Wedding Dress Silhouettes

The best way to decide on your preferred style of wedding dress is to settle on the silhouette you want to wear. The word "silhouette" refers mainly to the skirt style (though some also use the word to include the style of the bodice; it depends on who you talk to), and the fullness or shape that you wish your skirt to have. If you need a little guidance in that area, here is a basic guide to your wedding dress silhouettes to get you started:

Ball gown

Think "Cinderella". This is the most traditional silhouette, and it generally entails a big, poofy skirt with a real princess-y feel to it. These wedding dresses are the types that most little girls dream of wearing, and they flatter many body types, but especially those who are pear-shaped or especially slim.


An A-line gown is a popular style for those who love a full skirt but who do not want to go all the way to ball gown.

They have a very classic, old Hollywood feel to them. Think Grace Kelly at her wedding, or Audrey Hepburn at the Oscars. The best part is that these types of gowns look stunning on everyone!


A sheath dress, also known as "column", is a sleek and body-hugging style gown. The top is fitted, while the skirt follows the natural curve of your body. These types of dresses tend to flatter the tallest and slimmest (since they tend to be clingy and sexy), but if you are short and thin these can add some height to you!

Mermaid or trumpet

A mermaid or trumpet gown refers to the type of skirt that is very fitted right up until the bottom, where it dramatically flairs out to create the shape that gives its name. This is also a nice choice for several body types - it can add curves to narrower women, and curvy Christina Hendricks types can also rejoice. It makes those curves sing!


An empire dress is the type with a high waistline and a straight, somewhat shapeless skirt. While that may sound boring, it is anything but - these dresses are soft, sweet, and very romantic. Think "Pride and Prejudice" with a modern twist, though some have a more Greco-Roman look to them. These dresses are also helpful for hiding any tummy insecurities and are popular choices for pregnant brides, though they flatter most body types.

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