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Most women will have an area or body part that they wish they could change, right? On a daily basis this doesn’t cause un necessary issues however your ‘big day’ is a special occasion when all eyes are on the bride and groom. EEEK it’s time to take a big gulp and take center stage, your on – ta da.

Choosing a wedding dress isn’t as easy as most people would think.  There are many styles & fabrics that are all perfect for someone but they won’t suit every shape & size.
So you have hips you’ d like to hide or a tummy that makes you feel self-conscious? (You are not alone don’t worry). When looking in wedding dress shops it would be worth mentioning any areas you are not so confident about showing off and equally think about the parts you do like.
It is s all about balancing out the silhouette and drawing attention to or from areas. Choosing a wedding dress that compliments your figure is key

Image source - backonpointe.tumblr.com

Remember if you feel comfortable & happy with your appearance you will feel & act more confident and that’s exactly how is should be on your wedding day – after all the day is about celebrating you and your other half!
See which of the below body shapes you identify with as this is a good starting point when you begin your wedding dress search.


Triangle

The triangle shape is also known as the pear shape. This is recognised by fuller hips and/or thighs in comparison to the shoulders and bust. There are many ladies who would like to have slightly narrower hips & thighs however with the correct dress shape attention can be drawn away from the hips and voila!

How to balance out a Triangle
• Emphasis the shoulders to widen them thus creating a balance.
• Look for dresses with high necks, shoulders, sleeves, straps etc to draw attention up
• Emphasise the top half in general, Detailing higher up will do this.
• Skim the hips with free flowing fabric
• Emphasis the waist at the narrowest point (usually higher than the natural waist). This draws attention to the top section
• Don’t go for a style that is tight around the hips
• Don’t finish the waist line on the hips as this will draw attention to the widest point

These general styles will work for a triangle shape
A-Line styles will skim the hips and disguise a triangle body shape creating a balanced silhouette. Empire styles will draw the attention upwards and the skirt will then flow right from under the bust to the floor. A Ball gown will work as long as the waist line isn’t too low or the skirt will start right on the hips.

Here are 3 gowns to suit a triangle shape

All 3 gowns available at Alison Jane Bridal


Inverted Triangle


The Inverted Triangle shape is recognized by a broad shouldered frame with the hips being narrower. An inverted triangular frame can easily look top heavy or masculine. However don’t worry, as it is easy to create a point of interest & focus on lower areas to achieve a balanced shape. When you shop for your wedding dress, pay lots of attention to the bottom half to give you balance and proportion.

How to balance out a Inverted triangle
• Focus on the lower area of the dress or legs as this draws attention away & balances out the silhouette
• Skirts that flare from the body will create a balance with the width of the shoulders.
• Consider dresses with short or tea length hem lines that flare out - great for your shape
• Emphasise the lower sections of the dress with lots of detail
• Thick straps will narrow wide shoulders and V-neck neck lines will work perfectly too
• Don’t go for halter necks or off the shoulder as this will emphasise the shoulders
• Don’t go for capped sleeves as this will emphasis the shoulders too


These general styles will work for an Inverted triangle shape
Ball gown style dresses will show symmetry by balancing out the wide full skirt against the shoulders. Mermaid or trumpet styles can work only if the skirt flares out enough to create a balance with the shoulder width. Short styles that flare from the waist down & draw attention to legs and of course some special wedding day shoes!

Here are 3 gowns to suit an Inverted triangle shape

All 3 gowns available at Alison Jane Bridal 

All 3 gowns available at Alison Jane Bridal 


Hourglass

The Hourglass shape is easy to recognize with equal defined hips & bust and a nipped in narrow waist. There are more choices of gowns that will perfectly suit an hourglass body shape however that does mean making a choice may be more difficult than you first thought. Oh its hard work trying on pretty dresses all day let me tell you!

How to dress an hourglass shape
• Simple just look for styles that outline your curves
• Try on dresses that will enhance your shape not hide it
• With this enviable silhouette shape you are a bridal designers dream so you can literally wear any style.

These general styles will work for an hourglass shape
Sheath styles are very slim & elegant and will look sleek on an hourglass shape. A mermaid/trumpet style will show off your curves the most out of all the wedding dress styles. A ball gown will suit a curvy hourglass perfectly showing off the curves of the bust & waist & then va voom in to the skirt.

Here are 3 gowns to suit an hourglass shape

Round or Diamond

The round or diamond shape also known as the apple & oval body shape.
Characterized generally by a rounder shoulder line, an average to bigger bust with fullness around the middle. Your weight tends to distribute mainly around the waist & sometimes the bust. The aim is to slim down the silhouette and create a straight up and down shape. Think about which areas of your body you favour and would like to focus on and lets draw attention there.

How to balance out a round/diamond
• Avoid tight fitting dresses as they wont flatter your shape & will only emphasis a larger midriff
• Focus on the shoulders to create height & width. Straps & capped sleeves are good for this.
• Look for dresses with Vertical lines to create an illusion & add height
• Avoid cinched in waists at the natural waist line as this may be your widest part & you probably don’t want to draw attention to this area
• Keep any detailing to the top half of the dress
• Try on dresses where the skirt flows directly from under the bust line as this completely bypasses the waist & creates a balances shape.
• Remember a lace up back dress will help pull in & hide a tummy more than a zip up back.


These general styles will work for a round/diamond shape
An A-line style dress will be great as it will hide & flatter a tummy especially if coupled with lots of detail higher up. An empire waistline will cinch in under the bust & flow freely to the floor avoiding the middle section & emphasise the bust. A ball gown style will work also as long as the waist starts high up & not at your widest point.

Here are 3 gowns to suit a round diamond shape


All 3 gowns available at Alison Jane Bridal 

All 3 gowns available at Alison Jane Bridal 

Rectangle

The rectangle shape can sometimes referred to as a sporty figure. A rectangular shape is recognized by even hips & bust little if any waist definition. Weight gain goes relatively un-noticed as it is distributed evenly from the hips through to the bust. Leaner shapes tend to lack natural curves and so a any bridal gown that helps create a curvy silhouette will be a winner.
How to balance out a rectangle
• A gown that brings ample femininity will be your balancer
• Emphasise the bust and don’t rule out strapless gowns
• Try dresses that pull in at the waist yet are the same widths at the top and bottom as this will help create an hourglass silhouette.
• Choose dresses with skirts that flare out
• Attention on the natural waistline is key! Detailing at the waist will help
• Belts are good at creating a point of distinction & draw the waist in even more

These general styles will work for a rectangle shape
A-line style dresses will cinch the waist and give the illusion of curves. An Empire line gown will hug in just the right place and flatter a sporty figure. A sheath style gown may create curves where needed but play around with the necklines if opting for this style.

Here are 3 gowns to suit a rectangle shape

So if you are rearing to go or a little shy about your wedding dress search I do hope this may have given a little insight in to the shapes & styles of dresses you will come accross.
There is a dress out there for every bride you just have to know what to look for and not be scared to try on styles you didnt originally imagine yourself wearing.
Here's to all the happy brides out there who have found or are about to find the dress they will remember for the rest of their lives x

Source ref - Anna Guest - Jelley on Sparkpeople.com
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Women's body shapes & wedding dresses
June 27, 2014
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Published by:
Alison Hall