Style Decision – Embellishment & Fastenings

Designers often use embellishment to create different and unique designs. The main types of embellishment are beading and embroidery and, as a result, the variety of designs is almost limitless. Designers also use different types of fastenings – usually buttons, lace up or zips – to fasten up the dress.


The first beading option is pearls. Pearls are often used to decorate belts, motifs on the dress or on the straps. They come in many different colours, but a warm ivory is the colour most frequently used in bridal wear.

Another type of beading used in bridal wear is crystals. Crystals are found on a large number of dresses and veils, and can either be clear or coloured. They come in a variety of shapes, sizes and clarities.

As well as pearls and crystals, there are a number of other beads. They come in thousands of shapes, sizes and colours. Warm ivories, cream, clear or ‘Aurore Boreale’ (AB) beads are the ones most often found on bridal wear gowns.

Beads and gems that are found on bridal wear are not always sewn on. Diamantes or rhinestones are diamond-like beads that are usually glued on, rather than sewn on, and are found on a large number of bridal gowns, veils and other bridal gown accessories.

Sequins are not used as often on bridal wear in comparison to eveningwear. Sequins are sometimes used on an underskirt layer to create a subtle shimmer, or to decorate motifs or flowers on the dress.


There are other ways to embellish bridal wear gowns in addition to beading. Lace appliques are often found on satin or taffeta bridal gowns, as they stand out more than if they were placed on a full lace gown. Often in a flower or swirled design, these applique motifs are sewn onto the dress in areas such as the waistline or at the top of ruches or sections of gathered fabric. They can also be decorated with beads, crystals, diamantes or sequins.

Some wedding dresses have machine or hand embroidery sewn into the dress instead of beads or diamantes. These designs often follow flower or swirl patterns, and can use plain or sparkly thread.


Most bridal gowns have a ‘Lace Up Back’ to fasten up the dress. Lace Up Backs have an inverted triangular slit down the back seam of the dress, with loop holes sewn into each side of the seam. A fabric lace (long thin belt-like piece of fabric that matches the dress fabric) is then laced through each of the loop holes to pull the dress in and fasten up the back of the dress.

Buttons are also used to fasten up the back of a bridal gown. They can be either covered buttons or beaded buttons, and are sewn down one side of the back seam, with elasticated loop holes being sewn down the other side. Buttons are sometimes used as decoration to cover a zip in the back seam.

A zip is the final form of fastening found on a bridal gown. They are found either in the back seam or the side seam. The most common type of zip used is an invisible zip. However, normal zips can also be used and are usually put in with an extra fabric flap that folds over to cover the zip. Buttons can then be used to secure the fabric flap in place.


To see more dresses with a variety of embellishment and fastenings from a range of designers, click here.


    Claim your Listing
    Edit your Listing and add information

    Claim your Listing
    STEP 1

    • • Find your store in the Retailer Directory by typing in the name of your store in the box marked “Search by Shop Name” and clicking the search / magnifying glass icon.
    • Go down the list until you find your store.
    • Click on the name of your store and you will go to your directory entry.

    STEP 2

    • Once you are in your directory entry, move your mouse over the right hand side of the page and a button will appear that says “Claim this Listing”.
    • Click on this button and you will go to the Claim Listing page.

    STEP 3

    • Once you are in the Claim Listing page, type in your name and email in the boxes.
    • In the Comments box, type in your position within the store eg Owner or Manager or Sales Assistant etc. This additional information will help verify your claim.
    • Select the listing type you require by clicking on the circle next to Premium or Expert.
    • Accept the Terms and Conditions by clicking on the square.
    • Clicking the big “Claim Listing” button at the end of the page will take you to PayPal’s own pages. This Help Guide will not be visible on PayPal’s pages. So before you click on the “Claim Listing” button please note that on PayPal’s pages:
    • Important: If you do not already have an account with Paypal, click the button to use Paypal as a Guest and also click the “Do not have a PayPal account” button. If you already have an account with Paypal, log in to Paypal and complete your purchase as usual.
    • Important: You may need to change the Country to the UK by clicking on the drop down menu and selecting the United Kingdom.
    • Once you have made the payment via PayPal, you will see a message from us which includes the next steps.
    • Now click the big “Claim Listing” button at the end of the Claim Listing page to go to PayPal.
    • You will then go to the PayPal page where you will be able to complete the transaction.
    Edit your Listing & Add Info
    STEP 1

    • At the end of the page, click the “Edit My Listing” button and you will be taken to your Retailer Dashboard.
      Click on the name of your store and you will be taken to your Listing on the website.
    • Move your mouse to the right hand side of your listing and the “Edit this Listing” button will appear.
    • Click the “Edit this Listing” button.
    • A form will appear with the name, postal address and phone number of the store already filled in. Check these details are correct and amend them if necessary.
    • The form has other boxes in which you can add in other information. It is up to you what other information you wish to add.

    STEP 2

    • Type in your mobile, email and website address in the boxes.
    • If you have Twitter, Facebook or Google+ accounts you can add them in the boxes.

    STEP 3

    • Add the designers whose dresses you stock.
    • Firstly, click on the drop down menu list to add a Wedding Dress Expert Featured Designer whose dresses you stock. Click the Add More button to add additional Wedding Dress Expert Featured Designers whose dresses you stock.
    • Secondly, go to the Other Designers box and type in the names of any other designers (ie in addition to the Wedding Dress Expert Featured Designers listed above) whose dresses you stock. Please type in the names of the other designers you stock and put a comma after each of the designers’ names.

    STEP 4
    Type in any additional information you would like to add in the boxes provided. There are separate boxes where you can add:

    • a brief summary or introduction to your store.
    • your trading hours.
    • any industry awards you have won and any industry associations where you are a member.
    • a customer testimonial.
    • a second customer testimonial.
    • a third customer testimonial.
    • any Special Offers including Sale announcements.

    STEP 5

    • Click the Save Changes button at the end of the page to save the additional information you have just added.
    • You can edit and add further information whenever you like by amending the information in the boxes on this page

    STEP 6

    • Underneath the heading “Directory Dashboard” at the top of the page there are a row of sub-headings.
    • Click on the word “Listings” and you will go to the next page.
    • Click on the name of your store and your listing will appear.
    • Move your mouse across to the right side of the listing and a small picture of a camera will appear. When you put your mouse on the camera it says “Add frontpage photos”.
    • Click on the camera and you will go to the photo upload page.
    • Click on the button which says Choose Files.
    • Find the photo on your computer that you want to display on your listing. Click on the photo and then click on the Open button. The photo will then appear on the page. Repeat this process to add further photos, up to a maximum of 5 photos.
    • Click on the Submit button.

    STEP 7

    • Click on the Retailer Directory main menu at the top of the page.
    • Type the name of your store into the box marked Search by Shop name.
    • Click on the name of your store and you will see your directory entry.
    • Check your directory entry.
    • To make any amendments (or for Expert Directory entries to add more photos) click on the Edit Listing or camera buttons and follow the appropriate steps listed above.