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How To Find The Perfect Gown For Your Body Type
John Hardy

How To Find The Perfect Gown For Your Body Type

We can’t promise that choosing a wedding dress would be easy, but there’s no doubt it would be fun playing dress up in front of a mirror – getting the VIP treatment while you try on every beautiful dress you lay your eyes on in the bridal salon.

What’s interesting is that many brides say they have walked in to a bridal store, confident that they know the shape of the dress they want and then end up choosing the complete opposite. Why you ask? The answer is really simple, at some point we’ve all bought a dress from a store because it looked amazing in the store window, then when we got home and tried it on, it felt like the shop assistant played a trick on us.

The fact is the moment a dress is put a woman’s body, it can take a different shape and look. It is only natural, all women have different body types, it doesn’t matter if we’re all the same in size. Here are some useful tips to help you find the perfect dress for your body type.

The Mermaid

The mermaid (also known as the fishtail) shaped wedding dress offers a silhouette that contours to the body from the chest to the knee or just above the knee, and then flares out to the hem area. It’s a dress for the confident bride who knows that this dress will accentuate in all the right places. Also referred to as the modern day Cinderella ball dress, it’s a very sexy dress and takes very well after its name indeed.


If you want a subtle dramatic look or want to make a glamorous statement as you make your way into your wedding reception, this would be just the dress to choose. Think Hollywood and the red carpet. The shape is effortlessly fabulous, show-stopping and just perfect for a big day.


Because the mermaid dress is fitted, you’ll want to make sure that you can move freely, especially when sitting down. Some of them do come boned or have a bra shelf to help support the bust area. If this is not the case then you would want to purchase a good bra to support your busts. Also, if you’re a very pear shaped bride you should know that this dress is likely to emphasize your waist area and all the way down. The rounder brides and brides with thicker waistlines would not get much out of this dress as it would hardly flatter their figure.

The A-Line

The A-line wedding gown is popular because it’s very complimentary to all body shapes. It is not as full as the traditional ball gown and works for all figures, especially if you’re pear shaped or a fuller figure bride. With a fitted bodice and an A-line skirt, this dress hugs you in all the right places. Hugging the waist area, it creates a slimmer waistline while flattering the bust area.


This dress would suit almost every body type, and it does wonders especially for the petite, full-figured and brides with shorter waists. It can make the petite bride look taller and make the full-figured bride appear slimmer than she really is.


Brides with larger waistlines may end up looking straight, and effectively, the dress could look less like an ‘A-line’, thus emphasizing the waist.

The Ball Gown, Full Skirt or Ballerina

There is no doubt that the bride who chooses this gown is a romantic bride. It’s a very dramatic can be very Cinderella-like. It’s fitted through the waist and flares out through the bottom. Ball gowns are often stuffed with fabrics such as tulles, satin or anything that can give fullness to the dress.


The ball gown will work for you if you’re slim-hipped and fuller in the bust area. The fuller skirt will balance out the top and bottom of the gown perfectly, and end up giving you that “fairytale” look that you probably want.


Petite and fuller figured brides may want to stay way from the ball gown as they tend to accentuate areas they may not feel are their best assets.

Petite girls would often disappear in ball gowns due to all the fabrics that make up the dress. Also consider avoiding a ball gown with too much beading, this can add too much detail to the dress thus accentuating the dress more than the wearer. Every bride wants a beautiful dress but not one that will upstage them on their own big day.

The Column or Sheath

Also known as the sheath dress, it is characterized by a narrow shape and flows straight down from the neckline to the hem. It tends to hug the body, therefore accentuating it beautifully. This style is popular with brides who are planning a destination wedding and you can very easily see why. It’s very comfortable, clingy and can work with or without a train.

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Because this dress clings to the body, it would most suit the slim and petite bride. It can make you look taller and give you that supermodel look without a doubt.


The bride with a fuller figure or thicker waist may not like this dress because it’s often too clingy and straight or just shapeless. Unless the design offers some kind of support or detail that will accentuate her best assets, then it won’t be worth considering.

The Empire Line

The empire dress is defined by the raised waistline that sits just below the bust, from which the rest of the dress flows all the way down to the hem. Like the A-line, the empire style is very versatile.


Ideally, this is not a dress for the bustier bride, simply because it accentuates the bust and sometimes just more than she’d like.


Petite brides look best in the empire wedding dress as it elongates their torso and doesn’t make them look short. It also works for the slimmer bride as it gives the illusion that they have curves.

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