Choosing the perfect gown for your big day

IF YOU are planning to walk down the aisle this December, this is the right time to start planning your wedding, including choosing a bridal gown.

Luni Masebe, a wedding planner, says choosing a wedding dress is one of the biggest decisions for a blushing bride. She says an attractive wedding dress is the most important thing for a woman who is preparing for her wedding day.

"Most brides want to wear a meticulously designed wedding dress. But finding and buying a perfect wedding dress to match exactly with a bride's persona is a difficult job.

What wedding gowns are in?

Uyanda Mbuli of Diamond Face Couture says this season's wedding gowns have a strong leaning towards fabrics like chiffon. Also, the ballgown is back.

How do you choose a bridal gown?

Lieria Botha, a bridal merchandiser at Bride & Co, says the most critical aspect of choosing the right bridal gown is to find the perfect match between body shape, dress silhouette and personal preference.

"It is the perfection of wearing a silhouette that complements one's body shape, as well as the detail and the fabric that everyone will notice most when the bride makes her grand entrance," she says.

Botha says the body shapes consist of the following types:


An ideal silhouette for a pear-shaped bride is the A-line. This silhouette covers the bride's bottom half and creates a focal point of the top to bring a greater sense of visual proportion to the whole.

Equally flattering to all body shapes, but especially suited to the pear shape, is the ballgown silhouette with its simplicity.

Tall and slim

The sheath is definitely the perfect silhouette for the tall and slim bride. This shape freely follows the curves of the bride's body, but is also softly moulded to give this body shape the perfect outline without making it look elongated.


The silhouette best advised for an hourglass-shaped bride is the mermaid style. This cut is figure hugging and accentuates the contours of the body by showing off the bust, curves, waist and hips.

It is particularly appropriate for a bride who is very confident as it starts flaring only below the knee. A similar fitting design for this body shape is the trumpet.


The ballgown is the petite bride's best-fitting silhouette. The petite shape is defined by a small waist with similar shoulder, waist and hip ratios that could give it a boyish appearance.

The ballgown creates the illusion of a waistline, emphasising the best part of the body.