How to choose the perfect wedding dress for your dream wedding

You've probably spent quite a bit of time looking at wedding dresses in magazines, on television and on online, so you may feel you already know as much as you need to know about the style of wedding dress you want for your wedding. But with your big day being such an important event in your life, there's no harm in doing some additional reading...

We've put together this guide to give you some guidance on the different styles wedding dresses we sell here on Bridaltastic, with dresses to suit all styles and body shapes, so you're bound to find something you love and want for your wedding day.

Set a budget for your wedding dress

When you begin shopping for a wedding dress, it can become all too easy to allow your imagination to run away from you as you view dozens and dozens of beautiful wedding dresses. With the average price of a wedding dress costing anywhere from £1500 to £3500 and beyond, according to various sources. It's clearly a large amount of most couples wedding budget being spent on a wedding dress.

So you need to think about how much money you have to spend on the overall vision for your big day so you're not going to regret spending too much on the wedding dress. Of course there's the option of buying your wedding dress from a local wedding boutique. But if you're on a budget, this will likely mean you're going to have to delay your wedding or make cutbacks on other elements of your wedding.

Buy a wedding dress online? Visit a Wedding Boutique

It may sound like the sort of advice that's at odds with what we do here at Bridaltastic, but we're actually quite serious about this. By trying on different styles of wedding dresses, you'll quickly get an idea for which styles of dress suit you best and which ones you think you'll feel most comfortable wearing.

You may find that some bridal boutiques won't allow you to visit without making an appointment first and others may be unwilling to let you try on wedding dresses. So pre-plan your visit and ensure that they will allow you to try on the dresses. Of course, it goes without saying, but you should ensure you do not reveal your intentions to buy a wedding dress online, nor mention your limited budget if that's the case.

You may feel a little devious doing this, but with wedding boutiques are more than prepared for brides to be spending an hour or two trying on dresses and walking away without deciding on the day. So it will not be anything out of the ordinary if you try on a few different dresses without actually committing to buying one on the day. To make it easier for you, it may be worth visiting at least two or three boutiques as this will allow you to try on more dresses more freely.

Also be prepared to try on dress styles you may not have envisioned for your big day. Remember, the point in doing this is to try on a range of styles, rather than to find a wedding dress you plan to walk down the aisle wearing. So if the staff in the boutique recommend styles for you, go with it as they be able to find you a style of wedding dress which much better suits your size and shape.

Get measured up and buy based on your current size

This may seem strange to a lot of people, but whether you plan to buy a wedding dress online or in store, you shouldn't be tempted to buy a smaller size based on your expected dress size when your wedding comes around.

Even if you plan to lose weight for your wedding, your wedding dress can be altered in order to fit your shape closer to you big day. It’s going to be far easier to alter and take a dress in than it is trying to squeeze into one that’s way too snug. If this was the case and you bought a smaller dress in expectation of dropping a dress size, but this didn't happen. It's going to be more difficult to "release" the dress (which is seamstress talk for "make the dress bigger").

If you've chosen to visit a bridal boutique to try on their dresses to get an idea for the style of dress you'd like for your wedding. This is an ideal opportunity to see if one (or more) of the boutiques will properly measure you and provide you with the dimensions which will make it easier when you come to ordering your dress online.

Be prepared for numerous fittings and alterations

Once you've bought your wedding dress, it's highly unlikely that it will fit you perfectly, especially if you've bought one a little looser to ensure a perfect fit. In fact, a quick search online for 'wedding dress alterations' should highlight how many brides to be, rely on these sorts of services with dozens of shops setup specifically to carry out dress alterations.

Most companies offering wedding dress alterations should be able to carry out the work within a reasonable time frame, but you should still probably allow 3-6 months after buying the dress, for the alterations to be carried and the dress to be ready for your big day. So you should ideally begin dress shopping at least 6 months prior to your planned wedding date to ensure all of the alterations can be carried out in time.

Of course, the other option is to take a look at the wedding dresses right here on Bridaltastic. We work closely with wedding dress dressmakers to source the dresses directly as well as only selling online through our online wedding dress store which helps to ensure we can keep our prices low.

Match the wedding dress style to fit your figure

Below are merely suggestions on the types of wedding dress silhouettes which may help show off your figure and help make you look your best on your big day. This information is merely meant as guidance to help you decide on a look for your wedding.

Of course, no two women have the same shape and look, so we always advise that you at least try on a few styles at a wedding dress boutique first to get an idea for the styles that suit you best and that you feel most comfortable wearing before deciding on a wedding dress style.

Athletic, Tall and Thin Figure - Straight figure with no defined waist

For women with these figures with a straighter figure, dress styles for you to consider include the Ball Gown, Mermaid, Sheath and may well suit you best

Full Figured - Large all-round figure

For women with this type of figure, a dress style that helps to soften your figure such as the A-line and Empire may well suit you best.

Hourglass Figure - Defined hips, bust and waist

For women with this type of figure, most wedding dress styles will help show off your curves such as the Mermaid, A-line, Ball Gown, Mermaid and Sheath.

Apple Figure - Wide torso, broad shoulders and a full bust

For women with this type of figure, a dress style that helps to soften your figure such as the A-line, Ball Gown and Empire may well suit you best.

Pear Figure - Defined waist with hips wider than shoulders

For women with this type of figure as with an apple figure, a dress style that helps to soften your figure such as the A-line, Ball Gown and Empire may well suit you best.

Petite - Smaller frame and under 5ft

For women with this type of stature, a dress style that helps to give the appearance of height will benefit you most without drowning you in fabric. The A-line, Empire and Sheath may well suite you the best.

