Considering an empire waistline for your wedding dress? Le Dressing Club is here to help you find out whether the empire shape is the fit for you!
But first, where does the empire cut originate from?
We owe the empire waistline to Napoleon’s first Empress Josephine de Beauharnais, who was influential in popularising the style around Europe. She liked simplicity and therefore had fluid dresses made, showcasing her neckline while hiding her slightly stout hips.
Since then, the empire waisted wedding gown, elegantly simple and very feminine, has survived the centuries. It continually reinvents itself over the years while keeping its unique feature:
a fitted waist just below the bust and a long loosely-fitted gathered skirt.
Tempting and easy to wear, the empire wedding dress gives a high-waisted appearance. Originally featuring small sleeves and a straight neckline, it is now revisited by becoming a strapless dress or a dress with thin straps. Its neckline varies, it is short or long and more or less fluid according to the designer’s inspiration. The only feature that will never change is its waistline marked below the bust which, as you’ll have understood by now, is its trademark!
Is the empire waist flattering for all body types?
The main asset of empire waist wedding dresses is their emphasis on the bust while hiding the rest of the silhouette, especially the parts some dread of showing off such as belly and hips. The empire waist is therefore the ideal cut for women with a small cleavage, short women, women with wide hips but a small upper waist and last but not least, pregnant brides-to-be! Let’s explain this in more detail.
The empire waist is perfect for slim women who want to accentuate their small upper-body and cleavage thanks to the marked waist just below the bust.
Empire waist wedding dresses are also the perfect fit for women with wide hips who want to hide them. Indeed, the drop of the fabric from the upper waist conceals a multitude of sins, the aim being to rebalance your silhouette by drawing the eye to your delicate upper body.
For small women with shorter legs, empire wedding dresses are ideal - The dress’s short high-waisted bodice creates an optical illusion that elongates your silhouette and adds centimetres to your legs! Every girl’s dream right?
For pregnant brides, the empire style wedding dress is the perfect maternity wedding dress. The high waistband makes the fabric fall nicely over your stomach, guaranteeing confidence and comfort on your wedding day. The empire dress will highlight your pretty décolleté, while also making you look optically taller. An added benefit: Your bump can continue to grow without drastically changing the fit of the dress.
Despite all the qualities of this cut which has proven its worth back in time, we rarely see new bridal collections featuring empire line dresses these days. Reproached for not being figure-hugging or sexy enough, the style is hence not particularly fashionable on the bridal scene at the moment. That being said, men tend to approve of the empire silhouette because the cleavage is well showcased!
We are confident the retro trend will make its comeback soon. In the meantime, we have brides who know exactly what they want and what suits them, and come to hunt down our iconic empire style pieces on Le Dressing Club’s rails!
Our selection of empire waist wedding dresses
The Zola wedding dress by Laure de Sagazan, the queen of empire-style wedding dresses. We love the open back pearl button detailing on this Calais lace and silk crepe number. The perfect dress for a boho-chic wedding.
The Sublime wedding dress by Harpe. Light and flowing with exquisite butterfly-like organza sleeves, this empire dress is charming and bucolic.
The Lotte wedding dress by Rembo Styling. We love the contrast between its fun sparkly sequin bodice and the elegant triangle-shaped open back.
Still undecided about the empire waistline for your wedding day?
Book your fitting here and pop by our London showroom to try our empire line wedding dresses on yourself!