Searching for the perfect dress? First define your shape
Every bride wants to look fabulous on her wedding day and the best way to see what is right for you is to make appointments at bridal shops and try on a variety of dresses you like. Keep an open mind and take the advice of the experts in the shop as they are well practised at knowing what suits brides of all shapes and sizes.
The pear-shaped bride is smaller on top than the bottom with hips wider than her shoulders. Princess dresses will help disguise fuller hips and emphasise your better half, balancing you out. Strapless ballgowns also work well in this regard and empire line dresses highlight the smallest part of your body.
Avoid: Tiered, trumpet and mermaid dresses which draw attention to your bottom. Sheath dresses are another no-no.
This dress shape refers to girls who are wider on the top half of their body, with hips narrower than their shoulders. V-neck dresses work well to cover up wider shoulders or make them appear narrower by choosing a gown with thick straps. Scoop necklines can also work really well and sleeves are great for covering wider shoulders. Choose a dress with interesting details like embroidery or bows around the middle and bottom of your dress to force the eyes downwards.
Avoid: Puffed sleeves which will draw attention to your shoulders, as will halter and off the shoulder necklines.
THE BOYISH OR SLIM FIGURE
You have an undefined waist, with narrow hips and small bust. A sheath dress is perfect to flatter your slender shape and this type of figure can get away with a fitted dress with high neckline. A ballgown with fitted bodice and full skirt will create the illusion of curves while delicate embroidery and beading in the right places can also create curves.
Avoid: Off the shoulder or halter necklines.
If your top and bottom halves are perfectly balanced and you have a distinctive waist (nine inches or more smaller than your bust) you are defined as having an hourglass figure, which is by far the easiest to dress. Pick a gown that accentuates your waist, as this shows off your best asset. Try two-piece gowns or corset dresses. Sweetheart necklines and bodices emphasise a fuller bust and if you’re a bit more curvaceous you might like to try a mermaid or fishtail dress. A-line dresses with dropped waist show off your balanced figure.
Avoid: Empire line silhouettes and ballgowns; as your chest and hips are already balanced you don’t want to add weight to either.
The apple-shaped woman is more voluptuous than most, with full breasts, a bit of a tummy and a rounder bum and hips. Create a leaner look with an empire line dress or an A-line dress with dropped waist, which looks good on anyone. A ballgown will cover up all your bad bits.
Avoid: Princess line and basque dresses, which draw attention to your middle. Spaghetti straps can cut into your shoulders and a sheath dress will make you look heavier.
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