Thursday, July 1, 2010

A ‘Too Hot To Handle’ Wedding Gown?

There were so many things I loved about my wedding day, and my gown is right up there at the top of that list. From its gorgeous lace tiers to its lovely grape sash, the dress made me feel absolutely beautiful, starting with our "first look" and ending with the very last dance.

One thing that surprised me as the day went on, though, was just how heavy, and even more importantly, how hot, the fabric felt throughout the wedding. Though my gown was a mermaid design and not nearly as large as many of the ball gowns out there, it still weighed heavily on my petite frame, especially with the crinoline layered underneath.

Moving with the train? I needed one or two girls with me at all times. Using the restroom? I couldn’t manage on my own. Climbing steps and sitting in the van we’d rented? Extremely challenging.

Plus, I must admit that although the weather was a perfect 75 degrees, I still started to feel a bit overheated if I was walking around too long outside. And during the cocktail hour, as I sat in the bride’s room at the reception site taking a breather, my feet up and the back of my gown unzipped, I understood why many brides prefer to switch into a lighter gown for dinner and dancing.

On the other hand, once I was inside the cool banquet hall, things were a lot easier, and I just loved swishing around the dance floor in my beautiful dress, which was much simpler to handle once it was bustled!

LESSON LEARNED: If I had it to do over again, I wouldn’t change a thing, because I adored my gown. I’d choose it again in a heartbeat, and can’t wait to do a “day-after” shoot sometime in the future. But for those of you who have yet to make your pick, think long and hard about just how long you’ll be in your dress, what the weather will be like, how much time you’ll spend outdoors, and what undergarments you plan to pair with it. A gown feels different when it’s been on your body for six hours, rather than for just a few minutes at a time in the bridal salon.

What’s your gown like? Will you be changing into a separate reception dress?

(Photo Credits: Personal Library)


  1. I think about this with my own gown too because of the weather here. Hopefully though I won't be spending too much time in a non-air-conditioned environment!

  2. Your gown is beautiful, and you look beautiful in it :) I haven't spent a ton of time in my gown due to the whole debacle, but I remember it feeling very airy and light. Maybe I'll have the opposite problem, since our wedding is in October and there is a good chance it could be chilly! Thanks for the tips.

  3. I couldn't imagine you in a different gown - it was so beautiful on you and I definitely cannot tell that you were hot! You looked fresh and flawless!!

    Living in Central Florida I knew the heat would easily be over 90 and the humidity would probably be 70%+ (they both were) - So I went with a very light dress... and I wouldn't have chosen anything else!

  4. So extremely true! As much as I loved my gown, I sometimes wish I had gone a route that would have allowed me to wear it the entire day. But I wanted big and big was what affected me :) So I am glad I had a dress to change into. It wasn't hot on our day either but I felt strangled and suffocated and exhausted! My seamstress told me my gown was the heaviest she'd ever worked on. Wish I would have realized that in the salon :(

    I'm glad I had a dress to change into but I would have stayed in my ball gown a little longer if it hadn't been so heavy and constricting.

    I love that you sat with your feet up and dress unzipped for a funny!

  5. My dress wasn't very heavy, even with the extra crinoline skirt underneath, however I did have some issues walking in it simply b/c I'm not use to walking in long gowns that cover my feet. I had to "kick" my feet when I walked.

    Also, despite my alterations the bust area of my dress wasn't as tight as I wanted and with the weight of the dress I constantly felt like it was slipping and I kept having to pull it up which was very annoying. I almost wish I had straps to use on it for the reception.

  6. You looked gorgeous in your dress! And it's great you had some willing bridesmaids to help you when it got complicated. I don't think this will be an issue with my dress, and the wedding is in the Fall so it might be a little chilly out! Who knows-I still might need help going to the bathroom :o)

  7. Love the silhouette of your dress :)

    I'm nervous that I'm going to regret getting a gown with a train. I didn't really think about if I wanted a train (I kind of assumed a train would be cost prohibitive for me). Now I'm worried about the weight, heat, and dirt! :(

    Still, I love my dress and hopefully I'll get amazing photos of it. Hopefully it'll be worth it!

  8. Oh man, I was SO hot in my dress too! But it was a super warm day out. I wouldn't have changed it either, totally worth the pain to wear something you love!

  9. Your dress was gorgeous; sorry it was so heavy for you to wear.

    I did try on some that i discounted because of the weight but mine was actually really light, even though it was really long, because of the organza skirt.