Different Basic Dresses, Styles for Your Body Type

There's nothing better than a successful shopping trip. However, these expeditions can turn in to a nightmare when everything fits wrong, or just looks wrong. Looking for a dress can be especially confusing. It's helpful to know a few basic dress styles and which style looks best on your figure. When you have this info, your trip to the mall, department store, or even online will go a lot smoother.

The first thing you need to figure out is your body type. This article is a great way to get a good idea. http://hubpages.com/hub/The-Perfect-Black-Dress After you know your body type, knowing the basic dress styles can help you identify which style will be the best look for you and how to wear that particular style. No matter what body type you have, you can find the perfect dress for you and look gorgeous! Now who doesn't want that y'all?

This sheath is good for hour glass figures, but a pear would also look great in this because of the beautiful roching across the bust.
This sheath is good for hourglass figures, but a pear would also look great in this because of the beautiful roching across the bust.
The top embellishments make this dress awesome for ruler and pear figures.
The top embellishments make this dress awesome for ruler and pear figures.
Column prom dress.
Column prom dress.
Column style wedding dress that flares out at the bottom.
Column style wedding dress that flares out at the bottom.

Column/Sheath Dress

Column/Sheath - Form fitting dresses that are generally solid colors or one pattern with little or no embellishments. They can be any length, but typically hit at the thigh or knee.

Body Types - These dresses are great for hour glass figures. They highlight all the best features of the hour glass perfectly. They can also be great for pear shaped figures. The trick for this figure would be to balance the top with the bottom. You can do this by adding a wrap, or short cardigan to the top. Also look for two toned column and sheath dresses with a lighter color on the top. The ruler figure could get away with the same rules as the pear shaped figure, but would look even better with a different dress style.

This one would be good for the ruler.  It has interest at the top and flows really nicely on bottom, making some nice curves!
This one would be good for the ruler. It has interest at the top and flows really nicely on bottom, making some nice curves!
This is AWESOME for apple shapes!  The waist line is a little bit higher and the fabric is close but not tight.
This is AWESOME for apple shapes! The waistline is a little bit higher and the fabric is close but not tight.
The close fit of the fabric on this dress is perfect for hour glass figures.  Pear shape would also look great because of the flattering neckline.
The close fit of the fabric on this dress is perfect for hour glass figures. Pear shape would also look great because of the flattering neckline.
Wrap wedding dress.  Simple and beautiful!
Wrap wedding dress. Simple and beautiful!
This is a twist prom dress.  It is a different take on the wrap.  This would be perfect for creating a slimming effect.
This is a twist prom dress. It is a different take on the wrap. This would be perfect for creating a slimming effect.

Wrap Dress

Wrap Dress- The Wrap dress is a dress that wraps around the body and ties at the side. The neckline is universally flattering as it is always a V.

Body Types - This dress is great on ALL body types if you know what to look for. Hour glass figures need to find wrap dresses with a natural waist line. This accents the small waist and curves of this figure type. Pear and Apple Shaped women should look for wrap dresses with more of an empire waist line (right under the bust) with a skirt that flows out from the waist to minimize the hips and rear. Ruler figures look great when the dress has emphasizing details at the top (like flutter or slightly puffed sleeves) and also a flowing skirt.

This dress has a lot of pretty detailing.  The sleeves also add width to the top.  These features make it a great choice for ruler figures.
This dress has a lot of pretty detailing. The sleeves also add width to the top. These features make it a great choice for ruler figures.
I like the way the fabric flows on this dress.  The higher waistline makes it a very nice dress for pear and apple shapes!
I like the way the fabric flows on this dress. The higher waistline makes it a very nice dress for pear and apple shapes!
Very nice maxi wedding dress.  I love the delicate detials!
Very nice maxi wedding dress. I love the delicate detials!

Maxi Dress

Maxi Dress- A long flowing dress with an empire waistline. These dresses have become extremely popular lately. They are comfortable and very feminine.

