Five ways to make your wedding dress unique

07 Nov 2019

How to put a personal stamp on your wedding dress and make it memorable for you and your guests

Image: Jessica Hill Photography

Image gallery

Image gallery

In an age where the world is your oyster and you can wear what you want on your wedding day, we have never seen a more diverse array of brides. With more choice than ever before, brides-to-be are increasingly looking for ways to make their wedding dress unique.

Of course, when your wedding budget can stretch a little further to accommodate a bespoke bridal gown then you can have the dress you always dreamed of. However, if you are on a tighter budget or if you fall in love with an off-the-peg design, then there are many ways you can make a dress your own. 

From pops of colour to an abundance of accessories, we offer five ideas for a project in personalisation and feature some companies who specialise in bespoke creations. 

1. Add a back necklace

Back necklaces are having a moment and are particularly suited to plunging backs or dresses which are entirely backless. Some wedding dresses come with back necklaces already attached so, to ensure a completely exclusive design, work with your bridalwear supplier to choose a back necklace which comes as a separate accessory but perfectly complements your dress design.

Take a look at this varied selection of back necklaces for inspiration. 


Above: Grace Loves Lace 'La Bamba' collection

2. Choose detachable sleeves

For two bridal looks in one, detachable sleeves provide the ideal solution. While wedding dresses featuring detachable sleeves are usually bought together - meaning there will be many other brides sporting the same design, it's not to say that you can't approach your bridalwear supplier or dressmaker and request a pair of sleeves that have been created especially for you.

Speak to the professionals about the style of sleeve that will suit your chosen dress. There are many variations on offer including bell, cap, and full-length sleeves as well as armbands - each as different and dazzling as the other. 


Above: Charlotte Balbier 'Aerial' with detachable bell sleeves


Above: Grace Loves Lace 'Fabienne' with detachable star armbands

3. Consider dip-dye

If you want to add a splash of colour to your bridal ensemble without going completely garish, a dip-dye service might be the perfect option for you. Beautiful ombre effects displaying subtle or statement colour transitions are applied at the hemline, allowing the rest of the dress to shine in bridal white.

This autumnal-inspired dip-dye 'Phoenix' dress was created by Felicity Westmacott, Bespoke Dressmaker who is based in Redhill, Surrey. Felicity's bespoke commissions start at £1,600 excluding fabrics and take 6-12 weeks to complete. 


Above: 'Phoenix' by Felicity Westmacott (Image by Jessica Hill Photography)

4. Opt for a cover-up

Fur boleros, feathered or delicate beaded capes, and leather jackets emblazoned with your newly married status, can switch up your bridal style in an instant. Cover-ups also offer the perfect opportunity to showcase both your personal style and theme of wedding. 


Above: Jenny Packham 2020 Collection


Above: Jacket by Sammy Lea's Retro Emporium (Tanya Flannagan Photography) taken from 'An autumnal wedding shoot in Shropshire'

5. Enhance with embellishments

Retro brides with a quirky character and sense of fun may wish to inject personality with colourful embellishments. Akin to tattoo graphics and pop art, think flowers, unicorns, hearts, rainbows, stars and skulls...the list goes on.

For a few suitably placed motifs on a dress you have already bought, speak to a seamstress. Alternatively, for a completely bespoke dress made to your measurements and specification, take a look at the work of The Couture Company in Birmingham where prices range from £99 to £2,200. 


Above: The Couture Company creates bespoke dresses for brides looking for something different

Did you think of a novel way to make your wedding dress unique? We'd love to hear from you. Email

Related content

supplier finder

Get a quote

Looking for that perfect local supplier?
Let us know what you need and we’ll start looking for you.

supplier finder

Find a supplier

Search over 200,000 Suppliers in the UK.



Everything for your wedding

Wedding flowers inspired by the seasons

If you don't know where to start with your wedding flowers, consider your wedding season ...

Wedding Photo of the Week: Lewis Bishop Photography

Each week we’re inviting all wedding photographers to submit their images to be Bri...

The benefits of a smaller wedding

We explore the benefits of a smaller wedding, giving you plenty to consider before you d...

Asperger's and me; a bridal make-up artist's first-hand account

One bridal make-up artist shares how her Asperger's Syndrome has finally given her an app...

Wedding Photo of the Week: Laura Moon Photography

Each week we’re inviting all wedding photographers to submit their images to be Bri...

Looking for that perfect local supplier?
Let us know what you need and we’ll start looking for you.

the wedding show