That was nearly 20 years ago for me and I do not have a strict dress code that I have to follow on a daily basis any longer. I also know that a sleeveless or strapless wedding or bridesmaid gown is usually not "immodest" by any means. Modesty is more about a woman's spirit and they way she carries herself than certain guidelines.
However, some brides are looking for what is usually termed a "modest" wedding gown. Whether for personal, religious, or cultural reasons, she wants to wear a gown with a higher neckline and straps or sleeves. Unfortunately, when doing a search for modest gowns, much of what is found is poor quality and is not trendy or fashionable.
At September's Bride, several of our designers will customize a wedding gown in any way the bride desires. We often raise necklines, add cap sleeves, fill in sheer areas, and match beautiful jackets to our gowns for a customer who wants to show less skin. Because of our experiences, Rachel and I are both very comfortable working with this process and thoroughly enjoy helping brides see all the options that are available.
If you are a bride who wants a "modest" option, here are a few tips for you:
1. Don't feel ashamed or awkward asking for what you want or describing for what you are looking. You need to feel beautiful and comfortable in your wedding gown. When you walk into a bridal store and see only strapless gowns, just ask if there are options. Please don't walk out without speaking to a consultant. A good consultant will listen to what you want and will help you find YOUR gown!
2. Do not sacrifice quality. Many wedding gowns, whether labeled as "modest" or not, that are sold over the internet are not quality gowns and the manufacturers do not stand behind the product. 90% of the popular wedding gown designers in North America have options for "modest" gowns. These can be purchased at your local bridal salon where the consultant and seamstress can be sure the gown fits you and is exactly what you need and want.
3. Have fun! Yes, it may be a little more difficult or stressful to find exactly what you want or to find a gown that fits your church's guidelines. But, this is your time to shop for your gown. So, be willing to laugh, be willing to try something on that you might not otherwise, and enjoy yourself.
4. Call us. Even if you are not in the West Michigan area; we would be happy to help you in your search. Perhaps we can answer questions about a particular bridal line or perhaps our experience will make the drive to September's Bride worth the time.