Originally Posted by NGalitzine
The dress wore her. She was swamped by it and almost disappeared beneath it.
Oh goodness where do I start with this one...
The fundamental problem with this dress is not the fabric or the embellishments or the tablecloth on the brides head or anything else. the individual elements are all fine on their own except the lace used on the top of the dress (it looks like old curtain fabric).
Its much worse than that, this dress is not fit for purpose in that it does not suit the mise-en-scene, that it does not suit and flatter its wearer, and that it gave the wrong message. I can't pin down any overarching aesthetic or idea that is meant to unify the overall look. The antique corsage tiara's design has been taken into account and there is a Marian thing running through it, something does not feel right and does not add up. An orthodox ceremony does call for some modesty on behalf of the participants the neckline, the sleeves, and the veil all seem like overkill.
The bodice is far too tight and looks hard to breathe in and she was often having trouble moving more than is the norm for a large wedding dress. the round waist makes her look chunky around the middle and the boning in the bodice squashes her bust down - apparently MC later said she had problems breathing and i'm not surprised. The extra boning in the bodice was to support the weight of the skirt as the bodice and skirt are made from the same piece of fabric - poor design as separate bodice and skirt would allow for the weight of the skirt to be supported on the hips (better for women as hips are often more sturdy than the shoulders and less bad for the back, also places less strain on the shoulder seams) and not the shoulders, allowing for a less constricting top half.
Having the train built into the skirt was not a good idea - I presume Valentino did this for aesthetic reasons, as well as necessitating a second dress for the reception, as cost effectiveness does not seem to be a priority of his; it ruins the way the skirt is meant to hang when walking, giving it an awkward tulip/tapered shape (Pss Charlene had the same problem with her dress as well), and its lucky that there were not any accidents like what happened to Nicky Hiltons very similar dress. The skirt needed a frame underneath (crinoline or farthingale or panniers) to help maintain its shape
It actually looks like something from the late 1960s early 1970s to me due to the stiff fabric and angular silhouette but for someone conservative with a point to prove - is it possible it was based off Chantal Millers wedding dress, because I can't think of any other possible starting point for it? I'm not convinced about the Grace comparisons as they are so common place for wedding dresses with lace sleeves that it has become meaningless but, the embellishments are from the 1940s and 1950s and Signor Garavani has not succeeded in making all these different elements fit. There are too many patterns and too much embellishments on one dress that someone taller and bigger would have struggled to wear well (Maxima), but someone as tiny as MC just looks swamped in - the fact she has short legs and is bottom heavy doesn't help either, as the scale of the skirt and the unfortunate tapering effect only serve to emphasise this.
What happened is that Valentino basically made something that appealed to his personal taste and did not take the function or the setting or the wearers body type into account, it was a basic shape, than went nuts with the embellishment - its intellectually lazy. Stark white is too serve on MC, she needed something cream or pearl coloured with a warmer undertone to go with her complexion, it also makes the detail too hard to see on camera, and would have looked nicer in the church with all the gold detail. The fundamentally south American catholic design looks out of place in an orthodox setting - less lace and more emphasis on embroidery and sequins would have been a better option, along with a satin that flowed and draped instead of a stiff structural fabric. The lace veil is too large and overpowering (Butterflies?! are you kidding, how old is she, twelve?) a combination of tulle trimmed with smaller lace would have worked better and allowed the train to shine - the train and veil compete against each over.
For something that cost a quarter of a million dollars I would have expected something much better and all this does is confirm my low opinion of Valentino as he can do better - he was just fleecing bob Miller on this one.