Traditional Turkish Wedding Dresses

Interested in Turkish wedding dresses? Want to know what goes into making a traditional wedding dress in Turkey? Read on for more facts & information…

There is no one traditional Turkish wedding dress style because the diverse ethnic groups that live in Turkey have different styles of traditional clothing. Since the turn of the 20th century most Turkish brides have chosen to wear Western style white wedding gowns, but there were a number of different types of wedding costumes that were common in Turkey before that time. Not all of the wedding outfits were dresses, some consisted of wide trousers pegged at the ankle with floor length coats or knee length jackets worn over them.

A-Line Wedding Dresses

The two primary styles of traditional Turkish wedding dresses were an A-line style that was usually worn with a belt or sash and a fit and flair design with a fitted bodice and full skirt. Historically these dresses were made in rich fabrics like silk or velvet and heavily embellished with padded gold embroidery. Another type of wedding costume was wide knee length pants, similar to a culotte, worn with a cropped, waist length jacket.

Red Turkish Wedding Dresses

Prior to the 20th century, Turkish brides did not usually wear white bridal dresses. Traditional Turkish wedding dresses were brightly colored and richly patterned. Red was an especially popular color since the Turks share the Asian belief that red is a lucky color. Even today, brides in the Anatolia region wear red sashes at their waist and wedding gifts of gold coins are hung from red silk ribbons.

Turkish Bridal Headdresses

The elaborate headdresses worn by Turkish brides were just as important as their dresses. In earlier centuries all Muslim women covered their hair and different regions of Turkey favored different styles of bridal headdresses from towering fabric covered tubes to smaller fez style hats swathed in scarves. In some areas the bride would wear a veil over the headdress that completely obscured her face.

Wedding Dress Jewelry

No traditional Turkish wedding dress would be complete without elaborate jewelry. Many brides wore long necklaces or belts made from gold chains with dangling gold coins. Chains with gold coins might also be fastened to the headdress and dangle below the bride’s face. Even the most elaborate modern white wedding dresses simply cannot match the opulence of the traditional wedding costumes worn by Turkish brides in the past.

Retro Wedding Dresses

Turkish fashion designers are looking to history for inspiration and this can be seen in some of today’s Turkish bridal fashions. While most of the dresses are still in white, colors are making an appearance, especially in embroidered designs. While traditional Turkish wedding dresses may not be in vogue, modern dresses with ethnic elements are available for brides that wish to celebrate their heritage.

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