May 9, 2021


Pink wedding dress on a hanger next to rose gold sandals. Photo by Kayla Lee Photography + Design.

It’s always a great day for a white wedding dress. Or pink. Even blue. Purple, too.

This idea of the white wedding dress goes all the way back to 1499 and the wedding of Anne of Brittany to Louis XII of France. It became the color of choice in 1840 when Queen Victoria wore it in her nuptials to Prince Albert. Some of the believe as to why white relates to wealth; since wedding dresses are only worn once and was probably made of silk (which made it difficult to wash), the white dress came to be a sign of financial status; a bride in a white dress showed the world her family had the extra funds to make this happen.

The color itself also has resonance on a wedding day. White is the hue associated most often with innocence and virginity. The wavering western emphasis on chastity and purity has been a driving force in keeping this tradition alive (even if societal norms have shifted). To steal a phrase from my favorite musical, Fiddler on the Roof, it’s tradition for western women to wear white. 

Wedding white might not have the same meaning for everyone. Based on the culture, white might not be appropriate. For example, I remember clear as day one of my professors in college, Dr. Twu, explaining how she wore a very, very, very light blue dress at her wedding. In Chinese tradition, red is the color of Chinese wedding dresses while white is the color associated with mourning; it would have said something entirely different if she had worn a white wedding dress. 

The main reason to wear a different color? Because you want to. I have had brides wear dresses from pink to blue to purple, and their reasons were everything. One wanted a certain vibe for her wedding. One wanted to feel like a princess. One wanted to be different. All valid reasons. 

Moral of the story: It’s your day. Do it your way. Wear the color that makes you feel the most excited, the most you!

Kayla Lee is a Minnesota-based wedding and elopement photographer. She provides services to elegant, authentic, sentimental couples who not only choose their own adventures, but also live them to the fullest! See more about the KLP Wedding Experience!

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At home on the road. Forever-focused on authenticity and the thrilling art of creation; always found in the moments that leave me breathless and in awe. 

After fourteen years as a high school educator, I stepped back through a door I thought was closed. Journalism came back into my life. Armed with a Masters of Arts in Communication, I was again challenged and prepared to tell the stories that would become history, but with a twist: It is now your legacy of love that I document. The tension I seek is that from every tear, smile, laugh, and moment of love on your wedding day. 


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