Choosing a style
Selecting a wedding dress that reflects your personal style and flatters your figure is essential to feeling and looking confidently beautiful on your wedding day. Styling is all about using design details such colour, line, texture, patterns and shapes to help contour, balance and flatter the body. Play up your figure strengths and draw attention away from your least favourite figure areas by using these styling tips.
- Consider the length of your dress and the height of the shoe you will be required to wear. Select a shoe style that will comfortably accommodate long periods of standing or dancing.
- To add length and height to your figure, select a dress style that has a high waist break point or a seamless straight line with design details that create a vertical line from top to bottom. Design details might include piping, seams, buttons, appliqués, etc.
- To enhance the width of a small-boned or petite silhouette, select a dress that has horizontal or diagonal design detail including seaming or print detail. Also consider adding width to your frame by selecting a dress with embellishments such as ribbons or ruching. If you choose to wear a dress with a fuller skirt, be careful not to select one too full as this could overpower your upper body, making you appear even smaller.
- To enhance a smaller bust line, avoid straight, simple lines that tend to repeat or minimize the chest area. Instead, select a dress with design details that add fullness and give the illusion of having a fuller bust line including ruffles, appliqués with pearls or beading detail, gathering, darting, etc. It may also help to wear bra inserts to fill out the dress more.
- To reduce the appearance of a fuller bust line and create figure balance, select a dress that has design detail (patterns, lines and different textures) in balanced proportions throughout the dress including at the hem, waistline, and shoulders. Doing so will draw attention away from the bust line, causing the eye to flow around the dress and up to your face. V-neck style dresses can also help minimize the size of the bust line. Also consider adding jewellery to help draw attention up to your face.
- Use clear double-sided body tape to help hold your dress in place and to avoid worries of embarrassment.
- To reduce the appearance of a full midriff (stomach area) and to appear thinner, select a dress that is fitted from under the bust line and flows away from the body at the waist or hip area such as an empire waist or a two-piece A-line dress style. Ruching, folds or pleats across the midriff and upper part of the skirt also distract the eye.
- To accentuate or create a more visible waistline, choose a dress that has design detail around the waistline area including seaming, darts, piping or any embellishments (pearls, rhinestones). A-line dresses that flare from just below the waist enhance waistlines rather than those that are fitted lower on the hips.
Hips \ Bottom
- Consider an A-line dress style if you have fuller hips or a larger bottom. The dress should flow away from the body at the waist or hip area, camouflaging the fullest point of the body. Also, design detail such as bows, gathering and bustling on the back of the dress will draw attention away from the body, focusing on the dress design instead.
- If you have fuller or wider upper arms, cosider a dress with blousy sleeves, a loose fitting cut or a fabric that holds shape and doesn’t cling. Avoid wearing strapless or spaghetti strap style dresses without a wrap or shawl, otherwise, your arms may tend to appear larger.
- If you have small or narrow shoulders, avoid a narrow v-neck or u-neck line as this tends to make your shoulders look smaller. Instead, create the illusion of having wider shoulders by selecting a dress style with a wide v-neck or u-neck.
- To reduce the appearance of broad shoulders, select a dress style with a narrow v-neck or u-neck line. Balance the body silhouette by selecting a dress style that has a full skirt equally in proportion to the width of your shoulders. By increasing the width of the lower body area, you decrease the appearance of the shoulder width.