Originally Posted by janos614
Does anyone know how the dress designers are chosen? And in general, how much leeway does the bride have in selecting who designs her dress?
That's a great question. It seems to me that in many cases, the bride would go with the designer she already has a working relationship with. That seems to yield the best results, because the designer then already knows the bride to be really well, as well as her style, her body type and what suits it, and so on.
For example, Infanta Christina of Spain already had designer Lorenzo Caprile make a bunch of clothes for her, as well as evening dresses years before she dreamt of organizing her wedding. So he knew exactly what suited her and what she liked, when she asked him to design her wedding gown. The result was exquisite, everything was so right, the gown was beautiful, and it really suited the bride's style. It complemented her without overpowering her.
(If you look carefully, Cristina's wedding gown, by the way, is nearly identical to an evening dress by the same designer she wore for her sister's wedding ball, a few years before her own wedding. That dress was a hit, and clearly Christina and Caprile took pointers from that!)
On the other hand the brides-to-be that don't have any designer already working with them on various other clothes for other occasions, like new princesses, have it more difficult, and this shows in the end result, I think.
For example, take Letizia of Spain. The designer was famous, but had no previous history with this particular bride-to-be, and the result was a dress that looked good on a sketch, but overpowered the petite frame of the woman wearing it, which was a shame. She didn't look her best in the thing, unfortunately.
The other case in point is Alexandra of Denmark. Whereas the designer she chose, Jorgen Bender, had previously done excellent work for her mother in law, Margarethe's wedding gown way back when, for Alexandra, the end result clearly showed that designer and bride didn't know each other well: Alexandra's petite frame was entirely hidden, she looked even frumpy in the gown.
Other case in point: Silvia of Sweden. Who had her gown designed by the then most top tier designer in the fashion world, Marc Bohan of Dior. But he and the Swedish queen to be, didn't clearly have a relationship yet, as the end result was really less than stellar.