The wedding veil has been an iconic feature of bridal fashion throughout history. While its roots are a little unclear, we can trace it back to ancient civilizations of the Hebrew, Greek, and Roman empires. While the styles have changed notably over the years to match fashion trends, many modern brides still embrace the tradition. But choosing the perfect veil is as big of a decision as finding the right dress.
Personal taste and the details of the gown are the biggest influences on completing the look with the right veil. These symbolic accessories come in many different lengths ranging from cap styles that feature a small pinch of tulle atop the head to veils that extend all the way to the floor, matching the train of the gown with delicate lace patterns and intricate beading. With so many different styles to choose from, how can you choose the perfect veil to wear with your wedding gown?
Types of Bridal Veils
First, let’s take a look at the different options. Brides who are opting for the traditional look of a veil have no shortage of options. There are plenty of styles, lengths, and materials to choose from. From simple and elegant to the center of the show, there is a style and a length for every taste.
A birdcage veil provides a minimalistic approach to the traditional bridal veil. These designs feature shorter lengths between four and nine inches with a net or lace material that covers the eyes. Birdcage veils pair well with vintage-inspired tea dresses and short-hem wedding dresses.
An angel-cut veil or waterfall veil provides a cascading look using a V-shape that is shorter in the front with the longest point in the back. These veils are usually knee-length or shorter and provide a soft, elegant look without the fuss of beading or embroidery.
A blusher veil refers to any style of veil designed to cover the bride’s face until she is presented to the groom. This traditional take on the wedding veil is a timeless classic. In ancient bridal fashion, the veil was worn to protect the bride from evil spirits. Modern brides embrace the tradition as a symbol of purity.
Chapel veils are primarily a Catholic tradition. These feminine, laced designs are symbolic of the bride’s faith. For modern brides, the chapel veil look is about modesty and purity, presenting herself before Christ in a marital union. It’s an expression of femininity that embodies the Virgin Mary.
Cathedral veils are almost a style by themselves. These veils feature longer lengths that often match the train of the bridal gown. When it comes to achieving a sophisticated, formal bridal look, these veils are the perfect accessory.
Choose Your Length
Now that we have an idea of what’s out there, your personal tastes are probably leaning in one direction or another. Before you commit to that look you’re dying to try out, take a moment to consider your dress and how you plan to wear your hair. You’ll need to make sure your veil works with both.
Matching a Veil to the Dress
Short veils are typically meant for shorter dresses, like pairing a birdcage veil with a knee-length white dress. Longer veils that fall between the hips and the floor pair with traditional bridal hemlines. Longer veils can be used to provide a little sheer coverage for modest brides or winter brides. While sheer or shorter lengths might be a better choice for gowns that have embellishments on the back. As a good rule of thumb, choose a simple veil for an intricate dress and vice versa.
Consider Your Hair
If you have plans to wear a styled updo, the look might be obscured by your veil. For many brides, especially with longer veils, bridal fashion is a good excuse for a blowout and natural locks. If you’ll wear your hair up, a shorter veil works best.
Choose Your Veil Design
When it comes to fancy details and intricate embellishments, you can have too much of a good thing. For outdoor weddings, sleeveless gowns, and shorter hemlines, choose the shortest veils possible. A birdcage veil made from netting is short and can be a great way to infuse a vintage vibe into your look. For brides that want an elegant look, simplicity is always the best approach. Angel-cut veils feature minimal embellishment, using the cut to add style to a simple tulle veil. Use a sheer veil or a shoulder-length cut to make sure the back of your gown is visible.
For traditional brides that want a classic look, a plain satin white gown paired with a blusher veil detailed with modest embroidery work is a great choice. For brides that want to embrace the full femininity of bridal fashion, a floor-length lace chapel veil paired with a modest, short-trained gown looks sweet.
And for brides that want a dramatic style statement, an over-the-top cathedral veil is a must-have. Choose a design with show stopping style and pair it with a simpler gown that features similar embellishments limited to the front of the gown, or the train can be an impressive combination.
New York Dress is a high-fashion retailer with an eye for the right styles to create show stopping bridal looks. Our gowns come from top, global designers committed to helping you look your best on your big day. Shop the collections and find your perfect look today.