While the Spring 2022 bridal collections were virtual again, designers definitely looked to a (hopefully near) bright future, when weddings are full-on back again. Also, because we deserve it after more than a year of rescheduled nuptials and Zoom ceremonies.
Whether minimalist or maximalist or in-between, the wedding style trends across the board feel exceptionally celebratory. Interesting and inspired details — like romantic ruffles, puff sleeves and an exuberant mix of opulent embellishments and textures — abound, on styles ranging from a spectacular ball gown straight out of a fairy tale or party-like-it's-the-Roaring-Twenties separates you can wear again. And, to no one's surprise, certain elements may look familiar to our stay-home year of comfortable dressing and Netflix binge-ing.
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Below, click through galleries of the top 12 bridal trends of Spring 2022.
Fantastical Fairy Tale Gowns
Designers interpreted fairy tale and magical lore into the most elaborate wedding dresses to fulfill the dreamiest of dream weddings. New York-based Andrew Kwon debuted his bridal collection with a modern take on traditional bridal florals and ruffles, while Los Angeles-based Odylyne the Ceremony evoked the '80s film "Return to Oz" with exaggerated puff sleeves, majestic ruffles and enchanted shimmer. Ines di Santo, Kim Kassas Couture and Claire Pettibone reimagined Greek mythology with romantic draping, corsetry and intricate lace. And The Atelier Couture by Professor Jimmy Choo OBE went all-out with extravagant color, beading and embroidery, bringing Queen Elsa's big moment in "Frozen" to mind.
The Wedding (Nap) Dress
Easy, voluminous shapes, romantic puff and flutter sleeves and alluring bare shoulders look resplendent — and, importantly, feel comfortable — especially for outdoor weddings, which will continue into 2022. New York label (and Dr. Jill Biden-approved) Markarian reinterprets Alexandra O'Neill's signature sculptural shapes into Renaissance portraiture-inspired wedding gowns. Taking the nap dress concept further with a peignoir set, Brenna Simmons's Nordeen debuts with flexible, flowing modern layers designed specifically for nature-themed nuptials.
You knew this was coming, right? Of course, Daphne's exquisite cap sleeves, square necklines and corsets feature strongly in the latest bridal collections. Taking a cue from "Bridgerton" costume designer Ellen Mirojnick, put your own spin on Regency decadence through opulent Featherington feathers (like an Elie Saab off-the-shoulder ballgown), Penelope's signature buttercream yellow (in a structured fit-and-flare mini-dress by couture designer Yemi Osunkoya's Kosibah) or Eloise's bows and sheer layers (in Wiederhoeft's draped corset gowns).
Smoking-Hot Cold Shoulder
Cut-outs and asymmetry offer alternatives to the alluring off-the-shoulder aesthetic, while coincidentally speaking to the hottest fashion trend to come out of the vaccine roll-out. (Thank you, Dolly Parton!) Temperley London softens the look with a languid silhouette, floral patterns and billowing ruffles, while Savannah Miller adds a dash of edge to a long-sleeve, Grecian-draped gown in her "love conquers all"-themed collection, celebrating our emergence from this very challenging year.
Statement-Making Veils and Headpieces
Dramatic veils and imaginatively embellished headbands are also making a comeback. Monvieve — designer of sustainable, made-to-order veils — notes an "uptick" in requests for headpieces and masks for the upcoming season. In addition to her own line, milliner Gigi Burris collaborated with fellow New York City cool-kid label Markarian on a capsule of veils and headpieces, while Halfpenny London released the "Unveiled" capsule featuring statement headbands and daisy-embroidered veils to coordinate with the London-based brand's signature separates.
Florals are, of course, a forever wedding fashion theme, but this season, designers took the nature motif to the next level with celebratory color-play: bold and vibrant embroidery, as seen from Temperley London and Naeem Khan; breathtaking 3D appliqués from Claire Pettibone and Gracy Accad; joyful prints from Romona Keveža and White One by Pronovias.
Designers celebrated artistry, textures and dimension with expert pleating. Elie Saab's delicate origami-folded Mikado on a sweetheart neckline almost looks like seashells. Verdin's intricate tulle pleats create a woven pattern on a corset bodice. Scorcesa's dainty tucks accent the waistline on a red strapless gown. Kai Petty's versatile modern bride line, Fifth & Welshire, incorporates accordion pleats into a strapless asymmetrical gown and a chic double-breasted blazer and mini-skirt suit.
Tied With a Bow (or Bows)
Reflecting the runways, delightful bows of all sizes accented looks in the bridal collections. Justin Alexander Signature interprets a ballet inspiration through graceful ribbons atop shoulder straps, while Viktor & Rolf Mariage, marking its fifth anniversary, accents a deep-plunge back with its signature oversize bow. Amsale Archive celebrates beloved styles designed by the late, groundbreaking Amsale Aberra with an asymmetrical double-bow accenting a classic strapless mermaid gown.
Street Style Meets the Wedding Aisle
Midriff flossing and side cut-outs have made their way from celebrity fashion into wedding style. Gracy Accad, Patbo and Gala by Galia Lahav offer a peek of midriff, while Kim Kassas Couture's criss-cross floss accents a champagne lace-embroidered (and non-skin-baring) gown.
Bold Crop Tops
Separates continue to offer versatility and options, including a profusion of mix-and-match crop top options, which run from an adorable jacquard ribbon-accented skirt set from Alexandra Grecco's new size-inclusive, mix-and-match line Poppy to a corseted ballgown skirt look from White One by Pronovias.
So Many Ruffles
Designers also offered a plethora of ways to wear ruffles for weddings, from copious layers of ruffled tulle by Andrew Kwon and Kim Kassas to a single sculptural tier from Weiderhoeft and Amasale Archive. Philadelphia-based Sheila Frank accents a sheer puff-sleeve blouse with the flourish in her size-inclusive separates line, The New Bridal Look, which speaks to the versatility we need right now.
Ceremony to the Party (or Beach)
If you're looking for a less formal look to wear to a civil ceremony or a less traditional option for the reception — or just because — choose from a range of suiting and embellished party dresses, like Naeem Khan's, that take you from wedding to afterparty. This season, bridal designers directly speak to sun-and-sand-filled outdoor nuptials. Brazilian label Patbo debuts a literal beach wedding collection, full of swimsuits and mix-and-match separates, plus Yolancris and Viktor & Rolf Mariage offer cheerful floral-themed midi-dresses, even styled with bridal bucket hats.