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Wedding Dresses, a Brief History Lesson

by Mark Douglas June 21, 2018

Andrew and Kaleigh Branham at Howe Farms w/ All Dressed Up Chattanooga, TN | Christan C. George Photography

From ancient China to the recent royal wedding, wedding gowns have made up a large part of culture all over the world. But what is a wedding gown, and where did the modern idea of a wedding dress come from? Keep reading to learn all about the style and history of these beautiful dresses.

What is a wedding gown?

(Mrs. Kaleigh Branham | Christan C. George Photography)

Wedding gowns are unique from other dresses for two reasons: 1) their use and 2) their style. As the name says, a wedding gown is uniquely for the bride to wear on her wedding day. Usually, these dresses only get worn once, although some families choose to pass dresses down from generation to generation, with some girls actually wearing the antique. 

Sophia Tolli Wedding Dress Style #Y11632

(Mr&Mrs Andrew and Kaleigh Branham | Kaleigh is wearing our Sophia Tolli Riona Y11632. Her veil is a Berger 9943.)

The other thing that sets wedding gowns apart is their style. Traditionally, if it's a first-time wedding, the dress is almost always white, which is a key feature. This symbolizes virginity and purity. Again, with tradition, if a woman is getting remarried, the dress might be off-white or cream. Either way, wedding gowns stay in the white color range, which makes them instantly recognizable from other dresses. In addition to their color, wedding dresses are unique for their elegant, intricate style. Many wedding gowns will include beaded or laced features.

Where did wedding gowns come from?

Bridesmaids Dresses by All Dressed Up, Style #146

(Kaleigh's Bridesmaids are wearing our Morilee BM Dresses, #146. Her earrings are David Tutera's Embellish Sydney Crystal Balls.)

Before the 19th century, wedding dresses weren't all that fancy. Most Americans dressed up in whatever they could find around their house, which was usually something closer to their "Sunday best" than a formal ball gown. But when the British Queen Victoria got married in the middle of the century, her stunning white dress instantly started a trend that has endured until today. 

ADU Tux Rentals are #HOT!

(Andrew and crew are wearing our Jim's Formal Wear Tux Rental, a Stephen Geoffrey, Slate Blue #382.)

Of course, not everyone could afford a wedding gown, and many people still purchased nice dresses that they could re-wear later in life; the same is true today. But as time has progressed, the white gown has evolved into a universal American symbol of marriage and love. 

Where can I get my own wedding gown?

If you're looking for your own stunning wedding dress look no further than All Dressed Up. Our selection of wedding dresses ranges from the traditional to the extravagant, and will help make your special day unforgettable. And stop by our store today to meet Cheron, make an appointment, and peruse our in-house selections. 

Andrew and Kaleigh Branham w/All Dressed Up, Chattanooga, TN | Photos by Christan C. George Photography

Above I've added in a few Christan C. George photos from the fabulous wedding of Mr and Mrs Andrew and Kaleigh Branham's Wedding on October 14, 2017 at Howe Farms. Kaleigh sat down for an in-depth interview with me. Two weeks ago I introduced this couple with an intro vid about their love (#14 Finding My Soulmate) and a corresponding ADU blog about relationship virtues (Nurturing Your Soulmate, Living and Loving Through Virtues). Don't miss that intro! Today I dive even deeper and talk about their actual Wedding Day. Trumpets Please! ;)

This week's corresponding Video Bonus just went LIVE!: #15 My Wedding Day, The Kaleigh & Andrew Story, Pt 1 | 'Puttin On The Ritz w/ DJ Mark!'  

Video Dialogue:

