The hunt for a wedding gown usually starts online with Pinterest, designer websites, Google searches… and chances are good you are saving different styles. Chances are also good that you have different fabrics, too.
Do you know what is better for warm weather or what keeps that ball gown skirt fluffed to the max? Do you wonder about which wedding dress fabrics will show off what you love and hide what you don’t?
Let’s get into it and talk about eight common wedding dress fabrics: crepe, chiffon, satin, charmeuse, organza, silk, tulle, and English net.
Crepe is a beautiful and formfitting fabric. It is very clean, has a matte finish (not shiny) and is very easy and comfortable to wear. There are very few if any embellishments on most crepe dresses, aside from perhaps a detachable train or a hint of lace here or there. It may have a lace or beaded bodice with a plain crepe skirt. The most common embellishment on a full crepe dress would be buttons down the back. It will stretch with you as you move, dance, or sit, but it definitely clings.
Chiffon is a wonderful choice for a warm wedding setting. It is lightweight and very flowy, with a clean look that falls beautifully. It does not cling and is a popular choice for those who want to dance the night away. Chiffon can have embellishments such as beading or lace, usually at the bottom back of the train, however, many chiffon dresses have a more embellished bodice and a plain chiffon skirt as shown in the photo above. While chiffon can wrinkle if left in the dress bag, a quick steam out does the trick and you will be good all day!
Satin has a shine to it making it a more formal fabric. It is heavier than other plain fabrics, and is often embellished with beading, embroidery, or both. Many ball gowns are made in a satin fabric due to the formality of that shape. Because it is a thicker fabric, it will hold a full skirt easily over a crinoline underneath. Satin is a good choice if you are having a very formal wedding and/or a winter wedding. It does have a tendency to wrinkle, but a press out will make it perfect. Because of the heaviness, it is a wonderful choice if you want to really cinch in the bodice
Charmeuse is a middle ground between chiffon and satin. It is very soft like chiffon, but has a shine like satin. It gives a little formality to what may otherwise look like a less formal dress. Usually there is a sheer tulle layer over the charmeuse adding a pretty, more voluminous bridal affect. The shine of the charmeuse fabric underneath creates a depth and sets off the lace in front beautifully. This is a very comfortable fabric, and works perfectly if you prefer a little shine but do not want the stiffness of satin.
Organza is a softer version of tulle, made from silk so still keeps a good shape, very light and airy. Many tiered skirts are made of organza because of the beautiful way it falls, often given volume and waves by adding a thick horsehair edge. Because it is so light, it is very difficult to embellish without causing damage. Mostly wrinkle free, easy to steam.
Silk is a very tightly woven fabric and that gives it a beautiful, glimmering effect. Silk dresses rarely have embellishments aside from buttons and bows. There are different types of silks, such as dupioni, mikado, and shantung, and all are produced from natural fibers. Silk has the same luster and is as thickness as satin, however satin is a man-made fabric and costs much less than silk. Very rich with a classic, beautiful fit.
Tulle is a mesh fabric, made mainly from a silk-rayon combination that gives it a lightweight airiness with the strength to add lace or beaded embellishments. Tulle is typically layered over itself or over other fabrics due to its transparency and is one of the most widely used wedding dress fabrics. Most veils are made of tulle as well.
English net is a mesh fabric that is similar to tulle however it is heavier and therefore has a beautiful bridal look. It gives volume without being too wide or puffy, it does a perfect twirl and goes right back to its shape. Softer than tulle as well. A beautiful choice for a warmer, outdoor affair.
We hope this gives you some helpful tips on wedding dress fabrics that may be more appealing to you now that you read about them! Come in and see for yourself the differences, make your appointment here!