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Brides come in all shapes and sizes, which is why it’s a good idea to make sense of the different dress styles available and find the right dress for your body. Understanding your shape will help you find the gown that both fits and flatters you.

How to find the right wedding dress for your body shape

Flattering on most women

Here is a guide to find out what body shape you are and the styles most suitable for that special dress.

A-line fit is very flattering on most shapes and, in particular, more rounded, apple-shaped women or those who are pear-shaped – small on top but rounded on the bottom. A-line is ideal for those with a small bust and shapely thighs and hips.

Supportive dresses help busty brides. They are designed with boning or a built-in corset that will give a good shape. A square-necked dress is also a great option as it shows off the bust without going over the top!

An empire dress is ideal for plus-size brides. The fit from this style dress ¬– think of dresses from the days of classic novelist Jane Austen – is flattering for most body types. It is good choice if a bride doesn’t want a tight-fitting dress.

For brides with long or lean bodies, choose a sheath or column dress. This is an elegant, slim shape and looks great on those with sleek figures. It adds length and is great for petite women. The silhouette will make a pear-shaped bride look unbalanced.

How to find the right wedding dress for your body shape

Timeless classic

The ball gown with its full skirt, fitted bodice and cinched waist works best for boyish figures since it will give a curvier look. A timeless classic with a fitted bodice, it flatters all body types as the shape shows off the bust, arms and shoulders while concealing the waist and hips. Avoid this look if you are petite as the dress may appear to drown you in all that fabric!

The mermaid-style dress fits to the knee to provide more definition and show off brides with hourglass figures. This won’t suit brides who don’t want to be constricted.

The drop waist dress hugs the waist and hips. It is the best choice if the bride wants to show her trim waist and shape, and is less suitable for a boxy figure.

The trumpet-shaped dress, like the mermaid style, is another sexy look that hugs the bust, waist and hips. It has a straight-lined skirt that flares out from mid-thigh toward the hem in a trumpet shape. It is ideal for curvy brides who want a form fitting dress that is easier to move in, but avoid if you have an apple- or boxy-shaped body or don’t want to show off your shape.

How to find the right wedding dress for your body shape

Trust the experts

After you’ve found out what shapes suit your body, take your time to try on different dresses. Pick a fit that you like and are comfortable with. Think about your favourite asset and find a way to show it off. The name of the game is accentuating your body without exposing too much.

Work with what you’ve got and trust your bridal shop stylist. Don’t be afraid to try on dresses outside your comfort zone. Armed with this knowledge, you will feel fabulous when you slip on the right style of dress.

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