For almost every bride, the pinnacle of the big day is the dress. You've probably tried on enough white, cream, or ivory gowns to last you a lifetime-- but besides the cut, color, and style, is there anything else you need to think about? Certainly. Most brides don't really think about how well a dress will look in pictures. You'll be remembering your wedding and your dress with your photographs, so you definitely want a dress that is photogenic. Here are few tips to help you choose a gown that is truly picturesque.
1. Stay away from cheap satin.
Satin is one of the go-to fabrics in the bridal world. Some satins are made from high quality fabrics, and a have a subtle luster. However, many less expensive satins look shiny in person, but in a picture, with the camera flash or the bright sun, they positively glare. If you like the luster of satin-type fabrics, look for a more luxurious cloth, like silk charmeuse-- which has all the shine and gorgeous drape, but none of the glare.
2. Opt for detailing.
Some brides like a simple, plain cut from a matte fabric. They are going for the elegant, classic look. However, fabrics that don't have any embellishment don't turn up as well in photographs. Differing textures and beading are more effective at reflecting the light, so the dress shows up better and helps you to look more dynamic. If you are not into elaborate beading on your gown, here are some other methods of detailing to look for:
- small pleats. Some fabric, like airy organza, can be draped and pleated so that the dress is not smooth. This is especially effective through the bodice. The small folds will catch the light and bring interest to the dress.
- lace. Lace provides just enough texture that, even though the detail of lace won't show, the dress will have an added dimension.
- accessories. If you're set on a smooth, finished look to your dress, you'll need some carefully placed details to help your dress photograph well. These could include things like statement necklaces, beaded belts, beading at the hemline and neckline, or a detailed, long veil that brings interest to a simple dress.
3. Choose ivory.
Ivory or cream-colored dresses are more popular for a reason-- they look better in pictures because they look nicer with most people's skin. White or off-white dresses have cool tones-- which means that the color can often clash with those who have a yellowish or reddish hint to their skin, or those who tend to be more fair. The camera has a way of picking up on these subtle clashes in color. Warmer tones found in ivory fabrics will instead compliment and tone down colors in light skin tones. The only women who don't have to worry about how bright white looks with their skin are those who are naturally dark-skinned.
4. Choose a style that flatters you.
Let's face it-- you wear the dress, so a key factor in making sure the dress looks great in wedding pictures is how it looks on you. Some dress cuts only work for certain body types, but there are some universal "helps" that most women can look for. Your dress will generally look better in pictures if it:
- uses ruching on the bodice. Ruching uses small gathers tho "bunch up" the fabric along your midriff. This creates lines in the fabric that can make your dress look better fitted and you waist look smaller.
- uses diagonal lines. You will see that wedding dresses often have asymmetrical designs. These are meant to make you body look longer and leaner without actually changing your shape.
- is something other than a strapless. Strapless gowns are the most popular style, but you might find that your dress is more flattering with straps, sleeves, one sleeves, or a halter design. Strapless gowns can create a line across the chest, shortening the torso, and if you have a large bust size, another style will look better and emphasize your curves.
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