Mark: Ladies and gents we hope you've had a chance to see our last episode, #14 Finding My Soulmate, The Kaleigh & Andrew Story. We all got a chance to hear a short version love story between her and Andrew. And today we're going to find out just how awesome October 14, 2017 really was. Let's start at the top, your formal wear. You purchased your gown right here at All Dressed Up, a breathtaking Sophia Tolli style number Y11632. Tell us about your gown, it's alterations, and how did it perform that day? Kaleigh: My dress, I actually saw it on Pinterest, my Pinterest board. I brought it in, and I said, Cheron (ADU owner and Certified Wedding Planner... Cheron performed Kaleigh's Day-Of Wedding Coordination), I need this dress. She said, I don't have that in. But, she did everything she could to get that dress in, and I tried more on just to see different styles and, (she called and said) I got it in finally. It took about two weeks. I tried it on and I knew that was the dress and it was perfect, it was wonderful and I loved it. Alterations went really smooth; tucked it in where it needed to be and, other than getting a little sweaty towards the end of the night on the wedding it was, I love that dress so much, it was awesome. Mark: You also gave ADU the opportunity to dress your bridesmaids and groomsmen. How was that process and are you satisfied with the products and services? Kaleigh: Yeah, the bridesmaids dresses: I had two of them come in and (they) just tried them on, to see what I liked. And I wanted a style that was flattering to everybody and they all looked gorgeous and it was a lovely maroon color cause I was going for that fall (look). And then the groomsmen I decided to go with navy tuxes with hints of that maroon color we were using for the bridesmaids and it looked so good. Cheron suggested this and just what ties would look well with shoes and together it just looked so nice, and just really classy. And it really helped set the theme for those colors during  that time of year, so it was awesome. Mark: So how was the process of picking up the tuxes, getting the bridesmaids dresses in, making sure everything was fitted properly? Kaleigh: Getting everything is was so easy. I actually had to add a bridesmaids dress, like three months before the wedding. It came in two weeks and it was perfect, it worked out just fine. And then both bridal party, I'd (they) would just come in, pick up what they needed to go and leave. It was super super simple. Cheron made that process so easy. Mark: And your mom. Your mom grabbed a Cameron Blake style number 117614. Tell us about that purchase. Kaleigh: Honestly I think I got more complements on her dress than my dress that whole evening. But no, it was a beautiful navy dress to help accent the groom. She has red hair and the contrast between the red hair and the navy just looked so good and she looked awesome. But yeah, I honestly got more complements on her dress than mine but she looked perfect so it doesn't matter. It was awesome. Mark: You also grabbed a veil (Berger Veil 9943) and a David Tutera wedding bracelet (Sydney Crystal Ball Bracelet) and earrings (Sydney Crystal Ball Earrings). Kaleigh: I just wanted to pick out something that would accent my dress. And Cheron of course picked out the perfect things to that. Just simple pearls, nothing crazy, I didn't want anything flashy because my dress didn't really need that much. It was perfect on it's own. Just those small bits of pearls and a little ring that I got from mom, and then my veil just went with it so perfectly. It was awesome. Mark: Ladies and gents I'm cutting in right now to keep this video short. Tune in next time for Part 2 when we discuss the vendors Kaleigh used at the beautiful Howe Farm. I wanna do a big shout out right now to the photographer, Christin C. George Photography. And the video you're seeing from Axel Marshall ProductionsKaleigh: ADU Ladies, we're interested in your Wedding Day story! Would you like to be featured in one of our blogs or episodes? Share your event directly from the website, alldressedup.me. It's easy to find in the footer section, and Mark will place a link to it in the corresponding blog. Keep up with All Dressed Up! It's easy to Subscribe, Like, Comment, and Share. And make sure you get those notifications! Mark: What She Said!

Next week this sentence will be replaced by the blog link to "My Wedding Day, The Kaleigh and Andrew Story, Pt 2." 

Photography by Christan C. George Photography

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All Dressed Up is a family-owned Chattanooga, Tennessee business offering wedding and prom gowns, bridesmaids, mother and flower girl dresses and tuxedo rentals, to name a few. We have the lowest pricing (MSRP) and a wide selection of dresses for all personalities and styles.

Visit All Dressed Up today to set your VIP Bridal Appointment, your VIP In-Home Tuxedo Fitting, and shop for your favorite Bridal Gowns.

This is an original blog post from All Dressed Up - Bridal Prom Tuxedo.

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Mark Douglas
Mark Douglas

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The Bridesmaid Dress - What You Must Know
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Bridesmaids dresses are color coordinated, sometimes look similar to the bride's gown, and are always about style and current trends. The modern bride has a modern bridal party, and the dresses play a key part. Some brides choose for their girls to wear the same color, but perhaps select a variety of styles. However, the most recent trend among wedding parties is to have bridesmaids dressed in a completely mismatched fashion.

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Nurturing Your Soulmate, Living and Loving Through Virtues
Nurturing Your Soulmate, Living and Loving Through Virtues

by Mark Douglas June 06, 2018

Whether we meet on a blind date or over the backyard fence, love happens all around us. Finding a life-partner to build a future with is a possibility for each of us. But building a joyful, committed relationship with a soulmate requires a deep understanding of the many virtues that nurture and strengthen a couple's love for one another throughout the years.

