Ever since Kate Middleton walked down the aisle in stunning McQueen long-sleeved gown designed by English wedding dress designer Sarah Burton, brides nowadays are much more eager to resemble her regal and romantic bridal look. The traditional beauty of strapless wedding dresses are now replaced with long-sleeved gowns, completed with lace overlays and in more classic silhouette. So now, let’s take a closer look at the beauty and allure of long-sleeved wedding dresses.
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Long time ago, women only had one dress style option—long-sleeved dress style. Ever since, long-sleeved wedding dresses represents female modesty. An ancient long-sleeved wedding dress featured a closed neckline and sleeves that flowed down to the fingers. The traditional wedding gown, however, was also a fashion statement for women of long ago. A bride from a wealthy family could wear a long-sleeved bridal dress made of damask and velvet with trimmings of silk and satin.
Today’s long-sleeved dresses doesn’t have to follow its traditional look. Modern long sleeve bridal gowns don’t need to look vintage or ancient at all to be able to convey modesty. The long sleeves can already give the impression of femininity and modest look regardless of the neckline style and bodice cut. It is also able to emanate a sense of modern elegance and formality.
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Many brides still prefer long sleeve dresses simply because it looks modest. Your dress can have the sleeves in the same material as the majority of the dress and feature a simple round neckline. It’s also possible to look modest and daring at the same time with long sleeve dresses. Have your dress’ sleeves made of light fabric and then pick an off-shoulder style neckline. Another option is to have the neckline in square or V-neck style.
For All Seasons
You can wear a long-sleeved wedding dress in whatever season your wedding would take place. A sleeve made of a material same as the rest of the gown can keep you warm during cold season, while an elegant long sleeves made of light fabric, like organza and chiffon, can make you feel more comfortable even under warm weather on your wedding day.
Benefits of Long-Sleeved Dresses
There are a couple of reasons why long sleeve dresses is perfect for brides, though it depends on the taste and figure of each bride.
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• Intricately designed sleeves draw onlooker’s attention to the upper torso, specifically to the arms, and away from the lower body. Therefore, dresses with long sleeves are a great option for if you’re not very confident with your hips and thighs.
• Square shoulders often look a bit masculine, and wearing a dress with sleeves helps soften the profile for a more feminine look.
• Of course, long sleeves provide full coverage to the arms. So, reserved types of brides or brides with bigger arms may like the coverage that these gowns provide as it will enhance comfort and boost the confidence as well.
• For lovers of dramatic appeal, laced sleeves instantly provide a sense of formality. You can also choose a dress with sleeves ending a few inches past your elbow to give some room for gloves.
Styles of Sleeves
Basically, there are two styles of sleeves to choose from: opaque and sheer.
• Opaque. Although many of today’s brides are typically less modest compared to our counterparts from medieval ages, there are still a few who prefer modest and conservative look. For these brides, considering opaque sleeves made from the same fabric as the dress will provide full coverage to the arms.
• Sheer. For brides who want to combine modesty with modernity, think of The Royal Wedding and have your dress’ sleeves made of sheer materials. Sheer sleeves are often decorated with lace flowers and offer a really romantic look.
Trendy Long-Sleeved Dresses
Wedding dresses with long sleeves are making a comeback in the recent years, and most brides choose from these trendy style choices.
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• Sleek and Modern. This is probably the most popular style of long-sleeved wedding dress. These dresses usually have sheer and tailored sleeves, like the one worn by Kate Middleton on her royal wedding. The sleeves are often embroidered with lace details and rhinestones. Oftentimes, this style is found on ¾-length sleeves.
• Classic and Romantic. Class and romance is exuded by dresses with bell sleeves. Bell-style sleeves are flared at the end part of the sleeve, either from the elbow or at the wrist, and evokes a historical and romantic feeling. Corset bodices and full skirts look medieval and lovely with bell sleeves, and matches well a traditional-themed wedding.
• Loose and Retro. These dresses also feature sheer style sleeves, but are loose and puffy. The rest of the dress doesn’t feature much intricate details, has straight skirt or an empire waistline. The retro appeal of such wedding gowns looks great when matched with bold head pieces that are making an impact in today’s bridal fashion trend.
Avoid long sleeves if…
Unfortunately, long sleeves are not for all brides. If you’re naturally small in stature, you’ll look out of proportion with long sleeves. Likewise, if you have beautiful shoulders and well-toned arms that deserve recognition, you might want to skip the sleeves and show them off by wearing a strapless gown instead.
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Wedding dresses with long sleeves are classic and elegant choices. If you want the traditional look of long sleeves but don’t want to stay all covered up the entire night, let your dressmaker make detachable sleeves or wear a sheer shrug that matches your bridal dress. You can remove the sleeves or shrug after the ceremony, leaving you free to move and dance all night.
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