Wedding dress selection tips for tall brides

By on November 6, 2017

For many women, being tall is a dream! So, if you are taller than average, you will most likely have had others tell you how they envy your height. However, you know how this factor makes it exceptionally difficult to find dresses that fit you. As the general fashion industry is more geared towards creating dresses for women of average or slightly above average height, both tall and short women do not find as many options when they go shopping.

Fortunately, wedding dress shopping is not as difficult as finding regular dresses for your tall figure. Most wedding dresses are longer than average gowns and evening dresses, but it can still be difficult to find one that covers your toes, when you are six feet tall or more.

Here are some tips to help you find the dress and complete your look so it matches your expectations.

1.The good news is that wedding dress measurements usually cater to tall girls

Most fashion designers have their latest collections walk down the runway, and this means it is worn by models who are quite tall! So, your options aren’t too few. Additionally, even the bride of average height ends up being taller, once she wears her wedding heels. So, designers leave some extra length, to factor these few inches in. This article on the Long elegant legs Blog mentions that most clothiers design dresses so it suits a bride who is almost six feet tall. So, if you are above six feet, you should have several options, although you may not be able to walk down the aisle in high heels. But, with such an enviable height, wearing flats or tiny kitten heels wouldn’t be a damper on your style, don’t you think?

2.A good bridal shop will have the right solution for you

When you go gown shopping, don’t forget to discuss your height concerns with the salesperson. Since your designer dress will mostly be made-to-order, they can ask to have it made longer than usual. This way, you will not have much trouble finding a dress that is just the right length for you.

Once you make your pick from the store inventory, the general process is to then place your order for the dress in your size, and receive it after a few weeks. At this time, the gown will be custom-created by the design-house. Added length is not usually a concern. Some bridal designers, agree to add extra length to their designs to match your height requirements for a reasonable cost. So, don’t compromise on your dream of wearing a great gown with all the features that you need, by choosing off-the-rack. Instead, shop early so you have enough time to have a dress that is made-to-order.

3.You can still buy off-the-rack

Although it is best if you do your shopping early, you may not always have the luxury of having your gown made-to-order. Always aim to hit the shops early and order your gown, so you get it in time for your wedding day. However, if this isn’t possible, you still have enough options to buy off-the-rack. All you have to do is choose a wedding shop with several designer collections to choose from, like at Best for Bride. As different designers follow different measurement charts when planning their designs, your chances of finding longer wedding gowns are better at shops with extensive inventories, than your average local bridal store. So, find a wedding salon that stocks several designer collections, including plus size gowns, as you should be able to find more dress choices at such places. Discuss your length needs when you book your appointment at the salon, so the shop can keep suitable dresses ready for you to try on when you attend your appointment.

4.Alterations are a given

Even if you aren’t a tall bride, you will most likely need wedding dress alterations. In fact, nearly 90% of brides need wedding dress alterations. So, don’t excessively stress over it. Increasing the length is just one of the alterations that can be performed without much ado. Depending on the type of gown you choose, the alteration required may differ. Sometimes, the hemline may have to be lowered by using matching fabric in the layers above it. In other cases, extra fabric may be added to the lower part of the skirt to accommodate your height. When you work with a talented seamstress, she will know the right type of alteration that is required to achieve the intended effect. Never entrust the job to your regular tailor, as this can do more damage than good. Only a tailor who is familiar with wedding dresses will be able to do handle the task, as wedding dresses are more complex in comparison to regular gowns and formal dresses.

5.Focus on wedding accessories

The best thing about being tall is that you can wear bold,statement jewelry without looking cluttered or being buried in it. So, don’t worry if you aren’t able to find a dress that is elaborate and rich in details. You can always achieve a similar effect with the right choice of accessories. By opting for more sparkly jewelry with elaborate details, you can compensate for a simple wedding dress and silhouette. Unlike the limitations in dresses, you do not have any restrictions on choosing your jewelry.

However, if your intention is to dress up in such a way that your height is not in focus, you may like to use fewer and bigger pieces of jewelry that will draw attention to that particular position. While considering wedding accessories, take a closer look at veils and belts or sashes that can effectively break up your length and make you look less taller than you actually are.

6.Choose wedding dress features that enhance your best assets

When you are caught in a maze of wedding dress features to choose from, focus on finding a dress that brings out your best. Not all tall women have the same body structure. Different women have different body shapes, and not all silhouettes look great on every body type. Identify your body shape based on this previous article, and then opt for a silhouette that looks best on you.