Body Types - This dress can look fairly good on all body types, but was made for the ruler figure. This accentuates the long willowy figure of the ruler type. Apple and pear figures should find a dress that hits at they're smallest point and flow generously outward. Hour glass figures can wear this dress well, but it does little to highlight their shape and can add a few pounds if the fabric is too flowy. Hour glasses should look for dresses in this style that have skirts fitting closer to their silhouette. 

This a a nice dress for apple figures!
This a a nice dress for apple figures!
This one can be for pear and ruler figures.  The waist is high, there's some very nice details, and the hemline is good.
This one can be for pear and ruler figures. The waist is high, there's some very nice details, and the hemline is good.
I like this one for hour glass figures because of the definition in the waist.
I like this one for hour glass figures because of the definition in the waist.

Baby Doll Dress

Baby Doll Dress - This is a very trendy style at the moment. Baby doll dresses are cute, and generally less formal. Most of these dresses have short or cap sleeves. They can be paired with a cute short 3/4 sleeve sweater if you are self conscious of your arms. This style is definitely younger though. Those that are 40+ should proceed with caution!

Body Type - Another dress that can be worn by all body types, with the right waist and hem line. Apple figures should look for an empire waistline with a flowing skirt. The hem should fall right below the knee. Pear figures need to look for baby doll dresses with embellishment at the top. Ruching across the bust would be perfect. The hem line should also fall right at or below the knee. Hour glass figures should find waistlines that hit at the natural waist. They can get away with a shorter hemline. Ruler figures would also look fab in this dress. Look for detail at top. The waist and hemline aren't as strict for this figure. Going too short however will make you seem younger in this style for any of the body types.

Great for hour glass, pear, and ruler shapes!  See the nice curves.  This dress has them whether or not you do.  So cute!
Great for hour glass, pear, and ruler shapes! See the nice curves. This dress has them whether or not you do. So cute!
This is a nice set for apple figures.  The jacket is stuctured and creates a nice waist line.  The skirt is the perfect length too!
This is a nice set for apple figures. The jacket is stuctured and creates a nice waist line. The skirt is the perfect length too!
Suit dresses are a nice dress choice for mature brides.
Suit dresses are a nice dress choice for mature brides.

Suit Dress

Suit Dress - A suit dress is a dress with matching jacket. They are great for the work place, but can also be beautiful at a wedding, graduation, or luncheon.

Body Type - Any body type can look great in suit dress. The best body for this style is the Apple figure. Look for suit dresses that have a jacket with at least three buttons. The jacket should be very structured and come in at the waist. Stay away for anything too boxy. Pear figures would look awesome when the jacket is short and fitted. This can also be great for rulers that want to add a little bulk. Look for jackets that come in at the natural waist line and fit close to the body. Hour glass figuresshould avoid suits with long or boxy jackets. They can totally over whelm this figure. Close fitting suits with shorter jackets are also a good choice for you.

Again, this dress has nice ruching across the bust making it great on ruler and pear shapes.
Again, this dress has nice ruching across the bust making it great on ruler and pear shapes.
I just love this color!
I just love this color!
Empire dresses are very popular for weddings.
Empire dresses are very popular for weddings.

Empire Dress

Empire Dress - An Empire dress has an empire waist line and then flows close to the body and generally down to the ankles or floor. However, there are many variations of this style with shorter hemlines.

Body Types - This is a good style for ruler and pear shaped figures. Both should look for dresses with embellishment on the top. Pear shapes need to make sure the fabric isn't too tight across the hips. Apple and hour glass figures might look for a different style.  Hour glass figures could get away with this style if the dress stays close down the waistline. 

This would be nice on a pear shape.  The neckline is very good.
This would be nice on a pear shape. The neckline is very good.
I would choose something like this for apples.  Nice drapping, and not too short.
I would choose something like this for apples. Nice drapping, and not too short.
This would look pretty on rulers.  I love the addition of the sweater.
This would look pretty on rulers. I love the addition of the sweater.

