The Best Short Wedding Dresses for Every Bridal Style

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Brides / Chloe Jeong

Short wedding dresses have been giving floor-length gowns a serious run for their money, and it's easy to see why. From modern silhouettes to all-over lace minis to sequin and beaded styles, these leg-baring beauties are as comfortable as they are statement-making. Whether you're considering wearing a short dress for your rehearsal dinner, ceremony, or after-party, a little white dress is always a stylish addition to any bridal wardrobe.

No matter where you're tying the knot—be it on the beach, at the courthouse, or in your backyard—you'll find a short wedding dress that matches both your venue and your bridal style. Plus, the cropped length makes them a versatile part of your wardrobe, meaning you definitely won't wear this dress just once! For the minimalist bride, there are short dresses crafted from sleek fabrics in unfussy silhouettes. For the classic bride, impeccably tailored mini dresses and all-over lace details. And for the fashion-forward bride, there are scores of statement-making styles, from blazer dresses to designs with detachable trains.

Ready to show off some serious leg? Read on for the 15 best short wedding dresses to complement every bridal style, body shape, and budget.

For the Whimsical Bride: By Watters Pixie Silk Mini Dress

By Watters Pixie Silk Mini Dress

Courtesy of BHLDN

Size Range: 0-15 | Material: Silk, acetate | Shipping: Standard delivery | Return policy: Within 30 days

Never have we felt more strongly about the name of a dress. With a youthful empire waist bodice and flirty full skirt, this design is everything a pixie bride could want and more.

For a City Wedding: Reformation Wrap Dress

short dress

 Courtesy of Reformation

Size Range: 0-12 | Material: Polyester | Shipping: Standard delivery | Return policy: Within 30 days

Business in the front, party in the back. This sweet yet simple silhouette delivers a heavy dose of drama with an oversize bow in the rear.

Most Conservative: Hushain Zhang Reign Feather-Trimmed Crepe Mini Dress

Hushain Zhang Reign Feather-Trimmed Crepe Mini Dress

Courtesy of Net-A-Porter

Size Range: UK 8-16 | Material: Crepe, feathers | Shipping: Standard delivery | Return policy: Within 30 days

This dress is all demure sophistication, and we're totally here for it. With a crew neck and longer hemline, this is definitely the perfect pick for more modest brides—and the feathered sleeves are full-on fashion.

Most Playful: Rasario Silk-Satin Mini Dress

short dress

Courtesy of Net-a-Porter

Size Range: FR 34-42 | Material: Silk-satin | Shipping: Standard delivery | Return policy: Within 28 days

This sweet mini dress will surely satiate any princess ballgown dreams. If your wedding itinerary includes twirling the day away, we suggest you look no further.

For the After-Party: Retrofete Sparkly Mini Dress

sparkly dress

Courtesy of Net-a-Porter

Size Range: XS-XL | Material: Chiffon | Shipping: Standard delivery | Return policy: Within 28 days

Every wedding needs a party dress! We love this flirty number for its effortless silhouette, elegant neckline, and all-over shimmering sequins—because what's a party dress without sequins?

For a Bridal Shower: Self-Portrait Pearl-Embellished Guipure Lace Mini Dress

Self-Portrait Pearl-Embellished Guipure Lace Mini Dress

Courtesy of Farfetch

Size Range: UK 4-12 | Material: Polyester | Shipping: Standard delivery | Return policy: Within 14 days

While we love this mini dress for a trip to the altar, it also has "bridal shower" written all over it. Between the crochet-like floral lace and pearl trim, this stunner is as summery as can be.

Best Sleeves: By Watters Meringue Silk Mini Dress

By Watters Meringue Silk Mini Dress

Courtesy of BHLDN

Size Range: 0-15 | Material: Silk, acetate | Shipping: Standard delivery | Return policy: Within 30 days

One of the perks of a shorter hemline is more flexibility in dramatic details. These wonderfully exaggerated sleeves feel beautifully balanced among the plunging neckline and petite silhouette.

Most Versatile: Sachin & Babi Archie Dress

bow back dress

Courtesy of Reformation

Size Range: 0-26W | Material: Polyester | Shipping: Standard delivery | Return policy: Within 30 days

We love a dress that boasts two looks in one, and this design is no exception. The dramatic bow train (hello, grand entrance!) can easily be detached for a more pared-backed aesthetic—or a night of dancing without anyone stepping on your dress.

