Recently  I caught up with the fabulous New York based wedding dress designer, Henry Roth to talk all things bridal. The designer took his ‘Rock Your Frock’ tour to Australia showcasing his sophisticated and flawless new Summer 2014 ‘Manhatten’ collection, as well as celebrating the launch of his sister, Michelle Roth’s new collection- Michelle Roth Couture. He shared fantastic advice on everything from finding the perfect gown to having the perfect make-up for the big day.

What should a bride to keep in mind when shopping for the perfect gown?

Here are my top 5 essentials:

i. Do your homework, go online, favourite the gowns that you think you would like to try on and be prepared for your appointment by taking your iPad or if you are tactile, print outs or tear sheets from a magazine.

ii. Think of your search as a blank canvas.  The beautiful thing is, if you keep an open mind certainly you will start off with some ideas,  what you will end up with may well be what you have dreamt of but don’t be surprised if it is something different as well.

iii. Visit stores with an impeccable service reputation, check online chat rooms and seek out reviews as top excellent professional service does make all the difference

iv. Make an appointment – Though not all salons require one, trust me it makes a huge difference if you call up and make yourself known via the phone and discuss briefly what you are looking for so that the salon can prepare ahead of time.

v. At the appointment, go with an open mind, a definite budget with wriggle room of 10-20% and a nice group of 2 to 3 people max so you can focus, have fun and find your dream dress.

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What tips would you give for taking the stress out of finding the perfect gown?

Remember that this is the time to celebrate and enjoy.  Remember also that it is a personal expression of your own individuality.  It’s great to garner opinions and ideas, read about tips, be influenced and inspired but at the end of the day if you love your choice I guarantee, you will shine in it because you own your look.  Confidence is truly three quarters of what makes the gown glow.

What are your picks on length, sleeve style, necklines, waistlines and trains?

Fortunately the stranglehold of strapless, strapless, strapless and more strapless is over and I mean O-V-A-H!

Watch out as demure and ultra feminine long sleeves as in this Rosalind gown by Michelle Roth is a hot trending look.

Sabrina or boat necklines as pictured in Henry Roth Kara as well as V, Portrait and more are taking the wedding gown to the next level of wedding gown.

Hurrah! 50s tea length ballgowns are in, in, in.  Henry Roth Zoe Too is a gorgeous polka dotted tea length 50s look or for a more nostalgic tulle and lace 50s look, Henry Roth Evie.

Waistlines are exciting especially with the 40s peplum at the waist as pictured in the Michelle Roth.

With trains, the bridal gown celebrates with sweeps or longer trains because after the ceremony bustling has become a major feature for brides.    This is where your expert seamstress attaches hooks and eyes and bias ribbons underneath the gown to create more volume and allows it to become floorlength at the back.

Overall wedding gowns have become far more sophisticated and they refer to the runways of Milan, Paris and New York and the glamour of red carpet Hollywood.

What is your idea of a timeless wedding gown?

A gown that the bride is in love with today.  It represents her mindset at the time of the wedding day and that in itself represents all the history of who she is at that point with a firm eye on future chapters and that in itself is timeless.

How would you describe the current bridal trends?

Sensational, interesting, fresh, creative, textured and probably a move away from overt use of bling to far more use of the play of texture.  Take a look as this gorgeous Raya gown which features silk organza ribbon stitched onto floating tulle with the lightest whisper of Swarovski crystal detailing at the waist.

What hair and makeup tips would you give to the modern bride?

Make sure you are doing hair and makeup trials ahead of time and that you have photos taken so that you can see what other people will be seeing on your wedding day.

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