The Most Iconic Movie Wedding Dresses of All Time
See which memorable wedding dresses from movies made the list.
Do you know which designer created bridal gowns for Grace Kelly and Elizabeth Taylor's weddings, both on-screen and off? Or which movie wedding dress measured a jaw-dropping eight feet in diameter? Not surprisingly, some of our favorite fashion moments in film are the ones at weddings. Just like in real life, brides on the big screen need to stand out. Whether you're about to walk down the aisle or frequent the aisles of the movie theater, enjoy these iconic, scene-stealing wedding dresses that went down in cinematic history, plus fun facts about the designs (and the designers who dreamed them up).
"Frankenstein" Wedding Dress
Two words: That. Veil. It may have been a precarious choice for Elizabeth (Mae Clarke)'s purposes in the 1931 monster movie (read: escaping Frankenstein's monster), but the long-sleeve lace number by Vera West was so very lovely.
"It Happened One Night" Wedding Dress
Sleek and sexy and yet sweet and romantic, socialite Ellie Andrews (Claudette Colbert) captured the look of an ethereal bride in this flower-trimmed silk, body-conscious gown by costume designer Robert Kalloch for the 1934 drama.
"Here Comes the Groom" Wedding Dress
We could see a modern bride wearing this simple satin sheath, which Patricia Ellis wore for the 1934 musical. Off-the-shoulder necklines are making a big comeback in bridal!
"Bride of Frankenstein" Wedding Dress
Who says you can't be scary and chic? For her turn as The Monster's Mate in the 1935 horror flick, Elsa Lanchester rocked this caped column gown by Vera West, which is supposed to be made of surgical sheets and gloves of bandages. Talk about gothic bridal inspo!
"Carefree" Wedding Dress
Sure, a modern bride might lose the big sleeves, but we spy something pretty timeless about the wedding dress costume designers Edward Stevenson and Howard Greer dressed Amanda Cooper (Ginger Rogers) in for the 1938 musical rom-com: pleated stripes of lace are trending in today's bridal gowns—albeit in a slightly subtler way.
"Gone With the Wind" Wedding Dress
It might surprise you to learn that designer Walter Plunkett made Scarlett O'Hara (Vivien Leigh)'s iconic wedding dress from the 1939 classic ill-fitting on purpose. The wedding was a hurried one, as her groom, Charles Hamilton, was heading to war, so the bride borrowed her mother's gown. Talk about commitment to the storyline!
"Dark Victory" Wedding Dress
Not only did her portrayal of Judith Traherne in the 1939 movie earn Bette Davis an Oscar nom, but the actress also said was her favorite role to play. The fact that she got to wear this wedding dress with halter neckline and tiered tulle skirt by famous Hollywood costume designer Orry-Kelly couldn't have hurt. A matching cap and simple strand of pearls completed the bridal look.
"Paris Honeymoon" Wedding Dress
Actress Shirley Ross (playing Countess de Remi) wore a wedding dress designed by Edith Head in the 1939 Paramount comedy-musical.
"The Philadelphia Story" Wedding Dress
For the Broadway play-turned-1940-movie, socialite Tracy Lord (Katharine Hepburn) wore a ruffled, collared organza creation with laces at the waist, by MGM's Adrian, an iconic costume designer known best for his work on The Wizard of Oz.
"The Razor's Edge" Wedding Dress
Famous fashion designer Oleg Cassini made the timeless allover lace wedding gown that his wife at the time, actress Gene Tierney, wore as Isabel in the 1946 film.
"The Father of the Bride" (1950) Wedding Dress
You can't get much more iconic than Elizabeth Taylor's wedding dress in the original 1950 film, when she played Kay Banks, a daughter on her way down the aisle. It was designed by Helen Rose, who was known for her work in films as well as for creating some of the most famous wedding dresses of the era: Elizabeth Taylor's own bridal gown for her first marriage to Conrad Hilton, Jr. in 1950 (which, fun fact, was inspired by this one and given as a gift from MGM), and Grace Kelly's when she married Prince Rainier of Monaco in 1956.
