Health & Fitness

By Leslie Rice Hart

Choosing the wedding gown that is right for you can be overwhelming and frustrating. The dress that you fall in love with might not look so hot once you put it on. Here are some tips to help you find the dress that will accentuate the positive and camouflage the negative, giving you a beautiful fitted wedding gown for your body type.

Don’t Skirt the Issue
A-line or flared skirts hide large hips and heavy thighs. For a shorter, petite woman an A-line skirt can make her look taller. This type of skirt is not so great for a thicker waist because it will actually accentuate the waist, giving an hourglass shape. A much fuller “ball gown” shape will swallow the shorter bride, the ball gown should be left for the taller bride.

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“V” For Victory
A “V” waist fitted several inches below the waist, gives the illusion of a much smaller waist. This might not be the best for a shorter bride giving her a shorter appearance. “V” or long oval necklines elongate the upper body creating a slimmer look. A high neckline accentuates what you already have and gives a bustier look.

What’s Up Your Sleeves?
Three quarter length sleeves will cover arms if you’re not happy with your upper body shape. A tapered sleeve will make your arms look slim while large puffy sleeves will add width.

The Long and Short of It
If you have a long dress and a long train, wear a long veil. Shorter gowns and veils make you appear wider by cutting your silhouette into sections.

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No Butts about It… Busted
If you’re bottom heavy, avoid large bows or bustles. If you don’t want to draw attention to your bust, choose a dress with a plain, non-beaded top.

Fabric-adabra
Avoid clingy fabrics. Shiny fabrics reflect and make you look larger. There are plenty of non-shimmer fabrics.

If The Dress Fits Wear It
A poor fitting dress will add pounds so make sure your gown fits like a glove. There is some great waist trimming, tummy flattening, figure smoothing lingerie to help in the fit. These garments can take inches off but don’t wear something so tight that you can’t breathe on your wedding day.

Smile for the Camera
We’ve all heard the camera adds pounds; well the camera hides pounds, too. Know your camera angles in case your photographer does not. Stand with one foot behind the other, slightly turning your hips, this will make your hips appear smaller. Don’t turn the top part of your body sideways, face the camera with your shoulders slightly turned. High camera angles slim and looking up at the camera will stretch the neckline, making it appear thinner.

The Magic of Makeup
Get a makeup artist who knows how to make your cheeks, neck, and nose look thinner. They can bring attention to your lips and eyes as well, making your face look slimmer and glow, not that you’ll need any help with glowing on your wedding day!

Originally published May 2006
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