Your Guide to Wedding Dress Silhouettes

Your Guide to Wedding Dress Silhouettes

Your Guide to Wedding Dress Silhouettes. Mobile Image

Feb 15, 2019

Let’s break down the top wedding dress silhouette styles, so that you can take on wedding dress shopping like a pro!

Ready to find your wedding dress? One of the first places to start is learning what a silhouette is and the different types that are available. As a first time bride, getting married is a completely new experience! It can feel overwhelming to walk into a world filled with all of these new words and pieces and you don’t have the first idea about what to call them.


It helps to walk in with some sort of idea as to what you’re looking for, but you can’t do that if you don’t know what’s out there. What are these dresses called and which one will look good on your unique shape? Of course at The Poinsett Bride we are here to help you with this every step of the way, but this post will also help to give you some ideas and background on dress types and what to look for.


We want to make sure you find the best dress for your body type, that you feel comfortable and beautiful, and that when you say ‘YES’ to that dress, you can say it fully confident and sure of your choice!


The Most Common Wedding Dress Silhouette Types


Below are some of the major dress types. Read on to find a description of each, how they fit, and things to know about each of them!



A-line dresses look just the way they sound... A-shaped! They are narrow at the top (like the tip of an A) and descend over the body getting wider at the bottom (like the shape of the bottom of the letter A).


The A-line wedding dress silhouette tends to be universally flattering. It works very well for any body type/height. This dress type highlights the smallest point of your waist, which is what makes it a very flattering option.


A-line dresses can be considered a mix between a sheath and ball gown dress, and they are usually very comfortable and offer good flexibility and movement.


Best for: not showing off your lower half. As mentioned above, this dress tends to be universally flattering, so it’s a great option for any and all body types!



If you are looking to really show of your curves, then a mermaid dress is definitely for you! This silhouette is known for its curve hugging, and fitted bust.


Just as it sounds, the mermaid is fitted, body-hugging throughout the bust, waist, hip, and thighs, and flares out in a dramatic "tail" below the knee at the "join line" (seam where the flared skirt is attached to the bottom of the dress).


Something important to keep in mind if you’re planning on a mermaid dress, is that they tend to be a bit less flexible and easy to move around in. So if you plan on dancing the night away this style can be difficult because your knees are meant to stay close together. Perhaps you could consider a 2nd dress for the reception and party!

Best for: curvy ladies!


Fit & Flare:

Fit and flare is similar to a mermaid, but it’s a better option for the brides who are hesitant to commit to the dramatic mermaid silhouette. Much like the mermaid dress, fit and flare hugs your body through your hips, thighs, and behind. Unlike the mermaid, it flares out above the knees. This means you have a lot more movement and flexibility in your legs than you would with a mermaid silhouette, making it much easier for dancing the night away!


Best for: curvy ladies who want more comfort/flexibility than a mermaid dress.


Ball Gown:

A classic wedding dress that will remind you of a fairytale you read growing up. Ball gown dresses usually have a fitted bodice, sometimes with a corset and a wide, full skirt. The skirt is usually made by stiff fabric (like tulle) or many layers of fabric used to create a full, voluptuous skirt. The ball gown is one of the most formal and classic types of silhouettes.


Best for: Since it fits over your hips and lower torso it’s great for brides who want to cinche their waste. This fit will accentuate your waist shape and hide the legs and hips under the bigger skirt.



Sheath dresses skim the body and fall straight to the floor below the hips. These dresses tend to be stunning and elegant. Sheath dresses are super versatile! They have a lot less volume than a ball gown, but they look good in just about any type of fabric and style including beads, lace, satin, etc.


Because a sheath silhouette requires far less fabric than other gowns, they are great for brides who want and effortless gown. They are also very comfortable and easy to move around in, making them perfect for all of the dancing queens out there!


Best for: a slim or petite bride. The lighter load of fabric makes it so that the bride won’t be overpowered by the dress.


Like we said, we understand that stepping into a dress shop can be a bit overwhelming. There are so many options! Which one will look best on you? Where do you begin looking?


This doesn’t have to be your experience. At The Poinsett Bride we want you to feel confident and excited when you come in. Just by knowing the most common dress silhouette types and how they fit different body figures will help you to walk in with knowledge and give you the confidence to choose the dress of your dreams.