Bling is back in all its dazzling splendor. This season, we saw everything from encrusted sleeves and ornate bodices to all-over beading (with this latter option, prepare for all eyes to be transfixed on you for all 10+ hours of your wedding day). With a slinky sheath, scalloped edges or patterns—shown at Jenny Packham, Ines Di Santo and Reem Acra— it takes on a Great Gatsby-esque effect.
Dress by Ines di Santo
Who knew that a ring of skin could be so seductive? It would be easier for us to name all of the designers that didn't feature this ubiquitous trend than those who did—that's how pervasive it was. Sophisticated yet versatile, most keyhole back styles were encircled with lace detailing, but the illusion effect is just as divine (more on that below).
Dress by Ellis Bridals
Bare arms, begone: The royally-inspired cover-up look first popularized by Kate Middleton two years ago is still going strong. We're loving both billowy and skintight versions, so please don't make us choose. But the 2013 sleeved styles didn't just exude Old-World charm—fresh takes like Temperley London's tattooed version left a mark on us.
Dress by Temperley London
Chantilly lace was the go-to fabric this season. Designers such as Vera Wang, Christos and Kenneth Pool ushered us into a dreamworld with ethereal, billowing clouds of tulle anchored by vines of lace. If you're a romantic at heart, this ballerina-beauty look is for you.
Dress by Vera Wang
Whether they're on the front or the back, they add a sweet element to any bridal ensemble. The demure, miniature-sized renditions are the most wearable, but we bow down to those fashionistas who can rock the oversized version, like those shown at Badgley Mischka.
Dress by Tarik Ediz
Last season's structured fit has mellowed out a bit, giving way to a looser style that is more forgiving and figure-flattering on a variety of body types. However, the payoff is still the same: Peplums whittle the waist and give boyish shapes curve appeal.
Dress by Amsale
This season, designers like Pnina Tornai, Ines Di Santo, Marchesa, Reem Acra and more treated us to a disappearing act. Buttons, jewels and lace detailing appeared to magically float down models' backs and around their shoulders. This feminine look is a great option for brides marrying in spring or summer seeking lightweight coverage.
Dress by Christos
Last season, red ruled the runways. This time around, gold was the hue of choice, a perfect option for second weddings or unconventional brides. Romona Keveza's entire collection was dedicated to Bond girls (Skyfall, the hotly-anticipated 23rd James Bond Flick, is scheduled to hit theaters next month). Theia, Reem Acra, Anna Maier-Ulla Maijer and Lazaro also gave their gowns the Midas touch.
Dress by Reem Acra
The newest bouquet of gown styles is less garden variety and more fantastical, with floral appliqués as big as your fist and gathered silhouettes that resemble strewn petals, like those shown at Marchesa. What better way to bring an enchanted garden theme to life? Take baby steps with a floral-embellished veil or a few well-placed buds.
Dress by Marchesa
Every bride wants to feel like a goddess on her wedding day. If Bohemian-chic fits your M.O., gowns with butterflies, metallic embroidery, scattered leaves and ombré effects will strike your fancy. Whether you chose to go barefoot like Claire Pettibone's models is optional.
Dress by Claire Pettibone