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Beginners Guide to Finding the Ideal Wedding Gown

Updated: May 30

There’s no denying the complexity of wedding dress hunting. The pressure of finding the perfect outfit for one of the most memorable days of your life can be overwhelming at times, particularly with the many aspects to consider when deciding on fit, length, style, silhouette, and material. But, don’t panic yet, as we’ve compiled this guide on the most important considerations for when you start thinking about how you imagine your ideal bridal dress. 




Length: Full-Length, Midi, Short

The full length traditional wedding gown exudes both elegance and sophistication through its formality. Leaving the perfect amount of room for customization through fit and flow, this option can incorporate either a delicate feminine look with a flowing train or a dramatic aesthetic of royalty with an A-line flare. This length will undoubtedly make you the standout of any room - although we know you already would be in any dress style or length.


From left to right: The Massiel Gown, Melissa Gown, Viktoria Skirt, and Maria Skirt


For a bolder, more contemporary cocktail-style dress, the midi length perfectly embodies a slight deviation from traditional bridal dress while still maintaining the formal feminine aesthetic.


This length is ideal for creating a taller, more extended look (this is for you, shorter brides!) that accentuates your height, proportions, and figure while also showing a little more leg for a slightly unconventional wedding look. 


When you add in the option of a slit for a touch of sensuality, the styles of this length are endless.


Pictured left: The Linette Midi


Made for a civil wedding or second event celebrations, shorter wedding dresses create a fun and flirty vibe and allow you to move effortlessly while still maintaining the look of a bride. From a voluminous hem to a tight fitting low-cut that hugs all of your curves, the variations for styling are vast and can easily be made unique to you.


Pictured Above: The Idalise Skirt


Utilizing separates for your top and skirt also makes it easy to dress accordingly for ceremony, reception, and celebration by allowing for easy exchange between a black-tie skirt length and a more light-hearted after-celebration outfit. 


For a slightly more unconventional bridal look is the option of a loose leg silk palazzo pant.


Crafted for a bride that wants to stray from classic bridal looks and own their originality, dress pants with a delicate bridal top are unmatched in terms of making a statement on your wedding day.


The delicate flow of a silky pant both compliments femininity while also maintaining a more comfortable and powerful feel on your wedding day, allowing you to take charge over traditional dress codes and expectations. 


Pictured Right: The Luz Pant


Want to browse these lengths more or take a closer look at any of the pieces pictured and described above? Click here to visit the Hanna Gotz Studio website now.


Neckline and Silhouette

The neckline of a dress is undoubtedly one of the most important aspects to consider when selecting a design. The varying options, ranging from modest to daring, contribute significantly to the aesthetic of your outfit as a whole. Here are a few popular neckline options that we love here at Hanna Gotz Studio.

 

Neckline: Sweetheart or Scalloped

Commonly found on strapless gowns is the intimate sweetheart neckline. The soft curve and slight dip above the breasts creates a more feminine feel than a v-neck or traditional square neckline, made for a romantic wedding day look. Arguably one of the most flattering styles, sweetheart necklines compliment all body types in different, but equally beautiful ways. 


From left to right: The Carmen Top, Francesca Top, and Sherezade Gown


The scalloped neckline is a unique twist of the classic sweetheart, with more, smaller curves reminiscent of seashells. Often used for hem and neck lines, this design adds decoration and detail compared to simpler styles, creating a more modern but equivalently romantic look.


Neckline: V-Neck

From left to right: The Aline Gown, Lia Top, and Mar Top


A deep V-neck or plunging neckline is the way to go for a bold and sexy wedding day look. Variations of this style range from a small dip into the breasts to a deep v down the chest, with the delicate and flattering neckline naturally drawing down the eyes to create a sensual and attractive bridal gown in all forms. The natural elongating characteristics of the style create a lengthened look for brides of all sizes and is complementary to almost all wedding dress silhouettes. 


Neckline: High Neckline

A more modest style of wedding gown can be easily accomplished with a high neckline.


Utilizing tulle or lace for this high rise look can create the illusion of a traditional but sensual piece without giving away too much skin, while a high neck tie gives the impression of a lengthened torso and puts a contemporary twist on this classic style.


This modernized high-neck variation also creates a more balanced garment, promising more security to the bride.


Pictured left: The Gia Top



Want to browse more neckline styles or get inspiration for your custom bridal dress? Check out Hanna Gotz Studio gowns here or our Pinterest board for inspiration.


Silhoulette: A-Line

The next biggest consideration in gown styling is silhouette. This works hand in hand with the neckline, each serving to accentuate different parts of your figure.


For a voluminous and flowing dress that gracefully drapes over your natural curves, A-Line dresses are excellent at creating a universally flattering look. Fitted over the shoulders and widening from the waist to hem, the design encapsulates an aesthetic of timeless romance, its versatility promising your wedding photos will forever remain stylish. 




