Sophia-Tolli_ALLChoosing Your Wedding Dress in Devon & Cornwall

Slim and slinky, chic and elegant, a confection of tulle? Off-the-shoulder, halter neck, spaghetti-strapped, strapless, backless? In virginal white, ivory, gold, the palest of baby pinks or the deepest of crimsons or burgundies? If you’re beginning to panic, don’t. Just get out there and start looking! Your wedding dress is the most exciting dress you will ever buy and most brides will tell you they knew they’d found the right one as soon as they tried it on. Where do you start? There are thousands of wedding dresses our there but they all fall into five basic shapes:

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Ballgown

Its fitted bodice and full skirt creates the impression of curves for brides whose figures tend to be a bit straight up and down.

Empire Line

Its high-waisted style, with a slim or A-line skirt falling from just below the bust, suits brides with classic English figures – small on top and a bit fuller on the bottom.

Sheath

Slim and figure-hugging, the sheath and its sister style, the fishtail, look stunning on both perfect petites and long and leggy brides. Those with less than perfect figures are advised to avoid it!

Princess Line

Describing an A-line by means of vertical panels either from the shoulders or from the bust, this style suits brides who want disguise their hips.

Dropped waistline

The long bodice and dropped waist of the basque-style suits almost every figure and is perfect for brides who want to draw attention away from a very full bust. When it comes to necklines and sleeves, take a good look at your shoulders before you make a decision.

Strapless

this straps, halter necks and off-the-shoulder gowns accentuate pretty shoulders. If you have wide shoulders, go for a V-neck or wide straps Sweetheart, square and V-necklines elongate shorter necks. High collars and boat necklines disguise bony shoulders or prominent collarbones. Full, fancy sleeves and lace, beaded or embroidered bodices all suit the smaller figure while better-endowed brides should avoid low necklines and fussy detail on the bodice.

Should I wear white?

Nowadays, only if you have a tan to set it off – if you’re going for the traditional bridal look, creams and ivories are much kinder to the skin. But the choice of colour is enormous. Gold, silver and delicate pastels are very much in evidence and, if you really want to make a statement, there are fabulous rich crimsons and deep burgundies.

The back view

Everything you’ve ever read about the importance of the back of your dress is true. That’s what your guests will be looking at all through the ceremony. A built-in train will give you a slimmer outline while you’re standing at the altar and lend a special dignity to the occasion. Yes, they’re more difficult to handle but think of the fun you’ll have practising in front of the mirror at home. You’ll soon work out how to walk and turn gracefully and don’t forget your chief bridesmaid will be there to ensure your train falls properly on the day.

A final tip…

When you go to choose your dress, limit the number of people you take with you for advice to a maximum of two. And always include a friend whose opinion you trust and who will tell you the truth about what suits you, and what doesn’t.

14 & SIXPENCE

Mulberry, Ashwell Business Park, Ilminster TA19 9DX
Email: [email protected]

Website: www.14andsixpence.co.uk

Award-winning bridal, prom and occasion dress boutique where friendly and experienced staff will listen to what you’re looking for and help you find the dress which is perfectly suited to your style, shape and personality, as well as your venue, theme and special day.

A stunning collection of international designers, including Rachel Allan, Monica Loretti, House of Nicholas and Richard Designs, means there’s plenty of choice and the boutique prides itself on stocking designers who offer something extraordinary and a little bit different, every one exclusively to them in this area.

At 14 & Sixpence, they know how important it is that ‘THE DRESS’ makes you feel confident, beautiful and elegant and they offer every customer a personal appointment. There’s a full range of accessories and don’t miss the ‘One & Only’ department, with designer prom and bridesmaid dresses at half price.

THE BRIDAL EMPORIUM

105-106 Fore Street, Exeter EX4 3HY
Tel: 01392 493814
Email: [email protected]

Website: www.bridalemporium.co.uk

With over 200 lovingly made designer wedding dresses on show and collections to suit every budget, every style and every bride, The Bridal Emporium in Exeter should be on every bride’s visiting list. All the dresses are lovingly made by renowned designers, including Kenneth Winston, Mark Lesley, Romantica, Lois Wild and Phoenix Gowns, all of whom have been selected for their exceptional quality, reliability and experience.

