The hunt for your perfect wedding dress is an exciting, girly event! A chance to make your own dress-up movie-montage amass with silk, ribbons and petticoats!
Knowing which dress shapes suit which body types will help you when you enter the white wonderland of dress stores. It's surprisingly easy to get lost and frustrated amongst those piles of silk and sparkles, so I hope this helps you in your wedding gown quest...
A-Line dresses are a great place to start as they suit almost all body types. These dresses have a fitted bodice with a skirt that gently flares out from the waist, consistently to the hem. This simple yet elegant shape of dress flatters most brides as it creates a very balanced look between shoulders, hips and hem line. Duchess of Cambridge, the beautiful Kate Middleton, wore a stunning A-Line Alexander McQueen number when she wed William 2011. Who better to look to for style tips than our own modern day princess? The adorable Natalie Portman also looked cute as an absolute button when she donned a three-quarter length a-line number for her wedding in 2012. An empire line is a similar to A-line cut, with the waistline defined just under the bust, best for petite figures.
If your wedding dress fantasies consist of cloud like skirts made from miles of organza, well Cinderella, you are in luck. No matter what delicious shape you are; apple, pear, papaya; the ball gown cut dress is also flattering on most, with a fitted waist that sweeps out wide into a full skirt. This style can be used to give boyish shapes more curve by combining a voluminous skirt with a synching corseted bodice. They're also great for balancing top or bottom heavy bods because of their structured design; you can easily hide or boost whatever area you want! Portia De Rossi looked an absolute dream in her fairytale backless number when she married Ellen DeGeneres back in 2008. Her streamline body shape was given hourglass proportions with a Zac Posen va-va-voom tulle skirt in a barely-there pastel pink shade. Are you daring enough to go backless like she did?!
Trumpet or Mermaid
For the ladies out there that love a more form-fitting style, ask your fitting assistant to find you some trumpet and mermaid cuts to try. These styles both cling to your bodice down to the hip, showing off your foxy physique. Trumpet dresses flare out from the mid-hip, whereas mermaid dresses are fitted down to the knee and then flick out. Both are great if you want to add sexy curves or accentuate your feminine figure. Hourglass shapes rock these styles! Think Kim Kardashian's second (yes, second out of three) Vera Wang wedding dress from her marriage to Kris Humphries. A like-a-glove bodice clung to her signature curves and exploded into a fountain of hand-cut organza petals mid-thigh. Your mumma gave you a booty for a reason ladies, flaunt it!
As the gorgeous women we are, we all know that neckline-negotiations are a serious business. Yes, our lovely lady lumps tend to determine which wedding gown will be most flattering, most comfortable, and often, most church appropriate! All brides should feel sexy on their day of days, but remember this is also a family affair (if you're getting hitched in a private ceremony in Barbados please ignore me completely and embrace the chance to say your “I do's” in a smokin' hot white bikini), so let's keep those babies in check! For those girls “largely blessed”, strapless and sweetheart necklines compliment your neckline greatly, as well as asymmetrical one-shoulder styles. For those of us boasting a more petite cleavage that you want to enhance, try jewel and bateau cuts that follow the line of the neck. These will accentuate the shape and curve of your bodice without directly drawing attention to your girls.
In the end don't be surprised if it takes a few trips and several fitting appointments to find a dress that feels right. Arm yourself with clippings and print outs of gowns you love, samples of your colour scheme and any other little style snippets you want to incorporate; flowers varieties you've chosen, family heirlooms you want to wear. With your little kit of inspiration and a few girlfriends with honest opinions, you'll find a frock with the fabulous-factor you've been hunting for!