Wedding dress shopping for any bride can be as daunting an experience as it is exciting. But if you’re a plus-size woman in a sea of sample-size-eight gowns, it can sometimes feel downright impossible. Shopping for the perfect dress however, regardless of size or shape, should never be an unpleasant experience. Also, you should never feel forced to settle for anything less than your dream gown. In today’s post I will be sharing tips and advice for plus size brides. We all know size is just a number, learn to embrace your curves, and love who you are no matter what body shape you have there’s a wedding dress out there for you.
I was inspired to write this post after visiting several bridal boutiques across the UK, searching for my wedding dress. I realised that most stores stock an average size for all, which happens to be a UK12 and US8. If you are slightly slimmer, then they would use clips to take the dress in. When I tried on a gown the bride next to me, asked to try the same dress on, the sales person helping me told her they wouldn’t have her size, which made me feel bad, because every bride should be able to try on her dream dress, or at least have a chance too. At that point I put my self in that brides shoes, with the curiosity to know what do plus brides do in this situation?
Top 5 tips:
Call salons in advance
Don’t be shy, If you have a particular shop in mind, call them before you book your appointment ask them what sizes they stock. If they have a website, choose the designs you prefer, and make sure to mention them over the phone, maybe they hold similar designs in store. Even if the dresses on the floor don’t fit you perfectly, there are ways to gauge what the style will look like on you. There are ways to pin sample dresses to your undergarments that give a really good sense of what the dress will look like on, even if you’re not in it. Or if you can get the dress half on, you can get a good sense what the bottom silhouette looks on your body type. Don’t disregard any dress or shape until you’ve tried it.
Don’t be shy to try different styles
Sometimes you may have an image in your head, but when you try the dress on it just doesn’t feel right. I have known many brides to change their mind about the silhouette of their dream dress after trying on the total opposite. Just as you shouldn’t let your shape preclude you from your dream designer, also don’t let it overly dictate the style of the dress. Yes, there are some silhouettes that you will find work better for your body shape, but you might surprise yourself with the variety of looks that you can wear.
Buy the size that fits the biggest part of your body
A lot of brides might think that buying a smaller wedding dress will motivate them to shed weight before the wedding, but the truth is, it just adds a lot of unnecessary stress. Once you have found your dream dress, your assistant will take your measurements. My advice would be to opt for the bigger size, if your waste is slightly larger than your chest, I would recommend buying the dress in the bigger size (to fit your waste) and then alter down to accommodate the rest of your body.
Bring along your support team
Every women needs support of her nearest and dearest while taking a big decision like this. Bring someone who is going to give you as unbiased an opinion as possible. Ideally you want your shopping buddy to be someone you trust and someone who listens to and supports you, but isn’t going to overly sugar coat things or try to sway you into decisions you might not feel comfortable with. Bring the person who wants you to feel confident and look great on your big day.
Choose a figure-flattering fabrics
Thicker fabrics such as taffeta are ideal for curvy brides because they smooth everything out, creating a streamlined silhouette. Be aware that strapless styles can make shoulders look wider, so consider opting for styles with thicker straps or cap sleeves. Avoid heavily beaded bodices and appliqués, which can draw attention to areas you’d prefer to minimize.
Remember that the key to finding your perfect fit, is an open mind. Check out some of our favourite plus size wedding dresses and style tips to inspire you.
Cap Sleeves: Are an elegant alternative to the strapless look. They give just enough arm coverage but still draw attention to your collarbones
Long Lace Sleeves: Whether you’re looking for a more modest wedding dress or you’re just totally into the long-sleeved trend, lace sleeves make a simple gown feel instantly elegant.
Beaded Belt: Strategic beadwork and ruching on the bodice of your wedding dress brings attention to the smallest part of your body, while a more voluminous skirt makes your waist appear even smaller.
Blush Wedding Dress: The best thing about a lighter blush hue? It’s flattering on pretty much every skin tone. Up the romantic appeal with a full organza skirt.
Deep V-Neckline: You can’t lose with this sweet style: An A-line silhouette works for every body type, while a deep V, illusion neckline shows off a pretty décolletage
Sweetheart Neckline: One of the most popular wedding dress necklines, a sweetheart neckline is perfect if you have a larger bust. It gives more support than a V-neckline and shows less skin, but still feels romantic and feminine.
Halter Neckline: A flirty halter neckline is a win-win situation: It gives support and shows off sexy shoulders.
Illusion Neckline: An illusion style is a gorgeous way to bring up the neckline of your dress without looking too conservative
Empire Waist: An empire waist is the perfect silhouette for pear-shaped brides. It brings the eye upward to your narrow ribcage and skims over the hips and thighs.
(Click here for more inspiration)