The gown: A bridal Q & A with Heather McReynolds

Heather McReynolds is David’s Bridal Senior Bridal Buyer of designer collections.

A few years ago Kate Middleton influenced bridal gowns. Is there anyone today (or recently) in terms of a celebrity wedding or style icon who is influencing bridal gown trends and if so, who is it, what was her look and how is this being interpreted by David’s Bridal?

While there hasn’t been one specific bride who has influenced bridal gowns to the extent that Kate Middleton did in 2011, I think we are seeing a trend towards influencers (bloggers) having a more significant impact on bridal style today. Influencers have an authentic style aesthetic that is relatable and, for the most part, more attainable than the celebrity influencers of the past.

The most prevalent trends we have seen from both bloggers, celebrities and modern royals is a trend towards sleeved gowns, particularly long sleeves; a nod to tradition while still being modern in silhouette and details.  A few examples include Jamie Chung, Louise Roe, Whitney Port, Nicky Hilton, Ciara, Allison Williams, Zosia Mamet, Poppy Delevingne and Sofia Hellqvist.  Another trend we are seeing, although much less prolific, is non-traditional or alternative bridal style with brides wearing jumpers, rompers, separates, or more casual gowns on their wedding day.  A couple of examples include Olivia Palermo and Solange Knowles. When designing our new collections we always keep popular celebrity and influencer bridal trends top of mind.

What would you say are the top five bridal gown looks from your 2017 spring summer collection such as silhouettes, illusion, fabrics, sleeves/no sleeves, and neckline?

Our spring 2017 bridal collection embodies 5 key trends for the season:
1) “Turn Up The Volume” – Make a statement in bold and dramatic skirts; from frothy volume to soft diaphanous tiers of soie chiffon.
2) “Smolder And Seduce” – Flaunt a bridal bod in plunging necklines, low backs, sheer layers and sexy slits .
3) “Rose All Day” – Warm things up in shades of pink, champagne and nude.
4) “Go The Distance” – Make an entrance that goes on for days in an exaggerated train.
5) “Less Is More” – Clean and simple for a fresh and modern look.

Can you suggest two bridal gown looks for the following and the reason why you chose it? Please include the silhouette, fabrics, style or detailing.

Traditional Church Wedding

Our Oleg Cassini lace appliqued A-line gown is the perfect combination of classic opulence and modern styling, featuring an on trend off the shoulder scalloped neckline paired with beautiful full lace sleeves.

Another great option is our jewel beaded lace applique strapless sweetheart ball gown which offers a modern twist on tradition in a gorgeous vintage rose hue.

Barn or Vineyard Wedding

The float-y layers of tulle warmed by champagne lining and adorned with artisanal touches of delicate 3d florals and trailing lace appliques seen in this Melissa Sweet gown is the embodiment of rustic romantic and perfect for a barn wedding.

The long sleeves juxtaposed with the full sheer illusion back and small sweep train of our Melissa Sweet guipure lace sheath gown are a lovely compliment to the natural landscape at a vineyard wedding.

Destination Wedding

The delicate lace bodice paired with a flow-y tulle skirt in our David’s Bridal  lace and tulle wedding dress with beaded straps is the quintessential destination gown offering beautiful movement while still being lightweight and easy care.

Short gowns are having a moment and allow a bride to showcase her legs and a fab pair of shoes.  Our Galina strapless sweetheart floral lace gown is the picture perfect short gown for a destination wedding; it’s airy and light and the draped bodice detail is ultra-flattering.

Which new designer lines do you carry at David’s and can you briefly describe what each designer or line is renowned for in terms of bridal gowns?

At David’s Bridal we have exclusive collaborations with world renowned couture fashion designers, including Vera Wang (White by Vera Wang) , Zac Posen (Truly Zac Posen) and Jenny Packham (Wonder by Jenny Packham).  Wonder by Jenny Packham was the most recent addition to our designer lines with the inaugural collection launching this past spring. The gowns in the collection exude femininity and showcase craftsmanship, offering fashion-conscious brides decadence with a hint of nostalgia. Brides looking for a modern gown with a romantic aesthetic can explore offerings in the White by Vera Wang collection, while brides thinking of a glamorous, silhouette defining dress should consider browsing the Truly Zac Posen collection.

Are there any rules or suggestions about which silhouettes best suit certain body types such as pear shape, apple shape, boy shape and hourglass that you can share?

Absolutely! Body type plays a very important role in assisting a bride to find the gown that best compliments her features and vision for her big day.

“Straight” – Create curves with a style that draws you in at the waistline.  Great options for this body type include sheath, ball gown and A-line silhouettes.  And look for skirts with tiers or ruffles!
“Narrower In The Hips” – Look for a neckline that is delicate and open to balance out your broader top.  V and scoop necklines are a perfect choice!
“Fuller In The Hips” – Draw attention to your top half while disguising a fuller lower half in a flattering A-line silhouette.  Strapless, spaghetti strap and off-the-shoulder styles will also help to balance out proportions.
“Hourglass” – Flaunt your curves in a mermaid or trumpet silhouette.

How many dresses does a bride typically try on when she books a session at David’s Bridal? How does she narrow it down? When does she know she has found the right dress?

A bride-to-be typically tries on anywhere from 5-10 wedding gowns during her David’s Bridal appointment. Some brides have a clear vision for what they want in their wedding dress while others may be a little more skeptical. However, our trusted store associates are there to guide her and help her narrow down options based on what she feels most comfortable in. A bride knows she has found the right dress when she feels like the most beautiful version of her authentic self.

Anything else you wish to add in general about what David’s offers in terms of selection, designers, house brands, service, accessories, etc.?

David’s Bridal is a house of brands offering something for every bride no matter her aesthetic, venue or budget.  Our gowns are designed and crafted specifically to each brand’s aesthetic and price point. Exclusively designer for us, she can’t find these gowns anywhere else!  At David’s Bridal were committed to helping her find “the one”!