The coolest alternative wedding dresses for non-traditional brides

Alternative wedding dresses are growing in popularity every year. Whether you're a fashion forward dresser or a relaxed, fuss-free bride-to-be, check out Marie Claire's edit of the best alternative wedding dresses out there right now...

alternative wedding dresses
(Image credit: Getty Images)

If you aren't into traditional gowns, there's never been a better time to embrace alternative wedding dresses. Whether it's for a low-key registry office ceremony or blow-up destination wedding, suits or slinky separates have never been so cool.

There are many reasons to go down the alternative route, but the main factor is being able to wear your look again: think oversized suits, fluid jumpsuits or sequin dresses, perfect for any kind of occasion dressing.

The best alternative wedding dresses

No matter your budget - check out our under-£500 high street wedding dresses guide here - there's a style out there to suit your tastes, be it a colourful skirt, mini dress or jumpsuit.

Luxury designers like Roksanda, Gabriela Hearst and 16Arlington are a great shout for modern brides who want to push the envelope, while Halfpenny London, Bernadette and Galvan’s unfussy designs are definitely steered more towards those with a minimal aesthetic.

The likes of MatchesFashion, Net-A-Porter and Browns all have great contemporary bridal sections that should provide everything you're looking for to walk down the aisle.

If you're on a tight budget, that's more than ok, because high-street labels are coming out trumps with some beautiful pieces. ASOS, Phase Eight and Whistles have beautiful pieces that still look expensive, but thankfully keep your bank account out of the red - and don't forget to finish off your look with these gorgeous wedding shoes.

If you're unsure of which style to pick, let your venue guide you. Town hall ceremony? Try an oversized cream suit and hat, a la Millie Mackintosh or Emily Ratajkowski. Barn wedding? An off-the-shoulder or puff-sleeve boho style will look amazing. Beach wedding? Opt for a slinky slip dress or crop top and skirt.

Keep scrolling to shop my edit of the best alternative wedding dresses below.

Penny Goldstone

Penny Goldstone is the Digital Fashion Editor at Marie Claire, covering everything from catwalk trends to royal fashion and the latest high street and Instagram must-haves.

Penny grew up in France and studied languages and law at the Sorbonne Nouvelle University in Paris before moving to the UK for her MA in multimedia journalism at Bournemouth University. She moved to the UK permanently and has never looked back (though she does go back regularly to stock up on cheese and wine).

Although she's always loved fashion - she used to create scrapbooks of her favourite trends and looks, including Sienna Miller and Kate Moss' boho phase - her first job was at, sourcing the best deals for everything from restaurants to designer sales.

However she quit after two years to follow her true passion, fashion journalism, and after many years of internships and freelance stints at magazines including Red, Cosmopolitan, Stylist and Good Housekeeping, landed her dream job as the Digital Fashion Editor at Marie Claire UK.

Her favourite part of the job is discovering new brands and meeting designers, and travelling the world to attend events and fashion shows. Seeing her first Chanel runway IRL at Paris Fashion Week was a true pinch-me moment.