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Tips for Choosing a Wedding Dress Silhouette for Your Body


My dress: top and skirt

From the get go I knew that finding the dress that would most flatter my frame wouldn’t be an easy task, and I knew others would want to know the process I went through. For reference, i’m 5’6, about 190 pounds at this point, with a 36F bust and a short torso. Meaning, my body isn’t a “straight” size, and finding a dress that flattered me was more challenging than I care to admit.


I vowed to try on dresses of every silhouette, style and shape before making my decision; and try on every dress I did. Some were really bad (above), some weren’t so horrendous (below), but there were a few key factors I considered across each style I tried.

1. Did I feel pretty? <-- Above all else, I wanted to feel beautiful on my wedding day, and if trying on a dress didn't produce that feeling, I moved on.

2. Was my chest supported? <-- I have a large chest, and I didn't want to worry about falling out all over the place on my wedding day. If I loved a dress that didn't allow for straps, I seriously thought about how difficult alterations would be to add straps of some kind. Which brings me to my next, most crucial piece of advice.

3. You don’t have to take dresses as they come. <-- With every dress I tried on I considered whether or not I could make simple alterations to it that would make me more comfortable. In my mind that was: a) could I add thin, or thick, straps? b) Could the cups be expanded to really fit my chest? Both of these alterations are relatively minimal, but in the end made a huge difference for me.


When it came down to it these tips were crucial, but not as important as the last one, which I discovered as a result of an amazing sales associate at the Nordstrom Wedding Suite in San Francisco (highly recommend, by the way): Think outside the box.


This woman recommended that I try on a two piece dress (!?). Can you believe it? Cue the freakout moment. My immediate response? “I am NOT wearing a crop top to my wedding…” Duh. But nope, wedding dresses these days come in two pieces that allow the bride a bit more customization.

In my case, I purchased a tulle skirt (of the fullness I desired), and a bustier top of a style I loved. This allowed me to wear the skirt at my most flattering, natural waist, instead of the pre-defined waist of a one-piece dress. Score!

This was the top and skirt I ended up with. Absolutely stunning, comfortable for the day, and one that I felt like really flattered my figure.

And now, time for some beautiful wedding photos, courtesy of Carla Boecklin Photography.






Equipment sweater (in black), ASOS necklace, Ted Baker dress (updated version), Sam Edelman sandals, Ray-Ban sunglasses

You may remember this dress from a wedding last year. It’s Ted Baker and to be completely honest, it’s been sitting in my closet since that post. I was determined to find a way to re-wear it for a more casual Saturday afternoon, and resorted to my old-school standby: throw a sweater over it and call it a day.


I couldn’t be more in love with the way this outfit came together and love the fun vibe of the pleated skirt peaking out under the subtle camo.


How To: Choose A Flattering Crossbody Bag


Andrew Marc jacket, Anthropologie top (50% off!), BDG jeans, Steve Madden boots, Crossbody from Italy (similar below)

Over the last few weeks, I have received quite a few requests to do a post about crossbody bags. How I shop for them, how I wear them, and what I look for in the perfect bag. In my personal collection, the one that I use the most is a buttery leather black bag from a trip to Italy a few years back. It is the perfect size and has served me so well over the years. Here are the key components I looked for when shopping for the ideal crossbody bag:



1). I always look for unstructured crossbody bags. The weight on the side of your hip looks better when the bag drapes around the body, versus adding bulk with structure

2). Size is key. A medium size bag is ideal. On someone of my size (for reference i’m 5’6), a super petite bag will look out of place. However a huge duffle is impractical. A medium size and shape holds everything I need without being the focal point of the outfit.

3). Play with placement. I always opt for bags that have adjustable straps. That way I can play with the length and have it sit just perfectly on my body. For me, this is square on my hip. I find that any higher and I look short, and any lower the bag pulls me down and looks sloppy




Here are a few crossbody options in the general size range and structure I was speaking about. Any would be amazing, basic additions to a wardrobe:

Restyling a Bridesmaid Dress


Gap jean jacket, Eliza J dress via Nordstrom (same dress in solid colors)(similar floral option), Sole Society booties

The last time I wore this dress it was for my brother’s wedding. I searched for months to find the perfect dress for that evening and when I found this one, for under $200 at Nordstrom I was thrilled. The fit of this is probably one of my favorites of any dress I own and I always feel like a princess when I wear it. Eliza J is also wonderful for both “regular” and plus sized options, so definitely check out the brand if you’re in need of a formal occasion dress.


This dress pairs so well with so many casual items. Booties, sandals, jean jackets or even other printed jackets for winter. I absolutely love how it looks paired down for casual days.


How have you restyled your formal occasion dresses?

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