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Wedding Dress Sizes

Updated: Nov 13, 2023

Unfortunately, there is no universal size chart when it comes to wedding dresses. Since size charts are dependent on the designer or manufacturer, you may not know your dress size until you choose your wedding dress, and these dress sizes nearly always run larger than your normal clothing.

Wedding dress sizing may also follow different measurement systems, such as the United States standard sizing (e.g., 2, 4, 6) or the United Kingdom sizing (e.g., 8, 10, 12). We, here in NZ, follow the UK sizing system.

Your wedding dress size and street sizes can be very different. Street clothing sizing is the size of clothes you wear on a daily basis.

A key thing to remember is that everyday clothing is also rarely altered, whereas wedding dresses are.

Typically, you can expect to go up at least one or two sizes from your everyday clothing size. However, it may be more depending on the style of the dress and your unique figure.

A lot of brides find this quite shocking and also feel embarrassed. But the reality is that it is only a number on a tag! It is more important to feel relaxed and comfortable in the dress of your choice, rather than worrying about the size tag that no one else will see!

Therefore, alterations are typically recommended to achieve a perfect fit! In fact, you should expect to need alterations on your wedding dress, unless you are getting one made to measure (a custom made dress).

Note that seamstresses are becoming harder to find, so make sure to book well in advance. This will ensure that you look and feel your very best come your big day!

Remember too, that if you are considering buying a secondhand, or pre loved dress, that due to alterations it will no longer be a standard size. Sooo important to try it on, as that is truly the only way to discover the fit. Trying a dress on also enables you to see what needs to be done to achieve that perfect fit; a good bridal store will help explain these things, and consultants can check seam allowances etc. Their knowledge and advice will be invaluable.

Vicky Hughson | Wedding Dresses Wellington

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A bride shopping for her wedding dress, with 2 friends admiring her dress

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