Why More and More Ready-to-Wear Designers Are Getting into Bridal

Look 13 from Marchesa's Fall 2013 bridal collection. Photo courtesy of the designer.

Look 13 from Marchesa’s Fall 2013 bridal collection. Photo courtesy of the designer.

Do you have a favorite designer, label or brand—one where you know exactly what size will fit you without even trying on and who have basically never made anything you didn’t love—that you kinda wish would start turning out wedding dresses, because you just know they’d make your dream gown?

Well, it turns out a lot of people feel that way. And so more and more ready-to-wear designers are finding that, when they do wade into the waters of wedding gowns, people are scooping them up.


I read an interesting article this week on exactly this topic. For ready-to-wear designers, there are lots of ways they find themselves getting into bridal, and lots of reasons to stay there. A devoted client gets engaged and requests a wedding gown; the designer herself gets married, makes herself a dress, and everyone starts asking when she's going to do a bridal line—and then, once they're in, they find that other shoppers feel the same way. The gowns sell—because even women who can't afford to be regular clients are willing to go all out for the wedding days—people want more, and before they know it, they're regularly turning out bridal collections. Like this piece says:

And therein lies one of the biggest opportunities for ready-to-wear designers and luxury retailers targeting bridalwear: reaching an aspirational customer who is increasingly aware of high-end fashion brands, but cannot afford their products, except perhaps for that very special day that they expect to remember forever.

And the thing is, I knew this had been happening over the past few years, but when you see a bunch of them listed out—Giambattista Valli, Lanvin, Matthew Williamson, Naeem Khan (which will be debuting at the Wedding Shoppe in Wayne this winter!), Oscar de la Renta, Marchesa, J.Crew, Sophia Kokosalaki, Alice Temperley, Zac Posen (remember, he'll be designing wedding gowns for David's Bridal in a few months!)—you really can see how much the bridal world has grown in this way. And it's pretty cool.

So who are you crossing your fingers for? I'm crossing mine for Diane von Furstenberg. Her wedding gowns would be perfection.

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