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The Top 12 Books of Luxury Wedding Dresses for the Big Day

The Top 12 Books of Luxury Wedding Dresses for the Big Day

Weddings make us happy and we love looking at the intricate and lovely designs and embroidery of the luxurious wedding dresses. If you’re similarly inclined, read on. We’ve compiled the top art and fashion books to read right now about the most famous and beautiful luxury designer wedding dresses from haute couture designers, many worn by royalty and celebrities for their big day.

the most beautiful luxury wedding dresses

A wedding dress is so much more than an article of clothing: it’s a symbol of romance, purity, commitment and joy – a fantasy of what life will be and a timeless manifestation of childhood dreams coming true.

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Need further proof of its powerful symbolism? Traditionally, at the end of every haute couture fashion show, the final look is a spectacular wedding gown. The bridal dress holds pride of place even at the highest levels of design – which makes understanding its history and evolution worth any fashion maven’s time and attention (even those who aren’t hopeless romantics).

12 great books to read about luxury wedding dresses from famous designers, some worn by royalty

12 great books to read about luxury designer wedding dresses from famous designers, some worn by royalty.

What better time than now to get smarter about the history of couture wedding gowns – and to gaze upon some fantastical creations to inspire us for the big day that may be coming in our own lives or in the lives of people we love.

There’s just something about a wedding. We love them. It doesn’t matter where they’re happening – courthouse, park, beach, cathedral – and it doesn’t matter if we know the participants in the ceremony. It just makes us happy to watch, to laugh and to celebrate alongside the happy couple. It’s the ultimate moment of hope, love and happiness, and we’re up for living them vicariously as often as possible (although let the record show that we have never actually crashed a wedding. At least, not yet).

12 great books to read about luxury wedding dresses from famous designers, some worn by royalty

12 great books to read about luxury designer wedding dresses from famous designers, some worn by royalty.

The Top 12 Books of Luxury Wedding Dresses for the Big Day

Among many other things, a wedding can be a great fashion show. Many luxury celebrity wedding dresses are hand-crafted by a leading haute couture designer and sewn and embroidered by hand. There are several excellent books (some just released and others newly revised) about the history and current state of couture and luxury wedding gowns, and the symbolism and evolution of wedding dresses themselves.

Here are 12 great books to read about luxury wedding dresses from famous designers, some worn by royalty and celebrities on their big day.

1. The Way We Wed by Kimberly Chrisman-Campbell.

 

books luxury wedding dresses

The Way We Wed: A Global History of Wedding Fashion is filled with styles and stories from the Renaissance to the present day, chronicling evolving fashions, classes, and expectations. bridal inspiration for all seasons wedding gowns of all colors and styles from around the world, as well as going-away dresses, accessories (shoes, veils, hats, and tiaras), and clothes worn by flower girls, bridesmaids, mothers of the bride, and grooms. Same-sex weddings are represented along with royal weddings, wartime brides, White House weddings, remarriage, Hollywood weddings, and more.

2. HRH: So Many Thoughts on Royal Style by Elizabeth Holmes.

 

books luxury wedding dresses

HRH: So Many Thoughts on Royal Style is a close look at the fashion and branding of the four most influential members of the British Royal Family: Queen Elizabeth II; Diana, Princess of Wales; Catherine, The Duchess of Cambridge; and Meghan, The Duchess of Sussex. This volume includes gorgeous photographs of the Royal wedding dresses that have become so iconic throughout the world.

3. Couture Wedding Gowns by Marie Bariller.

 

books luxury wedding dresses

Couture Wedding Gowns  is a fascinating look at the role of the wedding gown in high fashion. The couture wedding gown—a fashion show’s grand finale—marks the pinnacle of a designer’s creativity for the season. Consequently, these dresses offer particular insight into the designer’s creative process. The author presents a collection of extraordinary dresses designed by some of the most respected designers from the 20th century to today.

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4. The Wedding Dress by Oleg Cassini.

 

The Wedding Dress: Newly Revised and Updated Collector’s Edition was newly updated in February 2018. This classic tome features a wide array of luxurious wedding dresses in every conceivable silhouette. From gowns worn by Jacqueline Kennedy to Grace Kelly. And creations designed by the author as well as looks from Chanel, Dior, Armani, and Alexander McQueen. It’s a catalog of the some of the best couture gowns ever. They’re photographed by notables like Patrick Demarchelier, David LaChapelle and Irving Penn.

