What makes a 5 Star Winter Wedding Dress?
What makes a 5 Star Winter Wedding Dress?

What makes a 5 Star Winter Wedding Dress?

Bespoke Wedding Dress Designer, Cynthia Grafton-Holt

Bespoke Wedding Dress Designer, Cynthia Grafton-Holt and Founder at Cynthia Grafton-Holt Couture shares exclusively with 5 Star Weddings what goes into making a 5-star winter wedding dress.

If, (you’ll need your eyes closed for this one) you have your heart set on a magical winter wedding? You will probably be thinking, of a roaring fireplace, an abundance of floral blooms cascading from every orifice, with you centre stage adorned in the most stunning couture gown.  And you would be right.  Why?  Let’s face it.  A winter wedding comes with a whole host of benefits, not least the fact that you will appreciate getting the best prices across the board for the most expensive elements, which means that you don’t have to scrimp or save on your dream.


Choosing to create a bespoke gown means doing your homework too and placing your order at least 12 months ahead, ensures you have plenty of time to secure a choice spot with a dress designer of your choice, avoiding the stress of the summer season, and having your dress made at a relaxed and calm pace – plus, the added benefit of getting first pick of dates to reserve a dresser for the big day. It also means that you can schedule your dress fitting timings over a longer period to avoid the stress of last-minute fittings at a time when you are at your busiest closer to your wedding date. 


Once you start the process of designing your wedding dress, every aspect requires planning well ahead to secure your choice of fabric.  The post-Covid market has meant that many suppliers now keep limited stocks of their catalogue, and this has affected wait times which can run into several weeks as they compile new orders for a restock.  From late October to early spring, suppliers show new textile collections, which also means you, have the choice to pick new designs before everyone else!  

What makes a 5 Star Winter Wedding Dress?

A winter wedding dress requires thought and consideration towards the season. We agree on the fact that it will be cold, and your priority will be comfort and warmth.  Even if the venue allows you exclusive use to stay indoors and move between spaces, using the outdoor spaces for photography will ensure that you are perfectly dressed throughout the day.  

Our recommendation and choice of suitable fabrics will range according to the overall dress budget. However, we are a firm fan of the family of silk textiles traditionally used in the making of bespoke dresses from tailored gowns to elaborate ball gowns for their ability to breathe and retain warmth whilst looking spectacular from beginning to end. There are multiple choices for contemporary modern weaves and textures that incorporate changing fashions, meaning that there is no need to feel staid or lost in time in an ageing design. Let’s face it, winter weddings are magical experiences, and a tailored silk wedding dress is undeniably the icing on the cake.


How you choose to stay warm is a matter of choice and personality.  Whilst most winter brides choose to keep their bespoke gowns timeless opting for long sleeves, I do love working with my brides to create a look that is “built around” her needs and preferences; for which, the beauty of a couture bespoke design lends itself perfectly for the bride who dislikes the restrictions of ready-made products.  

Options for staying warm can be designed as separate pieces that create a cohesive look whilst allowing transitions to take place throughout the day as and when needed. In fact, nothing is impossible when you know exactly what you want.  Our goal is to work with you to achieve it taking full advantage of the endless choices and options along the way.


If you have opted for an intimate wedding at your favourite Landmark hotel, then a dress that reflects the space and size of the venue might be more appropriate than say a ball gown with a cascading train and veil to match.  Décor, venue style, architecture etc, all play a part in the overall design.  They are key points and sources of inspiration for a couture bridal gown.  Sweeping staircases, chandeliers, ornate details, Neo classical architecture, high painted ceilings are all elements that will inspire and influence the finer details 


There really is no need to panic and go overboard with colour simply because of the season.  A gentle nod is all that is required, and splashes of seasonal colour can be introduced in a myriad of ways.  The same goes for choosing the colour of the gown. There are many different shades of Ivory from dark to porcelain and anywhere in between.   If you set your heart on gold, champagne, cappuccino, latte, garden rose, forest green or claret, then the world is your oyster for choices – after all, you make the rules. 

What makes a 5 Star Winter Wedding Dress?
What makes a 5 Star Winter Wedding Dress?


If you choose to go from arriving in a long-sleeved ball gown with a veil and train for the ceremony to a strapless mini sheath or trouser jumpsuit dress for the evening look, this can all be perfectly designed as part of the overall bridal package and not necessarily require several outfits, just clever design, and consideration.  Having a separate set of jewellery items, a gorgeous clutch and a different coloured lipstick for the night-time is effortless on the day and can be completed in less than 20 minutes as you refresh and recharge ready to party!  

The added benefit of creating a gown that allows transitioning means that you will have several pieces that can be reworked and re-worn again and again – ensuring that you do your bit for our planet.

Author:  Cynthia Grafton-Holt | Founder and Bespoke Wedding Dress Designer at Cynthia Grafton-Holt Couture


I love working with brides who seize the opportunity to create a unique and exclusive once-in-a-lifetime chance to wear a gown that will never be seen on anyone else!