Bridal Fabrics USA

Wedding Dress Style Guide: Sleeves

With royal brides Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton both choosing to wear a wedding gown with sleeves, this design feature has exploded in popularity. It's a trend that doesn't look like going away and so here is the Bridal Fabrics guide to wedding gown sleeve styles...

Angel Sleeves

So called because they look like angel wings, these sleeves are not fitted to the arm of the dress and instead float freely. The style is perfectly suited to that exciting vintage look and are especially gorgeous when created using a sheer fabric.

Cap Sleeves

There is tons of variety with cap sleeves, which are usually rounded and cover just the uppermost area of the shoulder. Whether ruffled, fluttered, puffed or simply flat, cap sleeves are attached to the top of the dress, with no fabric underneath the arm. Cap sleeves are one of the most popular sleeve style options, creating a romantic look and providing good coverage.

Short Sleeves

To be classed as short, the sleeves will generally end at the midpoint between shoulder and elbow, similar to those on a t-shirt. Completely surrounding the arm and available in a whole host of different styles, short sleeves are the perfect option for a boho wedding.

Three-Quarter Sleeves

The vintage style wedding dress made a dramatic comeback and, as they were popular in the 50s and 60s, three-quarter sleeves are perfect for helping to create that classic look. Three-quarter sleeves end slightly below the elbow and a particularly popular style in this length is bell sleeves, which are fitted close to the shoulder area and lead to an exciting, drama-filled flare at the lower edge.

Long Sleeves

Especially suited to traditional, formal wedding ceremonies, long sleeves leave plenty of room for creativity. Whether simple, straight and minimal or formal, stylised and flamboyantly detailed, long sleeves will end at or even slightly beyond the wrist.

For ideas and inspiration, check out our online gallery!

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