Silhouette: Slit

Ideal for creating a bolder style, this dress is made for the modern bride looking for a contemporary piece on their wedding day.


More daring than other options, the slit allows you to show a little bit of leg without sacrificing the formality of a full-length or midi dress.


The versatility of this choice, with the option for a slit on the front, sides, or back, allows each bride to find what compliments their body.


A carefully positioned slit also provides more free movement, so that a bride can enjoy socializing, walking, and dancing without being encumbered by her outfit. 



Silhouette: Fit-and-Flare

With a form fitting bodice that flares out mid-thigh, this popular style is excellent at accentuating curves without sacrificing comfort or limiting movement. The balance between fitted and voluminous suits almost all body types, elongating the body and having an unmatched slimming waist effect. Its ability to enhance natural figures and showcase sophisticated details promises a glamorous and romantic gown.   



Want to learn more about Hanna Gotz Studio gowns or separates? Click here for the full Collection I guide and here for the full Collection II guide.


Material

Each bride has different priorities when it comes to their wedding outfit, and a lot of functionality depends on gown material. At Hanna Gotz Studio, all of our pieces are fully customizable, meaning you get to choose the perfect material for the climate and planned activities on your big day. Not sure where to start? Here are a few popular bridal fabrics and their characteristics.


Crepe

This style is a popular choice for mermaid and fit-and-flare dresses, its natural flow and shapely material ideal for accentuating soft silhouettes.


Often made of silk, cotton, rayon, and synthetic fibers, crepe is a durable material designed for use in a long-lasting dress that’s also soft to the touch.


Italian crepe is a Hanna Gotz classic, with its bright lasting color and lightness creating the timeless aesthetic that every bride looks for.


Its natural drape also prevents excessive wrinkling, keeping the gown flawless through shipping and transport.



Silk

The most traditional and frequently used fabric in the wedding gown industry is undoubtedly silk. With its lustrous shine and form-fitting quality, silk is a high-end investment for a durable and sophisticated dress.


Coming in multiple forms including crepe, organza, mulberry, and chiffon, the variability of different silk fabrics allows pieces to effortlessly suit different wedding aesthetics. Its soft nature also makes it the perfect material for lining and fringe, a high-end quality we utilize in many Hanna Gotz Studio pieces. 


Lace

Romantic, sexy, and feminine are all words that come to mind regarding lace. Its open web-like stitching creates a delicate and easily customizable canvas, made for embellishments. With beads or sequins interwoven in the sophisticated fabric, each piece can be created completely unique of each other.


Typically woven with silk or cotton, lace's transparency makes it ideal for overskirts or the outer layer of a velvety dress. The diversity of this fabric has no limitations, leaving each design open for custom interpretation and individualistic designs. 



Tulle

Tulle’s airy and sheer weave is ideal for gown lining, overskirts, and veils. Its transparency provides a unique illusion for sleeves or skirt layers, particularly when pleated (pictured right).


Often made of silk, rayon, or polyester yarns, its flexibility also makes it an excellent choice for shaping or adding depth to a piece.


At Hanna Gotz Studio, we utilize tulle for elegant veils, creating the romantic and feminine feel that many brides crave. Shop tulle HGS sleeves and veils now!


Customization and Sizing

We all understand the disappointment of ordering a gown that doesn’t quite fit right, failing to hug your curves in the right places or being just little too tight and limiting your movement. Dress sizing can be difficult to nail , particularly when there are so many different metrics to consider. To help you out with this universal struggle, we’ve put together some details on basic bridal size guides and tailoring.


The bridal industry typically uses three primary measurements when determining gown fit - bust, waist, and hips. These numbers are then used to determine your basic size, then tailored to fit your unique proportions. Refer to this table when estimating size. 

To measure bust: Loosely wrap a measuring tape around the fullest part of your breasts, rounding to the nearest whole number.


To measure waist: Loosely wrap a measuring tape around the small of your abdomen, just above your belly button. Breath out naturally, making sure not to hold your breath during the process, and round to the nearest whole number. 


To measure hips: Loosely wrap a measuring tape around the fullest part of your buttocks, rounding to the nearest whole number. 


At Hanna Gotz Studio, however, we go a step further than just tailoring.


Each wedding dress is created individually for the bride’s figure and preferences, with a personal one-on-one consultation to discuss designs, fabrics, and embellishments.


Measurements are then taken for a fit perfect to your body type, making sure that you feel comfortable and look beautiful on your big day.


Learn more about our customization process and options here.


Although most gowns featured on our website fall into traditional sizes and are made of Italian crepe, tulle, and lace, our options for customization mean that your favorite designs and fabrics can be incorporated into your idealistic fit. The process has no limits, and includes professional guidance on bridal styling and fit. Book a consultation with Hanna now!


Looking for more bridal tips or inspiration? Check out our Pinterest page or other Bride Guide posts for more.


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