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The Importance of Dress Availability and Special Orders
The Importance of Dress Availability and Special Orders

by Mark Douglas May 23, 2018

These characteristics can only be fulfilled by a boutique that has an inventory that is well-thought-out and manufacturers that are experienced in supplying special orders. Sounds easy, right? But, having what a bride needs in the correct color, the right size, and the latest trending style is not a piece of cake (pun intended)... we suggest that you utilize a pre-wedding timeline so that you'll have the option to "special order" your perfect gown.

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Size Guide

MOST Professional Boutiques will size you at no cost; simply call and set an appointment. Of your 3 measurements: ALWAYS go with the dress size aligning w/ your higher dress measurement.

For example: If a size 10 calls for a 37 Bust, 29 Waist & 40 Hip 

Discover your measurements with this All Dressed Up Size Guide pic.

David Tutera, Martin Thornburg and Enchanting - Wedding Gown Sizes

Size Bust Waist  Hips
0 32 23.5 35
2 33 24.5 36
4 34 25.5 37
6 36 26.5 38
8* 36 27.5 39
10 37 28.5 40
12 38 29.5 41
14 39.5 31 42.5
16 41 32.5 44
18 43 34.5 46
20 45 36.5 48

 

David Tutera and Martin Thornburg - (W) Women's Wedding Gown Sizes 

Size Bust Waist  Hips
18W 45 38 49
20W 47 40 51
22W 49 42.5 53.5
24W 51 45 56
26W 53 47.5 58.5

 

Enchanting - (W) Women's Wedding Gown Sizes 

Size Bust Waist  Hips
16W 43 36 47
18W 45 38 49
20W 47 40 51
22W 49 42.5 53.5
24W 51 45 56
26W 53 47.5 58.5

 

Sophia Tolli - Wedding Gown Sizes

Size Bust Waist  Hips
0 31.5 23.5 34
2 32.5 24.5 35
4 33.5 25.5 36
6 34.5 26.5 37
8 36 28 38.5
10 37.5 29.5 40
12 39 31 41.5
14 41 33 43.5
16 43 35 45.5
18 45 37 47.5
20 48 40 50.5
22 51 43 53.5
24 54 46 56.5
26 57 49 59.5
28 60 52 62.5

 

Sophia Tolli - (LS) Large Size Wedding Gown

Size Bust Waist  Hips
22LS 51 43 53.5
24LS 54 46 56.5
26LS 57 49 59.5
28LS 60 52 62.5

 

Morilee - "Designer Gallery" Bridal Gowns and Bridesmaids Dress Sizes

     *see below for Julietta Bridal Gowns 

     *See "New" size chart below for the following Bridal Gown and Bridesmaid style numbers:

Size Bust Waist  Hips
2 32 23.5 35.5
4 33 24.5 36.5
6 34 25.5 37.5
8 35 26.5 38.5
10 36.5 28 40
12 38 29.5 41.5
14 39.5 31 43
16 41 32.5 44.5
18 42.5 34 46
20 44.5 36 48
22 46.5 38 50
24 49.5 41 53
26 53 44.5 56.5
28 57 48.5 60.5

 

Morilee - "New" Bridal Gown and Bridesmaids Dress Sizes

     *"New" refers to the following Bridal Gown and Bridesmaid styles numbers

Size Bust Waist  Hips
0 32 23.5 35.5
2 33 24.5 36.5
4 34 25.5 37.5
6 35 26.5 38.5
8 36.5 28 40
10 38 28.5 41.5
12 39.5 31 43
14 41 32.5 44.5
16 42.5 34 46
18 44.5 36 48
20 46.5 38 50
22 49.5 41 53
24 53 44.5 56.5
26 57 48.5 60.5
28 61 52.5 64.5

 

Morilee, Julietta - Wedding Gown Sizes

Size Bust Waist  Hips
16W 43 35 46
18W 45 37 48
20W 47 39 50
22W 49 41.5 52.5
24W 51 44 55
26W 53 46.5 57.5
28W 55 49 60
30W 57 51.5 62.5
32W 59 54 65

 

Joan Calabrese - Flower Girl

Size Bust Waist
2 22 21
3 23 21.5
4 24 22
5 25 22.5
6 26 23
6X 27 23.5
7 28.25 24.25
8 29.5 25.25
10 30.75 26.5
12 32 27.75
14 33.25 29
16 34.5 30.25

