Dressing for your wedding can be intimidating, especially for a plus-size bride. But there are oodles of ideas and strategies that can help you accentuate your best features no matter what size you are. Contemporary fashion is all about helping women embrace their curves, and wedding season is no exception. Especially in the bridal industry, vendors are taking a special interest in plus-size brides, helping them show off their fabulous figures on the most special day of their lives.
Feeling comfortable is the key when choosing your wedding attire, so let our list of top five accessories help you look and feel beautiful!
Well-constructed lingerie is the secret to making your figure look amazing under your wedding dress. If you're wearing a strapless gown, a corset will cinch in your waist and give you an hourglass figure that your groom will drool over. If you choose to wear a regular bra, make sure it fits correctly and is snug to your body. You don't want your straps falling down or cutting into your shoulders. Check out longline bras for more coverage and support than regular bras -- most longline bras have removable straps so you can alter them according to the type of dress you have. Spanx are also a hot commodity for smoothing the tummy and thighs, making your figure look flawless.
And let's not forget your wedding night lingerie! There are plenty of companies that specialize in plus-size lingerie that will perfectly hug your curves. If you don't have luck at your favorite department store, go online for gorgeous nighties, negligees and bustiers made especially in your size.
Choosing shoes to coordinate with your wedding gown can be tricky, but the right pair will work wonders! Overall, aim for a pump. Peep-toe pumps will elongate your legs more than other shoe styles can, and they show off that pedicure at the same time. Stick with a heel that isn't too thin or too thick -- a mid-range heel, about 3 or 3 -1/2 inches tall and 1/2 to 1 inch wide, will do more to streamline your figure. Stay away from ankle straps and buckles, which will only make your legs appear shorter. Another trick to lengthen the leg is to wear a pointed-toe shoe as opposed to a round- or square-toe. The tapered toe will make your legs seem to go on forever, which your guests will notice when your groom goes for the garter!
If you aren't into heels, opt for a flat shoe with embellishments. Not only might you be more comfortable, but you'll also have some great, attention-grabbing bling under your dress!
No matter whether you go for heels or flats, make sure your shoes fit correctly. If a shoe is too small, it's bound to be uncomfortable and make your feet look bigger than they really are.
Your hair is an accessory? Sure, it is! The right hairstyle on your wedding day can shed pounds off your look, making you glow and appear slimmer. Since there are many options out there, do your research to see what will fit your face shape the best. Tricia Parker from Aria Salon in Alpharetta, Ga., says, "If your face is round, it's best to create volume at the crown, elongating your face and making it look slimmer. Also, to create a longer neckline and torso, wear your hair off your neck." Check out hairstyles of celebrities with a similar face shape to yours, or upload your picture to a makeover site to see how certain hairstyles actually look on you!
When deciding how you'll wear your hair, don't forget to take into consideration the style of your dress. If you're wearing a strapless gown with a beautiful neckline, you may want to wear your hair up to show off that part of your dress! For simple, breezier gowns, wavy hair that cascades down your back looks fresh and relaxed.
You can also wear headpieces to add a little bling to your 'do. Try a sparkly brooch, silk flower or crystal hair comb with matching earrings to accentuate your hairstyle.
Jewelry completes your look by bringing in a classic or daring element to your wedding wardrobe. There are a lot of options out there, but focus on pieces that draw attention to your best assets. If you have gorgeous eyes, wear earrings that make them pop! If you aren't so thrilled about your arms, you probably shouldn't wear that chunky bracelet you borrowed from your friend. And if you want people to look at your face and not your cleavage, don't wear a necklace with a long chain!
Bottom line: Try not to wear anything that's too dainty or too chunky. Any thin chains or tiny studs won't stand out, and heavy pieces are attention-grabbers. Also, stay away from chokers or tight-fitting necklaces, which will only look too small for your frame.
If you're self-conscious about your shoulders or arms, plan on covering up with a wrap or a shawl. With so many elegant styles and luxurious fabrics to choose from, you'll be able to find one that perfectly accents your gown. Above and beyond the usual suspects, like silk and lace, you can have a wrap or bolero custom-made to match the beading on your dress, which will give you a cohesive look on your big day. If you're going to be a winter wonderland bride, consider a beautiful cloak to bundle up with in the chilly weather. Ivory, white, soft gray and even different types of fur or faux fur all complement your bridal look. What's more, you'll stay warm! Be sure to take a few photographs styled with your wrap -- you'll look extremely elegant.
Whatever wrap you choose, be sure the piece fits you comfortably. It shouldn't be too big or too small. Oversized wraps will seem baggy, covering up too much of your body, and wraps that run on the small side will look too tight.
Take a look at this photo album to see all of our style suggestions for the unique and unexpected style bride!
- 10 Old, New, Borrowed and Blue Bridal Accessories
- 10 Dress Trends to Steal from the Runway and Wear Down the Aisle
- 5 Wedding Dress Silhouettes and Fabrics for Plus-size Brides
- 5 Dress Shopping Tips for Plus-size Brides
- Advice from the "Say Yes to the Dress Bridal Consultants"
- Best Wedding Hair Accessories
- Shopping with Sarah: Your Perfect Plus-size Gown
- Bridal Curves. "Plus Size Bridal Accessories." (Sept. 5, 2010).http://www.bridalcurves.com/products/category/plus-size-bridal-accessories
- Parker, Tricia. Stylist. Personal interview conducted by Jessica Willis. Sept. 7, 2010.