The Best Dress for Your Body Shape

Carri Fras's picture
Written By
Carri Fras
April 9, 2018

As women, we come in many shapes and sizes. We aren’t only unique in our body type, but our stature, height and tastes as well. It’s a truly beautiful thing that no two brides look alike! There will and forever be only one of us! The good news is, there’s a lot out there to choose from. Amongst bridal salons, boutiques, fashion retailers and independent designers, thousands upon thousands of dresses and designers are waiting for you!

While finding “the one” is no small undertaking, a good place to start is understanding your body and what types of dresses will flatter and best highlight your personal shape. We’ve looked to some of our favorite partners to help key us into some great tips and education when it comes to finding the best fit for our body types. Let the shopping begin!





“In my recent experience giving suggestions to ladies with an hourglass body shape, I have found that almost any silhouette is flattering. The hourglass body shape is considered the ‘ideal’ body shape by many women. These ladies are very well-proportioned with curves in all the right places and a distinct waistline. Styles that are cinched or belted can help further accentuate the waistline, and a form-fitting dress that shows off curves is most often what these ladies are drawn to. Ruffles, bows and other dimensional details can also draw attention to the hips or bust and can actually make her curves seem bigger than what they are. If bigger busted brides happen to be self-conscious in that area, V-necks, halters, sweethearts and scoop necks can be slimming. Since this body shape can usually wear a variety of silhouettes, I still encourage ladies to try on a variety of styles. Often times, ladies will come in to the store looking for a specific silhouette and end up purchasing an entirely different style. It still boils down to whatever makes her feel the most beautiful.”

- Traci DeBord, That Special Touch Bridal Boutique
Columbus, IN



Full Figure

“I am so glad that today, women and the fashion world are embracing every shape and size. Even though there are definite options if you do have a fuller figure—like an A-line princess gown or a one that accentuates the smallest part of the body such as an empire waist gown—a bride should ultimately find the dress that makes her feel the most beautiful. Just because she is a fuller figure, doesn’t mean she can’t wear a dress that a smaller size can wear. What I am going to do is adapt it to her and find out what is going to make her feel the most comfortable. For example, does she like to show off her shoulders? Arms? A little bit of bustline tastefully? Maybe she loves her calves, which could be accentuated with a hi-lo hemline. In the end, it’s about what will make her feel the most beautiful on her special day.”

- Eric Woolridge, WeddingDay Style Consultant




“The best type of dress for a pear-shaped figure is the dress that makes you feel beautiful! We feel there are no longer ‘rules’ in bridal, and you truly should wear the dress you feel most beautiful in. If you want to camouflage your lower half, a soft ball gown is always a beautiful shape. This will really accentuate your waist and then just float across the hips! If you love your tush and hips, then go with a fitted style that accentuates all your beautiful curves! There are so many variations of the mermaid or fit to flare shape that you can find the perfect, fitted shape to highlight your figure.”

- Autumn Parton, One Fine Day Bridal & Gown Boutique
Fort Wayne, IN



Tall & Thin

“For a slender and tall body shape, we recommend choosing a style that is figure flattering and doesn’t cut off in awkward places (this can shorten your height, and no one wants that!) We recommend a beautiful ball gown that accentuates the natural waist or a sheath gown with a deep, plunging V-neckline. Say yes to something beautiful that shows off your great figure in the most elegant way!”

- Katia Agius, BIANKA Bridal
Grand Rapids, MI




“The silhouette or style of gown we would suggest for a petite bride is sheath or A-line silhouettes. These styles are very flattering on most body shapes and tend to elongate the body. Although some styles will look amazing on any bride’s shape, we would recommend that petite brides stay away from ball gown silhouettes. Another style to look for in a gown is a natural waist, which can keep a petite bride from looking shorter. The rest is up to you!”

- Alyssa Kelley, Beloved Brides
Fishers, IN




“I have found that an apple shaped body type normally avoids fit and flare, mermaid and trumpet silhouettes when it comes to wedding gowns. Most often, ladies with an apple shape choose a dress that draws attention away from certain areas of her body that she might be self conscious of, if any. An empire waist will help accentuate the waist at its smallest point, and ruching can be very helpful in hiding any area that she is uncomfortable with. Adding a belt to define the waistline can also be very appealing to her. Apple body shapes, in some cases, are busty. I would recommend structured shoulders with a scooped or V-neck line. I always suggest trying on several styles to see what best compliments her shape. Ultimately, choosing a dress really depends on what makes her feel most beautiful.”

- Traci DeBord, That Special Touch Bridal Boutique
Columbus, IN



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