Wedding Dress Waistline Options


The waistline of a wedding gown can make a bride feel beautiful or make them self conscious, so it’s important that the bride choose the waistline that will best flatter her body shape. There are several waistline styles to choose from that work well with slimmer body types and styles that work better with fuller body types. Whatever the body type, there is a waistline that will enhance the bride’s figure and make her feel beautiful on her most special day.

Natural Waist wedding dress

Natural Waist

The natural waist style hits at the natural point of the waist where the natural indentation is between the hips and the ribs. This is a good style that goes well with a ball gown, A-line, or sheath style silhouette. It’s a style that works well with most body styles, due to the natural fall of the waist. It gives definition and shape to the bride’s body and flatters most who choose it.

 Empire Waist gown

Empire Waist

The empire waist has a higher waistline that falls just below the bust and then the rest of the dress flows out to the hem. This is a style that is well suited for a slimmer body type due to the flow-y style. A fuller figure could tend to look fuller than a bride wants without the defined shape to help give a more hourglass figure. The empire waist style dress is used often in casual and outdoor weddings, but with the right trimming, it can make a beautiful gown for a more formal indoor wedding.

Dropped waist

Dropped waist

The dropped waist style gown has a waistline that falls to the middle of the hip and works well for a slimmer body type, much for the same reason as the empire waist. For a bride that has a fuller middle, the dropped waist style could actually emphasize this if the dress is too formfitting, but could work well with a fuller style skirt. The skirt would hide a fuller stomach without drawing attention to the thicker waist. A dropped waist gown works well with a ball gown style, A-line and also the popular mermaid style gown that is fitted all the way down and then flairs out at the bottom. This style works well for any style of wedding, at any time of day.

Basque Waist

Basque Waist

The Basque waist falls just below the natural indentation of the waist and comes to a point just below the waist. This is a great style for drawing attention to the waist and helps to disguise a small tummy, but if the bride has a larger stomach or is pregnant, this is not a style that would be very flattering. The Basque style waist goes well with an A-line style gown, as well as a ball gown since the skirt flaring out balances the lower waist.

Both the Basque and dropped waistlines can be asymmetrical as well, adding flare and uniqueness to the gown. The asymmetrical style can also make a waist appear smaller and take attention away from a thick waist if the bride wants to achieve that.