A guide to watches and jewellery
Although the gown is the most important item for a bride-to- be, jewellery is also significant. Experts say jewellery should match the gown, theme and venue of your wedding. 'The setting affects the jewellery and dress you wear,' says Michele Li, wedding planner and co-founder of the Wedding Co. 'A beach resort wedding is obviously more casual than a wedding in the ballroom of the Grand Hyatt hotel.'
Whether you're buying, wearing pieces from your mother or soon-to-be mother-in-law, or inheriting family heirlooms, experts stress the importance of choosing jewellery that goes well with your gown. Carolyn Chow of Central Weddings & Occasions says earrings and necklaces are essential pieces for most brides. She suggests paying attention to the neckline and the bodice of the gown. 'If the bodice has crystal beading, you may want to choose diamond jewellery to highlight the sparkling effect, while lace embroidery or traditional beading goes well with pearls,' she says. 'If you're wearing an elaborate dress with lace or intricate beading, keep your jewellery simple.'
Pearls are the classic choice, and many local brides pick pearl strands to go with their strapless gowns. For dresses with higher necklines, Chow suggests forgoing the necklace and opting for dangly earrings - 'they give a softer and younger impression'. In terms of earrings, diamonds with round South Sea pearls or dangling teardrop-shaped pearls are popular.
Nouvelle Ho, managing director of inMAGAZINE, formerly inWEDDINGS, suggests keeping your neck bare if you're wearing distinctive earrings. 'If you're wearing a strapless dress and a pair of diamond chandelier earrings with your hair tied back, it will look very chic.' Ho suggests diamond bracelets to balance the look. 'A tennis bracelet is basic and serves well for other occasions. For a more elaborate look, wear a diamond bangle.' If your dress has a halter neckline, Ho suggests wearing a pendant for an uncluttered look.
Many brides can't decide between pearls and diamonds for their big day. Experts say it depends on how much you're willing to spend, your style and the image you want to portray as a bride.
Jan Kong, general manager of jewellery at Lane Crawford, says a diamond necklace is more expensive than a pearl necklace of comparable size. You'll get more mileage out of pearls as they add volume and look classic and elegant.
Ho says pearls give out a pure and innocent image, whereas diamonds have a dazzling and glamorous effect. Some brides like to accessorise their veils with tiaras or flowers, depending on how their hair is set and the overall look. Chow says a quality diamond tiara is expensive. Since it's not something that can be worn often, most brides go for tiaras made of crystals. If you choose one, opt for a pair of diamond studs or simple earrings.
The custom in Hong Kong is for brides to change gowns during the wedding banquet, so take this into account when choosing jewellery. 'Some brides may have two sets of necklaces and earrings - typically pearls for the wedding ceremony and diamonds for the dinner banquet - depending on your budget,' says Chow.
For those wearing a cheongsam, Ho suggests a brooch with diamonds and/or jade. 'Jade goes well with a cheongsam and can be very elegant and classy if matched properly.' For evening dresses, Ho suggests coloured stones. 'They're more affordable than diamonds and great for matching with dresses.' For example, if you're wearing a dress in pastel pink, consider pink sapphires; the colour of the stones can be a shade or two darker than the dress.
Regardless of the jewellery you're wearing on your big day, experts stress the importance of wearing pieces you feel comfortable with. Li suggests inviting a friend who has a good eye to help out at least a month before the wedding. Have photos taken to see how the colours of the dress and the jewellery translate on to pictures.
Prince's Building, Central; tel: 2810 0978
St George's Building, 2 Ice House St, Central; tel: 2536 9338
Tiffany & Co
G/F the Landmark, Central; tel: 2845 9853