you a fashion-forward bride? Will your wedding be the designer event of the fall?

Innovative style and creative design are making their mark on the modern wedding, and every year the latest trends become that much more elegant and original. If you’re searching for the perfect way to inject a little ultra-modern cool into your bridal gown – or if you want to treat your guests to the best in couture events, check out our fashion tips for Fall 2007 below.

Bridal Gowns
When it comes to bridal gown fashion, 2007 looks a lot like 1957, with a delicate emphasis on the ethereally beautiful and the lightly sophisticated. Some couture designers are taking their cues from the subtle sophistication of the “Good Old Days” of the 1950s; others are taking a more elaborate route, imbuing gowns with the ultra-soft femininity of taffeta and tulle, bubble hems, and circle skirts.  

While an age known for straight-ahead lines and no-nonsense Modernist styling might seem an odd choice of inspiration, one expert says the meaning behind all the new austerity is clear. “There’s a definite desire to make the wedding gown as romantic as possible right now,” says Atlanta-based wedding expert Sandy Medina. “People are feeling old-fashioned and traditional. You’re seeing that idea of celebrating the classic reflected in all kinds of formalwear.”

Medina says designers’ emphasis on structured shapes such as trumpet skirts and column sheaths is a direct result of the everything-old-is-new-again atmosphere on the runway. Such shapes also complement the bride herself.
    
“Brides are really becoming the centerpiece of the modern wedding, in ways they never were before,” she adds. “It’s only fitting that the wedding gown itself highlights and calls attention to the feminine form.”
    
That’s why some designers are accentuating a “goddess” look of flowing fabrics, dewy makeup schemes and billowy trains. Some gowns also feature a “Belle Époque” look cultivated from 19th Century Parisian styling. Full-length sleeves, bustles, and elaborately crafted backs evoke late-Victorian elegance but make a simple statement of delicate style at the same time. Cultural historian Jennifer Conner says modern audiences can’t help but feel a connection to that moment in time when it comes to wedding romance.
       
“Modern consumers are hardwired to think ‘one hundred years ago’ when we hear the words ‘classical’ or ‘traditional’,” Conner says. “The late Victorian period was as good as it gets for that entire period. It was the high water mark before all the changes that came with the 20th Century.”

Bridesmaids Gowns
    
Much like the retro-hip austerity of the Modernist bride, the latest in bridesmaids’ dresses involves simple lines, columnar sheaths, and off the shoulder bodices. The twist for fall, however, involves vividly living color. “It’s not the cut of the dresses this year so much as their shade,” Medina explains. “Brides are going with hues that would’ve been outrageous just ten years ago. We’re seeing a lot of oranges, a lot of aquamarines, and even some deep purple.”
    Turning up the volume on the bridesmaids dresses lets brides add some pop to even the most traditional weddings.
    “Orange is probably the hottest color right now. It’s a marked contrast to the white of the wedding gown, and when paired with a darker brown or kiwi makes a really sumptuous statement when the wedding party assembles for the ceremony.”

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