5. The Wedding Dress by Edwina Ehrman.

 

The Wedding Dress: 300 Years of Bridal Fashions showcases the wedding garments in the renowned collection of the V&A Museum in London. Along with photographs, letters, memoirs, and newspaper accounts to explore the history of the white wedding dress and the traditions that have developed around it from 1700 to today.  Paintings, drawings, and wedding photos depict queens, princesses, celebrities, and everyday women in their gowns. The text considers the dress in the context of the commercialization of weddings that began in the Victorian era. The Wedding Dress is not only about costume, but also about the cultivation of the image of the bride.

6. Vogue Weddings by Hamish Bowles.

 

Vogue Weddings: Brides, Dresses, Designers showcases the work of legendary photographers such as Cecil Beaton, Mario Testino, Irving Penn, Richard Avedon, Helmut Newton and Annie Leibovitz. Crisscrossing the globe, we’re treated to romantic settings, like castles, palaces, and cathedrals. We’re “wedding crashers” at ceremonies by the sea or in the countryside. For students of the craft, we are privy to the fashion portfolios created by the magazine’s editors of bridal photo shoots featuring couture gowns. It’s the stuff of dreams made real, and a beautiful book over which to daydream.

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7. Delphine Manivet by Pauline Mallat.

 

This volume is an homage to French wedding dress designer Delphine Manivet. Designing since 2005, she is intent on modernizing the look of the marriage party. Revisiting the traditional design codes of wedding gowns, the Paris-based designer creates elegant silhouettes with modest hints of femininity. In this book we trace her design process from the first sketches to the final retouches in the studio, with stops at sources like the fine lace suppliers in Caudry.

8. Italian Dream Wedding by Enzo Miccio.

 

Italian Dream Wedding is a fantasy of la dolce vita and what a destination wedding in Italy can be. There are gorgeous photos of food, décor, flowers and wedding favors. And, of course, there are stunning photos of luxury wedding dresses to dream over.

9. Behind the Indian Veil by Sephi Bergerson.

 

No reading list about couture wedding gowns can be complete without at least one entry from India, where weddings are a multi-day affair filled with stunning attire. Behind the Indian Veil chronicles an award-winning photographer’s 7-year journey documenting wedding traditions in India. It reveals the differences and similarities in Indian wedding traditions across regions and religious traditions, and provides a wide-ranging and informative overview of the vast array of fashions and rituals employed there.

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10. Guo Pei: Couture Beyond.

 

Guo Pei: Couture Beyond is the first major book about one of China’s leading couture visionaries. It showcases the craftsmanship that led fashion publications worldwide to declare Pei’s creations “the Empire’s new clothes.” In recent years, she has been focusing her attention on Chinese wedding culture and reviving the art of the traditional wedding gown. The grandeur of her work – from the aureate cape that Rihanna wore to the 2015 Met Gala to a gown festooned with 200,000 crystals featured in the Beijing Olympics – has put her on the map as part of the next generation of haute couture.

11. 100 Unforgettable Dresses by Hal Rubenstein.

 

The coffee-table book 100 Unforgettable Dresses is a compilation of the most memorable, influential dresses from the worlds of fashion, film, television, society, and politics. the fascinating origins and legacies of the most stunning dresses ever created.

12. Style Me Pretty by Abby Larson.

 

Style Me Pretty Weddings: Inspiration and Ideas for an Unforgettable Celebration collects images and advice from the archives of the eponymous blog with lots of inspo for wedding dress fashion. There are practical suggestions and “how-tos” about every element of a luxurious wedding, including The Dress. One of the best features is the “17 never-before-seen Real-Life Weddings.” It includes practical “wish I had known” advice from the brides.

The Top 12 Books of Famous Luxury Designer Wedding Dresses for the Big Day

That our roundup of the top art and fashion books to read right now, with the most beautiful luxury wedding dresses from famous designers, worn by royalty and celebrities on their big day.

Whether you’re remembering your own big day or planning one for yourself or someone you love, dive into one of these to lift the veil on the many layers of meaning represented by the haute couture wedding gown. Happy reading!

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This article contains affiliate links to products independently selected by our editors. As an Amazon Associate, Dandelion Chandelier receives a commission for qualifying purchases made through these links. 

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