Strapless, halter or scoop ‐‐ which one’s right for you?
The V‐neck dips down to a v‐shape at the front, which de‐emphasizes the bust line. The back may be similarly cut or be higher and straighter. This style suits brides with medium sized breasts.
The square neckline is cut straight across angled corners where the straps or sleeves meet. This is a style for almost any bride.
The jewel neckline is round and high cut, sitting near the base of the throat. This style is good for small busted brides and anyone wishing to cover up their upper chest/ collar‐bone area.
The wide neck shape of the bateau follows the collar bone almost to the edge of the shoulders. The front and back panels are either joined at the tip or separated by a thin strap.
The neckline is different on the left and right of the bodice. The dramatic example here is the one‐shoulder design. This style is good for the bride who doesn’t need to wear a bra.
The neckline is usually straight or slightly shaped, and supported by thin, delicate straps, which are sometimes detachable. This style is good for small to medium‐chested brides.
After the general profile of the dress, your next concern is usually the neckline. Most brides find themselves firmly one side or the other of the straps/strapless divide, but there are many variations beyond those simple choices.
The neckline is important because it draws attention to the upper part of the body, especially the face, collarbone and décolletage (cleavage) areas. For these reasons, getting a neckline exactly right for you is very important. Necklines also add to the overall style of the gown, and will affect what accessories you could (or couldn’t) wear with the dress.
The following illustrations show the most common necklines.
The scoop is a U‐shaped neckline, which is often cut quite low and is similar on the back of the dress. This is a style that suits any bride.
The halterneck features straps which join at the back of the neck or a high neck with wide armholes. This design usually has a very low cut back, so it is best worn without a bra. This style especially suits brides with great shoulders.
As the name suggests, this neckline is reminiscent of the style worn during the reign of Queen Anne in 18th‐century England. The design features a heart‐shaped neckline in the front and a high back, which is often joined to the front by sleeves which cover the shoulders or are full‐length. This style is for brides who wish to display their cleavage ‐‐ tastefully.
The sweetheart has a low neckline, similar in shape but slightly less accentuated than the Queen Anne. The back is usually cut at a similar height to the front but without the curvy heart shape.
Off the shoulder
Off the shoulder
The broad sweeping off‐shoulder neckline style has small sleeves or straps, which sit just below the shoulder on the upper arm, showing off the shoulders and collar bone. Good for curves and medium to full‐chested brides, but not ideal for those with wide shoulders.
The strapless bodice is usually figure‐hugging, with a straight or shaped neckline. This style is good for those with broad shoulders.
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