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The focal point of any wedding is the bride’s dress. Needless to say that choosing a wedding dress will be a huge decision for some brides. There are many elements to consider when deciding on your dream dress, from budget to body shape to location, all of which will have a bearing on the type of dress you will don on your big day.
Before getting into the nitty gritty of selecting the dress that will mark the start of your married life together with your fiancé, there are some quick tips to take into consideration.
Firstly, do plenty of research (magazines, Internet, TV shows, Bridal fairs) and decide on a rough idea before you enter a shop. It can be very overwhelming and dresses could end up all looking the same if you don’t have some vague idea.
Decide on a budget as early as possible. You don’t have to stick to it, but it will help guide you to the right stores so that you don’t find your perfect dress at a price you simply cannot afford.
Try on as many as possible as some wedding dresses look hideous on the hanger and perfect on the body and visa versa. And don’t forget to move around in them to make sure you can walk easily and sit down to dinner without suffocating.
Finally, think about what your future husband likes and the kinds of clothes he enjoys seeing you in. Choosing the latest fashion might be great for you, but just make sure that it is a style your fiancé will like too.
Wedding Dress Shapes
One of the decisions that is good to make before going to search for wedding gowns in the stores is the silhouette you want. Here you should consider your body type too. The common wedding dress shapes are as follows.
▪ A lines
A line skirt that flares out gently from the waistline usually topped with a bodice.
▪ Ball Gowns
A super full skirt that springs out like a pom pom with a fitted or soft bodice.
A softer, figure-hugging look that frequently comes with a longer train or backless design.
▪ Empire Line
The skirt falls from below the bust often designed using lighter, softer fabrics.
▪ Strapless or sleeves
Will you go for the strapless look with a bodice or short/long lace sleeves?
You body type should guide your choice of silhouette to ensure that you look as beautiful as you can be on your special day. For example, ball gown shaped wedding dresses work well for all body types except very short or very tall brides, while the sheath silhouette is recommended only for those who are extremely happy with their figure as they tend to show every lump and bump. Likewise, if you have an issue with your arms or back, you may opt for a long sleeved gown. Busty women might consider a scooped neckline to avoid too much cleavage, while smaller chested brides could opt for a ruched bodice with extra fabric to give the impression of greater volume.
The color of your wedding dress is another consideration, depending on the style of your wedding and/or your skin tone. For example, white wedding dresses have only really been fashionable since Queen Victoria opted to wear a white dress for her marriage to Prince Albert in 1850, so really anything goes. Pure white dresses are not always the best choice for certain skin tones, with brides opting for ivory or pearl. Informal and beach weddings will give you even greater opportunity to choose virtually any color you wish.
The location and conditions of your wedding will affect your choice of wedding dress. For example, dresses for beach weddings usually have a shorter train to avoid damage when walking on sand and the materials preferred are lighter and generally more flimsy. In the same way, any type of destination wedding where the bride and groom have to travel by airplane will have an effect on the dress chosen, as heavily jeweled dresses can be very wieghty and difficult to ship. Formal wedding and religious ceremonies can also have an influence on the style, color and conservativeness of your dress, so it is important to have an idea of where your wedding will take place before buying your wedding dress.
Final Piece of Advice
The most important thing to remember when choosing your wedding dress is to enjoy the journey and make it a pleasant bonding experience for those you wish to invite to help you choose your dress. Avoid the stress and relax knowing that your wedding dress or design is out there waiting to be discovered and you will know it when you see it.