How to Shop for a Size Inclusive Wedding Dress

We’re often asked on our Instagram and Facebook how a plus-size bride should shop for a wedding dress. Don’t worry—we’ve got you covered! Luckily for #Kleinfeld brides, we have over 200 styles available in bridal size 20 in-store to try on, and hundreds of other dresses that can be ordered in size 2-32. Still unsure of what to expect? We spoke to our seasoned team of bridal experts and got the scoop on how to approach shopping for a size-inclusive wedding dress for your special day. Find out, below.

Do your research.

“Researching ahead of time is really important,” says consultant Amber. Whether you gather inspiration from Pinterest, save photos on Instagram, or make a profile on our website and favorite dresses, making sure to research styles you love before shopping is key. Here at Kleinfeld, we have over 200 styles in store to try on in bridal size 20-24, and almost every single style (over 1200!) can be ordered in size 2-32. Browse now!

Ask about options.

See a style with stunning beading, a form-flattering fit and flare silhouette, sweetheart neckline, but a low back that you don’t love? There may be another option. “There are many styles at Kleinfeld that have different versions for curvy women,” explains Amber. “There may be a sister style to that one you love with a higher back, which is better suited for your shape. Ask your consultant about this!” says Amber.

Pro tip: a style with a higher back will help to distribute support better along the bodice, and hide your bra.

Wear proper undergarments.

Most importantly, we always suggest that you wear proper undergarments when shopping for a wedding dress—ideally the undergarments you’d like to wear on your wedding day. “Make sure you wear a proper undergarment that gives you shape and support so you can envision how the dress is going to look” says Director of Merchandising, Dorothy. While shapewear is nice to have, a well-fitting, supportive bra is the priority.”Try bringing a corset-lined bra to your appointment rather than a strapless bra because they give you so much extra support,” says Amber.

Pro tip: “Ask your consultant to guide you towards dresses that have plenty of internal support as well,” says Amber. Styles with corset bodices, wider straps to hide a bra under, and structured tops will provide you with the most support. This way, you will look and feel your best!

Don’t look at the tag.

“Don’t be thrown off by gowns that are not your exact size,” says Amber, “Some samples may be a bit small, or on the other end, way too big!” Bridal sizing isn’t like typical streetwear sizing—while you might be a street size 14-16 in jeans, you’re likely a bridal size 18-20.  Don’t look at the tag–sizing is just a number! “Curvy women come in so many different shapes and sizes, so don’t let sample sizes hold you back from finding that perfect gown,” says Amber. This is especially true in the bust area, says Amber. “Not all curvy women have a large chest and your consultant will help guide you through that,”

Venture out of your comfort zone.

“Don’t be afraid to try on different silhouettes—bridal dresses are constructed differently than normal clothes and brides are always surprised by the fit,” explains consultant Kelsey. “So venture out of your comfort zone and I guarantee you’ll be surprised!” Thankfully at Kleinfeld, we have hundreds of options in various silhouettes, including a-line, mermaid, fit and flare, ball gown, and sheath. Browse styles here.

Keep an open mind.

“Balancing your body shape is key when trying on wedding dresses,” says Amber. With that, keep your options open, and don’t be afraid to try on a style that might not be your favorite on the hanger. “Keep an open mind in shape and fit. Don’t be opposed to trying on a dress that might be too small or too big. Our consultants have tricks up their sleeves to maneuver how the dress will look and feel on your body,” says Dorothy.

Embrace your body.

We all know what it feels like to not feel totally confident in the dressing room—try your very best to be positive, have fun, and most importantly, embrace your gorgeous shape—because feeling your best will make you shine from the inside out. “My advice is to speak kindly about your body when shopping—it’s your time to feel beautiful! Don’t be afraid to show off your curves in a wedding gown,” says Amber.


Love these tips? Browse our wedding dresses available to try on in plus-size here.
Almost any style at Kleinfeld can be ordered in sizes 2-32. Make an appointment to find the one!
Did you know Kleinfeld often hosts size-inclusive designer events where you can shop an even larger selection of plus-size wedding dresses (and receive a special discount)? Check our Trunk Show calendar for info!

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