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.
Halfpenny London's bridal separates are the closest you can get to a custom gown without having the expense or having to rely on a seamstress. Wear this with a skirt or tailored trousers.
Olivia Palermo got married in a tulle skirt and cardigan a few years ago, and it's a look that's stood the test of time.
Emilia Wickstead’s ivory Charlotte dress has a statement bow appliqué on the back with long sashes akin to a trailing veil. It’s made from cloqué crepe with a wide square neckline and a fitted waist, then falls to a streamlined column skirt.
This ivory cape-sleeve top, delicately cut from scalloped guipure-lace then punctuated with a row of crystal-embellished flower-shaped buttons. Wear it with high waist trousers or the matching skirt.
The dainty guipure-lace used to craft Self-Portrait's ivory cotton-blend skirt is complemented by the flowing tiered construction.
Frankie is a contemporary piece made of silk crepe for the modern bride. It gives off a truly effortless look with a high collared neckline, wide legged trousers and relaxed fit.
This white ANOUKI puff sleeve corset dress is crafted in the label's native Georgia and cut for a slim fit from cotton. Featuring an off-the-shoulder sweetheart neckline, it has puff sleeves with elasticated detailing, a boned bodice and falls to a mid-length skirt with a vent and concealed zip fastening.
This white Saint Laurent single-breasted wool tuxedo jacket is made in Italy. It features contrast peak lapels, single button fastening, long sleeves, front flap pockets and a central rear vent. A true investment piece, worth every penny. Wear it with the matching trousers, or over a silk slip dress.
These white Saint Laurent slim wool tuxedo trousers are tailored in Italy. Trimmed with silk satin, they have a mid-rise waist, belt loops, concealed fly fastening, side pockets, rear welt pockets and zipped hems at the inner ankle.
Designed throughout in delicate floral lace with eyelash trims along the sleeves, neckline and hem, this wide leg jumpsuit is a modern and striking bridal style option.
Retrofête's 'Gabrielle' mini dress has been re-imagined in many different colors, and this white chiffon version is perfect for brides. It's covered in iridescent sequins and has a wrap silhouette that fastens with a velvet sash.
Sleeper's feather-trimmed 'Boheme' slip dress channels all the glamor of Hollywood's Golden Age. Cut to a mini length, it's been made locally in Kyiv from smooth ECOVERO™-satin that's approved to STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX®.
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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 MoneySavingExpert.com, 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.
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