Glow in Gold

Traditionally, summer has always been a favorite season for weddings, but cooler weather and off-season rates makes fall an attractive option for many couples. For the bride, crisp fall air means new bridal gowns full of rich layers and a golden autumn glow.

From sateen to exquisite lace and varied colors of every fabric, a bride must choose her dress before selecting accessories and completing her wedding day look. Whether a gold headpiece, beaded belt or embellished earrings, these fall adornments will reflect the bride’s unique style and the warmth of the new season. 

Erica Koesler of Erica Elizabeth Designs ( in Los Angeles, specializes in creating handmade bridal accessories. From silk flowers dyed to complement each individual gown to elegant 10-carat-gold filigree headpieces, Koesler’s custom orders reflect the shift in seasons.

“I love this time of year because brides are more open to colors,” said Koesler. “There’s a great demand for ivory and champagne [dyes] which means warmer tones.” 

Koesler’s signature fall collection features a beautiful array of gold headbands, tiaras and halos created from stamped metals, pearls and gemstones, each transformed into elegant Edelweiss blossoms, laurel leaves and other vintage-inspired designs. 

Fashion icons such as Kate Middleton, who donned a Cartier halo tiara on her wedding day in 2011, have brought greater attention to these headpieces in recent seasons. Halo & Co., the English bridal accessories designers who created Geri Halliwell’s (a.k.a Ginger Spice from the U.K. pop group, the Spice Girls) gold tiara for London’s 2012 Olympic Closing Ceremonies, has also contributed to the headpiece hype. 

At Panache Bridal in Beverly Hills (, store manager Rachel Garrett Olsen works her magic pairing brides with their dream wedding ensembles. Panache’s extensive collection of gowns, shoes and accessories from world-renowned designers such as St. Pucchi and Eve of Milady, reveal the regal options available to brides this year. Each designer piece displays elegant bead work, yards of silky, fairytale-worthy fabric and beautiful embellishments. This season, gowns that are standalone statements are available and stunning in their own right, but the delicate balance remains — finding a dress and exquisite accessories to match. 


‘I love this time of year because brides are more open to colors. There’s a great demand for ivory and champagne [dyes] which means warmer tones.’
Erica Koesler, Erica Elizabeth Designs, Los Angeles

Olsen explains that with elevated necklines, halter cuts and keyhole backs, there is an increasing desire for elaborate earrings to complement these exaggerated fashions. Additionally, handmade and embellished belts are a staple accessory this fall. Often, shining gold and topaz stones mixed with clear crystals are used to capture the warm and earthy tones of fall dresses, which is exactly what Athena Yvette Portillo — a line producer at Lucasfilm Ltd., the film production company founded by the legendary George Lucas — got when she went to Panache Bridal looking for a bespoke wedding dress. St. Pucchi fully customized an exquisite silk wedding gown for Portillo, along with a silk brocade headpiece with tulle lace overlay and gold, topaz and clear Swarovski crystals — paired with earrings and a necklace to match.

“Athena had a good idea of what she was looking for,” said Olsen. “I knew it wasn’t traditional but I encourage brides to dig deep and follow those instinctual desires for their wedding day.”

“I fell in love with the gold and topaz colors,” said Portillo, whose autumn wedding was held in San Francisco, followed by a fabulous “Phantom of the Opera” masquerade celebration in the Gold Room of the Fairmont hotel — a seamless transition from fall fashion to extravagant autumn décor.

Choosing October was easy, she said, “October is Halloween month. How can you go wrong hosting a masquerade in October?”  

While the new season definitely calls for thick layers of varied fabrics during these cooler months, the elevated necklines and ivory and lace tops will remain fashionable options for brides in the coming spring and summer seasons. Choosing elegant, high-quality accessories to complement the amber tones of fall color will ensure a bold, rich glow — from your head down to your toes. 

Sarah Kruberg
Brand Publishing Writer

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