Shift/Trapeze Dress

Shift Dress - A shift dress can also be called a Trapeze dress. These dresses fit tight across the shoulder and the top of the bust and then fall shapeless to the hem. They can also be called tent dresses. It was made popular in the 60s and again has recently become a hot trend.

Body Types - This dress is another great option for the apple figure. The flowing fabric is wonderfully forgiving. Pear shapes can also wear this shape well. Both of these figures should try to find hems at the knee. This could possibly be a good choice for the ruler figure if the fabric isn't too flowy and fits right next to the body. If hour glass figures decides to give this fad a try, they will need to find a thick belt for right at the waist. This style would be extremely overwhelming for any figure that is petite however.

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Comments 77 comments

Heart Felt Book profile image

Heart Felt Book 6 years ago from New York, NY

Nice hub i got lots of info needed thanks


MissE profile image

MissE 6 years ago from Texas Author

Thanks! :)


Mana 6 years ago

I enjoyed your blog. The dresses are all very nice. Thanks

MissE.


MissE profile image

MissE 6 years ago from Texas Author

Thank you for your comments!


cameciob profile image

cameciob 6 years ago

Hi MissE. This is a great hub, I learned a lot. Everybody shopping for a dress should read your article. I discovered that I am a ruler. Thanks.


MissE profile image

MissE 6 years ago from Texas Author

I'm glad you enjoyed it!


VeggieJenn profile image

VeggieJenn 6 years ago

Great hub and nice visuals to go with it!


MissE profile image

MissE 6 years ago from Texas Author

Thanks! There are a ton of cute dresses out there this spring. I hope everyone finds one! :)


Donna W profile image

Donna W 6 years ago

My daughter and I loved this Hub!


MissE profile image

MissE 6 years ago from Texas Author

Awesome! Everyone, tell me if you find anything cute! I found a purple belted column dress at The Limited on Clearance for $49.99. It's so pretty!


home-works 6 years ago from Wyoming

Thanks for the tips!! Can't wait to go shopping.


MissE profile image

MissE 6 years ago from Texas Author

Have fun!!


brandyBachmann profile image

brandyBachmann 6 years ago

i love the column wedding dress that flares down at the bottom. nice hub!


MissE profile image

MissE 6 years ago from Texas Author

Isn't it gorgeous! So flattering too.


couponalbum profile image

couponalbum 6 years ago from Sunnyvale, CA

Nice Hub MissE. I have put your hub's link in my hub and joined your community too. I would also like to invite you to join my community. Looking forward for your comments or emails.


MissE profile image

MissE 6 years ago from Texas Author

Thanks!


lifelongseo 5 years ago

I like those designers, but some designers out there really need

to get back to a real fashion sence of what people really wear and can afford.


MissE profile image

MissE 5 years ago from Texas Author

So true. Some of it is way over the top! I mean, who really thinks fur is going to be BIG this winter? Some of it catches on on the real world level, some of it really doesn't. Don't be a slave to trend. Dress for your shape and your taste.


IdeaMorphist profile image

IdeaMorphist 5 years ago from Chicagoland

So well described! Things Ive known from working in Bridal, but not so sure I could have described it as well at all!


Moons 5 years ago

Great hub. :)


MissE profile image

MissE 5 years ago from Texas Author

Thanks y'all!!


AutumnLockwood profile image

AutumnLockwood 5 years ago from Northern California

Great hub. One of the best I've read.


MissE profile image

MissE 5 years ago from Texas Author

Thanks again!!!


misstr 5 years ago

Most liked the red and blue dress.


MissE profile image

MissE 5 years ago from Texas Author

Which ones? :)


NikitaButalia profile image

NikitaButalia 5 years ago

The information you've provided is really helpful. Especially for somebody whose out to buy a dress, and doesn't know what to look for.

T'is great! :)


MissE profile image

MissE 5 years ago from Texas Author

Thanks so much!


princess_31 5 years ago from Egypt

Nice hub. I like the way you have posted so many picture of dresses into this hub.


