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The New Comfort Zone With a range of necklines, sleeves, illusion elements and lace — lots and lots of lace — designers are showing off alternative looks that allow brides to take a few risks, with dress styles that are chic, youthful and luxurious, without having to settle on the strapless standby.

‘Danielle’ - Ivory and Nude lace illusion A-line dress with a organza skirt and lace appliqué neckline from Leanne Marshall. 22

May 2014

MODERN BRIDES

BY NOLA SARKISIAN-MILLER Brides 365

What’s not to love about 2014 trends in the bridal market? This year, brides are hard-pressed to find something they dislike, as designers are giving them choices galore in terms of necklines, silhouettes and embellishment details. With brides flocking to social media for nonstop ideas, there’s a sense that brides are stepping out of comfort zones and want more choices from designers to feed their sartorial wedding dreams. “The past couple of years felt safe, and this year designers took more chances and offered more breadth,” says Anna Walsh, owner of two Denver bridal boutiques, Anna Be and A & Be Bridal Shop. Topping the list were the selection of necklines parading down the runways. Strapless gowns had to make room for alternatives, such as silky cowl necks, shoulder straps, Vnecks, cap sleeves and elbow sleeves. Some highlights were the less-than-demure, bias-cut sheath gown with a plunging cowl neckline by Sarah Janks, along with the designer’s ladylike cap-sleeved silk marocain gown with a neckline framed in delicate, beaded French lace. Leanne Marshall’s looks included a coy lace gown with lace elbow sleeves. And, Modern Trousseau paid homage to décolletage with a Thai silk ballgown featuring a draped bodice with off-the-shoulder straps. “There isn’t just one neckline choice anymore,” Walsh says. “Brides can really pick and choose what they want. It used to be, I had only three dresses that weren’t strapless in the store.” At the same time, there were more riffs on strapless looks with the help of illusion styles, a trend that shows no abatement.

Modern Brides