The Bride Vibe

Finding the perfect wedding dress when you're expecting

Wedding dress shopping tips for pregnant brides

Here comes the bride...and her baby bump

Thanks to the worldwide pandemic, getting hitched while pregnant is no longer just a celebrity thing. As a result of the avalanche of postponed weddings over the last year, many non-famous brides saw themselves adhering to the trend and walking down the aisle with a baby bump on full display—which is incredibly special! But, as special as it is to have your baby’s presence felt in your wedding day, finding the perfect bridal gown when pregnant can feel discouraging, especially without knowing how to start.

So, to facilitate one of the most exciting to-dos of a bride’s wedding preparations, we at TDT have joined forces with Lovely Bride to compile a comprehensive list that answers the most pressing questions about wedding dress shopping when pregnant, including the best silhouettes and designs, the best retailers to check out, how to approach bridal salons, and some bonus tips from the amazing team at Lovely Bride.

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FINDING THE RIGHT FABRIC TO ACCOMMODATE YOUR BABY BUMP

Fabric is one of the most important components when searching for that dream wedding dress. As a bride, you don’t want to just look comfortable, effortless, and confident—you want to feel it, and that’s where choosing the right fabric comes in.

Lovely Bride points to a soft A-line silhouette as a complimentary option for pregnant brides. “Soft chiffons, [a] variety of lace and tulle over-layers can be flattering and will allow room for the bump to grow without constricting.” 

If you want to conceal your baby bump, Lovely Bride suggests going for a clean and minimalistic look without too much detail or fluff. 

However, if you decide to go the opposite direction and flaunt your amazing bump, then you might want to opt for silk Jerseys and stretch crepes to contour the body. It’s all about what you want and feel comfortable in. The only rule when shopping for a wedding dress while pregnant is not compromising your personal style, and ending up with the bridal dress of your dreams!

Credits: @jordanalexmoore

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WHAT IS THE IDEAL SILHOUETTE FOR A PREGNANT BELLY?

We can’t stress this enough: don’t limit yourself and be creative and authentic with your choices. 

“If you do wish to show your bump, less can be more in a form fitted jersey silk or stretch crepe, accessorising with a cape or statement earrings”

When it comes to showcasing your bump, Lovely Bride also recommends betting on bandeau styles, that by drawing attention to the décolletage upper body and having elongating high necks, look gorgeous on bumps!

On the other hand, if your objective is to conceal your baby bump, then you might want to look for a silhouette that offers a softer fall over your bust-line. “Empire lines will highlight your smallest point in the torso with a soft illusion fall over the bump,” Lovely Bride points out.

Another recommendation from the bridal retailer is that, if you’re having a civil wedding or a small ceremony, wrap silk dresses offer a classy alternative to empire lines, as the material softly graces over the bump in a stylish form that is particularly well suited for a more intimate ceremony.

Credits: @wedding.pages

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QUESTIONS PREGNANT BRIDES SHOULD BE ASKING RETAILERS BEFORE THEIR APPOINTMENT

Although not the only space for finding your dream wedding dress, for many brides, traditional wedding salons are an essential component of wedding dress shopping, and for good reason! The experience of trying on dresses, drinking champagne, and gushing with your friends and loved ones while doing it are some of what makes traditional wedding dress shopping so desirable.

Research the stores you are interested in visiting to see what they offer and call them up before a visit, so that you can make sure they offer what you are looking for. Lovely Bride advises brides to ask their desired retailers for their top recommendations for pregnant brides, the size range they stock, and the production times for your favourite designers. Knowing all that will undoubtedly help in your search for the perfect dress.

“Be selective of your stores and discuss with your stylist your current trimester in pregnancy and where you will be at your wedding date. This will help your stylist will devise a plan accordingly to help you find the one within suitable time-frame and when you feel most comfortable dress shopping.”

Another important note of advice from Lovely Bride: plan your wedding dress fitting ahead of time. Don’t let your body changes hold you off from dress trying.

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WHAT LOVELY BRIDE HAS AVAILABLE FOR PREGNANT BRIDES AT THEIR STORE

Pregnant brides based in London are very much in luck, as Lovely Bride has recently opened a new boutique in Fitzrovia that stocks chic and modern silhouettes that can either conceal or reveal your baby bump. They carry 7 international designers with a varied collection of shapes, silhouettes, and fabrics to choose from, ensuring a wide range of options to choose from!

“Many brides assume with their bump they will have to opt for something quite conservative or matronly. This is not the case.”

What’s more, their size range goes from sizes UK 8-20, meaning that they have plenty of styles available to accommodate a baby bump. Plus, when you go in for a fitting, your wedding dress will be professionally sculpted to give you a true idea of the final look. 

Lovely Bride also offers options to encourage versatility, so that you can make your wedding look 100% your own. They have a variety of soft A-lines, stretch fitted crepes, modern laces, and stylish layering and off-ons that can give you even more agency when styling your wedding look. 

Bringing it back to our previous point, remember to give retailers a call detailing your circumstances and what you’re looking for before booking an appointment. At Lovely Bride, stylists make a point of having detailed phone chats with brides prior to their appointments to discuss their top styles and wedding plans—as well as their baby! In that phone call they also advise brides on what underwear to wear for the fitting and assists them on choosing top styles on the Lovely Bride online look book. 


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DESIGNERS TO LOOK OUT FOR

Lovely Bride designers Alexandra Grecco and Prea James are perfect for the pregnant bride looking for something chic but timeless.

Alexandra Grecco’s pieces range from square necklines offering support on the bust and soft A-lines skirts with textured details to create soft illusions over the bump. Lovely Bride London is Alexandra Grecco’s UK flagship, which means that they are able to work closely with Alexandra for any customisations that may be needed along the way.

Prea James suits the modern pregnant bride, the silk cross overs and elegant draping falls softly over bust lines and will be comfortable over the bump. Prea offers light wrap over layers which define the feminine curve.

Credit: Anwe Bridal

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DESIGNS THAT WORK WELL FOR BRIDES WHO ARE EXPECTING

Azalea Gown by Alexandra Grecco: The hand-embroidered textured detail will create an illusion over the bump. 

Sienne by Alexandra Grecco: the soft A line will fall over a bump and the square neck for support. We can always raise the neckline! 

The Carine by Prea James: This soft A- line with the twist detail will sit above the bump pulling the bodice in at the smallest point. It falls gently at the hips and doesn’t hug.

The Cecile Blouse and Maya Skirt: Perfect for a bride wanting to reveal their bump in a stylish way. The Wrap around blouse will flatter the bust and the draping to the side will draw attention from the bump.

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SOME BONUS TIPS FROM LOVELY BRIDE

Don’t be afraid to think outside the box: Don’t feel like you can’t explore your original ideas of your dream wedding dress. Discuss with your stylist the wedding dress you had envisioned, and don’t limit yourself on how it could look. Like we mentioned before, there really are no rules, except not compromising your personal style. If you want something edgier like a jump suit or two-piece set, absolutely go for it!

Be open minded with sizing and alterations: When ordering your dress, we advise to add an inch for every month pregnant and be prepared to size up even if you your baby is due before the big day. Your stylist will study the designer’s size chart with you to order the best size. Remember that following alterations, your dress will be bespoke to your body, so don’t fixate on the initial size order and enjoy your pregnancy stress-free!

Becoming pregnant after choosing a dress is completely fine: If you have already purchased your dress and fall pregnant, don’t panic, there are easy solutions! Expert seamstresses can add panels of the same fabric from designers or complete dress customisations like panels and corsets to ensure you feel comfortable on the day.

Photograph: Victoria Somerset-How

Model: @bethsandland

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