Before the Fitting
|When to Choose Ball Gown?|
|What it is The number one distinguishing trait of a ball gown is its very full (aka huge) skirt. The silhouette also has a fitted bodice and is cinched at the natural waist.
Best for Brides with boyish figures. The fullness of the dress will make you look curvier.
Avoid if You’re a petite bride. You’ll get swallowed up by a dress this voluminous.
|When to Choose Mermaid?|
|What it is This shape is defined by a slim, tapered, curve-hugging skirt that follows the line of the hips and thighs and flares out below the knee.
Best for Brides with hourglass figures who want to show off their curves.
Avoid if You know you don’t want something tight; this style is constricting.
Before you go out for your appointment, check your outfit and make-up. Wear comfortable clothing that you can slip on and off. Sweatpants, loose t-shirt and socks without holes to keep your feet warm is an ideal outfit. Wear comfortable shoes, a bra, and panties. Use a light touch with your make-up. Apply a minimal amount so you do not leave make-up on the dresses you try on.
Unless you are able to pull a 10-20 lb dress over your head, zip, button, and lace it up yourself, the sales people will have to help you in and out of the dresses. That means they will see you in your delicates! Plus, they will need to grab certain areas, such as the rear end, along your back, and maybe bust to either clip back extra dress material or to fix the shape of the dress and conform it to your body. Try not to be shy! Get comfortable! Strike up a conversation with your sales lady. Between dresses, try to pick topics that are geared away from your body and are very lighthearted. Laughter helps you relax in a tense situation-so laugh!
Wedding Dress Sizing
|When to Choose Column?|
|What it is This formfitting style follows the body’s natural line and doesn’t flare out. It’s also referred to as a sheath.
Best for Petite women, since this slim shape adds length. This silhouette also looks great on brides with sleek figures.
Avoid if You’re pear-shaped (when you’re small on top but more rounded on the bottom). This silhouette will make you look unbalanced.
|When to Choose Drop Waist?|
|What it is This silhouette is exactly as you would imagine—it drops and flares out slightly below the waistline around your hip area.
Best for Brides who want to flaunt their trim middles and shape, since it hugs your waist and hips.
Avoid if You have a boxy figure—it might make you look like you have less curves.
|When to Choose A-Line?|
|What it is As its name implies, this cut is narrow at the top and extends out along the body in the shape of—you guessed it—an “A.”
Best for All body types. There’s a reason it’s one of the most popular skirt silhouettes—it’s super-flattering on almost everyone.
Avoid if You’re looking for something really sexy.
Wedding dress sales people will also have you try on dresses that are a size bigger than your true size. Usually, wedding dresses are two sizes larger than your street clothes. Remember, sizes will be different depending on the brand of the dress. Unfortunately, there is no standard size chart for designers. Measure your bust, waist, and hips before you try on any dresses if you are unsure about the size you will need. A friend can help you or you can ask a local seamstress.
The Right State of Mind
Wedding dress shopping is your experience, if you are not having a good time or you feel pressured in any way then stop. You cannot choose the perfect dress if you are not in the right place mentally. You do not want to associate the dresses you see with a bad shopping experience. You might dread the entire process!
Try on everything you like. This is supposed to be a fun experience for you. So try on any styles that appeal to you!
Ask the sales clerk if you can take pictures of the dresses before you try them on. If the boutique does not allow it, ask them for a catalog from the boutique, designer’s name, and style numbers of the dresses that you liked. You can always look up the designer’s website and check out their other dresses.
|When to Choose Trumpet?|
|What it is A straight-lined skirt subtly flares from the knee toward the hem in a trumpet shape.
Best for Curvy brides who are looking for a formfitting dress that’s slightly easier to move in.
Avoid if You’re not comfortable with clearly showing off your shape or if you have an apple or boxy body type.
|If You’re Apple-Shaped?|
|Look for: A dress that cinches in at the smallest point on the waistline, then flares out into a gradual A shape. Opt for a bodice with a lot of texture to it―think ruche or lace detailing―that will camouflage and fit snugly, creating a corsetlike effect. The most slenderizing neckline for you is one with a deep V, which will draw eyes toward the vertical, not the horizontal.
Keep in mind: Avoid trumpet dress styles, which emphasize the area where your body is widest and flare out at the legs and the knees, where you are most slender.
|If You’re Plus-Sized?|
|Look for: An Empire dress with a skirt that begins just under the bust and flows into a gradual floor-length A-line. Make sure the Empire seam does not start on the chest and that there is no pleating of the fabric, which is reminiscent of maternity wear. The dress should play up your shape; if it’s too loose, it will add pounds.
Keep in mind: Find fabrics like satin that provide structure, rather than anything too flowy. If you love the romantic look of airier fabrics, choose a gown with a stiffer base, then add an embroidered tulle overlay.
Now get out there and shop!