24 Elegant and Unique Structured Wedding Gowns

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structured wedding dress

Photo by Bedge Pictures/Dress by Gaurav Gupta

Are you someone who pictures walking down the aisle in a dramatic, architectural-esque bridal gown? If so, your wedding dress journey will likely be filled with trying on structured looks. Structured wedding gowns generally feature some sort of boning in the bodice or a corset design—and are typically more extravagant as the dress designer has more creativity when creating this look. Even more, these silhouettes are a great option for women with bigger busts as they allow a bride to feel extra comfortable outside of the support of a bra.

Structure doesn’t just have to do with the bodice of a gown, though. Some architectural elements such as solid ruffles or three-dimensional accents also adds to the uniqueness of this style of gown. Designers such as Peter Langner, Vivienne Westwood, and Danielle Frankel are known for their unique, avant-garde style gowns that have runway-worthy structural designs.

Ahead, we’ve rounded up our favorite structured gowns - from classic styles to modern, unconventional looks. 

Most Dramatic: Peter Langner Ottavia Gown

structured wedding gown

Courtesy of Peter Langner

Runs: True to Size | Size Range: Contact brand | Materials: Silk magnolia and silk satin | Length: Floor-length

This one-of-a-kind, showstopping gown from Peter Langner will have your spouse-to-be and wedding guests in absolute awe. The structured draped bodice and asymmetrical detailing add a modern touch to this ballgown. 

Best One Shoulder: Loho Bride Virtuoso Gown

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of Loho Bride

Runs: Small, order size up | Size Range: 4-6 | Materials: Polyester | Length: Floor-length

Futuristic and chic are the two words that best describe this one-shoulder gown. The asymmetrical neckline meets at a peaked gather on the left shoulder, and the unexpected zipper detailing is perfect for the unconventional bride. 

Best Midi: Maticevski Situational Strapless Midi Gown

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of Maticevski

Runs: True to size | Size Range: AU 6-14 | Materials: Silk| Length: Midi

The sharp tailoring paired with origami folds on this midi gown from Maticevski fit together in this most elegant way. The back of the dress features a flared-out mermaid hem. 

Best Statement Sleeve: Suzanne Neville Aveline Gown

Suzanne Neville

Courtesy of Suzanne Neville

Runs: True to size | Size Range: Contact brand | Materials: Contact brand | Length: Floor-length

Statement-making sleeves have popped up everywhere in 2022 bridal collections, solidifying that this is one trend to keep your eye on. The puff sleeves are a nice contrast to the structured bodice on this gown from Suzanne Neville. 

For the Simplistic Bride: Alex Perry Isobel Gown

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of Alex Perry

Runs: True to size | Size Range: Contact brand | Materials: Polyester, silk | Length: Floor-length

An architectural, structured design doesn’t always mean opulence. This minimalist ballgown is perfect for the ‘less is more’ bride. 

Most Unconventional: Vivienne Westwood Georgina Gown

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of Vivienne Westwood

Runs: True to size | Size Range: Contact brand | Materials: Champagne lace, tulle | Length: High-low

Inspired by the 18th-century icon, Duchess of Devonshire (and the extravagance of the Georgina era), this gown from Vivienne Westwood is truly one-of-a-kind. It is crafted in champagne lace and tulle and features pearls and colorful three-dimensional flowers made from recycled plastic.

For the Fashion-Forward Bride: Vivienne Westwood Camille Gown

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of Vivienne Westwood

Runs: True to size | Size Range: Contact brand | Materials: Contact brand | Length: Floor-length

This Vivienne Westwood gown looks like it came straight off the runway! Stylish brides will love the corset bodice, which is an ode to Westwood’s infamous Autumn-Winter 1987/88 'Harris Tweed' collection. 

Most Budget-Friendly: ASOS Edition Curve Lola Satin Structured Off Shoulder Wedding Dress

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of ASOS

Runs: True to size | Size Range: 12-26 | Materials: Polyester | Length: Floor-length

Structured, statement-making gowns can be hard to find on a budget, but this option from ASOS is truly a winner. The flattering, structured off-the-shoulder neckline and train hem are details that make this dress stand out amongst the rest. 

Best Side Slit: Watters Orlie Gown

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of BHLDN

Runs: True to size | Size Range: 0-18W | Materials: Polyester | Length: Floor-length

This elegant structured bodice dress features a daring side slit, giving you the opportunity to show off a fabulous pair of bridal heels. Even better, the slit is accented with delicate pearly beading. 

Best Off-the-Shoulder: Tadashi Shoji Tenley Satin Jacquard Gown

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of Tadashi Shoji

Runs: True to size | Size Range: 00-16 | Materials: Satin jacquard | Length: Floor-length

This glamorous dress is perfect for the bride who wants to take a risk while still staying true to a classic gown. Take advantage of the off-the-shoulder neckline by pairing it with a statement necklace or glittering earrings. 

Best Ballgown: Amsale Teddy Gown

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of Amsale

Runs: True to size | Size Range: 00-16 | Materials: Silk faille | Length: Floor-length

Amsale never misses when it comes to beautifully crafted bridal gowns. The sweetheart neckline and full ballgown skirt are made edgy with a structured bodice and detachable statement sleeves. 

Best Ruffles: Gaurav Gupta Ecru Endless Ruffled Lehenga

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of Gaurav Gupta

Runs: True to size | Size Range: XS-XL | Materials: Tulle net, silk crepe | Length: Floor-length

We love this avant-garde take on a traditional Indian Lehenga. The ruffle detailing on the Lehenga’s skirt and the trailing dupatta add a romantic and unique touch.