In general, ball gowns with dropped waistlines (like the basque style) are recommended for taller brides who don’t want to emphasize their height. If you have slender arms, you may like to look at sleeveless and strapless necklines that shift attention to your upper body. Definitely avoid the sheath style, as it can add extra vertical inches to your overall length, and you do not want that. Similarly avoid raised waistlines, like the empire waist, as these have a prominent skirt section, that can be overwhelming given your tall stature.

7.Consider custom-made if you aren’t satisfied with your available options

For no reason whatsoever, should a bride have to compromise on her wedding dress dream? If you are unable to find one that meets your expectations, but you know exactly what you want, consider having it made. A talented dress designer will be able to design a dress that will fit your exact measurements. You can also have every feature that you desire in your bridal gown, by choosing this route. So, once you find a talented person like this, you will have no trouble bringing your wedding vision to life. Don’t worry about the cost. When you compare the additional price you will incur to get a gown altered, it will usually be comparable. The only thing to look for is that the designer you choose has the expertise and experience to handle this task.

We mentioned earlier that wedding dresses are complex garments, with boning, multiple fabric layers and more detailed embellishments than other dresses. So, your average tailor may not be able to do justice when attempting to create or even alter a wedding gown. You must approach a professional to get the job done right. Our in-house designer team at Best for Bride, may be able to help you get what you need. Find out more about our bespoke wedding dress design service by visiting this page.

8.Think of fabric to decide on the final look

The fabric of your dress is just as important as the silhouette and style, in creating the final look. Choose the dress fabric based on whether you want to show-off your height or draw attention away from it. Stiff fabric in the right places can add more dimension and texture, giving you a fuller look. On the other hand, sleek soft fabric with a characteristic sheen will help you look slender and even taller. For a curvy silhouette, ball gowns made from tulle fabric are your best choice. Sateen finishes look good on brides who have an hourglass figure and wish to show-off their natural curves. Similarly, fit and flare dresses that have a distinction at the waist or an embellished bodice that stands out from the skirt are a good choice when you want to draw emphasis to your natural shape. Avoid full-sleeves and very high necklines, as these will cover up your assets. However, they will add more length, and this may be unflattering on the taller bride.

9.Think of your wedding shoe options early

The general wedding advice is to buy your shoes in time for your first fitting appointment. However, the case is different when you are a taller-than-average bride. Choose your wedding shoes before shopping for your dress, so you know how much change should be made to the length of the gown to fit you correctly. When you are tall, even small heels may make it necessary to add extra fabric to cover your feet. You should know if this is necessary, when your gown order is created. It will be difficult to add extra fabric if the gown doesn’t extend beyond your ankles, and is short after it has been created.

We know that tall brides may not have a world of options in wedding shoes. However, don’t limit yourself to wearing something that you aren’t really happy with. Explore options like handmade shoes or shoe accessories that can instantly dress up your shoes and make it more attractive. Think out of the box, and you won’t be disappointed with having to settle for what is available.

10.Wear a petticoat when trying the dress on, or it can end up being shorter when you later do

This article on the Wedding Chaos Blog is absolutely right in advising brides to wear a petticoat to their shopping and fitting sessions, if they intend to wear one on the wedding day.

Your dress will rise by few inches if you have a petticoat on, and this can throw off all your alteration measurements. After all the pain you take to get your dress to fit correctly, you do not want to be disappointed on your big day when it ends up shorter than it should be, just because of the addition of a petticoat. Also, a long petticoat may peep out from below your dress, and this can ruin the entire look. So, make it a point to wear all the undergarments you have chosen for your wedding day, to your fitting sessions. This will save you a lot of trouble later.

At Best for Bride, we stock dresses that are suitable for tall brides, and also offer alterations to customize wedding gowns that may be shorter than you need. The Alfred Angelo collection is one collection that has ready dresses in longer sizes, apart from others. So, if you are a tall bride, who is hunting for the perfect wedding gown, you know where to look. Browse through our online gallery to see what options we offer, and also contact us if you need any further assistance. Book your appointment with us today, and be on the way to becoming a beautiful bride, whether you are short or tall, curvy or slim, modern or traditional!

About Olga Pomeransky

Olga is manager at Best for Bride since 2005. Currently Best for Bride operates 4 bridal stores in Canada (Toronto, Etobicoke, Hamilton and Barrie). Best for Bride sells wedding, bridesmaids, mob dresses and more. http://www.BestForBride.com

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