Wedding Dress Shopping: The Plus-Size Way

Spring is here and weddings are underway. When the time comes to look for your wedding dress there are so many options to choose from. With so many dresses, sometimes it is hard to pick a place to get started with the search. Everyone has heard of the traditional style A-LINE. It is truly a classic cut and no one can wrong with this style. A-line dresses look good on anyone, but it’s playing things too safe. There is nothing wrong with going for this style dress if this style is what you are comfortable with, but before going hard core on A-line dresses explore the other options suitable to your taste and body shape. Remember, if you walk in a bridal shop wanting one thing, but end up falling in love with a dress that is nothing like the dress you dreamed of it’s ok. Do not over think or talk yourself out of a dress just because it’s not the dress you created for yourself in your head.

I work in the bridal industry and my expertise is finding women the perfect dress for their BIG DAY. I have done this for years, and there are different kinds of brides out there. Some ladies come in knowing what they want, the price, the color, and all other detail. However, many other ladies have no clue what they are looking for and how much a wedding dress cost.

Whenever you decide you want to search and find your wedding dress know before hand your budget for the dress and all the accessories that go along with a wedding dress, such as shoes, veil(s), tiara, flower, comb, alterations, jewelry, undergarments (foundations) – you cannot wear the bra you wear to work or to a work party under your wedding gown, your special day requires special under pieces too- and anything else that goes on your body for that day. You may want just a budget for your gown(s) or if you are stopping at a one stop shop a budget for all of your needs.

Once your budget has been established think of a style that you can see yourself in on your wedding day, just to get something going when you arrive for your appointment at the bridal shop. If you have no idea ask your consultant to pull A-line dresses that are within your price range and that have the detail and material you are looking for. From there see if you like how full the skirt is and other features of the dress. Then, your consultant can help you find a dress that has what you liked and know what you disliked about the dress.

As a curvy or full figured bride there are certain styles that bring out your curvy figure to show off your silhouette in a beautiful way. Sometimes while we’re shopping we want what we see on the manikin on us, but everything that Zoe Saldana, Rachel McAdams, or Taylor Swift wears we all can’t. The beauty of this life is that we are all different. No one is like the other person, so never be disappointed when Taylor Swift looked better in a dress that you hated yourself in. You just have to keep looking for the one right for you. My top styles that I like to see curvy and full figured brides in are ball gowns, empire, drop waist, trumpet, and A-line. You are probably wondering why A-line? While A-line is a safe choice, it is also a classic cut that you can never go wrong with and some are just too beautiful not to consider. On the list of styles I did not include mermaid and sheath. I am also not a big fan of trumpet either for full figured women, but if it is the right dress the silhouette looks fabulous.

BALL GOWNS

Ball gowns are very flattering on the waist. They make the waist appear smaller, and if you have wide hips it will not draw attention to them.
Ball gowns are very flattering on the waist. They make the waist appear smaller, and if you have wide hips it will not draw attention to them.
On this ball gown the waist is brought a little further down on the dress. This cut is referred to as the "natural waistline". The natural waistlines shows off more of your waist and causes your torso to look longer and leaner.
On this ball gown the waist is brought a little further down on the dress. This cut is referred to as the “natural waistline”. The natural waistlines shows off more of your waist and causes your torso to look longer and leaner.

EMPIRE

On empire waist dresses the waist is higher up and under your breast. This dress is great to hide your waist if you are looking to do that because it is high up and flows down.
On empire waist dresses the waist is higher up and under your breast. This dress is great to hide your waist, if you are looking to do that, because it is high up and flows down.
This is an empire gown with sleeves. This empire dress is more fitted in the waist than the one above, but a feature that all empire dresses have is the attention it draws to your breast and away from the waist.
This is an empire gown with sleeves. This empire dress is more fitted in the waist than the one above, but a feature that all empire dresses have is the attention it draws to your chest and away from the waist.

