How to find the right wedding veil for your wedding dress

Written by andrea hamilton
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How to find the right wedding veil for your wedding dress
Cathedral-length veils are the most formal style. (Michael Blann/Digital Vision/Getty Images)

Bridal veils are the icing on the cake of a bride's wedding attire. Though these accessories are not mandatory, many brides choose to wear them to complete their wedding day look. However, it is important to decide which veil looks best for your gown style, as the two should not be at odds with one another. Therefore, if you have a short, informal dress, look for a blusher or birdcage veil. If your gown boasts a seven-foot train, consider wearing a cathedral-length veil to match.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy


  1. 1

    Decide on the correct colour. Choosing the incorrect veil colour will make the veil or gown appear dingy, so it's important to match the two carefully. Bright white gowns need white veils, but any variation of white shades will require a diamond white veil, as this colour is softer than bright white. Ivory gowns will need ivory veils with pale yellow undertones, while champagne-coloured gowns require veils with hints of gold or, in regard to darker shades, brown.

  2. 2

    Select a veil style. Your veil should be shorter than the train or hemline of your gown and match your ceremony's level of formality. For instance, blusher and flyaway veils are appropriate for informal weddings, while elbow and fingertip length veils work well for formal and semi-formal occasions. Chapel and cathedral veils are best for formal events. Birdcage veils add a distinctly vintage feel and are appropriate for most wedding styles.

  3. 3

    Avoid veil hemlines that are the same as horizontal detailing on your dress, as this will make you look shorter and give that horizontal line a wider look. Therefore, select veils that are a few inches shorter than your natural waist or ones that fall below the gown's waistline silhouette. Additionally, do not select a gown with embellishments that begin right at your waistline, as this will have the same effect as a hemline.

  4. 4

    Pick any desired embellishments. Remember that the veil's embellishments should complement your gown, not compete with it. Therefore, pick one element from the gown's construction, such as pearl beading or embroidery, and incorporate that into your veil. Avoid overloading it with trims, flowers and crystals all at the same time, as this will steal your gown's thunder.

  5. 5

    Think of practicalities. Do not purchase a cathedral-length veil if you want to wear the headpiece for the entire night. If this is the case, select a two-tier veil with a removable layer. This will allow you to wear the shorter tier on its own at the reception and save the glamour of the long veil for the ceremony.

Tips and warnings

  • Try on as many veil styles at the bridal boutique when you purchase your gown to help you get an idea of what looks best with your frame and face shape.

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