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What is the reason behind a white wedding dress?

Wedding days are one of the most iconic moments in our lives, and for most of us, it’s a day we’ll remember forever. But have you ever wondered why brides wear white wedding dresses?

Throughout the centuries, wedding customs have evolved and changed, and white wedding dresses have become the norm. In this article, we’ll delve into the history behind white wedding dresses and what they represent today.

The history behind white wedding dresses

Prior to the late 19th century, brides wore a variety of colors for their wedding dresses, and there wasn’t a specific custom or tradition surrounding the color choice. However, in 1849, a magazine called Godey’s Lady’s Book declared white as the most fitting hue for brides to wear. It noted that it is an “emblem of the purity and innocence of girlhood, and the unsullied heart she now yields to the chosen one.”

Queen Victoria was instrumental in popularizing the trend of wearing a white wedding dress. In 1840, she married Prince Albert in a white satin gown with Honiton lace, and her dress was heralded as a symbol of purity and virginity. The trend quickly caught on, and soon white wedding dresses were regarded as a must-have for brides.

Interestingly, before white dresses became popular, blue was actually a more traditional color for wedding dresses. This was because blue was associated with the Virgin Mary and symbolized purity and fidelity. However, as white became more popular, blue lost its status as the go-to color for wedding dresses.

What do white wedding dresses represent today?

While white wedding dresses might have originally symbolized purity and virginity, today’s brides choose to wear white wedding dresses for a variety of reasons. For some, it’s simply a matter of tradition and following the norms of society.

For others, white wedding dresses represent new beginnings and fresh starts. It’s a way to leave the past behind and start a new chapter in their lives. A white wedding dress is like a blank canvas, waiting to be filled with the colors of a happy future.

White wedding dresses can also be a way to symbolize the bond between a couple. Just as the bride is dressed in white, the groom might wear a black tuxedo or suit, creating a contrast that emphasizes the union between the two halves of a couple.

Beyond the white wedding dress: alternative options

While white wedding dresses are still the norm, more and more brides are choosing to buck tradition and opt for alternative options. From floral prints to bright colors, wedding dresses are becoming more diverse and expressive of individuality.

For example, blush pink and soft pastels have become popular choices among brides looking for a romantic and feminine look. Bold, bright colors like red and blue are also trending, especially for destination weddings or outdoor ceremonies.

Another popular trend is choosing a two-piece wedding outfit instead of a traditional dress. Separates are versatile and allow brides to mix and match pieces to create a unique and personalized look.


Whether you opt for a classic white wedding dress or choose an alternative option, your wedding dress is a reflection of who you are and the love you share with your partner. While the tradition behind white wedding dresses might have originated centuries ago, the meaning behind them has evolved over time. Ultimately, what’s important is that you choose a dress that makes you feel beautiful, confident, and ready to start your happily ever after.


What does white wedding dress symbolize?

The tradition of wearing a white wedding dress has been a longstanding practice in Western cultures since the 19th century, but its roots date back more than 2,000 years. In ancient Rome, brides wore a white tunic that symbolized purity and chastity. The color white was also associated with the goddess Venus, who represented love, beauty, and fertility.

The practice of wearing a white wedding dress became popular in the 1800s when Queen Victoria wore a white gown for her wedding to Prince Albert in 1840. At the time, white was not necessarily the color of choice for most brides. Instead, they wore dresses in various colors and styles depending on their social status and personal preferences.

However, Queen Victoria’s choice of a white gown set a new trend in motion. Inspired by the queen’s wedding dress, brides of the time began to adopt the white wedding dress as a symbol of purity, elegance, and social status. The white dress became a status symbol among the wealthy, who could afford expensive dresses, and eventually, it became the norm for most Western brides to wear a white wedding dress on their special day.

Today, the tradition of wearing a white wedding dress continues to be a symbol of purity and innocence. It represents a woman’s transition from being single to being married, and it signifies her commitment to her husband. While some brides opt for colorful dresses or unconventional styles, the white wedding dress remains a classic and timeless choice for most brides.

The white wedding dress has a rich history and symbolism that has endured for centuries. Its roots in ancient Rome and association with the Roman goddess Venus have evolved over time to become a cherished tradition in Western cultures. Whether a bride chooses to wear a traditional white gown or not, the symbolism of purity and commitment remains an essential aspect of the wedding ceremony.

Can a non virgin wear a white wedding dress?

Traditionally, the white wedding dress is often associated with the idea of purity, virginity, and innocence. It was believed that only a virgin could wear a white wedding dress because white symbolizes the purity of the soul and the innocence of the heart. In the past, women who were not virgins or who had been previously married might wear a colored dress instead of white to avoid the social stigma surrounding sexual activity outside of marriage.

However, in modern times, the idea that only women who are virgins can wear a white wedding dress is no longer the norm. Many women today choose to wear a white wedding dress, regardless of their sexual history or marital status. A wedding dress is a personal choice, and each bride can choose the color and style that makes her feel beautiful on her special day.

Moreover, the significance of wearing a white wedding dress has evolved over time. Today, white is seen as a symbol of celebration, purity, new beginnings, and happiness. It is the most popular color choice for wedding dresses because it signifies a fresh start, and it matches many traditional wedding themes. Some brides may also choose to wear white because it complements their skin tone, hair color, or eye color.

While the tradition of only virgins wearing white wedding dresses still exists in some cultures, it is not a universal standard. Most women today feel comfortable wearing a white wedding dress for many reasons. The most important thing is for each bride to choose a dress that makes her feel beautiful and confident on her special day. the color of the dress is insignificant compared to the love and commitment being celebrated on the wedding day.

What did brides wear before white?

Before the trend of white wedding dresses, brides wore a variety of colors depending on factors such as their cultural background, social status, and personal preference. It wasn’t until 1840, when Queen Victoria wore a white dress for her wedding ceremony, that white became a popular trend and eventually became the dominant color for wedding gowns in Western cultures.

In some cultures, red was the color of choice for wedding dresses, symbolizing good luck and fertility. For example, Chinese brides traditionally wore red wedding dresses with gold embroidery. In India, brides often wore red or maroon dresses with gold jewelry and henna patterns on their hands and feet. In Japan, the traditional wedding kimono was a white silk garment with colorful embellishments.

In medieval Europe, brides wore dresses in a variety of colors, including blue, yellow, green, and brown. These dresses were often made of expensive fabrics with intricate embroidery and embellishments, reflecting the bride’s social status and wealth. Black was also a popular color for wedding dresses during this time, as it was considered a luxurious and fashionable color.

During the Renaissance period, the trend of white wedding dresses emerged among the upper class. However, it was not yet a widespread tradition, and brides continued to wear dresses in a variety of colors. It wasn’t until the Victorian era that the white wedding dress became a symbol of purity and innocence.

Before the trend of white wedding dresses emerged, brides wore a range of colors depending on their cultural background, fashion trends, and personal taste. The tradition of white wedding dresses only became widespread in the mid-19th century, when it was popularized by Queen Victoria’s iconic white gown.