Wedding Dresses for Petite Brides
Many women have a difficult time finding a dress which suits their specific body type. Even someone with a perfect figure may find something to dislike, and wedding dress shopping can become frustrating if you focus on these points. Some petite women especially feel stressed shopping for a dress, since wedding gowns may seem to overwhelm small frames. Choosing a couture dress that is made especially for you is a great option if you have a petite build. But how do you choose the perfect dress style?
Consider a shorter dress
Most brides opt for a long wedding gown, but there are a number of short styles that work well for petite frames. A petite frame is one of the few body types that can actually get away with a mini skirt, so this should be at least considered if you fall into this category. You may not want to go that short on your wedding day, and if you do not that should be fine as well.
Do not limit yourself though by thinking that a long dress is the best idea. If you opt for dress choices that are shorter, you will have longer looking legs. This is a great visual trick for those who are lucky enough to be petite. Several dress styles fall into this category; one's which hit above the knee but still look very formal.
Do not get overwhelmed by beading or rhinestones
For many petite women, staying away from huge prints is a guideline of sorts. Large prints can be overwhelming for this type of frame, and choosing clothing with smaller prints is probably a good idea. Wedding dresses typically do not have prints, but they do have design elements like beading, rhinestones, and patterned lace. If any of these adorn your gown and are too large, you could seem like you are too small to give the dress structure. Dresses with small details such as tiny, delicate embroidery and beading should work well.
Look for a v-neck neckline
When someone looks at you, you want his or her eyes to travel vertically, in order to create the illusion that you are taller and leaner. One great way to do this is with a neckline shaped like a "v." V-neck dresses can be sleeved, a tank top style, or a halter-top. They work for almost any bust size as well, making this one of the most universally flattering necklines. V-neck halter dresses look great on petite brides.
Avoid horizontal "stripes."
Most wedding dresses do not have patterns, but that does not mean that a dress can't have somewhat of a horizontal stripe to it. In general, because you want people to look at you vertically, thus making you taller, a horizontal look just does not work. Be aware that lace, ruffles, beadwork, and other design elements can all add horizontal patterning to a dress. If you choose to add any of these touches to your dress, make sure to do so sparingly.
Use texture, not volume
Petite women often complain that they feel like they are 'swimming' in their clothing. With your wedding dress, fit is very important, and you should have your dress custom-made to fit your body like a glove. However, fit is not the only important aspect. When it comes to creating a full look that makes you feel like a princess without drowning you in fabric, think texture instead of layers. Dresses that have very light, airy fabric, but use beading, fabric details, and other special touches to create texture will work well on you.
Add a great pair of heels
When you try on wedding dresses, make sure you do so wearing a pair of heels, preferably ones with the same height heel you will wear on your wedding day. Even if you do not like heels, the right pair will feel fabulous on your feet and give you a bit of extra height. Even if you just wear a very low heel, the heels will make your legs appear longer, making you appear taller. Your bridal consultant should be able to help you find the perfect pair to match your dress and make you feel comfortable.
Being petite does not have to mean it is impossible to find the perfect wedding dress. There are literally hundreds of thousands of weddings dresses available, and there is one out there that will fit you perfectly. Talk to your bridal consultant about your concerns before you start pulling dresses to try on, and make sure you follow the above tips to avoid getting frustrated with dresses that do not fit your body type well. Before you know it, you will be walking proudly down the aisle in a classic, timeless dress you know has been created just for you.
Leslie Silver is a freelance writer who writes about couture fashion and family events such as weddings, often discussing particular items like wedding dresses.