Whether going for a single garment or separates, the first thing to decide is the overall profile. The profile is the silhouette or outline of the outfit and there are only a few main types.
Each profile can be created by combining different bodices, necklines, waistlines, hemlines and trains to produce a different gown every time. After you've read the rest of this article. you may want to check out our individual articles on each element for more information.
Let's now take a look at the most popular Wedding Dress profiles.
With a fitted bodice, this dress has a defined waist line and a skirt with smooth lines travelling outwards from the hips.
This profile can come with different degrees of ‘bigness’ (a key factor for many women in selecting a dress), from relatively closely cut to the leg, to falling a reasonable distance away from the Bride’s feet.
With a fitted bodice and a very full skirt, the Ballgown is as big and traditional as it gets.
Typically floor length, it can also work at ankle or ballerina length (see our article entitled Hemlines for more details). This dress is your typical ‘princess dress’, so if you want to know what it looks like 'in the flesh', think Princess Diana, Sarah Ferguson or more recently, Jordan!