While looking through bridal magazines or surfing the net for gowns can be loads of fun and give you some great ideas, it is risky to not know your body shape and what flatters your type of figure -before you go shopping! We’ve all had the experience of wanting to wear the latest fashion style only to look in the mirror with disappointment. And, only a very trusted friend or discerning sales person will be honest with you. So if you’re afraid that your maid of honour or mum won’t be honest because they are afraid to hurt your feelings, then read on so that you will know when you have found the most flattering wedding gown!
Full-Figure: More volumptuous than most, you’ve got full breasts, a bit of a tummy and round hips and butt.
Wedding Dress Do’s: A ballgown wedding dress will hide quite a bit and of course an A-line dress looks good on just about anyone.
Wedding Dress Don’t’s: A sheath will make you look heavier than you are; avoid spaghetti straps.
Hourglass Figure: You have curves in all the right places! (Big chest, full hips and a small waist)
Wedding Dress Do’s! An A-line dress with a dropped waist will show off your figure; pair it with a sweetheart neckline to show off your chest. Or, for something a little more curvaceous, try a fit-and-flare gown like a mermaid or trumpet style.
Wedding Dress Don’t’s! A ball gown or Empire-waist silhouette may make you look disproportioned.
Petite Figure: Being petite doesn’t necessarily mean a small sized bride. Petite means that you are 5’4″ or under and your body is proportioned accordingly. Whether you wear a size 8, 12 or 16, you’ll want to keep your dress to a minimum or it will overwhelm you! You don’t want to look like the gown is wearing you instead of the other way around. Petite sized brides should also look at their body shape, not just their height. Here are some examples of dresses for the petite bride that won’t drown you. You want to see the bride in the dress, not the other way around! A-line is always flattering.
Thin Figure: Tall or short there is not a lot of meat on your bones! You have that ballerina type of figure and can get away with almost any style.
Wedding Dress Do’s: A ball gown will make a thin bride look like a fairy-tale princess, and a sheath would be perfect for you.
Wedding Dress Don’ts: Almost all silhouettes will flatter your figure, but stay away from portrait, off-the-shoulder, or halter necklines if your collarbone is too bony.
Short Waisted Figure: Your body is naturally proportioned, except for the small distance from your ribs to your hips. Keep in mind that while your weight may fluctuate between the time you buy your gown and the day of your wedding, your actual body type will remain the same. So even if you’re planning to drop 20 pounds before exchanging vows, choose the gown that fits your body type today.
Wedding Dress Do’s: If you are short-waisted, Princess-line silhouette that is fitted at the bodice and opening up gradually to a full skirt, elegantly elongates your figure. Designer Hollee Actman Becker suggests that if you love your shoulders, try a portrait or halter neckline. A slightly dropped-waist gown will also lengthen your torso.
Wedding Dress Don’ts: A sheath will make your short waist more obvious.
Thick-Waisted: Similar to a short-waisted figure, you have a straight line from your shoulder to your hips. You definitely want to de-emphasize your waistline to give you a long, lean look.
Wedding Dress Do’s: Go for an empire-waisted gown like this one.
Wedding Dress Don’t’s: A Princess-line or basque waist will draw too much attention to your middle. As lovely as this basque waist gown is, it will do a lot of damage if you are thick waisted. Photo: weddingimpression.com
Some General Tips: While every woman, regardles of her shape or age, wants to look like a million dollars on her wedding day, remember to not draw attention to what aren’t your best features. Always accentuate the positive and the beautiful because not matter what your shape, you are beautiful!
For example, being a “full figured” woman myself, I realized that my upper arms and waist are not my best features. As much as I dreamed about wearing a strapless gown, I decided to accentuate my best features: my eyes and my hair.
Some advice for more mature brides, women over 50 regardless of whether you’ve been down the aisle before or not. Go for an elegant, classic and tasteful look. As tempting as it is to try and look 25 again, it just doesn’t work very well. There are many gorgeous gowns, dresses and suits to bring out the beautiful you!
While this might be a fun afternoon activity at a senior’s residence, please don’t do this for real! There are many wonderful fashions for the mature bride. Hint: if a 20 year old model is wearing the dress/outfit, it’s probably not for you!
Send your comments! Always love to hear from you! Jordin