Following Boris’ announcement yesterday, UK summer weddings are officially back on the agenda. From April 12th, 15 participants are allowed to increase to 30 from May 17th.

London wedding dress designer Kate Halfpenny says she has already been “inundated” by phone calls. “We already had a large waiting list of brides ready to come in and have seen another spike since yesterday’s announcement,” she says.

But after a year of yo-yo bans, repeated shifts, and micro-marriages, women are still looking for the princess dresses they longed for before the pandemic?

The hunt for The One (the dress, not the life partner) once involved searching bridal boutiques before landing on the perfect princess creation, and then returning several times over the course of a few months for supplies before Big Day.

In a year when budgets have been cut and sustainability has come to the fore, high street wedding dress sales have increased and a used wedding dress industry has developed. In fact, according to, 67 percent of brides no longer want a bespoke couture dress, and “casual wedding dress” was Googled 158 percent more in January 2021 than it was in January 2020. It seems many are into the overall meringue Ask a Question.

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“The needs of someone getting married today are very different from the needs of someone getting married a year ago,” says Erdem Moralıoğlu, creative director of luxury label Erdem, which launched its first off-the-shelf bridal collection last week Has. The year-round collection of seven summery Broderie Anglaise midis and ditsy cotton voile maxi dresses is surprisingly airy for a designer who normally specializes in princess fantasy.

“When I created the collection, I was more relaxed about it. I love the idea that these pieces work in different contexts and environments. “

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RIXO, the favorite of wedding guest dresses, who presented its first wedding dress capsule on the London Fashion Week program, is also jumping on the bridal wagon. The capsule is made from a bespoke silk with minimal crease marks for ultimate functionality. It starts at £ 295 and includes a registry office jumpsuit as well as a two-piece skirt and blouse, as well as more traditional boho lace options.

“We wanted there to be an eternal element,” says co-founder Henrietta Rix. “For example, the ostrich feather-trimmed jacket and silk midi skirt can be easily styled into an everyday wardrobe.”


This growing appetite for wedding wear again has motivated former Condé Nast Brides editors Lily Dixey and Lizzie Gray to start the bridal website Little L, which launched last week, and which has the best wedding dresses and jumpsuits from cool young folks has brands such as Harmur and Seren in stock.

“We definitely feel that there has been a gap in the market for an alternative to the traditional wedding look for a while,” says Dixey. “We want to offer pieces that you can walk down the aisle one week and wear to a party the next.”


The trend gained momentum before Covid. Matches launched its fashion-forward bridal department in January 2020 with a narrow selection of white dresses from brands like Christopher Kane, Molly Goddard and Galvan. while Browns Fashion started processing at the end of 2019.

“Even before the pandemic, we had seen a real shift towards a more relaxed bride,” says Holly Tenser, Browns’ purchasing manager. “I think now, more than ever, brides are looking for something that is wearable yet chic. There is no longer an understanding that the big white dress is the only way to achieve this.”


Even Brown’s Bride, usually a go-to shop for traditional, bespoke princess dresses, has noticed that women have chosen not to make adjustments, but instead to go for designer swatches that they can wear off the shelf. Vivienne Westwood dresses, which are made from natural silk and can later be dyed a different color, and Viktor & Rolf’s two-piece ivory suits, which are easy to incorporate into a wardrobe after the wedding, were both popular.

Halfpenny London

“I think the trend of being able to wear elements of your wedding outfit is continuing,” says Halfpenny, who has seen an increase in demand for wedding anniversaries. Loungewear label Sleeper, known for its feather-light pajamas, launched a bed-ready bridal capsule back in 2017 after noticing women wearing their silky separates for the big day.

If walking in a pair of white feathered PJs isn’t the highlight, I don’t know what it is.

Shop some of our favorite casual bridal looks:

Galvan Molly Goddard Sadness Ghost fashion Paula Knorr boom Galvan RIXO

Carlotta plunging back silk maxi dress, £ 975, Rixo |

ghost Kate Halfpenny Retrofitting Goes with fashion Little L. Kate Halfpenn

Kelly Off Shoulder Satin Midi Dress, £ 1895, Halfpenny London |

Asar by Nikeen Asar


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