Bridal Gowns: Believe in the Sleeve!

Wedding dresses with sleeves are big news right now, a trend that looks set to escalate over the coming seasons. Both Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton wore sleeved wedding gowns, cementing the trend in popular culture. There are many different types of sleeve to suit personal aesthetic taste and here is our guide to some of the more popular sleeve styles.

Angel Sleeves

Reminiscent of the wings of an angel, these sleeves are extremely varied and cover any that is not fitted to the arm. Angel sleeves are most often seen on dresses with a vintage feel and, to add to their ephemeral beauty, are usually made with a sheer fabric.

Cap Sleeves

A variety of cap sleeves are available, from flat to ruffled and from puffed to fluttered. They cover only the topmost portion of the shoulder and are rounded, attached only to the top of the wedding gown with no fabric beneath the arm. Cap sleeves are perhaps the most popular option, delivering exactly the right amount of coverage and adding a touch of pure romanticism.

Short Sleeves

Though varying slightly in length, short sleeves generally end halfway between elbow and shoulder, similar to t-shirt sleeves. They will completely surround the arm and, like cap sleeves, can be rendered in many styles.

Three-Quarter Sleeves

Falling a few inches below the elbow, the three-quarter style sleeve was massively popular in the 1950s and 60s. This popularity has returned with a vengeance as vintage style gowns take centre stage once again. Bell sleeves, fitted close to the shoulder with a dramatic flare at the lower edge, are typically classed as three-quarter sleeves.

Long Sleeves

Ending at or even beyond the wrist, long sleeves have the most scope for creative design and can be anything from simple and straight to more formal and stylised. This type of sleeve is most suited to traditional wedding ceremonies.

For ideas and inspiration, check out our online gallery!

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