Sophia-Tolli_ALLChoosing Your Wedding Dress
in Bristol, Somerset & Wiltshire

Slim and slinky, chic and elegant, a confection of tulle? Off-the-shoulder, halter neck, spaghetti-strapped, strapless, backless? In virginal white, ivory, gold, the palest of baby pinks or the deepest of crimsons or burgundies? If you’re beginning to panic, don’t. Just get out there and start looking! Your wedding dress is the most exciting dress you will ever buy and most brides will tell you they knew they’d found the right one as soon as they tried it on. Where do you start? There are thousands of wedding dresses our there but they all fall into five basic shapes:

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Its fitted bodice and full skirt creates the impression of curves for brides whose figures tend to be a bit straight up and down.

Empire Line

Its high-waisted style, with a slim or A-line skirt falling from just below the bust, suits brides with classic English figures – small on top and a bit fuller on the bottom.


Slim and figure-hugging, the sheath and its sister style, the fishtail, look stunning on both perfect petites and long and leggy brides. Those with less than perfect figures are advised to avoid it!

Princess Line

Describing an A-line by means of vertical panels either from the shoulders or from the bust, this style suits brides who want disguise their hips.

Dropped waistline

The long bodice and dropped waist of the basque-style suits almost every figure and is perfect for brides who want to draw attention away from a very full bust. When it comes to necklines and sleeves, take a good look at your shoulders before you make a decision.


this straps, halter necks and off-the-shoulder gowns accentuate pretty shoulders. If you have wide shoulders, go for a V-neck or wide straps Sweetheart, square and V-necklines elongate shorter necks. High collars and boat necklines disguise bony shoulders or prominent collarbones. Full, fancy sleeves and lace, beaded or embroidered bodices all suit the smaller figure while better-endowed brides should avoid low necklines and fussy detail on the bodice.

Should I wear white

Nowadays, only if you have a tan to set it off – if you’re going for the traditional bridal look, creams and ivories are much kinder to the skin. But the choice of colour is enormous. Gold, silver and delicate pastels are very much in evidence and, if you really want to make a statement, there are fabulous rich crimsons and deep burgundies.

The back view

Everything you’ve ever read about the importance of the back of your dress is true. That’s what your guests will be looking at all through the ceremony. A built-in train will give you a slimmer outline while you’re standing at the altar and lend a special dignity to the occasion. Yes, they’re more difficult to handle but think of the fun you’ll have practising in front of the mirror at home. You’ll soon work out how to walk and turn gracefully and don’t forget your chief bridesmaid will be there to ensure your train falls properly on the day.

A Final tip

When you go to choose your dress, limit the number of people you take with you for advice to a maximum of two. And always include a friend whose opinion you trust and who will tell you the truth about what suits you, and what doesn’t.


67 Sandy Park Road, Brislington, Bristol DS4 3PQ
Tel: 0117 919 3007


Celebrating their 10th anniversary last year, a Class Brides stocks beautiful bridal collections by Stella York, True Bride, Private Label by G and Nicola Anne.  There are gowns to suit all tastes and budgets from sizes 8 to 26 in store for you to try. Bridesmaids’ and prom dresses galore come in exciting new ranges, where you really can mix and match any colour combination with a range of styles to suit all shapes, sizes and ages.

A Class Brides  has been consistently awarded ‘highly commended awards’ from Wedding Ideas magazine voted for by brides and, as a member of the Bridal Retailers Association, all their brides get free insurance for their dress up to £1,000.


4 The Willow Centre, Downend Road, Downend, Bristol BS16 5UJ
Tel: 0117 9568068
Email: [email protected]


Now celebrating their 25th anniversary, Bride at Home offers scrumptious and affordable bridal and bridesmaid dresses and accessories from all over the world, including La Sposa, Jasmine, Eternity and Bonny Bridal. There’s also a large range of outfits for the Mother of the Bride/Groom to choose from. A made-to-measure service is also available. Brides are welcome to browse, but appointments are advisable if you want to try dresses on in privacy.




21 St James Parade, Bath BA1 1UL
Tel: 01225 446844
Email: [email protected]


Stunning wedding gowns from top international collections, including Augusta Jones, Ellis Bridals, Enzoani, Maggie Sottero, Ronald Joyce, Victoria Jane and Rita Mae. Full range of accessories, plus bridesmaids in a rainbow of colours. Professional, experienced fitting and alterations are all part of the service.

Winner of the 2016 Bristol & Somerset Wedding Award for Best Bridal Boutique.


7 Market Walk, Keynsham BS31 1FS
Tel: 0117 986 8911
Email: [email protected]


Mother and daughter duo Carol and Becky Pincott run this luxury, vintage-inspired boutique , showcasing a diverse collection of carefully hand picked, exquisite gowns and accessories for the contemporary bride from talented, renowned British and international designers.

Exclusively, they also offer a bespoke, couture service where you can share your visions with Carol, an established designer and dressmaker, with over 25 years experience who can expertly create meticulously hand crafted gowns using the most luxurious fabrics for an impeccable fit.

Full range of accessories and a bespoke alteration service.


69 High Street, Midsomer Norton BA3 2QD
Tel: 01761 416699


Lucy and her team provide a large array of bridal gowns to suit suit all budgets, shapes and styles from a personally selected list of designers, including Mon Cheri, Phil Collins, Olivia Grace, Eternity, romantica, Christina Wu and Venus Bridals.
The Solitaire Menswear section is ideally placed in a separate area of the premises to enable visiting grooms and groomsmen to be professionally measured in comfortable surroundings.  Solitaire has a varied selection of suits for you to choose from, ensuring that you get the right style that flatters you on your big day.



12 High Street, Keynsham, Bristol BS31 1DQ
Tel01179 860303/863582

Find the perfect look for your perfect day among the fabulous designer bridal wear and dress your bridesmaids in virtually any colour you can think of. Also fabulous special occasion outfits for the Mother of the Bride and wedding guests and an extensive range of men’s formal hire.