Still unsure about the styles for your shape or figure?

As we mentioned above, you should never restrict yourself from any style of wedding dress without first trying on a few of the silhouettes you think will both suit your shape and style, as well as being those you feel you will feel most comfortable wearing on your big day.

Wedding Dress Silhouette Guide

Find out more about the different bridal gown silhouette's and follow the links below to see a range of different wedding dresses all available to buy online today with huge savings over buying from other online stores and wedding boutiques.

A-line Wedding Dress Silhouette Guide

A-line Wedding Dress Silhouette Guide

The A-line style of wedding dress silhouette is very popular amongst brides to be as it can flatter all body shapes. The name A-line comes from the fact that this style starts as a fitted top and gradually becomes wider as you follow the dress down towards the floor leading to the class ‘A’ shape.

This wedding dress style will naturally shape the bust area, whilst at the same time slim the waist and skim over the hips, so it neither looks top or bottom-heavy. It's a great silhouette for many brides as this classic and chic style can easily be partnered with many different necklines, waistlines and fabrics to showcase your best features.

Ball Gown Wedding Dress Silhouette Guide

Ball Gown Wedding Dress Silhouette Guide

Let's face it, most little girls grew up watching Disney princesses dreaming of wearing a wonderful ball gown and dancing with prince charming. So what could be more fitting than wearing a ball gown of your very own to your own big day

The ball gown wedding dress silhouette features a fitted bodice and full-length skirt. Brides of all shapes can feel like a princess for the day, with the option of a hooped underskirt emphasise the perfect shape. Choosing a larger hooped skirt can potentially give the ball gown the appearance of a smaller waist.

As such, it makes a beautiful choice for large and traditional weddings and is perfect for brides who want to feel like a princess on their big day. It can also suit all body shapes, providing the fullness of the skirt balances the wearer’s height and size.

Beach Wedding Dress Silhouette Guide

Beach Wedding Dress Silhouette Guide

The beach wedding dress silhouette is well suited to those planning on spending some time with the sand between their toes and the waves brushed up against their wedding dress. But it's a lot more than just a style designed for beach weddings.

The loose flowing materials are ideal for those planning on getting married in warmer climates, allowing the air to move freely and in turn helping to keep you cool. This style is suitable for all shapes, with loose flowing fabrics falling freely without being too clingy or causing you to overheat in warmer climates at home and abroad.

Empire Wedding Dress Silhouette Guide

Empire Wedding Dress Silhouette Guide

The Empire Wedding Dress Silhouette typically have a higher waistline that sits below the bosom with the long flowing dress to the floor helping to give the appearance of height and long legs. So this style is ideal for petite brides, looking to wear a dress that gives them the appearance of looking taller.

The beach wedding dress is not the only dress suited to an outdoor wedding. With the looser fitting around the stomach and bosom, this should help to keep you cooler outdoors during a summer wedding or abroad in warmer climates.

For pregnant brides to be, the dress elegantly flows down from the bosom, so should help to flow over your baby bump and keep you comfortable, without feeling too clingy like some of the other styles and designs.

High / Low Wedding Dress Silhouette Guide

High / Low Wedding Dress Silhouette Guide

The High / Low Wedding Dress Silhouette is well suited to those who both want to show off their legs in their wedding dress, but at the same time want the look of a longer, more traditional wedding dress train.

Much like the beach and other wedding dresses, this style would also be just as suitable for outdoor weddings where you want to stay cool, as anywhere else. Some brides to be getting married in a less formal setting often opt for this style of wedding dress since it’s considered to be less formal.

Mermaid / Trumpet Wedding Dress Silhouette Guide

Mermaid / Trumpet Wedding Dress Silhouette Guide

The Mermaid / Trumpet Wedding Dress Silhouette is a glamorous dress, designed to hug the bodies curves, before flaring out at the bottom giving that mermaid / trumpet / fishtail appearance to the dress

so it’s especially loved by brides to be that have curves ‘in all the right places’. But can also be just as suitable for those with a straighter figure too. This style of dress is especially suited to brides to be who are body confident, as there is nowhere to hide any lumps and bumps you may not want people to see as the dress follows the contours of the body.

There are many variations of this dress with different styles of flair at the bottom of the dress, with some designed with a softer flare that begins higher up the legs.

Sheath / Column Wedding Dress Silhouette Guide

Sheath / Column Wedding Dress Silhouette Guide

The Sheath / Column Wedding Dress Silhouette closely trace your curves on the way down, suiting those with a straighter as well as hourglass figures wanting to show off their curves. Looking less extravagant than a typical wedding dress, they’re well suited to brides who are looking to keep things more low key.

For brides that don’t want to stay in their daytime wedding dress and want something less showy and more toned down, but still want to be the centre of attention on their big day. A sheath wedding dress will also make an ideal second wedding dress if required.

Tea-Length and Cocktail Wedding Dress Silhouette Guide

Tea-Length and Cocktail Wedding Dress Silhouette Guide

The Tea-Length and Cocktail (short) Wedding Dress Silhouette is well suited to those who both want to show off their legs in their wedding dress, but at the same time do not want a train or the worry of stumbling on the bottom of their wedding dress. This is especially the case for those who may not regularly wear dresses or indeed long dresses and may worry about spending the day moving around in a long wedding dress.

Much like the beach and other wedding dresses, this style would also be just as suitable for outdoor weddings where you want to stay cool, as anywhere else. Some brides to be getting married in a less formal setting often opt for this style of wedding dress since it’s considered to be less formal.

Ready to go Wedding Dress Shopping?

Take a look at the Bridaltastic range of wedding dresses we have available to buy online today.