"The Long, Long Trailer" Wedding Dress
Film fashion legend Helen Rose designed the over-the-top Lucy Ball gown—er, lacy ball gown—that Tacy Bolton-Collini (Lucille Ball) wears in the 1953 comedy.
"How to Marry a Millionaire" Wedding Dress
William Travilla (AKA Travilla) created the off-the-shoulder fit-and-flare wedding dress Lauren Bacall slipped on as Schatze Page in the 1953 film. Made of embroidered ecru lace, iridescent sequins, and heavy satin lining, the gown was sold in an auction in 2011.
"Gentlemen Prefer Blondes" Wedding Dresses
At the end of the 1953 film, Lorelei Lee (Marilyn Monroe) and Dorothy Shaw (Jane Russell) walked down the aisle in matching tea-length, A-line lace Travilla wedding dresses, complete with high necks, bell sleeves, and veiled hats.
"Oklahoma!" Wedding Dress
With a frilly neckline and green ribbon around the waist, the wedding dress Charles Arrico designed for Shirley Jones to wear as Laurie in the 1955 musical was simply sweet.
"And God Created Woman" Wedding Dress
How cute is this short wedding dress worn by Juliette Hardy (Brigitte Bardot) in the 1956 French film? Pierre Balmain made the collared shirtdress with three-quarter-length sleeves and a thick belt at the waist.
"And God Created Woman" Wedding Dress
And once she shed that conservative shirtdress, Bardot was a bombshell in her bridal bustier. OK, so this is technically movie wedding lingerie, but with similarly revealing dresses on the runways right now, we can't help but include the sultry, sheer costume in this list.
"High Society" Wedding Dress
Looking for a little floral wedding dress inspo? Turn to the dress Grace Kelly wore as Tracy Samantha Lord to marry Bing Crosby's character, C.K. Dexter Haven, in the 1956 remake of The Philadelphia Story. And that hat! So very sweet and iconic. The designer behind the bridal look? None other than Helen Rose, who created Kelly's own wedding dress.
"Funny Face" Wedding Dress
Audrey Hepburn was rocking her Givenchy dress way before Bey, as Jo Stockton in this 1957 movie. The super-chic, tea-length wedding gown has become one of the most iconic in the history of film.
"Houseboat" Wedding Dress
After famously falling in love on the set of The Pride and the Passion, Sophia Loren and Cary Grant's chemistry continued in this 1958 movie. And though the actors didn't end up together (Loren wed Carlo Ponti instead), their characters in Houseboat did, with Cinzia Zaccardi (Loren) wearing this wedding dress by Edith Head down the aisle. With its high neck, structured bodice, full skirt, and soutache on net overlay, the ball gown is giving us major Grace Kelly vibes. It was sold in a 2015 auction for $12,500.
"The Black Orchid" Wedding Dress
With its full skirt and sleeves, the wedding dress costumer Edith Head created and Sophia Loren wore as Rose Bianco in the 1958 drama is positively angelic. But it's the floral accents on either side of her veil and Loren's unparalleled beauty that really makes the look an unforgettable one.
"Come Dance With Me!" Wedding Dress
Jacques Esterel made this dreamy lace wedding dress for Brigitte Bardot to wear as young bride Virginie in the 1959 French movie. The regal look was completed with a crown and veil.
"Vice and Virtue" Wedding Dress
Damn, (Catherine) Deneuve! Back at it again with the great legs. The French actress stunned in a short wedding dress when she played Justine Morand in the 1963 French war-time movie.
"Viva Las Vegas" Wedding Dress
To marry Lucky Jackson (Elvis Presley) in the 1964 musical, Rusty (Ann-Margret) donned a demure short-sleeve wedding dress perfect for a summery celebration.
