Choosing a veil can often be an afterthought once you’re Found the Gown/Said Yes to the Dress and all that. You might feel a bit bombarded by all the questions over what type of veil you want, what length, how many layers, any beading, what material, it might be the one that throws you over the edge during a very busy planning period of your life!
So relax, we’ve got you covered, in more ways than one. We’ve laid out the the different types of veils, the styles and body shapes they suit so you can walk into your bridal appointment completely prepared and more importantly, able to articulate exactly what you want for your Big Day.
So starting with veil lengths…
This is the shortest type of veil that generally just comes to the nose or chin. They’re a nice nod to the tradition without the hassle and are back in style as of late after they accessorised the faces of models at the holy grail of fashion trend birthplaces – the Chanel Haute Couture S/S 2015 fashion show.
This veil is 45 inches and suits a 50s style dress. It’s also perfect if you’re intending to have your hair up or if your dress has a beautiful ornate back that you want to show off.
Elbow-length veils are approximately 54″ and suits most dress and body types. This one is really flattering as it emphasises the small of your waist. It’s also easy to manage and give the appearance of a full veil in your wedding photos without the added hassle of extra length.
72″ Fingertip veils are one of the most popular at the moment thanks to a certain Miss. Middleton who wore a veil that length for her intimate wedding to some prince of somewhere. It’s extremely elegant, elongates your form and gives your dress that extra bit of regal gravitas.
Knee / Ballet / Waltz
We love the name of this veil almost as much as the look itself. It finishes between the knee and ankle so you can ‘waltz’ with your husband without fear of stepping on it. Actual length depends on the height of the bride but it’s usually between 90 and 108 inches. Knee-length is an unusual choice as often the cut of the veil and your dress need to be just right to work in tandem. It’s best-suited to a dress that is fitted until below the knee (like Christina Ricci’s wedding dress) or a tea-length dress so it doesn’t get lost in the train of the gown or look as though it’s been unceremoniously chopped off.
A chapel veil again varies depending on the height of the bride and the length of the train but they’re generally around 126 inches. They just extend a few inches further than the bottom of your dress and are usually cut in a circular shape so it drapes around you. It’s a wonderfully romantic choice and plays with the light that reflects onto your dress, adding drama and detail.
This is the statement veil, coming in around 144 inches, and needs to go with a statement dress if you want to pull it off. It has a train and will give lots of drama as you walk down the aisle. However, if you want to wear your veil throughout the night, this one is not for you as the beautiful detailing will quickly be caught in other people’s heels and dragged through spilled liquids.
Think Diana Princess of Wales. This type of veil is generally reserved for if you’re marrying royalty or saying ‘I Do’ in a VERY dramatic venue that warrants an over-the-top veil. Otherwise, it looks just that, over-the-top.
There are also a couple of stylistic choices regarding your veil…
The blusher is the part of the veil that comes down in front of your face and you can have it as far as your chin or to almost to the ground as above. It’s worth mentioning that when your bridal consultant tells you the length of your chosen veil, it INCLUDES the blusher so make sure you know how long you want it in the back AND front when you’re getting measured for a veil.
A Mantilla style of veil is a traditional Spanish-style veil that is worn beginning at the crown of your head and draping over your ears. It usually has a deep lace edging and extensive detailing. A very strong statement veil, wear it without jewellery down the aisle to really show it off.
The Juliet Cap is one of the statement styles that has come back into fashion again. Iconised by Grace Kelly at her 1956 to the Prince of Monaco, it’s since been seen on a number of stylish celebrities on their Big Day, including Kate Moss and Anne Hathaway.