The emergence of black and white wedding gowns has a long history. The old saying was “Marry in black, you’ll wish yourself back,” but even in the 19th century, women sometimes wore their good black dresses for their weddings. As a dress designated solely for nuptials was something only worn by the very wealthy until comparatively recently, so the uniformly white wedding dress was something not seen so much in centuries past.
Black and white wedding gowns were seen initially in the Art Deco era, as the stunning color contrast so prevalent in art, architecture, design, and fashion would naturally extend its influence to high-fashion events like weddings. Dashes of black in folds of gowns enticed the eye as the bride moved or danced.
The look was also popular in the mid-1950s, when style-setter Audrey Hepburn sported a beautiful strapless white gown with black accents designed by Givenchy in the film Sabrina. Women went mad for the dress and the look is still widely sought by brides and copied by designers today. [via]