Las Vegas brides, choosing your wedding dress is one of your most important decisions for your Las Vegas wedding. While many brides prefer to look through magazines or store racks, we’ve created this page for the ambitious bride who wants to research her options and discover what best fits her body. With skirts, bodices, straps, and sleeves, here is a detailed list of wedding dress styles. Feel free to combine styles to design your favorite wedding gown silhouettes. Then, ladies, it’s time to hit the bridal gown shops (see “Wedding Dress Shops” page).
Skirt Shapes and Silhouettes: The skirt of the gown and the overall look of a gown
A-Line: This gown’s skirt forms an upside-down triangle shape or “A,” beginning from the waist and flaring outward as it lengthens. With no horizontal lines, this gown makes a bride look taller and minimizes her hips. Even better, this shape flatters every woman’s figure.
Ball Gown: This gown accentuates a woman’s waist with a fitted natural waistline or drop waist that leads to an exceptionally full skirt. Often likened to a Cinderella gown, this wedding dress is one of the most romantic options. Whether a woman is tall or of average height, this shape looks stunning on any bride with a full-figure or hourglass shape.
Empire: This gown has a cropped bodice, with a seam directly below the bust line, that leads to slim skirt. Called the “Empire” dress for Napoleon’s Josephine, this gown makes a bride look like royalty on her wedding day. Since this shape greatly accentuates a small bust and elongates a slim figure, this dress is the perfect choice for the petite bride.
Goddess: This gown drapes across a bride’s body with long, loose layers of fabric. Inspired by Grecian goddesses, this gown is often belted to accentuate a slim waist or can be wrapped to create a fuller bust. While there are several ways to wear the Goddess gown, this striking shape targets the thin bride who above-average height and possesses strong natural features, from her neckline to her legs.
Slip: This gown reveals a bride’s curves, from her bust to her hips. Known as the most revealing shape, this gown fits exceptionally close to the body, often with a hemline that reaches near the ankles for balance. Whether a bride is tall or petite, this gown looks ravishing on any woman who wants to especially accentuate her figure.
Sheath: This gown uses darts and strategic seams to follow the natural line of a bride’s body. While this shape is close-fitting, it is much more understated and elegant than the slip dress. With its ability to hint at subtle curves and present a beautiful elongated shape, this gown works so well for slim brides who are tall or petite.
Mermaid: This gown features a form-fitting bodice, which remains tight through the hips and thighs, then flares near the knees. Likened to a mermaid fin, this modern dress design has been successfully worn by celebrities like Eva Longoria-Parker, Beyoncé Knowles, and Jennifer Lopez. While some women feel uncomfortable walking in this tight style, this gown is best for brides with an hourglass figure who want to embrace their curves.
Princess: This gown is characterized by vertical seams, which run from the neckline, through the bodice and waist, along the hips, and into a flared skirt. Similar to an A-Line, this gown can flatter any figure, slimming the hips and adding the impression of height. With this shape, every bride will feel like a princess on her wedding day.
Bodice Types: The portion of the wedding gown that fits your bust and waist
Corset: Fashioned after the ladies’ undergarment of the same name, the corset is form-fitting and often laces up the back. Complete with boning (like vertical underwire) for figure definition, this style flatters a small waist and enhances a bride’s bust.
Empire: With a high waistline directly beneath the bust, this bodice fits well with the A-Line or Sheath skirts to create the Empire silhouette. Especially made for brides with small busts, this style lengthens a woman’s frame and enhances her bust for an elegant look.
Halter: Similar to halter tops, this sleeveless style has a strap that extends from the front and wraps around your neck. Often paired with a bodice that’s low-cut in the front or the back, this sexy style allows most brides to display a strong collarbone, smooth shoulders, beautiful back, and toned arms.
Insert: This style has the same affect as a tank top strategically worn beneath a low-cut shirt. For any low-cut fronts or V-neck gowns, a beautiful insert allows coverage to hide a bride’s cleavage. As a style that can be worn by women of all bust sizes, the insert is often a different texture from the main bodice to add femininity and allure.
Midriff: Unlike its cousin, the bare midriff, this style does not reveal a belly button ring. Rather, this bodice is called the midriff because it fits closely around the rib cage. This style is an excellent choice for any bride who would like to show off her small waist or hourglass figure.
Overlay: This style includes additional material that lays over the bodice. The overlaying piece of fabric is often patterned and sheer to create an elegant aura. Designed to provide full coverage, this style looks so sophisticated on full-figured brides.
Princess: Best paired with the Princess skirt, this bodice holds two vertical seams that begin at the shoulders, skim the hips, and continue into the skirt. With its long lines, this slimming style flatters brides of every figure.
Surplice: This bodice includes additional fabric that cross-wraps, either in the front or the back. Whether a bride is petite or full-figured, this style flatters a bride’s bust without being revealing.
Ruching: This form-fitting style offers material that is gathered widthwise across the waist. Often seen with beautiful bead and rhinestone designs atop the ruched material, this bodice balances a bride with wide hips and a small bust.
Tank: Similar to a tank top shirt, this sleeveless bodice provides wide armholes and often a scoop neck. Well-paired with an A-Line skirt or Sheath skirt, this versatile style can be worn by brides of any height or body type.
Sleeves and Straps: The portion that covers your arms or goes over your shoulders
Strapless: This popular style contains no straps or sleeves. Almost all brides can wear this style. Before purchasing, brides should test this style in the store to ensure the gown will not fall down over time or whenever she raises her arms.
Halter Strap: This strap wraps behind a woman’s neck. Best worn by brides with a beautiful back and shoulders, the halter adds dramatic sexiness to any ensemble.
Spaghetti Straps: With one spaghetti strap over each shoulder, these thin straps add subtle sensuality and show off all the same areas as a strapless gown. Also, spaghetti straps are popular with brides who want elegant solutions sewn onto a strapless gown so they won’t have to worry during the dance party.
Cap Sleeves: These sleeves cover the very top of a bride’s shoulder and nothing more. Often made of lace or the same material as the bodice, these rounded sleeves offer a delicate touch to any wedding gown.
Petal Sleeves: This style includes several pieces of fabric overlaid atop one another, similar to several rose petals sitting on each shoulder. As a graceful addition to a wedding gown, this design is chosen by many slender brides who prefer subtle sleeves to strapless gowns.
T-shirt Sleeves: Similar to its namesake, T-shirt sleeves extends from the bodice, runs across the shoulders, and covers the bride’s upper arms. This style flatters women of all sizes. Many modern brides choose this design for the modesty it provides.
Now that you’ve reviewed wedding dress styles popular with Las Vegas brides, it’s time to step beyond into the realm of real wedding gowns. Bring notes of your favorite styles with you to bridal boutiques and wedding dress stores. But don’t be afraid to try on something new too. You may be surprised at what styles suit you. Review our “Wedding Dress Shops” page to prepare for your wedding dress search and shopping trips. Attend a local bridal show, like the Bridal Spectacular, to see fashion shows and preview current styles. Most of all, Las Vegas brides, enjoy the wedding dress experience!
Author: Allyson Siwajian, Staff Writer for Bridal Spectacular