"The Sound of Music" Wedding Dress
With its classic shape and modest V-neckline, this ivory satin wedding dress designed by Dorothy Jacobs perfectly suited the woman who wore it, Maria Von Trapp (Julie Andrews) in the 1965 movie. The iconic bridal gown was sold in a 2013 Julien's auction for $23,040.
"Penelope" Wedding Dress
Edith Head was behind the beautiful costuming (totaling $250,000) for the 1966 film, and that included this wonderfully whimsical wedding dress. The wardrobe was such a key part of the 1966 film that the credits feature footage of Penelope (Natalie Wood) showing off even more outfits that didn't make it into the final film.
"Two Weeks in September" Wedding Dress
We're loving the marabou feather-embellished wedding dress Tanine Autré designed for Cecile, Brigitte Bardot's character's wedding in the 1967 French film.
"The Graduate" Wedding Dress
Here's to you, Elaine Robinson (Katharine Ross), and that iconic wedding dress of yours. Thankfully, with its scalloped neck and hemline, Patricia Zipprodt's lovely design for the final wedding scene of the 1967 classic helped soften the blow of such a dark ending.
"Funny Girl" Wedding Dress
Though not worn for an actual wedding, but rather for the performance of "His Love Makes Me Beautiful," Fanny Brice (Barbra Streisand) made this flower-trimmed wedding dress a memorable one by stuffing a pillow in the empire waist. Academy Award- and Tony Award-winning costume designer Irene Sharaff did the fashions for the 1968 musical.
"On Her Majesty's Secret Service" Wedding Dress
Leave it to a Bond girl to do bridal in such a badass way. Not only is the dreamy jumpsuit by Marjory Cornelius timeless (we'd like one in our closet, stat!), but think how comfortable it would be. Tracy, portrayed by Diana Rigg in the 1969 action movie, was Bond's only wife, ever. Probably for the best. That wedding look would be one tough act to follow.
"The Adventurers" Wedding Dress
As Sue Ann Daley in the 1969 thriller, Candice Bergen looked totally regal in the high-neck, long-sleeve wedding dress with allover embroidered flowers that Ronald Paterson chose.
"Rum Runners" Wedding Dress
Outfitted in a fringed frock by Jacques Fonteray, Linda Larue, or rather, Brigitte Bardot, was every bit the style icon in the 1971 French film.
"The Godfather" Wedding Dress
For her turn as Apollonia in the 1972 classic, Simonetta Stefanelli glowed in a lacy, empire-waist creation. The Oscar-nominated costume designer for the film, Anna Hill Johnston, framed her face with a traditional mantilla veil fitting for a conservative Italian-Catholic ceremony.
"The Godfather" Wedding Dress
Poor Connie Corleone (Talia Shire)'s wedding day marked the beginning of a violent marriage, but still, the only daughter of Don Vito certainly was stunning in her long-sleeve A-line gown with trailing veil.
"The Brady Girls Get Married" Wedding Dresses
When it came time for the series' eldest sisters to get married in the 1981 made-for-TV movie, they did so in true Brady Bunch fashion: together! But unlike the double wedding in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, Marcia (Maureen McCormick) and Jan (Eve Plumb) wore different designs.
"Out of Africa" Wedding Dress
Costume designer Milena Canonero did some serious research before creating the costumes the cast wore in the 1985 film, and the re-imagination of Karen Blixen (played by Meryl Streep)'s wedding outfit was no exception. In Blixen's writings, "she makes reference to clothes she had shipped from Paris," Canonero told the Los Angeles Times
. "She said in one letter she wore a white suit to her wedding. I'm sure she had a very simple suit, but I wanted to make a little more of it. I decided to make it very French, a la mode." Of course, it was the white silk hat with antique embroidery that took the look to the next level.
"The Princess Bride"
What little girl didn't dream of wearing Princess Buttercup (Robin Wright)'s baby blue, medieval wedding dress from the 1987 fairy tale? Costume designer Phyllis Dalton is to thank for the velvet, empire-waist gown adorned with pearls.
