It's one of the biggest moments in the wedding planning journey; finding your dream wedding dress! But with so many styles to choose from, not to mention the conflicting opinions from your well-meaning bridal party, how do you find 'the one' for you? We asked Kate Halfpenny, the bridal designer whose Halfpenny London label is loved by stars including Millie Mackintosh and Vogue Williams, to share the top tips you need to know.
WATCH: Get inspiration from our top celebrity wedding dresses of summer 2019
"Don't follow any trends and go with whatever you feel is right when it comes to your wedding look. Be yourself," Kate recommends. "Your partner is marrying you for you so embrace your own, unique beauty and remember that the dress should work for you, not you work out for the dress!"
MORE: 10 of the best bridal suits for a cool alternative to a wedding dress
Kate also suggests brides don't pay too much attention to other people's opinions. "I'd say it's important to avoid listening to too many opinions as it's such a personal process and we all have our own different style. Don't discount a sleek, slinky number you adore because your friend always imagined you in a boho, lacey gown. You do you," Kate told HELLO!. "Whether it's a princess gown or a jumpsuit, just go with what you love and feel amazing in. Our mantra at Halfpenny London is be the bride you want to be."
Kate encourages brides to wear what they love - like Vogue Williams' bridal jumpsuit
While it's important not to be swayed by trends, there are some key styles that are set to be popular in 2020. "I think silhouettes are getting bigger again. Big skirts will be back in a huge way!" Kate says. "Brides also love that transformation moment but I think we'll see a reduction in the number of women who have two separate dresses and instead will go for a detachable overskirt or cape, for example."
GALLERY: See the beautiful second wedding dresses worn by celebrity brides
Sustainability is also becoming more important for brides and designers alike, something Halfpenny London has long prioritised. "Sustainability is incredibly important to us as a brand and I think the wedding industry in general is waking up to it too. We're already at an advantage because bridal gowns are generally made to order so there isn't any surplus stock or wastage so that's a huge positive," the designer said. "I think businesses can make a big difference by considering the day to day impact of their decisions. For example, we've changed all of our packaging to recyclable or eco-friendly materials, including the inks we use."
The mantra of Kate's Halfpenny London label is 'be the bride you want to be'
Kate continued: "We're designing with a conscience so try to minimise waste and repurpose offcuts of fabrics to create new garments or embellishments and, of course, one of the big things is that we make our bridalwear in England instead of shipping it in from overseas. There is always more you can do but it’s something that’s at the forefront of our minds."
Like this story? Sign up to our newsletter to get other stories like this delivered straight to your inbox.