Fabulous facts and reasons about wearing a wedding veil on your big day.
Having been in the wedding industry for over 20 years, as a photographer I’ve seen a lot things! Creating beautiful images is what we do, photographing many with brides, with and without a veil on their wedding day.
To wear the veil or not to wear a veil? We have some interesting facts and some fabulous reasons you should wear a veil on your wedding day. Along with some amazing, real wedding day, photos of our brides wearing veils to help you decide.
The wedding veil means different things to different brides. For some it is steeped in traditional for others it’s a beautiful accessory. Lets explore…
So! What is the tradition of the brides veil?
Apparently the veil is one of the oldest parts wedding attire dating back to Greek and roman times. It was a way to worn off evil spirits and designed to hide the brides face from the groom. In Western Christian culture it symbolisms modesty before God.
When researching this topic I was fascinated when I found out that in the 18th century bridal veils were only worn occasionally. It wasn’t until Queen Victoria worn a veil when marring Prince Albert in 1840 that veils become a trend. The length and quality of the brides veil reflected on her social status.
Similarly, the tradition of wearing the veil over the brides face only became common in the mid 19th century, his tradition continues today in Christian and Jewish cultures.
At a traditional Jewish wedding, the custom for the groom to place the veil over the bride just before the ceremony. I’ve been told by Rabbis that this is to ensure he is marrying the right bride. As according to Genesis 29 when Jacob went to marry Rachel, his father-in-law Laban tricked him into marrying Leah, Rachel’s older sister.
What does the wedding veil represent for the brides today?
Religious choices and traditions aside, todays brides tend to have fun with their veil choices. They choose to have it as an accessory as you would a piece of jewellery. It’s your day and you look and feel how you want on it.
For brides today? We think the bridal veil makes for fabulous photos!
Should I wear the wedding veil all day and night?
We often photograph brides wearing their veil all day. From their preparation photos, ceremony, family photos and then on to location photos. Some brides opt to remove the veil at the reception. This can make the grand entrance and the bridal waltz a bit easier. Some brides may even swap the veil out for a jewelled hair accessory, pop fresh flowers in the hair or change the hair style from an up do to down or vice versa.
Does wearing a veils make for better photos?
Whether you wear a veil or not, you are going to have fabulous photos from us! The veil does tend to create that finishing bridal look, therefore looking very bride like in your photos. Wearing a veil gives photographers another accessory to work with. We can capture softness, drama, romance all by utilizing the veil in different ways.
Here are our 4 reasons to wear a veil on the wedding day
- Tradition: Veils have been a part of wedding attire for centuries, and many brides choose to wear a veil as a nod to this long-standing tradition.
- Symbolism: The veil can symbolize purity, innocence, and modesty. It can also represent the bride’s transition from her old life to her new life as a wife.
- Romance: The veil adds a sense of romance and mystery to the wedding ceremony. It can be an ethereal and delicate addition to the bride’s overall look.
- Elegance: The veil can add a touch of elegance and sophistication to the bride’s dress, especially if it has lace or beading details.
- Photogenic: The veil can make for some stunning wedding photos. The way it catches the light and flows behind the bride can make for some truly beautiful and memorable images.
Considerations: Things to consider when choosing to wear a veil on your wedding day:
I spoke with fashion designer and bridal wear expert Palak Harry, about some of the considerations for wearing a veil on your wedding day.
How long should a veil be?
‘There are no set rules as to how long your veil should be. Bride’s personal choice and her overall bridal look plays a major part in deciding the veil length. Some brides prefer a minimalistic look and opt for an elbow length or a fingertip length (75cm and 100cm respectively). Brides who want a show stopping look opt for cathedral lengths (300cm and above). Some brides have the idea of keeping the veil for their first dance as well, so they either opt for a waltz or floor length, or they go for 2 veils with different lengths. When you decide to have a veil, your hairstyle will affect how your veil sits and where the end of the veil will fall. I always suggest measuring, from where you will wear the veil (e.g. under a bun, or on the crown, or over a low bun), till the length of your dress train. The veil can end exactly at the dress train or can go past a little, as such that it frames the dress train beautifully.’
Beaded veil, is weight a consideration for veils?
‘First of all, the weight of a veil depends on what type of tulle is used to make a veil. There are many types of tulles available now and every designer uses different types to make veils. A beaded veil does get a little heavy and there are several ways to secure a heavy veil on to any hairstyle, taking your veil with you for your hair trial is highly recommended. A bridal bun or a half up do is known to support a heavy veil beautifully. Brides who go for Hollywood waves secure their veil onto the hair extension pin underneath, or you can also tie a tiny section of your hair (make top and bottom sections at the crown and tie the underneath section of hair) with a thin rubber band, cover it back with the top section, so it is not visible and then place your veil comb above the rubber band.
Pearl veils and beaded/embroidered veils are becoming quite popular. I have made very long pearl veils that are wider width as well, and brides always mention that it wasn’t heavy and stayed on with comfort. Many of my brides use my tying method for long and heavy veils.
If the look you want to achieve desires a longer veil or a beaded veil, then go for it! There are many ways to secure the veil and you can be prepared by trying on the veil at fittings and trials and practice walking and having it on.’
What is the best placement on the head for the veil?
‘The placement of your veil will depend on the hairstyle you decide to have. Most preferred placement is at the crown and a veil looks beautiful. If you are having open hair, be it waves, curls or straight, in my opinion, the veil placement should be at the crown or higher up, if you wear a veil higher up, it gives a vintage vibe, framing your face gorgeously. If you are having a bridal bun, the veil normally is placed over the bun, when you have high or mid high or low bun, especially if it’s a veil with a blusher to go over your face. If yours is a 1 tier veil, you could also wear it under your bun.’
You can check out Palak’s work in her Instagram @palakharry.bridal
Some of my favourites of Rocco's photographs featuring wedding veil
Whether or not a bride chooses to wear a veil on her wedding day is a personal decision. Some brides may prefer not to wear one, while others may feel that it completes their wedding day look. The last thing you want to do on your wedding day is to start doing things you don’t like or cant connect with.
You can check out more of Rocco’s work here