"Coming to America" Pink Wedding Dress
We're willing to bet Shari Headley would have looked great in anything when her character, Lisa McDowell tied the knot in the 1988 comedy. Costume designer Deborah Landis agreed, saying in an interview with Complex
, "She is every designer's dream, because the more I put on her, the more she could take it. She could carry it. She had that kind of natural elegance. Very much like Audrey Hepburn." Funny enough, the fabric Landis used for the wedding dress is an inexpensive nylon tulle. "She had dignity and elegance," Landis said. "She wore it as if it was the most expensive dress on the planet."
"Coming to America" Gold Wedding Dress
She may not have been "the one" for Prince Akeem (Eddie Murphy), but Imani (Vanessa Bell Calloway) glowed in her sexy gold wedding dress, the fabric for which costume designer Deborah Landis said she purchased near 38th street in New York City.
"Steel Magnolias" Wedding Dress
The first of many roles for which Julia Roberts would wear a wedding dress, Southern belle Shelby chose a feminine pale pink ball gown by Julie Weiss in the 1989 drama. With pink flowers on the bodice and pink sashes in the skirt, the bridal look was befitting for a girl whose wedding colors were "blush and bashful," or "pink and pink."
"The Father of the Bride" (1991) Wedding Dress
Annie Banks (Kimberly Williams) stole the hearts of dads everywhere in her wedding dress by costumer Susan Becker in the 1991 remake. And of course, the character kept comfortable with sneakers underneath—an idea that Williams borrowed for her own wedding to Brad Paisley.
"Sense and Sensibility" Wedding Dress
For the 1995 film adaptation of the Jane Austen novel, costume designer Jenny Beavan based Marianne Dashwood (Kate Winslet)'s stunning cream wedding dress with straw-worked collar and trim on the styles of the 1800s.
"Sense and Sensibility" Wedding Dress
Marianne's sister, Elinor (Emma Thompson)'s bridal gown by the same designer consisted of printed muslin and lace trim. Over the dress, Elinor layered a crushed velvet spencer jacket with silk ribbon rosettes.
"Emma" Wedding Dress
For the final scene of the 1996 movie, Gwyneth Paltrow wore a lovely silk crepe creation with embroidered net sleeves and train, and of course, an empire waist that became instantly popular following the film's release. "It's an honor to launch a trend,'' costume designer Ruth Myers, who made it, told the Los Angeles Daily News
. "But the dress is meant for young women with perfect figures like Emma (Gwyneth Paltrow), as the style is not very forgiving.''
"Romeo + Juliet" Wedding Dress
A spur-of-the-moment secret wedding and a very young bride (Claire Danes as Juliet Capulet) in the 1996 retelling of the Shakespearean tragedy called for a simple silk wedding dress with ever-so-delicate button detailing and feminine white gloves to match. It turns out, costume designer Catherine Martin (you'll recognize her name from her work on husband Baz Luhrmann's other films, Moulin Rouge! and The Great Gatsby) has a thing for buttons. "I love a bit of trim and I love a button," Martin told Vogue
. "I think buttons are very important. Because a button is this big [motions with her hands] on the screen because 30 percent of every film [is a close-up], so if you're looking at a big plastic button on Leonardo DiCaprio and he's going, 'I love you baby, I love you,' and all you can see is the plastic button—it pushes you over the edge." Luckily, these covered buttons do nothing but complement Danes's loveliness.
"My Best Friend's Wedding"
Despite some drama along the way, the young Kimberly Wallace (Cameron Diaz) did indeed tie the knot in the 1997 romantic comedy—wearing an off-the-shoulder long-sleeve ball gown with a 14-foot train and 20-foot silk tulle veil by costume designer Jeffrey Kurland.
