how to match your wedding dress with your venue

The perfect match: your venue & your dress

Two of the most important things a bride-to-be will be thinking about: the venue, and the dress.


When you first start your bridal shopping journey, you’re likely looking for the dress that has the wow factor. The wedding dress that gives you the warm fuzzy feeling that you’ve found ‘The One’. But as your journey continues, and you begin looking at venues, it’s likely you’ll start to tie the two together (if you haven’t already!) and thinking about matching your wedding dress to your venue.


While it’s not the most important thing in the world to match your wedding dress to your venue, it does make a big difference if you have a wedding theme in all other aspects.


Overall, we’d recommend you have your venue picked and booked prior to wedding dress shopping. Not only does this give you a timeframe to work with when shopping for your dress, but it also gives you some idea of how the day will look, which will therefore impact your bridal gown choice.


So without any further hesitation, here’s how to match your wedding dress to your venue, and some examples of the perfect match!

How to Choose a Wedding Dress to Match Your Venue | Hannah Elizabeth Bridal


Consider formality


When you initially chose your wedding venue, it’s likely you’d already had an idea of how formal you’d like to your wedding day to be. For example, if you’ve chosen to get married in a grand house or hotel with a seated three-course meal, you might be looking for a more formal day than if you had chosen a woodland or relaxed outdoor wedding with gastro style food trucks.

So if you’re thinking about how to match your bridal gown to your venue, think about the formality of the day. For a more formal day, you might think about a more exquisite dress, with delicate detailing or a standout skirt. For an understated wedding day, you might be more inclined to look at minimalist chic wedding dresses.


Plan your theme


Some wedding venues are spacious with lots of green land, while others are industrial, featuring concrete floors and ironwork. While there are no rules as to what dress you should wear in either venue, the environment is likely to feed into your overall style of the day.

For example, if you’ve gone for a very boho/rustic vibe with your venue, flowers, decorations, and band – it’s likely you’ll want a similar style of bridal gown. On the contrast, if you’ve chosen an elegant interior with traditional decorations or going for a more modern minimalist feel, a contemporary classical feel bridal gown might be the perfect match!


Take inspiration from online


Finally, we’d recommend looking at your wedding venue and exploring their tagged photos on Instagram. Take inspiration from other brides and their ideal wedding days. This will help you to envisage your day even better – not just from the perspective of the bridal gown, but theme, decorations, flowers and more. You’ll gain a better understanding of what suits the space, and what doesn’t – including the dress!


For the chic and contemporary venue


If you’ve got your heart set on a contemporary venue, look no further than Botley Hill Barn in Surrey. With the most gorgeous sunset views, floor-to-ceiling industrial style windows, and a distressed ceremony room with pew-style seating – Botley Hill Barn is the chic, industrial and contemporary venue for the modern bride.

Featuring mismatching luxurious sofas and textures, combined with the barn-like wooden ceiling and long trestle tables – we’d choose either an understated chic bridal gown from Love Story Bride, a sophisticated crepe wedding dress from Rosa Clara or a modern luxe wedding dress with exquisite embellished detail by Jane Hill.

Willow by Jane Hill would look incredible against the striking glass windows at Botley Hill Barn, and would align perfectly with the luxurious feel of the venue.

Alternatively, Coco by Love Story Bride oozes sex appeal and minimalist vibes – which the industrial and moody tones in Botley Hill Barn perfectly compliment. This bridal gown could also be paired with some of the separates, such as the Olive Pearl Top or the Amelia Overskirt for softer details. 

Finally Nagash by Rosa Clara offers class and sophistication, which Botley Hill Barn certainly delivers. 

Jane Hill Bridal - Willow | Hannah Elizabeth Bridal
Willow by Jane Hill
Love Story Bride - Coco | Hannah Elizabeth Bridal
Coco by Love Story Bride
Rosa Clara - Nagash | Hannah Elizabeth Bridal
Nagash by Rosa Clara

For the timeless, elegant venue


If you’re more of a traditionalist and love hand-painted ceilings and walls, exquisite details and endless history – you’ve likely booked your day at a gorgeous stately home or country manor, such as Pylewell Park, Lymington Hampshire.

A timeless yet glamorous venue with acres of space and endless ceremony spots from the decadent main house interior, ceremony gazebo and wedding pavilion. Pylewell Park has a beautiful historical backdrop which lends itself to having a more elegant and classical wedding dress to compliment. 

