The wedding dress. What an impressive dress. Hopes and dreams, promises and rituals are wrapped in its threads, and even the most cynical of us cannot deny their romance.

A person standing in front of a body of water: from frothy vintage tulle to elegant modern satin, Lynne Coleman pays tribute to the romance of bridal fashion

© Lynne Coleman
From foamy vintage tulle to sleek, modern satin, Lynne Coleman pays tribute to the romance of bridal fashion

I could lose hours browsing through piles of poofery in beloved stores. I would make friends with charity shop workers just to freak the hiding place in the background. Then, during the lockdown, I flipped through endless bridal listings on eBay.

At first it was for a perfectly legitimate reason. After almost a decade of working with DC Dalgliesh, there is so much excess tartan in my archive that I told myself I need to turn it into outfits. So I set out to find inspiration in the delicate clothes of the 1950s and 1960s. I was seduced by the bohemian vibe of the 1970s before falling into the rabbit hole of the 1980s meringue dome. Then, like the smell of salt, the nineties helped me come to my senses wearing slim clothes, which reaffirmed my confidence in simple silhouettes.

When 10 wedding dresses showed up around the house, I had the perfect excuse to reassure my partner: I used them as a dress sample. But when I opened each package and held the various satins, crepes, silks and brocades in my hand, I knew that I couldn’t cut them up.

Gallery: Nobody’s Child brings a wonderful clothing collection onto the market with Simply Be (Good Housekeeping UK)

one person wearing a dress: £ 35.00 BUY NOW

Now I’m stuck with a mini vintage bridal showroom and a pretty confused spouse. Last week when I held up the oversized brocade from the 1980s while recording a podcast with Savannah Miller (aka the queen of bridal design), she said, “Oh Lynne, this dress would be amazingly made of tartan!” This lady is seldom wrong in terms of fashion.

We chatted about everything textile, from her St. Martin’s roots to Alexander McQueen’s sidekick. Then there was the story of those paparazzi hiding a tree during their own wedding.

A sandy beach by the sea: Lynn Coleman

© Lynne Coleman
lynne coleman

After all of this, you’d think my thirst for wedding dresses would be quenched. Until Christopher Kane brought out a bridal line, I can’t stop thinking about it now. His cropped pearlescent jacket slung over the shoulder of one of Savannah’s briefs would be the perfection of a date night gown – a fashionable marriage made in heaven.


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