 

Joan Calabrese - Half Size, Flower Girl

Size Bust Waist
8.5 33 29
10.5 36 32
12.5 38 34
14.5 39 36

 

Joan Calabrese - Baby Size, Flower Girl

     *m=months

Size Bust Waist
6m 20.75 20
12m 21.25 20.5
18m 22.25 21.5
24m 23.25 22.5

 

Little Black Tux, by David Tutera - Jacket & Pant Sizes

Size Bust Waist  Hips
0 31 24 33
2 32 25 34
4 33 26 35
6 35 28 37
8 37 30 39
10 39 32 41
12 41 34 43
14 43 36 45
16 46 39 48
18 49 42 51
20 52 45 54

 

Cameron Blake - Special Occasions

     *W=Women's P=Petite WP=Women's Petite

Size Bust Waist  Hips
4 34 27 37
6 35 28 38
8 36 29 39
10 37.5 30.5 40.5
12 39 32 42
14 41 34 44
16 43.5 36.5 46.5
18 48 38.5 48.5
20 48 41 51
16W 45.5 39 48.5
18W 48 41.5 48.5
20W 50.5 44 53.5
22W 53.5 47 56.5
24W 56.5 50 59.5
26W 59.5 53 62.5
4P 34 27 37
6P 35 28 38
8P 36 29 39
10P 37.5 30.5 40.5
12P 39 32 42
14P 41 34 44
16WP 45.5 39 48.5
18WP 48 41.5 51
20WP 50.5 44 53.5
22WP 53.5 47 56.5
24WP 56.5 50 59.5
26WP 59.5 53 62.5

 

Ellie Wilde and Colette - Prom

Size Bust Waist  Hips
00 31 23.5 34.5
0 32 24.5 35.5
2 33 25.5 36.5
4 34 26.5 37.5
6 35 27.5 38.5
8 36 28.5 39.5
10 37 29.5 40.5
12 38.5 31 42
14 40 32.5 43.5
16 42 34.5 45.5
18 44 36.5 47.5
20 46 39 49.5
22 48.5 41.5 52
24 51 44 54.5

 

Dave & Johnny - Prom

Size Bust Waist  Hips
0 32 26 36
1/2 33 27 37
3/4 34 28 38
5/6 35 29 39
7/8 36 30 40
9/10 37 31 41
11/12 38.5 32.5 42.5
13/14 40 34 44
15/16 41.5 35.5 45.5
17/18 43.5 37.5 47.5

 

Dave & Johnny - Women's Prom

Size Bust Waist  Hips
14W 43 36 46
16W 45 38 48
18W 47 40 50
20W 49 42 52
22W 51 44 54
24W 53 46 56

 

La Femme - Prom

Size Bust Waist  Hips
00 32 24 35
0 33 25 36
2 34 26 37
4 35 27 38
6 36 28 39
8 37 29 40
10 38 30 41
12 40 32 43
14 42 34 45
16 44 36 47
18 46 38 49
20 48 40 51
22 50 42 53
24 52 44 55

 

Jasz Couture - Prom

Size Bust Waist  Hips
00 32 24 35
0 33 25 36
2 34 26 37
4 35 27 38
6 36 28 39
8 37 29 40
10 38 30 41
12 40 32 43
14 42 34 45
16 44 36 47
18 46 38 49
20 48 40 51
22 50 42 53
24 52 44 55

 

Zoey Grey - Prom

     *For styles 30614, 30693 & 30701 see size chart below.

Size Bust Waist  Hips
0 32 24 36
2 33 25 37
4 34 26 38
6 35 27 39
8 36.5 28.5 40
10 38 30 42
12 39.5 31.5 43.5
14 41.5 33.5 45.5
16 43.5 35.5 47.5
18 45.5 37.5 49.5
20 47.5 39.5 51.5
22 49.5 41.5 53.5
24 51.5 43.5 55.5
26 53.5 45.5 57.5
28 55.5 47.5 59.5
30 57.5 49.5 61.5

 

Zoey Grey - Prom - for styles 30614, 30693 & 30701

Size Bust Waist  Hips
0 32 23.5 35
2 33 24.5 36
4 34 25.5 37
6 35 26.5 38
8 36 27.5 39
10 37 28.5 40
12 38 29.5 41
14 39.5 31 42.5
16 41 32.5 44
18 43 35 46
20 45 37.5 48

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