MissE profile image

MissE 5 years ago from Texas Author

Thanks! I like dresses, but I wouldn't want to wear one everyday. Hooray for jeans!!! Maybe that will be one of my next hubs. :D


yenajeon profile image

yenajeon 5 years ago from California

I love shift dresses! They aren't for my "body type" but sometimes, you can't help what you love!


MissE profile image

MissE 5 years ago from Texas Author

True, but the good thing about a shift dress is you can belt it or pair it with a cardie and totally make it work! :D


mysisters profile image

mysisters 5 years ago

This is a great Hub. There is a dress for every body type, you just have to know which one works best for you. Your article has great information for people to figure that out.


MissE profile image

MissE 5 years ago from Texas Author

Thanks!


QHuman profile image

QHuman 5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

This is super helpful. Knowing your body shape really does help with buying the best looking clothing for your body.


MissE profile image

MissE 5 years ago from Texas Author

Thanks! Yeah, it really can make all the difference in the world!


Ellarose92 profile image

Ellarose92 5 years ago

wow this was a really good helb, and i love all the dresses in the pictures!! i'm defintely bookmarking this thank you!


MissE profile image

MissE 5 years ago from Texas Author

Thank you!


Elizabeth 5 years ago

ooommmgggg!! totally hate it because my dress got torn the next day by washing it.and it was the only thing i had washed


Elizabeth 5 years ago

:(( but the dress was pretty


MissE profile image

MissE 5 years ago from Texas Author

What dress?! Was it hand wash or dry clean only?


fabgirl21 5 years ago

Good Hub! Thanks! I just recently bought a very cute evening dress from Jovani. Have you heard of them?


MissE profile image

MissE 5 years ago from Texas Author

Hmmmm.....I have not. I will have to look that up! Thanks!


graceomalley profile image

graceomalley 5 years ago

Lovely wedding dresses. I've been happily married for 20 years, but i still like to look at wedding dresses.


MissE profile image

MissE 5 years ago from Texas Author

Don't we all?! ;)


brennawelker profile image

brennawelker 5 years ago

Thanks for the basic, Great job.


MissE profile image

MissE 5 years ago from Texas Author

Thank you!


Pineapplege 5 years ago

This is great helpful. I can buy a prom dress which best suits me best according to my body type.


louisvuitton outlet box  5 years ago

Thank you!


rosarionet 5 years ago

You present a lot helpful ideas! Perhaps I should think of trying to do this myself.


hellotwo 5 years ago

Fashion changes in wedding, you can easily find that a kind of things like wedding dresses in TOPB2C ,which is popular today but next day, for those people who have great interests in wedding apparel, They have to pay much attention to the fashion trends of wedding accessories, wedding party dresses, bridesmaid dresses,flower girl dressesand even the Maternity Wedding Dresses. Believe me, in TOPB2C you can always find the one you like best. People speak highly of this kind of clothing. If you choose it, you can see what a wise choice you have made.


Katya Drake profile image

Katya Drake 5 years ago from Wisconsin

Great hub, so much fun. I love dresses and so many women avoid them now. I think if they read your article and follow your advice that will change!


MissE profile image

MissE 5 years ago from Texas Author

Thanks! I love dresses when the occasion calls for one, but I don't wear them for kicks. Maybe if I had a really comfy one.... It is sad when someone avoids wearing one because the think they can't though. Everyone can look good in the right dress!


Lee 5 years ago

Hi MissE,

Your Hub is very helpful to me, im in garment retail business, most of my stocks are ladies dresses and blouses. I wanted to get familiar with these dresses, and be able to help my customer find the dress suiting for them. Can you send me more info on this please? You say ur an LDS? I am too.


MissE profile image

MissE 5 years ago from Texas Author

Hi Lee! I researched a lot online and in fashion mags. My favorite one is In Style. Thanks! :)


prektjr.dc profile image

prektjr.dc 4 years ago from Riverton, KS, USA

good hub! I will use this information while shopping for my Mother of the Groom dress! Thanks, voted up, useful and interesting!


