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Oh, My Veils!

Posted on April 11 by New Jersey Bride

Veils at wedding
Jackie Averill Photography

To veil or not to veil—that is the question. As the oldest piece of the bridal ensemble dating back to ancient times, wedding veils are steeped in tradition. In some cultures it was known to be a symbol of purity, modesty and obedience, an indication of wealth and a way to ward off evil spirits. Over the years, the traditional meaning of the veil was lost and it simply became an iconic bridal accessory. While some brides see the veil as an old-fashioned cumbersome adornment, for others it remains the ultimate finishing touch and ode to personal style. You may be thinking about skipping the veil, but remember your wedding day is the only event that will ever call for this timeless accessory. Here is our guide to choosing the veil that is undeniably you.

Things to consider:

—Consider your hairstyle. The type of veil you choose will affect how you wear your hair. You also want to choose a hairstyle that will still look great when the veil comes off.

—Don’t over embellish. A gown with lots of bling or embellishments should be paired with a sweet and simple veil. If your gown is on the simple side, opt for a more dramatic veil.

—Choose a statement piece. An over-the-top gown paired with a multilayered heavily adorned veil, chandelier earrings and a large necklace is an accessory overload. Choose one piece of your ensemble as a statement, and keep everything else simple.

—A perfect pairing.  Your veil should complement your gown, not distract from it. Opt for a matching color and fabric that coordinates. Most designers create veils specifically for each gown they design.

—Highlight your best assets. If your gown has an incredible intricate back, don’t hide it with a long veil. If you going for an elaborate hairstyle, choose a veil to accent it, not cover it up.

Types of veils:  

Cathedral ~ The cathedral veil is often associated with royal weddings, church ceremonies and the most formal of affairs. Being the longest and most dramatic veil, it is a showstopper and the most regal of choices. The cathedral veil pairs well with ballgowns as it is meant to have an over the top princess feel but it also adds drama to a sleek shiloutte and is perfect for gowns with a long train.

Chapel ~ The chapel veil is simply a shorter version of the cathedral veil. It’s floor length hitting just above the floor or just beyond the hem of your gown. It still offers a dramatic flair but it’s a bit easier to navigate. This type of veil does pair well with sleeker gowns as its length may compete with a full-skirted gown.

Mid-Length  ~ A mid-length veil is a popular choice as it’s the perfect in between. It creates a silhouette around the brides shoulders highlighting her face. It can vary in length from just below the shoulders to the fingertips. It pairs well with most gowns but especially ball gowns as it allows the full skirt to take center stage.

Ballet ~  The ballet veil falls somewhere between the brides knees  and ankles. It’s longer then mid-length veils but not as dramatic as Cathedral and Chapel Veils. It pairs well with trumpet type skirts and a-line styles.

Flyaway ~  A flyaway veil brushes the shoulders and has a retro feel often being multi-tiered and made of a stiffer tulle that gives it a definitive poof. This veil looks great with vintage style gowns and shorter gowns. It can also add personality and an edgy flare to a body hugging silhoutte.

Circle ~ This ethereal style veil goes full circle around the brides body creating creating an aura of tulle. This type of veil looks great with an embellished edge and works with most gowns. I comes in various lengths but most often ends just below the shoulders.

Birdcage ~ The birdcage veil is a hip, alternative option for brides. It’s fun and flirty style offers brides a way to showcase their uniqueness while still getting that bridal feel. The Birdcage veil covers the crown of  the head or falls just over the eyes. It looks great with short gowns or edgier styles.

Blusher ~ The blusher veil is the most traditional type of veil.  It is meant to conceal the brides face offering a big reveal to the groom when the she reaches the alter. Many veils come in multiple tiers offering brides the option to have a blusher but a second layer can be added to any veil to create the same affect.

Mantilla ~ The mantilla veil is of Spanish decent and is oh so romantic! It is most well known for its scalloped lace edges that frame the brides face. It lays flat on top of the brides head towards the front and comes in various lengths and styles.

Article and Styling By: Kristin Rockhill, Philadelphia, PA

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