From The Straits Times    |

Organza bustier gown with pleated bodice, beaded waist and tiered skirt, from Rico-A-Mona. Photo: Her World Brides December 2014

Most Singaporean brides wouldn’t think of buying their wedding dress – after all, with so many affordable wedding dress package options – you don’t have to. But if you’re looking to have your dress as a memento from your big day, or as a way to honour your parents (if you’re wearing your mum’s dress or are redesigning it), here are some ways to go about personalising your very own dress.

1. Add your story to it
While most brides would consider something small like a monogram to their veil or a part of their dress, there are brides who have had their entire love story incorporated into the design. 

Celebrity bride Angelina Jolie first made waves when she requested that her children’s drawings be embroidered on her custom Versace gown and veil when she married fellow actor Brad Pitt.

Similarly, this talented bride embroidered her entire love story (in symbols) onto her wedding lehenga when she tied the knot in India in February 2016. Kresha Bajaj had dreamt of designing her own wedding clothes one day, but she took things a step further when she met her future husband-to-be. See how she managed to fit everything into her elaborate suit here. See also other beautiful Indian-inspired wedding dresses here.

2. Transform an old dress into something new
If your mum still has her old wedding dress, consider redesigning it with the help of a seamstress, into something that’s more your style. Not sure what we’re talking about? Here’s an example from TLC’s latest bridal reality show, Something Borrowed Something New

3. Include an heirloom piece
From brooches or belts, to fabrics from your mother’s or grandmother’s wedding dress or veil or your father’s shirt or handkerchief, bring more meaning to your dress with these significant items. (See how belts make all the difference to your look here).

4. An extra garment changes everything
A pretty lace bolero adds elegance and romance to an otherwise plain strapless dress (see how Glenda Chong transformed her look from the traditional tea ceremony to the reception with this simple addition here). Likewise, a wedding dress with a detachable skirt makes all the difference if you’re going for two looks. See other ways on how you can save on your wedding wardrobe here.

See also: How to store your wedding dress properly after, a guide to wedding dress fabrics, and how to choose the right shoes for your wedding dress.