How to Choose the Right Wedding Dress for Your Body

How to Choose the Right Wedding Dress for Your Body by Terence Joseph Photography

A bride’s style stems from her choice of wedding dress. It should be something which not only suits her personality and the type of wedding she is planning, but which also suits her body shape. I have photographed many brides and I can always spot the ones who are not fully comfortable with their gown. Here is advice from professional bridal store consultants to help you choose the perfect dress for your silhouette.

Pear Shaped Brides

If your hips and bottom are wider than your shoulders, you are pear shaped. Choosing a dress which accentuates your shoulders and torso will help create balance, so look for dresses with embroidery, ruffles, or lace on the top half. A-line dresses look fantastic, but pear shapes should avoid a mermaid or trumpet style dress which will only serve to make your hips look disproportionately large.

Apple Shaped Brides

Apple shaped brides carry most of their weight around their middle. Their shape is the reverse of pear-shapes, being characterised by strong shoulders, a larger than average bust, and little waist definition. Choose a gown with a v-neck to elongate your torso, and look for one which has a belt or sash to define your waist at its narrowest point. Avoid mermaid dresses which emphasise a thick waist, and look for A-line dresses with asymmetrical pleats or ruching on the bodice.

Large Busted Brides

Regardless of your body shape, if you have a large bust you will need to choose a dress with sufficient support. Many dresses have built in corsetry which means you won’t need a strapless bra, but it is possible to add straps to many strapless gowns for extra support. Fit is crucial. You definitely don’t want to be the bride who is falling out of her dress, or constantly tugging it up all day because she’s worried about it slipping down.

Petite Brides

The key to choosing a dress if you are a petite bride is to look for one which doesn’t swamp your frame, or hide you amongst too many layers and ruffles. Strapless dresses, and those with open necklines, will create the illusion of height. You will need a dress with a higher waistline than a taller bride, so try on a variety of styles until you find one which best meets your natural waist.

Plus Size Brides

The choice of plus size wedding dresses is increasing every season. It is not your dress size which dictates your dress, but your body shape. Mermaid gowns look incredible on hourglass brides – those with a defined waist, and shoulders and hips roughly the same width, or you may prefer an empire line gown to showcase a beautiful bust while skimming over your stomach and hips. It is usually possible to add straps and sleeves to strapless gowns if you want extra support, and it really pays to visit a boutique which specialises in plus size bridal gowns for the biggest selection of dresses.

Ultimately, all brides are beautiful but those who are confident in their choice of dress look happier and more relaxed in their wedding photos.

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