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Is wedding-dress shopping stressing you? Then you may be doing it all wrong. Pick up helpful wedding-dress-shopping cues and style advice from the go-to designer of the Duchess of Cambridge.

Jenny Packham's Wedding Dress Shopping Tips

In an engaging feature at, Jenny Packham, a British designer who celebrated her 25 years of creating bridal gowns and ready-to-wear clothes, shares tips for brides looking for the perfect wedding dress.

Packham suggests not worrying too much about your wedding dress. After all, the whole wedding planning part alone is already an overwhelming ordeal. The part where you choose your wedding dress should be a fun, laid-back activity to be ticked off from your wedding itinerary.

Just be natural, she advises. According to Packham, it is never a good idea to turn yourself into somebody else. If you are not comfortable wearing a sultry head-to-toe beading and lace, for example, then go for a wedding dress with a simple and clean design. Packham also says that these days, she has been designing many 1920s-style slim-line-silhouette wedding dresses. This is a calculated move away from the popular big dresses with a strapless bodice. She suggests considering a slim-line dress.

She appeals for brides to avoid worrying if their dress will look dated in a few years. Packham recommends that brides should "live in the moment," because their wedding dresses--whether they like it or not--will eventually become dated. So, if one of your worries is seeing your dress looking dated in a few years, then you may be missing out on a rare opportunity to find something that suits you and your personality to a tee. It is a good idea to simply choose the most gorgeous dress reflecting your personal style and to just enjoy your special day.

Wedding Dress Shopping Tips for Full-Figured Women

Do you wear upwards of a size 14? Then that is equivalent to a size 16 in bridal stores. A plus-size wedding gown means more beading and more lace, which increases the price of the dress. Try on gowns within your price range. And if you find one that you really love but cannot afford, talk to the designer. Ask how much it would cost with the beading restricted only to the bodice, for example. You can also look at another version of the dress made in a less pricey fabric.

Know the dress silhouette that flatters your body shape. If you are top heavy, opt for a trumpet-style dress. Bottom-heavy body shapes look great in an A-line cut, while apple-shaped figures are stunning in ball gowns and empire dresses.

Don't shy away from form-fitting gowns. A curvy and full-figured body can be readily streamlined by thick fabrics like taffeta. In addition, a strapless bodice can make shoulders appear wider. So you might want to look into romantic cap sleeves or wide straps instead. Also, take note that details like intricate beading and appliqués may be drawing attention to the areas of your body you'd prefer to play down.

Invest in high-quality undergarments such as Spanx's Simplicity Open-Bust Mid-Thigh Bodysuit. The right shape-wear underneath your wedding gown can give you a fabulous fit. Plus-size or not, the right shape-wear can do wonders most especially for form-fitting dresses.


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