Bridal Lingerie – An Evolution
One of a bride’s most important considerations, second only to her choice of wedding gown, is her choice of bridal lingerie. Just as fashions have evolved over time, so too have the styles and trends in bridal lingerie…
- Minoan women in ancient Crete saw their breasts as symbols of power. They wore strips of leather around their breasts, pushing them out from the clothing, fully exposed, to achieve a warrior’s appearance.
- Ancient Greek and Roman women bound rather than enhanced their breasts. They used bands of gauze under their loose shift dresses to flatten and support the breast.
- During the Dark Ages, women of European cultures wore no lingerie, save for a plain and shapeless linen shift under their dresses.
- By the Fourteenth Century, early corsetry was coming into vogue. Women not only cinched their waists, but flattened their breasts, achieving a straight and flat front to their torsos.
- Elizabethan-era women wore decorative undergarments, with lace trims, whale-boned corsets, and an early version of the “bustle” to enhance the hips.
- Despite the reputation for being prim, proper, and very buttoned up, the Victorians of the Nineteenth Century embraced colourful, lacy, embellished undergarments. Silk, frilly pantaloons were popular amongst the wealthy; garters were invented to hold stockings in place; and corsetry evolved to accentuate the breasts. Bridal dresses were, for the first time, most commonly white, and lingerie was worn to complement this.
Over the following century, bridal wear became an industry in and of itself, and bridal lingerie also came into its own. Today, bridal lingerie serves two distinct purposes: to make the bride look and feel sexy, seductive, and beautiful, and also to create the perfect silhouette under the bridal gown. Depending upon the style of bridal gown chosen, today’s bride might wear a backless bodysuit, a bustier and thong, suspenders and stockings, a bridal petticoat, a push-up, plunge, or adhesive bra, and, of course, a garter. The choices are almost endless.