Strapless gowns are the most popular style, and that trend does not show any signs of ending anytime soon. Although the majority of brides wear them, many brides do not know how a strapless gown should really fit. To make sure that you do not have any mishaps on your wedding day, here is what every bride should know about fitting a strapless gown.
The first thing to know is that not all strapless gowns are created equal. And even if you have worn other strapless dresses, such as a prom dress or a sundress, you may not know what to look for in a strapless wedding dress. This is because the weight and complex design of a wedding gown calls for a lot more structure to support it than a regular dress does.
When you are shopping for a strapless wedding gown, the first thing to look at is the structure of the bodice. A strapless dress must have boning in it to keep it from falling down. A bit of smocking or a stretchy neckline is not going to be enough. Some of the inexpensive mass-produced gowns may be lacking in this structure. If you should happen to fall in love with a dress like that, then your best bet is to have a seamstress add spaghetti straps to it. A very pretty look is to have the straps beaded with crystals or pearls to match your bridal jewelry.
Many of the finest strapless gowns will have an inner corset. This is a built in boned piece that fits very snugly at the waist and through the torso, while allowing the dress to float over the structure of the corset. This is a great solution for making the boning less visible in a dress made of lightweight fabrics, such as organza.
An inner corset is also an excellent solution for a strapless dress with an empire waistline, because just boning to the empire seam under the bust is not enough to ensure that your dress will stay up! If you have a long torso, make sure that your gown's inner corset is ordered extra long; otherwise the corset will end up pulling the bodice down to your waist, leaving too much exposed at the top of the bodice.
The number one thing that is going to keep your strapless wedding gown in place is to have it fit tightly through the waist and at the top of the bodice. Dress fitters everywhere are used to having brides say, "It's so tight I can barely breathe!". If you want to breathe, don't choose a strapless gown! As long as the seams are not pulling, it is probably not too tight. A well fitting strapless gown should never gap away from the body at the top, nor should you need tape to stick it to your skin!
The other issue that concerns many brides is the underarm squish that comes from having the top of the strapless dress fit snugly …