"Ever After" Wedding Dress
When Danielle (aka Cinderella, aka Drew Barrymore in the 1998 movie) walked into the ball wearing the same gorgeous gown her mother wore down the aisle, she looked like an angel—and not just because of the wings. Often referred to as the "Breathe" gown because of the phrase the character whispers as she enters the ballroom, it boasted a beaded bodice, off-the-shoulder neckline, and seriously intricate long sleeves, and was accessorized, of course, with "glass" slippers by Salvatore Ferragamo. Take that, wicked stepmother!
"Runaway Bride" Wedding Dress
Designed by Amsale Aberra, the fifth wedding dress was the charm for chronically cold-footed Maggie (Julia Roberts) in the 1999 rom-com. But the pretty woman was pretty gorgeous in every one of them, which has us thinking ... would five dress changes be considered overboard IRL?
"The Best Man" Wedding Dress
Sheer sleeves made Mia (Monica Calhoun)'s modern wedding dress sexy yet sophisticated in the 1999 comedy.
"The Wedding Planner" Wedding Dress
While her costar bride Bridgette Wilson-Sampras (playing Fran Donolly) was beautiful in Vera Wang in the 2001 rom-com, Mary Fiore (Jennifer Lopez) looked demure in the simple, boat-neck top and pencil skirt that Pamela Withers designed for the wedding planner's courthouse wedding.
"Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones" Wedding Dress
Unless you're a Star Wars buff, you probably didn't know that Trisha Biggar used an antique lace bedspread as the starting point for the pearl-studded, scrollwork-covered gown worn by Padmé Amidala (Natalie Portman) in 2002. Linens never looked so good!
"Sweet Home Alabama" Wedding Dress
Reese Witherspoon plays displaced southerner-turned-NYC-fashion-designer, so Sophie de Rakoff, costumer for the 2002 rom-com, was tasked with creating a dress that merged both her southern roots and city style. Bonus: It looked great, even when soaking wet on the beach at the end.
"My Big Fat Greek Wedding" Wedding Dress
In 2002, in the highest-grossing wedding movie (and romantic comedy!) of all time, Toula Portokalos (Nia Vardalos) did her roots (and the title of the movie) proud: with a big, fat Greek wedding, and a big, beautiful "frosted cupcake" wedding dress by Michael Clancy to match.
"Moulin Rouge" Wedding Dress
Come what may, we will always love the curve-hugging strapless dress Nicole Kidman wore in Moulin Rouge while her character Satine played the courtesan in "Spectacular, Spectacular." Costume designers Catherine Martin and Angus Strathie designed the Hindi-style wedding dress with silver metallic embroidery and beading. Their work in the film earned them a 2002 Academy Award for Best Costume Design.
"Love Actually" Wedding Dress
All you need is love. And of course, a super unique wedding dress. That's what we learned from Juliet (Keira Knightley), whose long-sleeve, feather-adorned frock fit perfectly with the festive feel of the 2003 holiday movie.
"The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement" Wedding Dress
For the teen movie sequel in 2004, Gary Jones dressed Mia Thermopolis (Anne Hathaway) in a long-sleeve lace gown worthy of a princess.
"The Notebook" Wedding Dress
Allie (Rachel McAdams) may never have worn it down the aisle, but a few frames from the fitting was all it took for us to fall head over heels for the vintage-inspired wedding dress in the 2004 film. And who could forget that scene in tub, when she's still wearing the veil?
"Kill Bill 2" Wedding Dress
OK, so maybe it's the massacre that ensues that makes this wedding dress so memorable. But before it was covered in blood, you have to admit that "The Bride" Beatrix Kiddo (Uma Thurman)'s long-sleeve wedding dress in the 2004 thriller was a pretty choice for the pregnant bride.
"The Phantom of the Opera" Wedding Dress
As creepy as we find the Phantom's obsession with Christine (Emmy Rossum) in the 2004 film adaptation of the Broadway musical, you have to admit: The masked man sure can dress a hostage bride. Made by costume designer Alexandra Byrne, the off-the-shoulder, lace-trimmed ivory ball gown is a symbol of the character's virtue. It sold in an auction for $5,120.