Stately Home Wedding Inspiration | Hannah Elizabeth Bridal

Images of Pylewell Park. Left image by New Forest Studio, Right Image Unknown

For any of our future brides, we’d bring their attention to the highly-anticipated Vera Wang Bride collection, the incredible Jane Hill or alternatively the stunning Rosa Clara 2022 collection. These designers feature stunning, contemporary dresses to suit your natural style yet classical enough to never date! Perfect for truly feeling like a modern day Princess.

Babette by Vera Wang is the classic crepe bridal gown with the ultimate designer modern twist, bringing together traditional and modern for a standout bridal look. 

Nuwa by Rosa Clara is the epitome of class and sophistication, with a gorgeous skirt and delicate bow feature. 

Airlie by Jane Hill is a traditional bridal silhouette with beautiful embellishment for the modern bride.

Vera Wang Bride - Babette | Hannah Elizabeth Bridal
Babette by Vera Wang
Rosa Clara - Nuwa | Hannah Elizabeth Bridal
Nuwa by Rosa Clara
Jane Hill - Airlie | Hannah Elizabeth Bridal
Airlie by Jane Hill

For the sunny destination wedding


Many brides dream of having a destination wedding, getting married by the water and running their toes through the sand. There are endless wedding venues we could find looking abroad, but one that really caught our eye was a recent wedding reception held at Copacabana in Dubrovnik, Croatia.

And this bride above matched our ideal vision with the ultimate Jane Hill bridal gown ‘Saint‘ which is perfect for any destination wedding – striking through both feminine and romantic silhouettes with luxurious and on-trend details. 

We can also totally envisage Laure by Vera Wang, with luxurious embellished sleeves and delicate spaghetti straps. Designer heaven! 

Osman by Rosa Clara would similarly look incredible at a destination wedding, bringing together a sheer, romantic skirt and stunning bodice. 

Jane Hill Bridal - Saint | Hannah Elizabeth Bridal, Hampshire
Saint by Jane Hill
Vera Wang Bride - Laure | Hannah Elizabeth Bridal
Laure by Vera Wang
Rosa Clara - Osman | Hannah Elizabeth Bridal
Osman by Rosa Clara

For the relaxed festival-style or outdoors wedding


Oh hey boho-bride! If you’re doing things a little bit different and want a relaxed but equally luxurious bridal gown to match your romantic outdoor or fun festival feel, we’ve got a few top hits to recommend for you.

There’s nothing more magical than hiring a gorgeous tipi from a company like Tribeca Tipis (East Sussex), and filling it with all your favourite people, dancing and playing games under the stars. Or perhaps saying I do among the natural beauty of Larmer Tree Gardens (Wiltshire/Dorset) with it’s ornate Roman temple, charming gardens and magical outdoor Victorian theatre.

Outdoor Wedding Inspiration | Hannah Elizabeth Bridal

Left image: Tribeca Tipis, Photo by Rachel Takes Pictures | Right image: Larmer Tree, Photo by Nadia Meli

The romantic outdoor wedding is suitable to various bridal gowns at Hannah Elizabeth Bridal.

We love the minimalist Emmy by Love Story BrideWith it’s crepe silhouettes and gorgeous feature at the front, it’s ideal for the understated chic bride getting married under the stars. 

Similarly, the bride would look incredible in the luxurious Mimi by Jane Hillfeaturing delicate floral detailing all over and a sheer bodice. 

Alternatively, if you’re looking for a whimsical, boho designer bridal gown that ticks all the boxes, Raphaelle by Vera Wang could be The One for you. 

Love Story Bride - Emmy Without Sleeves | Hannah Elizabeth Bridal
Emmy by Love Story Bride
Jane Hill Bridal - Mimi | Hannah Elizabeth Bridal, Hampshire
Mimi by Jane Hill 
Vera Wang Bride - Raphaelle | Hannah Elizabeth Bridal

Raphaelle by Vera Wang


Your bridal appointment

Our award winning bridal boutique is located in the Hampshire village of Botley, home to our carefully curated collection of modern luxe wedding gowns. From the streets of Paris, to the beaches of Australia, and the hustle and bustle of NYC – we’ve selected the finest bridal designers from across the globe, all specialising in exquisite designs, classic couture and exclusive styles. Your bespoke experience starts the moment you make contact with us. From our first phone consultation to your exciting and luxurious bridal boutique appointment. We lead you with our expertise and guide you through our extraordinary array of designers, their exquisite fabrics and mesmerising designs. We passionately provide an unparalleled, inspirational and high-end bridal shopping experience.

5 High Street, Botley,
Southampton, Hampshire,
SO30 2EA