The Perfect 1920s Wedding Dress for a Great Gatsby-Inspired Wedding

by Karen


Any dress from the 1920s perfectly captures the festive wedding vibes we want to embody. But, with a Gatsby-inspired 1920s dress, your wedding gown transforms into a glamorous, vintage, form-fitting, elegant, and graceful dress that turns heads!

Yet, you won’t find the perfect Gatsby 1920s wedding dress just anywhere.

Wardrobe Shop offers some tips on what you should look for when looking for the ideal Gatsby-inspired 1920s wedding dress for your perfect day!

A Note before We Begin

Wedding dress trends in the 1920s broke away from the strict dress rules of the 19th century. Instead of using boning and crinoline to fit the body, dresses embodied simpler lines, loose and straight tailoring, as well as shorter hems and a surplus of embellishments.

In short, wedding dresses in the 1920s perfectly symbolized the merriment and happiness that one feels on their wedding day. And they do so without restricting your movement.

When looking for a 1920s dress, don’t expect the look to mirror the conventional dresses that are favorites nowadays!

What to Look for When Searching the Perfect 1920s Wedding Dress

-        The Right Embellishments

For a simpler look, let’s take the example of our Downton Abbey Tea Party Gown:

downton abbey nataya dress
Downton Abbey Tea Party Gown in Pearl by Nataya

While you’ll find plenty of 1920s dresses with flashy embellishments and luxurious fringing, this style was still unconventional in the early 1920s.

To get away from the typical design restraints, many women would use embroidery on their wedding dresses. That’s a trick we use for the Downton Abbey dress as well. So, if you’re a simple girl with a simple fashion sense, such dresses would suit you well.

However, if you’re a fan of the flapper girl style, one that uses excessive embellishments, fun silhouettes, sumptuous fabrics, and pleated skirts, our gorgeous Angelina Gatsby Gown or the Vancouver 1920s Art Deco dress are perfect examples. These are exclusively popular among our Gatsby lovers, so they fit your memo well.

1920s wedding dresses, especially the Great Gatsby-inspired dresses, use glittering pearl embellishments, feathered frocks, art deco patterns, lace trimmings, silk-covered buttons, sheer detailing, and bold and contrasting embellishments against light fabrics. If that’s your style, such embellishment would fit your look perfectly.

Listen to it:

-        The Right Length

1920s tea party medium dress

The typical length in the 1920s was short, mid-knee, and with a slanting hem; the wedding dress lengths were inspired by the dresses flapper girls would wear.

But this didn’t mean women couldn’t choose to wear longer dresses.

A bride’s dress symbolized more than the bride’s union to the groom. It symbolized the wearer’s social status, relations, and even her political aspects. In some ways, if she wore a long dress, this signified that her family had enough money to spend on expensive fabric. Equally long veils would also accompany these ensembles.

Thankfully, that isn’t the case now, so you can find dresses of every length if need be. But, with a 1920s dress, mid-knee or full-length are the only options you should go with. Paired with the fact that you require a Gatsby-esque dress, that fits the requirements too.

-        The Right Fabric and Color

1920s flapper nataya dress roaring twenties

Alexa 1920s Flapper Style Dress In Lemon by Nataya

Although you may see some hues of ivory, ecru, wheat, and eggshell, white was a safer option to go with back in the 1920s for a wedding dress. Even in The Great Gatsby, most dress styles, even in general, don’t stray too far from this color selection, with a few exceptions being black and lighter shades of blue and pink.

With wedding dresses, you’ll see many imitation dresses in the same shades. But that isn’t what will set your dress apart from the rest. It’s the fabrics.

Because the preferred silhouette was loose, draped, and straight, most women would go with fabrics like silk, satin, velvet, tulle, and lace. Both the colors and the fabrics are common nowadays too.

But with 1920s dresses, the brides would also use heavy embellishments to make their dress unique. Some would choose white, while others would go with contrasts to create a dramatic effect.

In accordance with your skin tone and shade, 1920s dresses give you plenty of options to choose from. But keep in mind that not every dress will suit you if you factor in embellishments.

When looking for a suitable fabric or color, do your best to choose something simpler in hue, then add to it if need be. And find a fabric that suits the weather and your overall style. You don’t want to look or feel overwhelmed on your special day.

-        The Right Accessories

1920s accessories dresses

                             French Net Bridal Birdcage Visor Veil with Swarovski Crystals       

The main goal in the 1920s for a wedding look was to somehow achieve a party look that would exude a sense of elegance. And one way brides were able to do so was by choosing the right accessories.

Veils were a primary component of a bride’s outfit. But with veils, most women would choose a length according to their taste, not the length of their dress.

So, you would see birdcage veils, short veils, as well as flowing embroidered veils, some even studded with shimmering pearl beads to give the accessory a bit of a kick. Follow that lead and choose a veil that fits comfortably with your wedding look.

Along with the veil, brides would also outfit the headgear with unique headbands and hair accessories to complete the elegant getup. They would pair these ornamental hairpieces with elegant footwear like simple pumps, Mary Janes, and T-strap shoes, but that would be their limit.

To add to that, you have your jewelry. The 1920s were a glamorous era, so think along the lines of elegant but chunky diamond bracelets, stacked bracelets, long pearl strands, and dangling earrings. Your goal is to add that bit of sparkle to compliment the embellishments. If it’s pearls, add diamonds. If you have sparkling embellishments on your dress, don a set of pearls.

-        The Right Fit

Brides in the 1920s had the perfect idea for their wedding attire. Drop waists, slim silhouettes, calf-lengths skirts, and loose sleeves—comfort was their goal.

With your 1920s dress, choose a straight-tailored dress that doesn’t hug your body too tightly. Women in the 1920s would choose cap or draped sleeves, embellished backs with lace or silk buttons, short pleated skirts, and no-volume tiers. Go with a look that doesn’t add to your natural silhouette but isn’t too simple either.

A Gatsby-inspired 1920s dress fit requires you to have a looser outfit, one that’s straight and doesn’t flare out at the bottom.

Feeling Adventurous? Here are Some More Styles that Were Popular in the 1920s

Brides in the 1920s were adventurous with fashion. They would experiment with beading, embellishments, lengths, silhouettes, accessories—anything they could get away with. So, if you’re willing to be open with your style, some things you try include:

  • Feather hemlines
  • Beaded and fringed bodice
  • Contrasting fur collar
  • Nude tones
  • Art deco headbands
  • Lace dresses
  • Lace gloves
  • Handkerchief skirt
  • Pantsuit
  • Sequins
  • Deep v-cowl
  • Bateau necklines
  • Corset-style bodices
  • Cloche-style hats
  • Flashy headpiece
  • Fur capes
  • Velvet capes

Remember that the 1920s were an unpredictable era in terms of fashion. At the tail-end of Victorian fashion, flapper-style, Gatsby-inspired ensembles started taking over, and revolutionized women’s style, and influenced fashion, even today.

So, you’ll have no problem finding accessories and designs that imitate the style you’re going for.

Closing Thoughts

A significant advantage for you is that you’re here at Wardrobe Shop. So, you won’t have any problems searching for the perfect wedding outfit.

Nevertheless, if you decide to collect various elements to create your wedding attire, keep in mind that your comfort and happiness are what counts with your 1920s dress. After all, when you walk down the aisle, you want your love to look at you and think:

“I love her, and that’s the beginning and end of everything.” - The Great Gatsby

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