Bridal Gowns: Something Borrowed

Brides magazine looks at popular styles that borrow from past eras.

ByABC News via via logo
January 26, 2009, 11:25 AM

Jan. 26, 2009 -- Brides magazine is celebrating its 75th anniversary this month and looking back at nearly eight decades of bridal fashion.

With the help of the magazine's editor in chief, Millie Martini Bratten, "Good Morning America" looked at trends from other decades that are reappearing on brides of the 21st century -- with some modern twists.


Influenced by the Hollywood high life, the '30s introduced a more bias cut and fabric that emphasized women's curves. Style icon Jean Harlow captured this simple look, reminiscent of the post-flapper period in a Depression-era America.

This Jenny Packham ivory silk charmeuse gown with cowl neck and deep V embellished cowl back with feather bolero is an updated take on the '30s look.


Dressing a post-WWII society came with a more frivolous use of fabric and design. Tiny waists offset by large skirts welcomed the GIs home, as seen on such women as Elizabeth Taylor from "Father of the Bride" and Princess Grace.

The modern take on the 1950s look is a Monique Lhuillier with a natural waist, an A-line skirt and lots of sparkly, beading details from head to toe.


Cue Twiggy. This was the era that brought the fashion world right to the wedding chapel, welcome more diverse and funky looks. Full pantyhose were invented, which elevated skirts' lengths to a whole new level.

This short boat-neck silk faille dress with bow at banded hem by Amsale harkens back to the '60s.


From Princess Diana's wedding to average women everywhere, bridal gowns took on the pouf, majestic skirts and padded shoulders of a princess fairy tale.

The modern version of the big '80s look is this gown from Platinum for Priscilla of Boston, a pale-pink, one-shoulder silk taffeta draped ball gown with balloon skirt and jeweled bodice.

Find out more at and

ABC News Live

ABC News Live

24/7 coverage of breaking news and live events