Wedding Palace Bridal Show: a touch of elegance

January 18, 2011

Text by Nicole Nolan.

Photos by James Park.

The Westin Ottawa was abuzz with excited brides, their family and friends over the past weekend for the 14th Wedding Palace Bridal Show.

Ottawa’s finest in bridal boutiques, wedding photographers, bakery artists and florists filled the rooms, and displayed latest trends for every aspect of the big day. The stage offered highlights including a lesson on wedding etiquette, and a fashion show put on by White Satin and Jubilee Jewellers.


The ladies behind it all - Shelagh Mills and Amanda Andrews.

Wedding gowns, of course, were the main stars of the show. Every little girl has, at some point, imagined her dream wedding gown, and there were many eager young eyes taking in the creations exhibited.

The dresses this season have appeal, to satisfy dreams of being a princess, with enough style and flair to suit the most fashion-conscious bride. Full skirts make a strong comeback, with many stylistic twists. Bodices are simple, with subtle detailing, allowing the skirt to be in the spotlight. Tiered tulle creations, often with floral silhouettes taking shape in the cascade of ruffles, are also very popular. Mermaid dresses offer the elegance of the ruffles, with a slimmer silhouette, for brides who are looking for a more streamlined shape. Belted waists are another slimming detail that is widely offered, both as part of the dress with custom options, and as accessories to make that dress your own.

While the gowns may have gotten bigger and more elaborate, veils and hairpieces have gotten smaller, but are still very intricate. Vintage inspiration was everywhere, with birdcage veils at virtually every vendor, and silk floral fascinators with delicate feathers creating a whimsical halo around them. The focus was kept on the face with these face-framing headpieces, and delicate or minimal jewelry. Pearls, ever a classic, were plentiful in the displays, but rarely in white. Soft peach, cream or mocha pearls instead added a delicate touch of colour near the face.

Of course, no bridal ensemble is complete without the bouquet, which can be as simple or as elaborate as the bride chooses. Flowers ranged from classic bouquets of red roses to miniature white rose parasols. Exotic flowers also took the stage, with the colour purple being especially in demand, as a palette for the entire wedding, even the cake.

Cupcakes are yet again a popular alternative to a tiered cake, with many bakeries offering the option of having a small matching cake at the top level of a tiered display, so that the bride and groom may still cut the cake. If you need another reason to choose cupcakes after seeing our photo gallery, consider this: there’s no need to choose between flavours. You can have as little or as much range as you like.

For more information about the Wedding Palace Bridal Show, please visit

All photos by James Park.
Nicole Nolan is a a fashion designer and writer based in Ottawa.

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One Comment »

  • Anne-Marie said:

    Great article Nicole and lovely photos James! Thanks so much for stopping by my booth for a chat :)

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