Glossary of wedding dresses and bridal gowns styles bookmark

These are the most common terms used to describe the sillouette of wedding dresses....

A-line wedding dress – Form fitting bodices that flares out from the waistline to a full skirt. These bridal gowns have a seamless waist.

Ball gown – Very full skirt that begins at the waist and continues to a formal length wedding gown.

Basque waist/V-waist – Dropped waist starting at or just below the waistline, and dips in the center creating a “V” shape.

Column skirt/straight skirt – Straight-line skirt with no flare or fullness at the hem or waistline.

Empire waist wedding gown – Waistline begins just below the bust.

Mermaid – Skirt that hugs body until it reaches the knees then ends in dramatic flare.

Sheaths – Usually have straight or close fitting skirts, accompanied by a form-fitting bodice. Skirt is often ankle length and sometimes has a slit in either the front, side, or back to make walking easier.

Tulle skirt/bouffant gown – A sheer, puffed-out skirt often made of stiffened silk, rayon, or nylon net.

Wedding gown styles

Additional terms useful when shopping for your wedding dress....

Back drape – A length of material attached either at the shoulder or the waist that flows over the back to floor length. In some cases can be removable.

Corset top/boned bodice – Form fitting, usually strapless bodice with boning and either laces or snap closures, worn as an undergarment in the past, now popular as outer-garment.

Crinoline – or Petticoats - stiffened slip worn under the dress to give the skirt height or “poof”. Most common is found in 2 styles. A-line and Full. A-line is 2 layers, Full is 3.

Gauntlets – Dress gloves extending above the wrist.

More wedding planning tips.