Choosing a Figure-Flattering Wedding Gown
. . . something for every bride

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Some wedding gown styles look good on every bride . . . A-line silhouettes, Queen Anne necklines, tank/scoop necklines and cap sleeves. Unfortunately there are many more styles which seem to flatter only one particular body shape. The following list may be used as a general guide for who looks good in what and to allow a bride to pare down the tremendous number of choices to a reasonable few.

FOR THE BRIDE WHO HAS FULL HIPS
She Will Look Good In: A-Line silhouette, which tend to conceal fuller hips while defining the waist, portrait or off-the-shoulder that balances the bosy and accents the upper body She Will Not Be Flattered By: Straight line gowns (which tend to accentuate fuller hips) and very full skirts, which tend to make the wearer, regardless of size, look heavier, halter neck which makes the bust appar narrower

FOR THE BRIDE WITH A FULL WAISTLINE
She Will Look Good In: Empire silhouette styles which help to camouflage heavy waists
She Will Not Be Flattered By: Princess style gowns which draw the eye to the waist

FOR THE VERY THIN BRIDE:
She Will Look Good In: Ball-gown shaped dresses which gives the appearance of a new shape while accenting the waistline, jewel abd bateau necklines create the look of a larger bust
She Will Not Be Flattered By: Very thin straps and low necklines (that let too-slim arms and chest area show), drop waistlines and wide skirts, sweetheart necklines that focus on cleavage

FOR THE FULL-FIGURED BRIDE:
She Will Look Good In: A-Line silhouettes, basque waistlines, open necklines (e.g., "v" and square), ornamentation around the neck (which guide the eye to the face), full skirts and long sleeves (which will conceal heavy arms)
She Will Not Be Flattered By: Thin straps, puffy sleeves, fabrics which hug the body, ruffles and ball-gown, tulle skirts

FOR THE BRIDE WITH A PEAR-SHAPED FIGURE (with her weight concentrated below her waistline)
She Will Look Good In: Wide skirted ball gowns (that accentuates the waist and conceal the hips) off-the-shoulder necklines (that make body shape appear more proportional), heavily ornamented bodices and plain skirts
She Will Not Be Flattered By: Bows in the back of her dress at hip height which draw the eye to heavier parts of her body

FOR THE BRIDE WITH AN HOUR-GLASS FIGURE
She Will Look Good In: Straight skirts and mermaid-style gowns (that emphasizes curves), portrait necklines, strapless dresses, and "V" necklines to emphasize shoulders
She Will Not Be Flattered By: Lots of bead work and ornamentation, full or ruffled gowns (which tend to make her heavier than she is), high necklines and puffed sleeves (which tend to downplay bust size and make the wearer appear disproportional)

FOR THE PETITE BRIDE
She Will Look Good In: Straight, princess-style, sheaths and A-Line gowns (that appear to add length and make the bride look taller), empire waist, high necklines, short or sleeveless gowns (especially when worn with long gloves).
She Will Not Be Flattered By: Excessive detailing on the hem of the skirt, belts or waist seams and very puffy, full gowns (which make the wearer appear even shorter than she is).

FOR THE BRIDE WITH A SMALL BUST
She Will Look Good In: "V" neckline (for "B" or "C" cup brides), bateau neckline (will "increase" bust size), strapless gowns, sleeveless gowns
She Will Not Be Flattered By: "V" necklines (for an "A" cup bride), dropped-waist styles that will cut her height, poofy skirts or bows that will overwhelm her small frame

FOR THE BRIDE WITH A LARGE BUST
She Will Look Good In: A-Line silhouette, sweetheart neckline which shows off the decolletage, strapless gowns, basque waist that accents a slim body She Will Not Be Flattered By: Jewel necklines, halter neckline, "v"-necklines (for brides larger than a "C" cup), spaghetti straps, empire gowns that focus on the chest, mandarin and jewel necklines make a generous bust look even larger

FOR THE BRIDE WITH BROAD SHOULDERS
She Will Look Good In: Strapless gowns
She Will Not Be Flattered By: Off-the-shoulder necklines (which will make her shoulders appear broader), jewel necklines, bateau necklines, oversized sleeves

FOR THE CURVY ALL-OVER BRIDE
She Will Look Good In:Off-the-shoulder gowns, portrait necklines that cover upper arm, but show a bit of decolletage
She Will Not Be Flattered By: jewel necklines that make a full bust appear larger, bateau necklines, oversized sleeves, empire waist that accent a full bossom and hide the waist

It's important to remember that these are just suggested guidelines and there are always brides who are the exception that break the rule. Whatever she chooses, what is most important is that every bride remember that the selection of her wedding gown should be a once-in-a-lifetime, joyous experience.


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