Headpiece and veil trends are as
changeable as the bridal market.
BY BARBARA PASH
he headpiece is the crown-
ing accessory, framing the
face and giving a polished
look to the bridal outfit.
Just as there are trends in bridal
gowns, so are there trends in head-
pieces. But what the trends are
depends on who you ask.
Some bridal gown companies
design and manufacture their own
headpieces, often intended to be worn
with certain gowns in the company's
line. There are also bridal millinery
companies that do nothing but design
and manufacture headpieces. They of-
fer a bigger selection of headpieces
than the gown companies, covering
the gamut of styles from wreaths and
tiaras to hats, and the trick is to find
the one that suits you and your gown
Here's what the leading designers
have to say. But beware. Not only
don't they agree with each other, they
often contradict one another.
Michele Piccione of Alfred
Angelo, based in Willow Grove, Pa.,
the country's largest bridal manufac-
turer, designs both gowns and head-
pieces. Usually, the company designs
a headpiece to go with each of its
gowns, although the headpieces can
be worn with other gowns. For the
past two years, she has seen a return
to floral wreaths and sprays, usually
worn with fingertip-length veils.
"We're doing silk flowers, pearl
sprays — everything heavily beaded.
48 Brides 1990
Sometimes the headpiece is worn on
the forehead as a band; or on the back
of the head, attached to a comb; or
on one side of the head," Piccione
says. "The veil has a pouf in back,
sometimes pearl studded, which is at-
tached to the floral wreath or spray."
Most headpieces are seasonless —
in other words, they can be worn year-
round. However, there is one excep-
tion — the picture hat which, says
Piccione, is really a warm weather
phenomenon, especially when made
up in a lightweight fabric like chiffon
While she sees no regional prefer-
ences for headpiece styles, there is a
difference depending on the age of the
bride. Older brides tend to choose
something dramatic; younger brides
go for the sweet and the traditional.
"This goes for the entire outfit, not
just the headpiece:' she says.
Floral wreaths and sprays go with
almost any style of gown; hats are
more limited as to what styles they
complement. Certain headpieces are
more flattering to certain body types,
though. Petite brides and heavy brides
should choose headpieces with some
height, like tiaras; tall brides should
go for the flatter headpieces.
Etiquette rules concerning length of
veil and formality of wedding have
disappeared. The fingertip veil is the
most popular because it's the easiest
to manage. Some brides like to make
their veils removable, so they can take
them off during the reception. Not all
headpieces look great without the veil
— one that does is the floral wreath.
For second-time brides or if the wed-
ding is informal and the bride is wear-
ing a short dress, usually just a touch
of veiling is attached to the headpiece.
It's important to be comfortable in
the headpiece, and one way to ac-
complish that is to keep your normal
hairstyle, says Piccione. "I find that
brides who change their hairstyles for
the day tend to regret it. You shouldn't
force yourself into a mold, trying to
be 'glamorous' on your wedding day."
Piccione sees another headpiece
trend. Bridesmaid headpieces have
become an important accessory, with
many more styles available. Three are
particularly popular: cocktail hats,
bows on a comb, and sprays of fabric
flowers. All three are usually made up
in the same fabric as the bridesmaid
Tito Maressa of Bridal Orig-
inals, a New York City-based corn-
pany, designs headpieces to go with
the company's gowns. "In materials,
beading has become much richer.
Flowers, usually silk and hand-made,
have become more important. The
other headpiece materials have stayed
the same," he says.
Changing demographics have influ-
enced the bridal market. Formerly, the
bridal market was "all rather youthful
and flowery," he says. Now, brides tend
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