2018 Bridal Trend Forecast
02/16/2018 07:00AM ● Published by Robert Frey
Gowns & RingsBy Hailey Hensgens Fleming
Ask anyone who has planned a wedding, bride or groom, and they will likely tell you the most difficult decisions of the entire process involved selecting the engagement ring and wedding dress. With so many styles, details and materials to choose from finding that perfect match can sometimes seem overwhelming. Luckily, whether you’ve recently been engaged and you’re on the hunt for that dream dress or you’ve decided to take the leap and you’re now searching for that perfect ring, we’ve consulted the local experts on what’s in style so you can shop confidently.
Engagement Ring Trends for 2018:
OVAL AND PEAR CUT DIAMONDSWhile the round cut diamond center stone will always be number one, this year, oval and pear cut diamonds are quickly becoming the new favorites with oval in the lead. Jennifer Guilbeaux, with Ashley Blue Jewelers of Youngsville, confirms, “It’s one of the more popular cuts, I think, because it looks good on the hand. It’s a very pretty cut and complements the finger, because it sits long ways and elongates the finger.” Whether set in a halo surrounded by smaller pave diamonds or a more simplistic 4-prong setting, which is quickly gaining popularity, selecting an oval or pear center stone is a definite way to stand out.
ROSE GOLDIf there were one trend on the list to reign supreme it would be rose gold. The blush colored metal, which had faded into the limelight for the last several decades, has made an impressive comeback in recent years. Cara Lanclos, with Texada’s Jewelry in New Iberia, adds that with the resurgence of rose gold they’ve even seen a return to yellow gold as well, “Probably one out of every five customer either wants the rose or yellow gold. Traditional white gold is still what we see the most of, but rose and yellow are being asked for frequently. We’re starting to put more out and getting the newer styles in.”
Don’t let the trendiness of the color scare you away. People are mixing their colors like never before. “What a lot of people are doing is getting their engagement ring in white gold and getting their band in rose,” explains Rebecca Aloise at Lee Michaels. She adds, “That way they can change out their band at some point if it goes out of style or they get tired of it.”
COLORED GEMSTONESWe all know diamonds are a girl’s best friend, but morganite seems to be the new kid on the block. For the less conventional bride, this pale pink gemstone offers a dainty, unique alternative to your typical diamond without sacrificing the brilliance or sparkle every woman loves. Additionally, the neutrality of the stone color complements any metal. However, according to our jewelers, a morganite center stone paired with a rose gold band has quickly become the most popular combination and we see why. Ultimately, although less conventional, the neutrality and rarity of morganite’s delicate color ensures this trend will be around for years to come.
RING STACKSHaving a separate engagement ring and wedding band is nothing new, but this trend is taking things up a notch by adding one or two extra bands to the mix. In an effort to make their rings unique, more women than ever are asking for rings that can be stacked, mix matched and rearranged. “Everyone is mixing and matching rose gold with yellow and white gold and some bands have diamonds and some are different designs,” explains Emma Hanks, co-owner of Allains Jewelry in New Iberia. She goes on to explain the versatility of this style is what makes it so alluring, “We have over 100 different styles of stackable bands, so everyone goes in their own direction in making their stacks really unique to their style.” Choosing several rings may be a more daunting task for the groom-to-be, so ladies can always go into the store to make a wish list – a surefire way to get the styles you want!
SIMPLE SOLITAIRESTrends will come and go, but the simplicity of a single solitaire ring will never go out of style. Paired with the color band of your choice, the diamond takes center stage offering an elegance that speaks for itself. Perhaps that is what has so many brides-to-be going crazy over this classic style made modern. Or, perhaps it is the customizable aspect of these rings that women love. “People seem to like picking out their mounting and then picking out their diamond,” explains Aloise at Lee Michaels. “It’s close to being a custom ring without being fully custom, and we can put it together for them. This way they have a little more input in the ring than just picking one out of the case.”
VINTAGE INSPIREDEngagement rings inspired by the past have been very popular in the last decade and it’s no surprise this trend is still going strong. The delicate details of their design are captivating and the call to years past exudes romance. If the old world charm speaks to you, it is a style you’re sure to find in any jewelry store. For those looking for a more personal touch and have a particular ring they’d like to tweak or replicate, perhaps a family heirloom, jewelers like those at Ashley Blue can help. Guilbeaux explains, “We do custom designing here and we do all of our work in house. So, we can start from a sketch or picture they bring in and work from there.”
Wedding Dress Trends for 2018:
CAPESYou don’t have to be royalty to wear a cape on your wedding day. This new trend began in fashion capitols around the world and is slowly making its way to South Louisiana for those who dare to be different. Ashley Thibodeaux from A-Net’s Bridal Boutique explains, “What we’re seeing is an illusion style cape that usually attaches on the shoulders of the dress and then flows out from there so it becomes the train of the gown. Often times the dress underneath is really simple or straighter in design.” She adds that the style has certainly not yet become mainstream but is a good option for a bride who wants to give a different effect, “They may want the feel or look of that traditional train, but this does it in a new and fun way.”
3-D ELEMENTSAlthough the days of 3-D flowers and feathers have passed, designers are still finding ways to make their dresses come alive through unique beading and pearl embellishments. Rather than the typical rhinestone or crystals, brides are donning dresses and veils decked out in elegant pearls and whimsical opaque stones. Unique interpretations of ever-popular lace appliques are even being done for a bride who wants to think outside the box. “We have gowns that are designed with all sequins, but the pattern and the illusion of the lace is there,” explains Roxanne Yazdi, owner of Le Jour Couture. “You get that traditional look of the lace, but it isn’t actually lace. It’s more modern and it pushes the envelope,” she adds.
CLASSIC SILHOUETTESFor every action there is an equal and opposite reaction and, when it comes to wedding dresses, bold lingerie styles have been countered by the resurging popularity of a classic, minimalist bride. Theresa, owner of Sposa Bella bridal boutique, comments that this trend is all about the “classic bride, who likes clean lines and timeless fabrics.” Dresses following this trend feature classy elegant lines and simple silhouettes that beckon back to Audrey Hepburn in “Breakfast at Tiffany’s.” Thankfully, this one is for women of all shapes and sizes with the resurgence of elegant fabrics like crepe and mikado. Thibodeaux at A-Net’s Bridal explains, “Crepe is a very weighted matte fabric and it’s very minimal, but since it has a little weight to it it’s very flattering. Likewise, mikado is a more structured fabric that holds its own so it’s a great cut for a bateau neckline or an A-line dress with a natural waist accent.”
STATEMENT BOWSAnother couture take on a timeless classic is the recent popularity of large statement bows. While it has yet to become a widely sought after design trend in Acadiana, according to Roxanne at Le Jour, alternative interpretations of this elegant staple have some fashion forward brides swooning. “It’s usually in the back,” she says, “and it may not necessarily be in the shape of a bow, but it’s something that mimics it or mimics the boldness of a bow.” Whether literal or not, adding this trend to your list of “must haves” will certainly make you stand out on your big day.
BELL SLEEVESThis retro style has invaded nearly every aspect of women’s fashion, so there’s no surprise that it’s trending in bridal. Although typically imagined on a boho inspired dress, you don’t have to be a full on flower child to embrace the look. Either long and exaggerated or soft and subtle, when paired with elegant ball gowns and modern sheaths, bell sleeves give a little something extra to really push the design over the top and set the bride apart from the rest.