DROP WAIST

Drop waist is a combination of two things: A-line and fit & flare. It shows of your waist beautifully and has a full skirt. What makes it different from a mermaid and trumpet dress is that it stops at your hips then flares out.
Drop waist is a combination of two things: A-line and fit & flare. It shows off your waist beautifully and has a full skirt. What makes it different from a mermaid and trumpet dress is that it stops at your hips then flares out.
Empire dresses are very romantic. They are fitted in the waist to show off your curves, but also remain traditional with a flared skirt.
Empire dresses are very romantic. They are fitted in the waist to show off your curves, but also remain traditional with a flared skirt.

TRUMPET

Trumpet dresses allow you to show off your hour-glass figure or pear shape. I do not recommend this style for busty women that do not have proportionate hips. This style dress is all about proportion
Trumpet dresses allow you to show off your hour-glass figure or pear shape. I do not recommend this style for busty women that do not have proportionate hips. This style dress is all about proportions. The sash on this dress brings in the waist more. Adding a sash to any style except empire (it will not look right and most likely clash with the jewelry already on the dress) makes the waist look even smaller.
This is a true trumpet dress. The dress is fitted all the way past the hips and flares out mid-thigh. The skirt looks like the horn of a trumpet. Compared to the one above there is a difference in the waist. Notice that this one does not have a sash and the difference the sash does for the waist on the one above.
This is a true trumpet dress. The dress is fitted all the way past the hips and flares out mid-thigh. The skirt looks like the horn of a trumpet. Compared to the one above there is a difference in the waist. Notice that this one does not have a sash and the difference the sash does for the waist on the one above.

A-LINE

A-line dresses are the go to dresses. You can tell a dress is A-line by the way it makes an "A" from the chest down.
A-line dresses are the go to dresses. You can tell a dress is A-line by the way it makes an “A” from the chest down.
This dress is an example of why even though A-line dresses are safe they are still sometimes the right choice. They are all over figure flattering. The difference between an A-line gown and a ball gown is the skirt on an A-line dress is not as full as the one on a ball gown.
This dress is an example of why even though A-line dresses are safe they are still sometimes the right choice. They are all over figure flattering. The difference between an A-line gown and a ball gown is the skirt on an A-line dress is not as full as the one on a ball gown.

These are my top style picks for curvy and full-figured brides. Always have an open mind to styles you never imagined, you never know you may end up with a trumpet even though you walked in thinking you would walk out the bridal shop with an empire. The possibilities and choices are endless at a bridal store. Pick a dress that you will not regret ten years down the line, and don’t pick one you think your daughter will wear twenty some years down the line. It’s your dress for the day that begins the best days of your life.

Have fun dress shopping Jewels!

Here are a few places to start your shopping that carry plus size gowns:

– David’s Bridal

– Alfred Angelo

– Impression Bridal

– Your local bridal shops and boutiques should have plus sizes dresses as well

5 thoughts on “Wedding Dress Shopping: The Plus-Size Way

    1. My apologies for the late reply. You can find dresses with ruffles at any local bridal retail store or online. I do not recommend buying dresses online. I have had many clients buy dresses off the internet to avoid the high prices in stores. But in the end, the dress they bought online did not fit right. So they ended up buying two dresses and wasting money. Have fun dress shopping!

      The dresses vary in prices. The cheapest dresses are about $100, and those dresses are typically very plain (less bead work, cheaper material, etc). I hope this helps. =)

      Like

    1. No i don’t. The dresses on this blog I googled the different styles I was looking for and found them that way. I’ve had customers before show me similar dresses when looking for a dress in that style, and I believe the dresses are made in China. You would send in your measurements and the dress would be made based on the measurements you sent in. With the people I’ve personally worked with, it’s always been unsuccessful. I highly recommend you do no do that.

      But, you can always use the dress as a style reference for when you go dress shopping. Or if you really want to find this particular dress and try your luck, Google the style the dress is (trumpet, mermaid, aline, etc), and add in the search box plus size wedding dress. I’m more than sure the dress will come up in the pics. Then, you’ll click on the pic to see the source of it.

      Best of luck to you. Please let me know if you need anything else! 😉

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s