Bridal outfits are like cocktails. They don't need accessories, but a few fancy adornments can make them all the more memorable.
Hardly know where to start? Hardly surprising. The world of bridal accessories can be tricky to navigate. It's all too easy to get caught up in a web of traditions ('Something old…'), expectations ('Grandma would love it if…') and plain old analysis paralysis.
Don't tie yourself in knots. Remember: it's your big day and you have the last say.
Fancy a traditional wedding with all the trimmings? Great! Want to ditch the usual bells and whistles and go for something completely unique? That's fine too.
If you do want to follow the rules – at least a little bit – we've got you covered. Here are six essential bridal accessories to add to your wedding checklist.
Let's start from the top. Will you crown your outfit with an eye-catching adornment or go au naturel and let your hairstyle do the talking?
The classic choice is, of course, the bridal veil. A lacy full-length number, like Britten's 'Coria' veil, is sure to please the traditional crowd. Love the vintage-modern look? You can't go wrong with a short, face-framing birdcage veil. We've spotted cute options from Lace & Favour and Liberty in Love, among others.
Another option: simple, sparkly sophistication. A jewel-studded hair accessory, like Ivory & Co.'s Honeyblossom Crystal and Freshwater Pearl Hair Slide, will glitz up your mane without tripping up your feet.
Go on – treat yourself. (And tick off that 'something new' while you're at it.)
As far as bridal accessories go, jewellery is pretty much essential. Even the most modest bridal outfit would look lonely without a well-placed trinket or two.
Where to start? Your heart might tell you to pull out all the stops, but our advice is to keep things simple. A couple of stand-out pieces make for a more balanced outfit overall. (Besides, you don't want your bracelet to steal the show from your wedding ring, do you?)
Think elegance, iridescence and 'less is more'. Something like Poetry Designs' 'Penelope' necklace, with its teardrop-shaped pendant and rhinestone bands. Or Lily & Roo's Silver Beaded Pearl Bracelet, which pairs shimmering freshwater pearls with a simple silver chain.
Got heirlooms? This is your chance to raid the family jewellery box and find something old to usher in your new beginning.
There's one rule for wedding shoes: they should make your feet sing.
This means two things. First, they must be the most wonderful-looking shoes you've ever worn. And second, they should be comfortable enough to let you rule the dancefloor at your wedding reception.
It's a tough ask, for sure. And shoes are as individual as fingerprints, so we won't start throwing suggestions around.
Follow your heart, choose a good fit and don't let yourself be tempted by a titanic heel. The last thing you want is to wobble on the way to the altar.
Do bras and knickers count as bridal accessories? You won't want to forget them on your big day, that's for sure.
Support and comfort are key. Consider a strapless bustier rather than a bra – it will help define your silhouette and save you from playing keepie uppie with your underwear. And for knickers, it's seamless all the way. Let's not put VPL on the VIP list.
An optional – and traditional – extra is the classic wedding garter. Lace & Favour has some gorgeous lace options with pretty bows and blue bands. (Something blue?)
OK. Gloves are hardly essential. But if you're chasing tradition, you should consider adding a pair to your shopping list.
The classic option looks like this: white or ivory opera-length gloves made of lace, silk or satin. Simple, elegant and demure.
If you want your bridal accessories to feel a little more modern, go for bold adornments like ruffles, tulles and crystals. We like Seezona's 'Be a Diva' Crystal Gloves and Vampal's affordably luxurious selection.
Now here's a must-have.
Let's be real, ladies. The British climate is a cruel mistress. Just when you think you've lucked out with a gloriously sunny day, she'll creep up behind with a thunderstorm or throw some gale-force winds into the mix.
So have some warm bridal accessories on standby. Perhaps a cosy wrap, such as Monsoon's Faux Fur Bridal Jacket, or a long, loose-knitted mohair cardigan.
You could even go a little bit edgy. Check out Nasty Gal and Not On The High Street for glam leather bridal jackets, embroidered with slogans like 'Hitched' and 'Till Death Do Us Part'.
Got a wedding theme in mind? Wonderful. Themes are a great way to let your personality shine through and draw guests into your matrimonial mindset.
Of course, everything has to feel perfectly cohesive. Decorations have to match stationery, which has to match bridesmaids' dresses, which have to match accessories. And so on.
Don't fret. Here are a few ideas for bridal accessories that will help tie a theme together.
- Boho wedding: be playful and take inspiration from nature. Try white wellies for an outdoor ceremony, with flower crowns for the bride and bridesmaids.
- Eco wedding: heirlooms and upcycled accessories are your friends. Scour Etsy for frills like vintage earrings and bracelets made from reclaimed sea glass.
- Fairytale wedding: forget everything we said about restraint. Think tiaras, pendant earrings and matte satin gloves – the more embellishments, the better.
- Modern wedding: let the tastemakers guide you. This year's en-vogue bridal accessories include block heels, birdcage veils and heart-shaped jewellery.
Your wedding venue might be the most important accessory of all.
If your jewellery, dress and shoes are your paint, your wedding venue is your canvas. It's the backdrop that lets your bridal accessories shine and helps make your big day feel that little bit more special.
Whatever you have in mind, we're here to make it happen.
Court Colman Manor is a historic mansion set in the beautiful, untamed countryside of South Wales. With our stunning Georgian architecture, impressive suites and in-house wedding coordinators, we have everything you need to plan the wedding you've always dreamed of.
Lavish or low-key. Twenty guests or 180. If you want your big day to make a big impact, start exploring our cost-effective wedding packages today.