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For The Petite Brides

By Richa

Are you the kinds on whom regular dresses become maxi dresses? Well luckily for you, your wedding day outfit won’t run into any of these problems since it’s custom-made to size. But if you are marrying a guy who is significantly taller, these tricks may help you look and feel your best on your wedding day!

Obtaining an impressive height is a dream of every woman; while some achieve the dream, some don’t and they end up blaming their fate and hating their body. And then you talk about petite brides - ‘can you see me under all of this fabric?’ and ‘Do I look like a ‘real’ bride?’ are the common worries we often hear. For brides, the fear of ‘looking like the dress is wearing you instead of the other way around’ is common and it’s especially troublesome for shorter brides, only if they knew there are some fabulous fashion tricks to get rid of it.

If I am not wrong then fashion is all about illusion. While a professional makeup can transform any unattractive face dramatically, an appropriate dress can also alter one’s personality. As a petite bride you might think that you will have to compromise your bridal look for something that suits your body type - but the truth is you can have it all! You can rock the royal princess look as well as the sultry silhouette with your small frame. The trick is finding one that fits you! The good news is there are some great fashion tricks to virtually make you look taller than your actual height. Well, we all know heels are the most effective solution to look taller. I have some more innovative ideas in store for you!

Scale is everything when you are petite. For the starters - when you are trying on bridal dresses, you will usually be standing on a pedestal almost a foot off the floor. To get a more accurate picture of how the dress will look when it is the correct length, stand on the floor, and ask the bridal consultant to fold the extra length of skirt under. Suddenly, you may see things in an entirely different light! Once you find a dress that hits you right at the perfect place everything else can be altered to fit you like a glove. Plus, if you are big on personality and style, no one will even bother about your lack of height. After all, good things come in small packages!

How to Pick Bridal Outfits

There are many styles which look wonderful on shorter brides. The key is to select a wedding dress which neither cuts your body in half nor swallows you up. Choose a wedding dress that shows off your arms and shoulders. This will allow for more of you to show and take control of the dress.

“Petite brides can opt for lehenga choli with lots of flare in it, or opting for bridal gowns with gathers at the waist line giving a better flounce to the outfit. They can also opt for more of fuller sleeves with embroidery and lehengas with jackets on it. Drape the dupatta around like a saree style – it will definitely make you look fuller or take the dupatta on the head one side,” suggested designer Masumi Mewawalla.

Making it convenient to choose your attire for the D-Day, Jyoti and Nimrit Gill of Malasa, spills the beans on some safe but impactful suggestions:

High Waisted Lehengas: Whether you are slim or plump, a high waisted lehenga with a tiny, thin waist band is the just what the doctor ordered illusion of longer legs and height.

Monochrome Outfits: When you wear too much colour in one outfit, the vision breaks at every colour - giving you an illusion of looking shorter. Conversely, when there is one colour from head to toe the eye flows down to it in one single swipe giving the illusion of height.
Get a Lehenga with Vertical Kalis: While we recommend you pick a style you love irrespective of your height, lehengas with vertical patterns like ambi’s or panels going from bottom to top will add to your height.

Smaller Prints in Kanjivarams or Smaller Motifs in Lehengas: If you are a South-Indian bride, then to avoid being overwhelmed with the thick fabric of a kanjivaram – pick one with very fine close knit print on it. Get a blouse in the same colour family and keep it as short as you can which will help accentuate the height.

Avoid Layered Jacket Styles: You know those long jackets with side slit styles that are worn over lehenga skirts- well as much as we love them; they are just overwhelming for a shorter bride. Too much fabric can be a total buzz kill, and anytime you pick an outfit – you should look at sharply tailored, well fitted silhouettes versus layering and draping.

Avoid High Necks: V shaped or U shaped blouses give the illusion of height, while boat neck or high neck blouses don’t do much for a shorter girl making their neck look even shorter.

Anarkalis Can Look Good If You Pay Attention to the Length and Ghera: Anarkalis are actually a great option for short heighted brides as they have a natural high waist. However; keep in mind that the ghera should be A-line and not full flare. Voluminous full flare anarkalis can almost eat up a shorter bride. Also keep the length just at ankle length and wear heels – instead of opting for a floor sweeping anarkali.

Keep Borders to a Minimum: Avoid lehengas with high borders that can cut your height further. Pick thin, minimal borders both at the waist and at the edges.

Fabric and Colours for the Dear Bride!

Want a wedding dress that drapes beautifully? Poufs out beneath you? Glides down your curves? It’s all in the fabric and colours. Style, cut, texture, drape, and season are all-important factors in determining the best fabric for a wedding dress. The same style dress can look and feel quite different in a variety of fabrics and shades; since each material is designed to produce a distinct effect. Different fabrics have an individual look and will determine your comfort level and the whole wedding look.

“Fabrics can make a lot of difference to your getup. Make sure you choose the right dress styles for body types to look ravishing. Stretchy fabrics like matte jersey, satin and silk would do wonders if you’re petite. You need to invest in clothes which will delicately hug your figure and at the same time prevent you from looking like a stick insect,” says Jyoti and Nimrit Gill of Malasa.

While in terms of colours - they suggested deep blue, red and maroon.

Clever Accessories…

Now that you’ve found your dress, the next step is choosing the finishing touches. And it can be a little tricky, especially if you are vertically challenged. “Opt for jewellery which makes you look neither very petite nor very over the top with huge jewellery. Concentrating on pretty neck pieces and maang tika would be perfect. You should experiment with necklaces — whether it’s a chain, pendant or string of pearls I will suggest that the length should be kept small with 14-16 inches and the placement should be tightly placed around the neck or against base of the throat and regarding earrings, stud earrings work especially well for petite women because they are appropriately proportioned,” suggested designer Masumi Mewawalla.

Finally, when everything is said and done, the perfect dress or suit can really make the occasion. Put your main focus on coordinating the perfect outfit - from the clothing itself to the best shoes, purse and accessories you can find! Worry less about the things you can’t change, and focus on the things you can. Every bride should feel confident when walking down the aisle regardless of shape or size and why should you not feel special and beautiful, you are the bride after all!

As the bride-to-be, it is your right to take your time when looking for your perfect dress. If you have the time and the energy to try on every single dress in the bridal shop then why not go for it! Remember, yes you are petite but you are also a bride and picturing yourself on your day feeling glamorous and elegant will give you the confidence boost you need to find that dress that will suit you down to the ground! Happy wedding to you!

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