MissE profile image

MissE 4 years ago from Texas Author

Thanks! Good luck with the shopping. I hope your DIL2B picked some good colors to work with as well! :)


kellymom1970 profile image

kellymom1970 4 years ago

MissE,what a wonderful hub. I love wearing dresses and skirts. Thanks


JH 4 years ago

As a single father of 2 girls - I found this an invaluable resource to help me pick out dresses for my daughters.


MissE profile image

MissE 4 years ago from Texas Author

Oh my goodness! You pick out their dresses?! Someone give this man a Father of the Year Award! :) I'm glad it was useful to you.


Deborah Brooks profile image

Deborah Brooks 4 years ago from Brownsville,TX

what a great HUB.. so many times I have went to get a dress and left because I got so frustrated that things did not fit right.. Very useful.. I voted up of course..


MissE profile image

MissE 4 years ago from Texas Author

Thanks! The main thing I've learned about fit is that I have to go shopping when I have the time to really try everything on. Women sizes are all over the place.


Diana Mendes profile image

Diana Mendes 4 years ago

Great Hub. Liked the information. Voted up & useful. Thanks for sharing.


MissE profile image

MissE 4 years ago from Texas Author

Thank YOU! :)


Judy 4 years ago

Thanks a lot. I have one question though. I'm kinda short with a full figure. Will maxis look good on me or should I go for a hem that's slightly higher? But how much higher is my dilemma. Appreciate your thoughts please.


MissE profile image

MissE 4 years ago from Texas Author

I was just reading an article about maxi skirts and dresses the other day and it gave some great advice. It said that shorter women should wear fuller shirts if they want to go for the maxi trend. If you consider yourself full figured I wouldn't recommend any hems higher than the knee....actually I don't really like high hem lines on anyone over the age of 5.....but that's just me. :D


Judy 4 years ago

Ooopsy, actually I think I'm more average than full figured. But definitely short. I bought a maxi dress but now can't decide if I should shortened the hemline so I could look taller rather than shorter. Some websites say it's fine for short girls to wear maxis but some say don't. So I'm confused. What do you think?


MissE profile image

MissE 4 years ago from Texas Author

I agree with the article I mentioned. If it's really full and floats away from you I think it looks good. Some maxi dresses fit right next to your body and those are the ones that will make you look a little more squat. :) I'm pretty short and really, I've come to the realization that unless I'm wearing my high heels or boots, most people will just see me as short anyway. :D I think most maxis are cute regardless of your height. Go for it! Just stay away from really big prints if your petite.


southernadver profile image

southernadver 4 years ago from SC, USA

very elegant dress!Nice hub!


MissE profile image

MissE 4 years ago from Texas Author

Thanks!


MissE profile image

MissE 4 years ago from Texas Author

Thank you very much!!


basic-wear 4 years ago

Its a great hub and lots of information you have provided in your hub. This information so useful. A shift dress can also be called a Trapeze dress. These dresses fit tight across the shoulder and the top of the bust and then fall shapeless to the hem.

http://www.basics-wear.com


aries guzago 4 years ago

nice dresses i like all... im a dress maker here in philippines...


Esther  Strong profile image

Esther Strong 4 years ago from UK

Great advice here - my issue is that I tend to forget (wishful thinking) that I no longer have the shape/size I had when in my late teens/early twenties.

I knew what suited me then and now have a tendency to want to wear the things that would have suited me at that time. I used to be able to just look at an item in a shop and know whether or not it would flatter me, but now I have to actually try every thing on to check!


Ariel 3 years ago

I love your taste in dresses. You may be interested in http://pearlposh.com , they offer a variety of dresses for low prices and free shipping.


grace 3 years ago

nice dresses


MissE profile image

MissE 22 months ago from Texas Author

Thank YOU! :)


angel 18 months ago

Thanks for advise. Every dresess looking so nice and dresses fabric so good.

http://www.angelnx.com/

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