And the Bride Wore Lavender

As wedding traditions evolve, more women are saying I do to colorful gowns

When Courtney Zierden was choosing a gown for her June wedding, she bristled at the thought of wearing white. "I'm not 22," says the 37-year-old investment banker. "I thought, What am I going to look like in a white dress?" Still, she tried on some 50 ensembles--many of which were white from top to bottom--before deciding on a strapless gown with Wedgwood blue tulle flowers appliqued on an ivory bodice. "The blue really did it for me," she says. "It made me feel like I was doing something that was a little bit different but still traditional."

For years women...

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