Written By: Brooke Stewart
In Part One (you can catch up here) we covered the basics and practical matters that you need to know in selecting and ordering your ideal wedding dress, including neckline, fit and quality. In this part, we’re looking at how to choose the best dress for your body shape and what to avoid. Looking your wedding day best is easy when you know how!
TRY: For an apple figure you’ll likely feel more comfortable in a structured dress to give your shape more definition. The key will be defining your assets and feeling confident. Look at styles with diagonal design lines or details that carry over the bust, through the body and down the hips – this will create length and guide the eye through the body rather than having a single focal point.
AVOID: Steer away from horizontal lines around the hips and bust, these tend to accentuate the fullness of these areas. Do not feel you have to cover up your shoulders or arms, a cap sleeve in the wrong position can often make the arm appear wider, so go for a strap that lengthens and celebrates your décolletage. A lace strap with beautiful detail or edging that widens as it heads over the back will soften fullness at the back of the arm.
TRY: The key for a bootylicious girl is balance. There is no reason not to rock a fishtail gown if you love your curves but remember to balance it out. A plunging neckline or strong detail over the décolletage and shoulders can balance out your fuller hips. Also consider a higher-waisted dress with a straight or soft A-line skirt that falls over the hips; this will create a long lean silhouette.
AVOID: It’s important to avoid a waistline that sits around your widest point. For both pear and hour glass figures (below) if you are going for a full skirt the waistline should be high enough that the skirt defines the waist and falls over the hips without creating a bulge. Or, the waistline should be fitted low enough that your hips are sculpted and defined before the skirt flares out.
TRY: Show off those curves! The key is to show of your lovely waist while still keeping your hips and bust in proportion. Using gowns with strong princess, vertical or diagonal detail lines will sculpt smooth curves. Experiement with some straighter skirts too, you may find they give you more length than the fuller styles.
AVOID: Avoid too much fabric! Don’t let the dress “wear you” via excessive amounts of fabric. You want to skim and sculpt your curves – don’t feel like you need to drown them out and cover them up.
TRY: The key is to define the smallest part of your body and balance your hips and shoulders. Depending on your body length this may mean playing with different definition points. Try styles that hug the body all the way to the hip or mid thigh then flare out. Or, if you’re shorter in the legs then dresses that define the bust and hug to ribs before softly flaring out will work best for you. Keep peplum features in mind too – these are a great way to add definition to the waist and the hips!
AVOID: If you’re a smaller sized rectangle ensure you don’t drown yourself in fabric, and if you’re a bigger rectangle make sure you don’t accentuate your fuller areas by having too much fabric there either. Remember to skim and accentuate.
In saying all of the above, when choosing the right wedding dress it ought to reflect your personality, and your story. Ask yourself how you want to feel on your wedding day and what kind of story you want to create. Not every girl fantasizes about their wedding day, but every bride has an image and a story they want to portray and look back on. You need to be yourself – the woman that her partner adores, her family is proud of and her friends envy. In short, show off your personality.
Got the dress? Now figure out the hair with: THE MOST BEAUTIFUL BRIDAL HAIR TRENDS FOR 2014/2015
Brooke Stewart is a bridal industry veteran and loves to share her knowledge and experience with excited brides-to-be.