For the Romantic Bride: By Watters Adelia Dress

By Watters Adelia Dress

Courtesy of By Watters

Size Range: 0-15 | Material: Polyester | Shipping: Standard delivery | Return policy: Within 30 days

Love is definitely in the air with this pint-size stunner. All our favorite romantic details, from sumptuous lace to a high neckline and gorgeous puff sleeves, are encapsulated in this poetic masterpiece.

For the Contemporary Bride: Alex Perry Elyse Strapless Silk-Faille Mini Dress

Alex Perry Elyse Strapless Silk-Faille Mini Dress

Courtesy of Net-a-Porter

Size Range: UK 4-16 | Material: Silk-faille | Shipping: Standard delivery | Return policy: Within 28 days

Calling all brides who are planning a modern wedding! This little number is crisp, simple, and exquisitely structured. Check, check, and check.

Most Unexpected: Cult Gaia Shannon Dress

Cult Gaia Shannon Dress

Courtesy of Cult Gaia

Size Range: XS-L | Material: Viscose | Shipping: Standard delivery | Return policy: Within 30 days

What's a bridal fashion week detail we can't get enough of? Feathers. And this mini dress takes that trend to the next level. Besides, a solid party dress will never go to waste.

Best Shift Dress: Jane Nerys Jersey Shift Dress

shift dress made from structured jersey in white

Courtesy of Jane

Size Range: UK 8-16 | Material: Structured jersey | Shipping: Fees vary depending on location | Return policy: Within 14 days

The simple shift dress is the perfect number for a classic bride. Plus, it doubles as a chic honeymoon look too!

Best Ruffles: BHLDN Huntington Dress

BHLDN Huntington Dress

Courtesy of BHLDN

Size Range: 0-15 | Material: Polyester, organza | Shipping: Standard delivery | Return policy: Within 30 days

Tiers and tiers of frothy ruffles make our hearts skip a beat. With all-over pleated organza and playful volume to spare, this look is a must for fun and flirty brides.

For the Sophisticated Bride: Sau Lee Alexa Tweed Mini Dress

Sau Lee Alexa Tweed Mini Dress

Courtesy of Sau Lee

Size Range: 0-8 | Material: Polyester, acrylic, rayon | Shipping: Standard delivery | Return policy: Within 30 days

If it's good enough for Chanel, it's definitely good enough for us. Tweed, that is. We love this sophisticated design for anything from a classic vow exchange to hosting a posh bridal luncheon.

For a City Hall Wedding: Kiki de Montparnasse Tuxedo Blazer Dress

Kiki de Montparnasse Tuxedo Blazer Dress

Courtesy of Farfetch

Size Range: 0-14 | Material: Acetate, viscose | Shipping: Standard delivery | Return policy: Within 14 days

Opting for an intimate courthouse affair? Nothing pairs better than a fitted blazer dress and a civil ceremony.

What to Look for in a Short Wedding Dress

Whether you choose to wear a short dress for the ceremony or change into one for the after-party, there are many stylish little white dresses to choose from. These leg-baring silhouettes are especially fitting for spring and summer weddings, but some thicker fabric options like tweed can transition into the cooler months.

Be intentional when choosing the exact length of these shorter styles. The higher hemlines could create some friction in more conservative venues and especially religious houses of worship. Still, you'll want to be comfortable. Test that you can easily bend down and move around without worrying about any indecent exposure—you definitely don't want to be tugging down your dress all night. If you're planning to slip into a second outfit for your reception, consider choosing a short dress that feels completely different from your wedding gown for optimal impact.

FAQ
  • Are short wedding dresses appropriate for my wedding ceremony?

    Short wedding dresses are just as ceremony-appropriate as floor-length gowns. With so many options to choose from, you'll be sure to find a short wedding dress that matches your bridal style and venue.

  • Can I wear a short wedding dress for a formal wedding?

    Yes! Short wedding dresses in luxurious fabrics like silks, organzas, or lace feel right at home for more formal occasions. Intricate detailing like beading or dramatic accents like statements sleeves also creates a more glamorous look.

  • Can I change into a short dress for my reception?

    Absolutely! Second looks have become increasingly popular and are a great chance to showcase your personal style.

  • What shoes can I wear with a short wedding dress?

    While your wedding shoes might be hidden when wearing a floor-length gown, a short wedding dress puts them on full display. So it's worth investing in a pair that you really love. From sky-high stilettos to really elongate those gams to casual wedges that put a premium on comfort, there are tons of shoe options to complement a shorter dress.

About the Author

Sophie Moore has worked in the fashion industry for over seven years. Her access to bridal designers and experience in the market brings readers the latest wedding dress trends, and a view of the ready-to-wear and accessories market from the lens of what a bride is looking for.

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