Wedding Dress Material Guide

09 Feb 2016


Different wedding dress will have an individual look to them as well as different comfort levels based on the fabric that they are made out of. When starting to look for a wedding dress it helps to know and understand the different types of fabrics used.

This will be especially helpful if looking at dresses on the bridal boutiques website before your first fitting as you will not be able to see or feel the material. It will help to know the difference between taffeta and tulle when reading a dress description.

This will help you to read wedding gown descriptions, such as this description of David Tutera’s Aisling dress: “A stunning A-line taffeta and hand beaded lace wedding dress with a slightly curved neckline, hand-beaded lace bust and directionally pleated taffeta waist. The hand beading is repeated at the bust, dropped waist and lace underskirt to create an elegant romantic look.

You can find out more about different wedding dress silhouettes here.

Here is an explanation of some of the most common wedding dress fabrics.

Taffeta is a crisp, smooth fabric with a slight sheen to it, similar to satin, that rustles when you walk. It is often used for full skirts and ball gowns.

Tulle Tulle is a fine netting made of silk, nylon or rayon. It looks best when mixed with, and layered over, other fabrics. Tulle is used for veils, skirt overlays, and tutus, as well as the trendy illusion effect often found in dress backs and necklines.

Chiffon is a transparent material often used in matric dance dresses. It is a lightweight, thin material that is not very glossy. Chiffon is often used in wedding dresses purposed for beach weddings or warmer locations, or layered (because of its transparency) and used for overskirts and sheer sleeves.

Organza, similar to chiffon but slightly stiffer, is often used for overlays and embellishments such as veils, trains, and full skirts. Organza is different from tulle as it is more of a structured fabric, with a flowing effect, whereas tulle is soft and light.

Lace is used to give a vintage look to wedding dresses. Lace comes in various types and is usually used together with other fabrics or as a decorative feature.

Georgette, like chiffon is a sheer fabric, but with a matte look. Georgette has a floating appearance to it that softens the look of the dress.

A light sheer fabric – satin-lie to the touch – that is breathtakingly glamorous and rich in shine. However this fabric is known to hug your curves – rather choose a different material if you aren’t fond of tighter fitting styles.

Satin Satin, with it’s natural sheen, is ideal for traditional, formal weddings. Satin is a heavier material that creates a beautiful dress shape and gives the bride a classic, elegant look.

Silk is a sought-after valued fabric when it comes to wedding gowns – silk is available in many different textures and types, all of which are absolutely stunning.