Maybe the thought of spending more than one month’s pay on a wedding dress never even occurred to you; or the idea of standing in front of a mirror with two-dozen of your closest friends at Kleinfeld’s makes you break out in hives; or perhaps looking like a cake-topper while you walk down the aisle is your worst nightmare. We get it—so we hunted down 19 simple and elegant wedding dresses sure to delight any modern bride.
Just a few short years ago, finding a sleek and simple wedding dress that was still gorgeous would have required an all-hands-on-deck manhunt and a solid amount of spare time. Nearly every dress in a storied bridal boutique has some sort of detailing to speak of: an inordinate amount of Swarovski crystals, crazy-intricate beading, or a bustle that requires half your extended family to tame.
But if you’d rather leave all those traditional bells and whistles behind, we hear you. Because finding a pared-down wedding gown requires some digging, and we’re guessing that planning an entire wedding might be clogging up your calendar, we found 19 simple—but incredibly memorable—wedding dresses that are anything but plain. Whether you’re looking for an unfussy gown for your beach wedding, trying to find a lace-adorned midi dress to head to city hall, or you’re going all out but still want something clean, these picks will let you feel like you.
With a sweetheart neckline, thin shoulder straps and smocked back bodice, this wedding dress is simple and stunning. While it definitely works best for warmer seasons, you can get away with wearing this dress any time of year with the right accessories.
This flow-y crepe gown is truly a gorgeous and breezy. The jeweled criss-cross straps in the back add a bit of bling, too, so you’re sure to stun from all angles.
Can we please talk about these sleeves? Contemporary with just a hit of stunning lace detail, this chic wedding dress is definitely one everyone will be talking about.
While most of this Pronovias wedding dress is extremely simple and sleek, the cowl neck adds just the right amount of flare. And who can resist such a beautiful train?!
If you’re looking for a wedding dress that isn’t floor-length, this simple but elegant puff-sleeved frock might just be your saving grace. Plus, just by changing up the accessories, you can get even more wear out of this dress than just your wedding day.
For brides looking for a gown that’s not quite as formal as traditional wedding dresses, feast your eyes upon this gorgeous dress from Marchesa Notte. The simple bodice pairs nicely with the ruffles at the bottom of the gown, giving you a perfectly balanced wedding dress.
An off-the-shoulder dress is classic, sleek and stunning. Without extra frills, bedazzlement or tulle, this satin mermaid gown is perfect for any modern bride.
The first thing you need to know about this dress: It has pockets. (!!!) In addition, the ’50s-inspired wedding dress has a gorgeous high-neck with a sleek modern edge that’s irresistible.
If you’re looking for a wedding dress with some serious The Great Gatsby vibes, look no further. This dress has a total 1920s feel while still remaining sleek and simple.
Another casual-but-stunning wedding dress option is this kimono sleeve gown is a gorgeous option. It wraps around the bodice and has a relaxed fit for major comfort—and dancing all night long.
For those looking for a modern and sleek wedding dress with long sleeves, you’re in luck. This gown is beautiful and simple in the front, and features a subtle lace detail in the back.
This flutter sleeve wedding dress gives off total Grecian vibes—without being over-the-top. There’s just the right amount of tulle for photographing spins, but not so much you won’t be able to dance later.
We had to do a double-take too, but this floor length halter gown is under $20. For a sleek and modern bride on a budget, this might be exactly what you’re looking for.
This DB Studio wedding dress is another gorgeous off-the-shoulder style. The sweetheart neckline and leg slit only add to the simple *chef’s kiss* perfection.
Want something other than white or ivory? This light nude wedding dress is seriously gorgeous—and has adjustable shoulder straps so you can get the perfect fit even when ordering online.
In a twist of fate, we have another wedding dress with pockets , folks. It may seem like a miracle but this sleek v-neck gown is stunning, has pockets (seriously a win!!) and a beautiful lace-up enclosure in the back.
The lace slits on the sides of this wedding gown take it up a notch—without being overdone. Sleek and simple, this v-neck gown is truly gorgeous.
Perfect for a simple beach wedding , this chiffon wedding dress is flow-y, elegant and sleek. With a lace-up closure and swoon-worthy train, any modern bride is sure to love this gown.
With simple spaghetti straps and a drop-dead gorgeous open back, this classic wedding dress is one for the books. Add a flower crown for some seriously boho vibes or keep it traditional with a veil. Either way, you’ll look gorgeous.
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A version of this article was originally published in 2017.