The Neo-Retro Bride: Faking It in Style

Vintage fever has once again taken the world by storm, with brides across the globe climbing over each other for a taste of that retro goodness. And it’s hard to blame them – that trademark 50s aesthetic is hard to beat. We’re more than partial to a bit of lace and some Louis Armstrong, and openly admit that we have our very own pair of rose-tinted glasses used exclusively for vintage weddings.

But we live in the Information Age, with options and resources light years beyond what was available to the retro bride before she became retrospective. So we think it’s time for brides to embrace their role as a 21st century bride – but that doesn’t mean you have to ditch the pearls or even the floral prints. Allow us to present the Neo-Retro Bride’s matrimonial manual, so you can borrow the very best of vintage without living in the past.



So, he’s proposed and now you’re channelling Audrey Hepburn, longing for every girl’s dream wedding, dripping in vintage goodness from the dress to the décor. Planning the wedding is the hard part – but once you’ve taken care of the finer details, you need only make sure you’ve got a wedding photographer who knows what they’re doing.

Go for a pseudo-antique vibe with your bridalwear and groomwear and opt for those classic poses which just ooze that retro goodness. With the wonders of modern photography, any 21st century wedding can have the classic appeal of cosy, old-timey prints. Just because it’s digital, doesn’t mean it has to look that way.

Vik Taak, VIP Digital Photography

We’re all too aware that those vintage wedding cravings start the moment you see the weddings of past generations, in all their antique finery and, most importantly, in that scrumptious sepia tone. Nostalgia is all wrapped up in these hazy pigments and we completely appreciate the Neo-Retro Bride’s desire for some old-school Kodak class in her wedding photos. And thanks to the glory of photo-sharing social networks like Instagram, that sepia goodness can be yours at a moment’s notice.

The array of gorgeous pseudo-retro filters available on Instagram guarantee to satisfy the appetite of even the most vintage-hungry bride-to-be. You might even want to try having your wedding photos printed to look like old-school Polaroids for that modest 1950s charm sought by vintage brides the world over. Whatever your tastes, insta-nostalgia can now be yours at the tap of a touch screen.



Contemporary designers with their fingers on the pulse of those scolding hot fashion trends understand the ongoing demand for the vintage aesthetic and are happy to supply. This is a fashion trend which appears to have reached immortality status, meaning that you’ll always be able to find new pieces with the dreamy delicacy of vintage. These new dresses allow you to steal what you want from previous eras while retaining your modernity – and they’re infinitely more accessible than the originals.


katie london accessories

The word ‘vintage’ may well be firmly at the top of your inspiration list for your wedding day, and it’s easy to see why. It is a classic, elegant and timeless look, sure to give you that unique feel.  Kelly Clarkson recently spent her special day wearing this style to perfection.

The beauty of a classic vintage look is that the level of detail really allows you to add your own personal touch, separating you from all other brides. Your headpiece is one of the most important features to complete your ‘longed for’ look; and the part of you that is most photographed on day.

Katie Elizabeth, Katie Elizabeth of London

We urge any neo-retro bride to take a look at the Katie Elizabeth Venetian Collection for that instant Hepburn vibe, brimming with old-timey glamour and all-round pseudo-vintage goodness. Swarovski Elements are a girl’s best friend.

If you need spectacles and are considering wearing a vintage dress on your wedding day, choosing the right pair of glasses to match may not be as difficult as you’d think. Many of the classic, vintage styles are timeless and the shapes are elegant, feminine & complimentary. Try to avoid bold, heavy plastics as they are modern and not classical. The colours should either match or disappear, as your face will be photographed more times than ever before and you want to have the complete look – not just the dress. Look at your glasses as an accessory and remember that you can wear them again and again after your big day.

 Karen Louise, Bridal Eyewear



A glorious faux-retro trend sweeping the small business market lately is the notion of ‘distressing’ furniture to give it that pseudo-authentic vintage look without the furniture having to be old enough for this to have come about organically. But there are a universe of original retro pieces which can be used to accessorise your neo-vintage wedding – and they work a treat.

Imagine beautiful china teacups, vintage cake stands and stunning marquees filled with your favourite people, this is THE theme of 2013/2014. Vintage has become a very popular wedding theme, with different variations making it unique to each couple. Variations such as  20’s chic, think beautiful candelabras, feather accessories and lots of pearls, Vintage Rose with lots of lace, embroidered table cloths and stunning floral designs or Rustic Vintage with vintage roses, wooden centrepieces and home made wooden sign posts.

I love it when brides think outside the box, we have so much fun re-using old clothes for bunting, finding treasures in charity shops and sourcing local tradesmen to design signposts or wooden save the dates. There are some stunning venues I have found from working farms, to marquees in fields or privately owned manor houses that provide you with the perfect backdrop for your special day.

Bekki Richards, Silver Cloud Event Management

There’s no denying that retro chic has a lot of life in it yet. The level of elegance and class offered by these vintage designs is something no subsequent trends have been able to emulate. So for now, we’re happy to look back over our shoulders at this glorious aesthetic until it is usurped – if it ever is. Long live vintage.