The family-run, independent business has a fabulous team of professional bridal consultants and talented seamstresses, all with years of experience, who will look after you from your initial point of contact right up to the day of your wedding, when they will happily arrive at your venue and dress you for your big day.

Established for 27 years, The Bridal Emporium is Exeter’s longest-established bridal, prom and occasion wear boutique aqnd it has something for every bride from modern glamour to vintage chic . Whatever the look you wish to achieve, they will help you to find ‘the one’.

 

BRIDAL RELOVED

14b Market Street, Tavistock PL19 0DB
Tel: 01822 610501
Email: [email protected]

Website: www.bridalreloved.co.uk

Run by mother and daughter duo, Sue and Kate, Bridal Reloved specialises in sample and pre-owned high-end designer wedding dresses. The beautiful boutique on the edge of Dartmoor also offers a new range of Terra Bridal dresses for curvier brides in sizes 16 to 32. Just a two-minute walk from the centre of the town, there’s plenty of convenient parking in nearby car parks.

 

 

THE BRIDAL STUDIO CORNWALL

14 Coinagehall Street, Helston TR13 8EB
Tel: 01326 560903
Email: [email protected]

Website: www.bridal-studio-helston.co.uk

Book an appointment and start the most beautiful journey. The Bridal Studio offers stunning collections, including Madi Lane, Rachel Allan, Monica Lorett, Gais and Monreal and they’ll take time to get to know you and your style, so that they can help you put together an outfit that’s perfect for you and your big day.

Over  cup of tea or coffee, they’ll discuss fabrics, styles, silhouettes and create your own collection, ready for you to try on. From romantic, ethereal boho styles with soft laces, floaty skirts and plunging necklines with open backs, all the way through to the traditional bridal look with sweeping train, soft satins and subtle touch of sparkles, The Bridal Studio offers the entire gamut of bridal styles.

BROWNS OF TOTNES

Huntwell House, 48 High Street, Totnes TQ9 5SQ
Tel: 07875 504779
Email: [email protected]

Website: www.brownsoftotnes.co.uk

Browns of Totnes stocks some of the most sought-after designers including Cymbeline of France and St. Patrick of Spain, offering a top range of unique dresses you’ll struggle to find elsewhere in the region. If you want your wedding to be unlike any other, you need a dress unlike any other – and Browns of Totnes is the place to get it. They pride themselves on showcasing a wide range of styles for every bride. Whether you’re looking for something traditional or more edgy, to a boho or vintage look, there will be something for you to try in sizes from 4 to 14. They also specialise in exquisite sample gowns from the best designers for brides who are on a short timescale or working to a strict budget.

During your private appointment you will enjoy a welcoming and tranquil environment and be treated to a VIP experience on the most memorable and emotional day amid all of your busy wedding planning. They recognise that buying a wedding dress should be an enjoyable and unforgettable experience and endeavour to make every bride feel truly special and relaxed.

FROCKS & FRILLS

1 Little Castle Street, Truro TR1 3DL
Tel: 01872 713824
Email: [email protected]

Website: www.frocksfrills.co.uk

Established in 2013 Frocks & Frills was originally set up as a one-stop wedding shop. Over the years it has developed into one of Cornwall’s largest wedding and bridesmaid dress suppliers with over 400 dresses in store. Prom, evening and mother of the bride/groom are also available, together with accessories for the bridal party.

In November 2022 Frocks & Frills moved right into the centre of Truro. The new two storey premises has all off-the-peg dresses upstairs and all current range dresses on the ground floor. Bridal collections include Morilee, Sonsie, Romantica, Pure, Silhouette, Jennifer Wren and Isabella, available in sizes from 4 to 36+.

The aim of Frocks & Frills Wedding Studio is to provide a stress-free, relaxed environment for the bride to choose her wedding outfit, bridesmaids outfits and accessories, with no high pressure sales pitch, so they offer a closed door policy for appointments, this mean they cannot guarantee availability for walk-ins.

