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Destination I Do
Thursday, May 30, 2013

Wedding Dresses by Destination

Words by Julie Sabatino
Photos courtesy of the respective designers

We at Destination I Do would like to introduce you to our newest guest blogger and destination wedding and honeymoon-style aficionado: Julie Sabatino. Julie has been a staple in the wedding industry for over ten years and entered the business after planning her own wedding. What was meant to be a fun experience, shopping for her wedding dress, quickly became an overwhelming and stressful process. While lots of family attempted to weigh-in, what Julie really wanted was professional guidance.

More Photos

Thus, The Stylish Bride was born. Julie started the business to help brides find that most perfect of wedding dresses. Over the years, the business has grown to include everything from the bride’s dress and accessories, to engagement party attire, the rehearsal dinner dress, the attire for MOB and MOG and the wedding party. Tune in on the third Monday of every month for the latest and greatest in destination wedding and honeymoon fashion courtesy of Julie. For more about Julie and her style ideas, visit her blog.

Bridal Market is an exciting time when we see the new wedding dress collections from bridal designers. This April the collections were beautiful, as always, and offered great choices for brides having destination weddings.

It’s easy to group all destination wedding dresses into one category, but I think it’s important to take a closer, narrower look. Because let’s face it, a wedding on the beach in St. Thomas is very different than a wedding on the beach in Nantucket. So in an effort to define the “Destination Wedding Dress” category even more, I’ve broken it down to locations which have distinct feelings. To see each of the recommended dresses, click "more photos" above.

1)   Coast of New England – There is something so special and magical about New England in the summer. Sunny hot days, cool clear nights and nautical inspiration everywhere. A feeling of understated elegance runs throughout and this is not an area where you are going to see a lot of sparkle and glitz.

To me, the perfect dress to wear in this setting is this dress by Oscar de la Renta. It is a silk taffeta, adorned with lovely floral threadwork and embroidery. This shape is almost universally flattering and because it does not have a lot of crinoline under the skirt, it will not be too heavy and hot to wear.

2)   The Hamptons – The Hamptons are a wonderful, heady blend of country charm and over-the-top luxury. This means there is a lot more room to think outside the box when it comes to a wedding dress. I can see a simple organza and lace gown looking lovely, or a beaded trumpet for a black-tie affair. The sky is really the limit!

I love this dress by Carolina Herrera because of the embroidered silk organza overlay. The detail of the embroidery is so pretty and creates an effortless, chic look that is perfect for a Hamptons wedding.

3)   Carolina Low Country – I just love the South and the beautiful country that lines the coast. The live oaks dripping with Spanish Moss, the gorgeous flat beaches, and the long summer days all make this area perfect for a wedding. But brides beware…it gets HOT and HUMID, and you have to really pay attention to this when selecting your gown.

I love this dress by Lela Rose because it is soft, feminine and very pretty. The organza is in the palest shade of blush which adds a certain sweetness without being overwhelmingly pink.

4)   Palm Beach – To me, Palm Beach is fancy, fun and just a little over-the-top in the best possible way. Brides getting married here can really go all out, even though it’s a costal setting. Bring on the glam!

I love this Monique Lhullier dress because it’s super sparkly and fun and because it is lightweight. A bride wearing this dress would be able to dance the night away without having to change into a short dress.

5)   British Virgin Islands – One of the things I love most about the BVI’s is that they are relaxed and Caribbean in feeling, while still having a bit of British formality to them. A bride here would perhaps choose to be a bit more tailored than if she were getting married in a different part of the islands.

I absolutely love this dress by Angel Sanchez and think it would fit perfectly into that setting. There are so many interesting things about this dress including the asymmetrical ruffle and the beautiful floral lace. It’s not often you see a lace with very small flowers like this, and the effect is so pretty and refreshing.

6)   Palm Springs – When I think of Palm Springs, I think of Old Hollywood glamour, gorgeous sunny days and crisp cool nights. What better place to make a dazzling, sophisticated statement?

This gown by Amsale has a very chic, modern and glamorous look. It combines all of those feelings to create a dress which can be worn in a courtyard surrounded by bouganvilla or in a New York City ballroom. I love when a garment can really take on the personality of the woman and the location!

7)   Big Sur – Whether you are getting married on the stunning rocky coastline or amidst the giant Redwood trees, Big Sur is one of the most interesting places I can think of for a wedding. The feeling is decidedly rustic…how can it not be with the amazing natural elements, but also luxurious and private?

This season, Vera Wang used laces which gave the gowns amazing texture and romance. They have almost a webbed quality and blend wonderfully into a natural setting. This dress in particular has an easy-to-wear quality to it that is very unfussy. I can just imagine a bride in it amidst the redwood trees!

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