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  • Lauren Pfaff

The Dress AND The Venue

One of the biggest decisions a bride can make after getting engaged is determining that perfect, magical venue in which say “I Do”. The venue is the single most important choice in determining what your wedding style will be and sets the tone for the entire aesthetic of the biggest day of your life. How do you keep that in mind when selecting THE PERFECT DRESS?

Know your wedding theme and vision - Your wedding venue has a huge impact on the theme of your wedding. The interior décor and style of the venue, landscaping, and even the architectural elements all play a role in determining the overall aesthetic and theme of your day. Remember, you will have photos taken in all areas of the venue. It is best to consider your vision for the ceremony, bridal party photos, even dinner and dancing and how your gown will look and photograph. Whether you see a dreamy, candlelit, romantic evening or an ethereal and whimsical fairytale – your gown should reflect the feeling of that through selection of fabrics, colors, drama, and details such as lace, beading, or subtle simplicity. Express your unique personality with your vision by adding special touches such as similar patterns in your centerpieces or linens to something in your gown perhaps a beading pattern, or color palette!

Real Black Iris Estate Bride Amanda reflected the caviar beading from her Hayley Paige gown into her gorgeous linens beaded patterns for her spring wedding Photographer: The Siners Photography

Level of formality - All decisions regarding the formalness of your wedding are all be important in deciding which gown to choose. A grander and more formal venue will require more drama. The bride should select a gown that will help ensure she and her groom are the focal point of the photos and evening. In a ballroom like Black Iris Estate, a Thomas Caterers of Distinction venue rich in history and grandeur with capacity of up to 400 guests, rolling acres of greenery and fairytale details, special touches such as a long sweeping train, whimsical fabrics like tulle’s or organza’s accented with soft detailing and feminine necklines would blend with the overall look of the venue.

Style shoot from Willow Chapel with this gorgeous blush & ivory hue gown. Paired with a dreamy cathedral tulle train and soft feminine sweetheart neckline, the setting is matched with the perfect Summer florals at Black Iris Estate. Photographer: Alison Mae Photography

When considering CANAL 337, an industrial, rustic- chic downtown venue overlooking the Canal, sleek and chic fabrics, or even art deco details such as beading or necklines with a touch of vintage, will suit the venue properly. No matter what your personal style might be – there are ways to incorporate your personality into the details of your gown. Remember, never forget the power of fashion to define the mood of your wedding!

Real CANAL 337 Bride Megan chose the perfect art deco vintage beading for her glamorous silk sheath gown paired with a gorgeous champagne fur wrap for her late Fall wedding Photographer: Danielle Logan

Real CANAL 337 Bride, Danielle, had a vision of soft romanticism, femininity, and candlelit rich glow for her December wedding. She was able to create a warm, gorgeous ceremony space through rich blooms, twinkle lighting, and many candles! She paired her florals and setting with her gorgeous Galia Lahav gown for the perfect look! Gown: Marie Gabriel Couture , Florist: The Sage House Indy, Photographer: Heather Miles Photography

Choose your shopping crew wisely

With these points in mind, one of the most important factors in picking THE dress, is of course the support you have through friends and family that make up your crew. We suggest bringing only those whose opinions you trust and value the most. Although we know the urge is strong to bring everyone you know to see how beautiful you look in wedding dresses, we promise that your shopping experience is best with only those few people!

Keep the season in mind - Whether you are exchanging vows in June at our gorgeous Willow Chapel, or saying I do in February in our cathedral ceiling, wooded beamed, stain glass upstairs loft, certain seasons will require certain looks from your gown. If you choose the natural outdoors, look for gowns in soft, airy fabrics that flow and move easily. This is the best weather to style sleeveless and strapless options. The best fabrics for gowns in warm spring and summer months include crepes, chiffons, light tulles. If you are more comfortable in some sort of sleeve, look for cap sleeves, butterfly, or sheer sleeves to ensure you feel comfortable and confident!

Photo left: Real Black Iris Estate bride Erin chose the perfect cap sleeve, lace, fitted gown for her classic Fall outdoor wedding with a gorgeous pearl back necklace to show her personal touch on the classic style. Photographer: Cotangent Studio -- Photo right: Real CANAL 337 bride Anna styled a modern, chic fit and flare crepe gown with the perfectly butterfly cap sleeve to give a touch of soft coverage and unique look to her timeless gown during her Summer wedding. Photographer: Wandering Heart Photo

Look for shapes such as A-lines or fit and flares as they are easy to move about and lightweight. In cooler months and seasons, make sure your gown is comfortable but still warm. If you go with a strapless or less coverage option, pair with a bolero or stole in case of colder weather.

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Black Iris Estate & CANAL 337 are Thomas Venues

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