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IZZI STOCKTON

48 Bridge Street, Taunton TA1 4UD
Tel: 01823 331053
Email:

Website: www.izzistocktonbridal.co.uk

From walking through the door and trying on your first gown to collecting your dress for your special day, Izzi Stockton Bridal has your best interests in mind. And when it comes to hand-picking each season’s collections they have real women in mind, so their glamorous gowns come in sizes from 10 to 30 and the majority are over size 18. Among their bridal collections are Veromia, Sonsie by Veromia, Tiffanys and Lou Lou Curve. There’s a full range of accessories and prom and bridesmaid dresses in sizes from 2 to 30.

Currently the boutique is working by appointment only and limiting groups to three people. Visitors are politely asked to continue to wear face masks and sanitise their hands when they arrive and the shop is thoroughly cleaned between customers.

It’s ully accessible to wheelchairs and pushchairs and there is lots of parking nearby at Wood St pay and display and Morrison’s supermarket.

 

 

 

LOWEN BRIDAL

12 Church Street, Launceston PL15 8AP
Tel: 01566 778989/07516 646089
Email: [email protected]

Website: www.lowenbridal.co.uk

Fabulous selection of gowns from British designers Romantica of Devon, Phil Collins and Tiffany Bridal. Also glittering range of accessories, beautiful bridesmaids’ dresses and pre-loved ball gowns, prom and party dresses. There’s also a ‘Bride on a Budget’ collection. Sizes range from 4 to 30, all at amazingly reasonable prices.
Supporting UK business is important to them, which is why they’ve chosen to stock only from suppliers based in the UK and, wherever possible, right here in the south west.

 

PIROUETTE

The House that Moved, 24 West Street, Exeter EX1 1BA
Tel: 0101392 432643
Email:

Website: www.pirouettethecollection.com

Stocking highly sought-after international collections, including Maggie Sottero, Sottero & Midgley, Rebecca Ingram and LouLou Bridal. Intimate appointments available and there’s a bespoke alteration service for that perfect fit.

 

PRETTY SMITHY BRIDAL

335 Torquay Road, Paignton TQ2 3EP
Tel: 01803 362392
Email: [email protected]

Website: www.prettysmithybridal.co.uk

Pretty Smithy operates by appointment so you get exclusive access to their collection of beautiful and affordable wedding dresses. Prices start at £399 and go up to £2399 and there’s a selection of over 150 dresses in sample sizes from 6 to 36 ready for you to try on.

They have both made-to-order and off-the-rail dresses and are proud stockists of GAIA, True Bride, Brighton Belle and Millie May, alongside an extensive collection of curvy wedding dresses in sizes 14 to 36 from designers True Curve and Millie Grace.

They want every bride to have the dress of her dreams, with a boutique, special experience, at a realistic price.

 

PRUDENCE GOWNS

2 Saltash Road, Keyham, Plymouth
Tel: 01752 558858
Email:

Website: www.prudencegowns.com

With over 30 years of experience in helping brides-to-be find their perfect wedding dress and with prices of wedding dresses from as little as £299, you can’t afford not to look at Prudence Gowns. Expert staff dedicate their time to each and every bridal appointment and the shop offers a unique collection of international designers, including Rebecca Ingram, Maggie Sottero, Justin Alexander, Essense of Australia, Sincerity & Sottero & Midgley to name but a few. All dresses are sourced with great thought for every bride, with a wide range of sizes and styles for all budgets to make your special day perfect.

You’ll also find bridesmaids, mother of the bride and menswear by Mark Darcy and Cavani, so everyone in the bridal party is well looked after.

Book a bridal appointment with an expert stylist in one of the air-conditioned private viewing areas by calling the boutique or by completing an online appointment form.

 

TWO FOR JOY

Ashleigh Meadow, Tregondale, Liskeard PL14 3RG
Tel: 07767 646337
Email: [email protected]

Website: www.twoforjoybridal.co.uk

These relaxed wedding studios in the Cornwall countryside are home to a unique collection of over 400 designer new and ex-display bridal, bridesmaid and prom dresses. From size 8 to 32, each has been handpicked for its quality and are all £750 or less.

With private bookings available twice a day, you are free to try on beautiful dresses, slip on your dream shoes and browse the array of gorgeous accessories too. Surrounded by loved ones and guided with expert advice, you can let go of worries, embrace your style and become the bride you’ve always dreamt of being on your wedding day.

Free parking.