The Victorian style took its name during the reign of Queen Victoria (1837-1901), whose influence interfered into all spheres of life and could be traced in practically everything, let along wedding dresses. Victorian style wedding dresses are chosen because of their romantic look, created with layers of soft satin and encrusted fabric. Victorian bridal gowns are designed to accentuate an hour-glass bodily constitution with their tight bodices and full skirts made from layers of crinoline underneath and hoop skirts. Also, historical photos give us some ground to consider a Victorian style wedding dress a separate upper part and skirt.
One way or another, hosting a Victorian-style wedding is not where you can be thrifty. Every detail must create the touch and the feel of that period on your theme wedding ceremony that is typically arranged in the morning. Morning weather and natural daylight are supposed to comfort the atmosphere. A synonym to a Victorian wedding is gloss. A ballroom with costly décor, floral ornaments and lace peculiarities are classical attributes of this special day.
While a groom wears a tuxedo with a long waistcoat, a hat and gloves, a bride has a wider selection of Victorian dresses models. A universal Victorian style wedding dress pattern goes like this: a silhouette of a classical Queen Victoria’s dress is a slim top made even smaller with a corset, a puffy dress embellished with floral elements and lace and off-the-shoulder sleeves. However, depending on the choice of fabric and a peculiar fashion style one can single out such wedding dress patterns as civil-war style, early Victorian, late Victorian and floral style.
Key-points of a civil-war style wedding dress are heavy skirts, abundance of lace on top of tender muslins, luxurious velvets or brocades. This wedding gown pattern was likely to be produced in Paris and soon simplified (less decoration and lace) to correspond with modern traditions.
As for early Victorian bridal gowns, they were worn in 1850s and contained everything a classical Victorian style presupposed: puffy sleeves, fixed at the forearm area, tight corsets and wide skirts with which it is often difficult to pass through the doorway. A typical fabric to be used for sewing the dress was heavy satin or velvet.
Unlike early Victorian wedding dresses, Victorian style gowns of later times (since 1880) featured less puffy silhouettes, straighter sleeves and lighter fabric types such as organdy or linen. Nevertheless, late Victorian wedding dresses were richly decorated and wrapped with fur capes.
The last kind of Victorian style gowns – floral style – speaks for itself. A floral embellishment is pinned all over the dress, including the hem. Not only artificial but also real flowers were used.
Take your time to consider all nuances and evoke the Victorian era on your own wedding!