Millennial Brides Are Breaking With Tradition

John Krautzel
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Brides of the millennial generation are unwilling to step into the cookie-cutter look perpetuated by their parents and grandparents. Shaping bridal trends, members of this generation are saying no to the traditional bridal look and exploring new ways to dress for their wedding ceremonies. Here are few trends for retailers to keep an eye on as they adjust their marketing to attract a younger crowd.

Emphasizing Individuality

Bridal trends are helping more and more young brides choose dresses they love that flatter their figures. Short skirts, diverse silhouettes and pops of color are becoming more common. Millennial brides want to create a unique look for their special day, one that shows off their personality and is tailored to their personal needs. Collections from design houses, such as Carolina Herrera and Marchesa, are blurring the lines between ready-to-wear fashions and bridal collections. This pulls jackets, sweaters, skirts and jumpsuits into the choices available to the modern bride-to-be.

Breaking Tradition

Future brides no longer focus their search for an ideal gown on traditional images full satin, lace, full skirts or mermaid silhouettes. Bridal trends show millennial brides even questioning such staid traditions as the bridal veil and bouquet. Although young brides-to-be recognize the importance of the wedding occasion, they are more likely to create looks and customs based on their own personal needs and what they find special and appealing rather than continuing with traditions from the past. More brides are also extending their search for bridal wear outside of traditional bridal boutiques. Fashion retailers across the board need to be ready to work with brides-to-be and may want to consider developing special events and other methods of pulling in these non-traditional bridal shoppers.

Feminist Outlook

While bridal trends of the past often emphasized the togetherness of the new couple, millennial brides prefer to show off their independent spirits. Houghton's 2017 collection features a wedding biker jacket emblazoned with the motto: “Not Your Baby." Other lines take a more subtle approach, offering capes and robes that create distinct lines to show the brides separate individuality from the groom.

Extending Wear

This bridal trend focuses on the millennial generation's practical nature. Younger brides are unwilling to pay large sums of money for dresses that they only wear once. These brides-to-be are looking for wedding ensemble pieces that can be worn to other events when the ceremony is over. Separates and pieces featuring colors beyond white top the list of items that can be worn into the future. Other options include white items that are easily dyed after the ceremony is over.

The bridal marketplace needs to focus on creating an atmosphere that melds the best of the past with new pieces that allow millennial brides to create custom looks. Retailers should focus on pieces that offer colors and shapes that appeal to feminist sentiments and offer options for extending wear beyond the wedding day. With a bridal trend toward ready-to-wear and bridal lines converging, general fashion retailers can benefit from adding marketing that targets bridal shoppers.

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