The best white dresses in films

Deborah Mistry

There is nothing I love wearing as much as a white dress. Summer or winter they are the staple of my wardrobe. I even managed a maternity wardrobe of almost entirely white dresses. Over the years my passion  has been inspired but some beautiful white dresses on the big screen. Here are some of my favorites:

Amanda Seyfried’s wedding dress in Mamma Mia (2008)

This was the first wedding dress image that I stuck in my bridal inspiration scrap book. That tulle over the shoulder was just so unique and pretty. I also loved the tiny pale blue beads and sequins which it was embellished with (that are tantalizingly difficult to see in detail in the film let alone in any of the pictures). I was just disappointed that she didn't actually get married in the film in the end: I know it was meant to be for the best but it felt like a waste of a truly spectacular dress.

If you love a one-shouldered gown with delicate embellishment, take a look at the Lalibela Dress.

Natalie Portman’s evening gown in Black Swan (2010)

I suppose from the front this could be considered quite conventional and even a bit tacky with all those rhinestones but I loved the unexpected back detail of the cross over tulle and the way that it looked like an evening wear version of a Swan Lake costume. It was perfect for the character’s transformation into an idealized Prima Ballerina.


Audrey Tatou’s halterneck dress in Priceless (2006)

I loved all of Audrey Tatou's wardrobe in Priceless but this white dress was the prettiest. She looked like a modern Greek Goddess. Simple, slinky, sexy and expensive looking. What's not to love?

For another beautiful little Grecian white and gold dress, take a look at the Delphi.


Kristen Scott Thomas’s evening dress in The English Patient (1996)

My all time favorite film, The English Patient, won an Academy Award for best costumes and it's not hard to see why. Kristen Scott Thomas looked so stylish throughout, even when wrapped in a parachute! Her best outfit though was this exquisite white empire-line evening dress with silvery beaded straps. Prior to the scene when she wears this her character has been living in a tent in the Sahara wearing a chic, but utilitarian wardrobe of khaki trousers and white shirts. You can easily imagine the joy she would have felt at arriving at this luxurious hotel, bathing and changing into this cool, comfortable, slightly sexy and yet supremely elegant dress. It was proof that full length white dresses aren’t just for brides. 

If you love an elegant white cotton gown then you will love the Cefalu

Alicia Silverstone’s Calvin Klein dress in Clueless (1995)

This one gets an honorable mention rather than being one of my favorites. Today I would probably have to agree with her on screen father's remark that it 'looks like underwear' and find it a little underwhelming. Back then though it was a beautiful example of the  90's minimalism trend worn well. 


Clare Danes’s angel costume in Romeo + Juliet (1996)

Who didn’t love this one? It was so simple, yet so pretty and flattering. And it stood out so beautifully against all the black leather and sequins the other characters were wearing. And those wings! Nowadays you can probably buy something similar very easily. Back then the only wings available for fancy dress were made out of glittery net stretched over wire (you know the ones I mean). No one had seen someone wearing such beautiful, realistic feathered wings. Angelic really is the only word!

For a simple, but very pretty little white dress, have a look at the Ile de Re. 

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