Is Black the new White in Wedding Gowns?

Is Black the new White in Wedding Gowns?



After Vera Wang’s fall 2012 Bridal Show she will have us won­der­ing “is Black the new White ” in wed­ding gowns.  Here is what the New York Times said.….

AFTER a sea­son of high-profile wed­dings, begin­ning with Kate Middleton’s royal affair and cul­mi­nat­ing with Kim Kardashian’s blowout, could bridal design­ers be expe­ri­enc­ing white-dress fatigue?


For her fall 2012 bridal show this month, Vera Wang, who designed Ms. Kardashian’s wed­ding dress and those of count­less other famous brides, sent a flock of black wed­ding dresses down the run­way. I found black to be fresh and tongue-in-cheek, Ms. Wang said in a tele­phone inter­view. With all the big wed­dings that hap­pened this year, it was fun to step out of the box.

 Ms. Wang, who has been in the bridal busi­ness for nearly 22 years, has dab­bled in pur­ple, pale green and dusky neu­trals in past bridal col­lec­tions, but never in a palette this out. In an indus­try that is as tradition-bound as this one, and given Ms. Wang’s rep­u­ta­tion as a set­ter of trends” wed­ding attire as ready-to-wear; gowns with swirls of ruf­fles (see Chelsea Clin­ton) ” the col­lec­tion caused quite a front-row stir.

It was shock­ing and out­ra­geous, but it was also fab­u­lous, said Mark Ingram, the owner of the Mark Ingram Bridal Ate­lier in Man­hat­tan. It was bold, but it also made me pay atten­tion to the details all that more carefully.

Ms. Wang bal­anced her inky palette with sheer lay­er­ing on bodices and skirts. She drew on lin­gerie motifs with exposed corsets, and added insets of frothy gray tulle. Even so, the looks were far from sweet and vir­ginal; they were almost gothic.

I did take it to a witchy kind of place, she admit­ted. For me, it helped build a sense of mys­tery that I was hun­gry for. And it added this sen­su­al­ity and sex­u­al­ity, and a lit­tle bit of sever­ity, too.

Ms. Wang, who has the safety net of a more tra­di­tional and acces­si­ble line for the David’s Bridal chain, designed the col­lec­tion while she was in Los Ange­les, far from her New York head­quar­ters. The dis­tance, she said, had freed up her per­spec­tive, allow­ing her to explore novel ways for black to read wed­ding day. Not that the noirish hue would be all that strange at her home base. (No mat­ter what peo­ple say, black is very asso­ci­ated with New York, she said.) But the col­lec­tion had per­sonal res­o­nance as well.

I wore white on my wed­ding day, Ms. Wang said. I was very frus­trated, it being so tra­di­tional at the time, but the bridal indus­try wasn’t so evolved back then.

Con­ven­tional eti­quette would still say that a bride (and no one else) should be in white at a wedding.

The bride who chooses the black dress does not care about eti­quette, said Jung Lee, a founder of, an event-planning com­pany in Man­hat­tan. Ms. Lee advises brides on the intri­ca­cies of every­thing from invi­ta­tions to attire. That’s not to say she doesn’t have man­ners, she said, but it’s cer­tainly not eti­quette. My advice is that she really think about it, and not just in the short term. Think how the pic­tures would look 10, 20 years from now. A bride in black will draw more atten­tion than one in white or ivory. You have to be pre­pared for that.

In the celebrity-saturated con­text of the times, the black wed­ding dress may her­ald a new phe­nom­e­non: the wed­ding aisle as red car­pet. Ms. Wang’s darkly roman­tic wed­ding gowns would be equally at home at an impor­tant awards show. And for many brides, the wed­ding day (the expen­sive gown, makeup and acces­sories) is the clos­est thing to a red-carpet rit­ual. Is it that much of a stretch to say that the celebrity expe­ri­ence has become the modern-day fairy tale?

Source: The New York Times
Writ­ten By: Bee-Shyuan Chang

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