Wedding Dress Bodice

Most Brides know instantly which wedding dress they want to wear on their wedding day from the moment they see it while a lot of others will take weeks deciding on the perfect one. Whether you are choosing to buy a designer or second hand wedding dress, the style of the dress is very important.

There are many wedding dress styles to choose from including Empire line, Ballerina or halter neck dresses. If you have a preference in the 'look' that you like you should ensure that you try them on first as the style may not actually suit your shape.

A wedding dress which incorporates a figure hugging bodice could be the choice for you and this article has been written to provide you with further information on the bodice to hopefully make your choice easier.

Bodice History

Research states that when the bodice was originally designed it was used to cover the torso area from the waist up to the neck and it was most common in Europe, particularly in the sixteenth, seventeenth and eighteenth Century.

It was given its name because the garment was designed to be a pair of 'bodies' which were two separate pieces of clothing that were usually laced together to make one bodice.

Some bodices were fastened together using hooks and eyes but at some time in the nineteenth Century (when it was referred to as a corsage) the one piece bodice was designed giving its wearers a looser and easier to use devise.

The older bodices were designed to fasten with one continuous lace that closed up in a spiral; this then progressed to be two laces with eyelets which allowed a lot of women to be able to put their bodice on themselves.

How to Wear A Bodice

bodice 2A bodice was designed to be worn as a separate item of clothing but with a matching skirt or tutu and nowadays you can pair it up with various styles of skirts or even trousers if you prefer. The bodice can include sleeves and there are many different neck lines available.

The bodice differs slightly from the corset in that a corset is designed to be worn underneath items of clothing (like underwear) whereas the bodice can be worn above a corset or even on its own.

One area of similarity is that the bodice can also supports the chest area as it is often stiffened and shaped using either whalebone or a type of reed known as bents. Wearing another item of thin clothing underneath the bodice will keep the bodice a bit cleaner in case you want to use it again.

Generally designed to sit on your hips and dip to either a rounded shape or a point below the navel, your bodice can be worn tight or loose depending on the look you prefer.

When being fitted for your bodice, it is vital to ensure that you feel comfortable when it is all closed up, the last thing a Bride needs is to pass out on her wedding day from not being able to breathe.

Most Brides will require help getting into a bodice. It is generally held onto the front of the body (by the Bride) while an assistant closes it together at the back. It can be loosened and tightened to varying degrees depending on the style and it is worthwhile having either your mother or your Maid of Honour shown how to lace up the bodice as they will be the person doing it on the day.

Have them do a couple of practice runs in the lead up to your wedding day to ensure that they have mastered its closure.

Read Wedding Dress Bodice Part II >