Most Whimsical: Gaurav Gupta Ivory One-Shoulder Organza Ruffled Gown

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of Gaurav Gupta

Runs: True to size | Size Range: XS-XL | Materials: Micro-crepe, silk organza ruffles | Length: Floor-length

Get swept away in this whimsical, yet sophisticated, structured ruffle gown from Gaurav Gupta. Style with a pair of statement earrings that will stand out with the one-shoulder neckline.  

For the Modern Bride: Chiara Boni La Petite Robe Hebe Strapless Ruffle Sheath Dress

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of Chiara Boni La Petite Robe

Runs: True to size | Size Range: 0-18 | Materials: Polyamide/elastane | Length: Midi

This midi dress's architectural, three-dimensional ruffle flower-esque detail is perfect for the modern bride. We can picture it at a daytime spring wedding or as a second dress option for brides opting for multiple looks. 

Most Unique Construction: Danielle Frankel Remy Gown

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of Danielle Frankel 

Runs: True to size | Size Range: 0-12 | Materials: Satin, corded lace, organza | Length: Floor-length

Where to begin when describing the intricate details of this Danielle Frankel gown? The structured bodice leads into a full corset and an umbrella pleated skirt that gives the architectural gown movement. 

For a Black Tie Wedding: Carolina Herrera Sloane Gown

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of Carolina Herrera

Runs: True to size | Size Range: Contact brand | Materials: Contact brand | Length: Floor-length

For a formal, black-tie wedding celebration, look no further than this classic mermaid-fit gown. The carefully-structured statement-making sleeves add an unanticipated detail that elevates the overall look. 

For the Playful Bride: Sachin and Babi Tara Gown

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of Sachin and Babi

Runs: True to size | Size Range: 0-16 | Materials: Mikado | Length: High-low

We can picture this high-low hemline dress at an unconventional, glamorous wedding. The oversized knot-detailing on the center of this gown adds just the right amount of youthfulness while remaining formal.

Best Corset-Detail: Peter Langner Annabelle Gown

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of Peter Langner 

Runs: True to size | Size Range: Contact brand | Materials: Silk organza | Length: Floor-length

This gown unconventionally incorporates a corset design with the draped V-neckline. The fabric features tiny feminine polka-dots and an illusion tulle back. 

For a Cathedral Wedding: Peter Langner Camelia Gown

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of Peter Langner 

Runs: True to size | Size Range: Contact brand | Materials: Silk organza, silk satin | Length: Floor-length

Walk down the aisle in this sweeping ballgown that feels like something out of a fairytale. The one-shoulder dress is crafted in silk organza with silk satin draping.

Most Unexpected: Ashi Studio 03-01 Gown

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of Ashi Studio

Runs: True to size | Size Range: Contact brand | Materials: Contact brand | Length: Floor-length

Searching for a gown that feels like a piece of art? This gown from Ashi Studio is your answer. The extravagant, unconventional sleeves on this gown are indeed a sight to see and will look incredible in photos.  

Most Eye-Catching: Pantora Bridal Esperanza

Pantora Bridal

Courtesy of Pantora Bridal

Runs: True to size | Size Range: Contact brand | Materials: Contact brand | Length: Floor-length

This fitted mermaid-style gown encapsulates Hollywood glamour to a T. The exaggerated bow-bodice adds a whimsical and bold detail to the gown.

Most Regal: Danielle Frankel Tabitha Gown

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of Danielle Frankel 

Runs: True to size | Size Range: 0-12 | Materials: Silk | Length: Floor-length

Danielle Frankel takes a note from the regency era with this off-the-shoulder ball gown. The pleated corset bodice and grosgrain waistband flares out into a bubble skirt hem. 

For the Colorful Bride: Azzi & Osta Through the Lens Look 14

structured wedding dress

Courtesy of Azzi & Osta

Runs: True to size | Size Range: Contact brand  | Materials: Contact brand | Length: Floor-length

More and more modern brides are inching away from white bridal gowns and opting for colored options—like this sage green ballgown. The color alone isn’t what makes this dress stand out, though. Instead, it’s the architectural detailing on the bodice that truly steals the show. 

Best Mini Dress: Katherine Tash Mini Ilaria

structured wedding dress

courtesy of Katherine Tash

Runs: True to size | Size Range: Contact brand  | Materials: Contact brand | Length: Mini

Get party-ready in this flirty mini dress from Katherine Tash. The structured bodice is juxtaposed with off-the-shoulder draped sleeves and a wrap-skirt. 

What to Look for in a Structured Wedding Dress

So you’ve decided you want a structured wedding dress. What’s next? Well, there are a few key considerations to keep in mind during your search for this dress style. For starters, the fabric of your gown is important to keep in mind. Materials that generally make for well-structured gowns include mikado, brocade, faille, and any other thicker fabric. With more expensive gowns, it’s not uncommon to see silk or crepe utilized as well. 

Structured wedding dresses—while stunning—have the potential to be restricting. For this reason, you’ll want to move around while trying the gown on to make sure it will be comfortable for all-day wear. Focusing on the appearance of your dress may be all-consuming, but the last thing you want is to feel uncomfortable or restricted during your big day. If you choose a grand, structured gown, consider a second dress option to change into during the ceremony that might be a bit more comfortable for dancing and eating.

FAQ
  • Are structured wedding dresses popular?

    Many brides opt for a structured bodice because of its flattering and sophisticated appearance. It is rarer, though, to find brides who choose an architectural, grand structured gown. This style of dress is made to stand out, and therefore may not be as popular as they have a more unique, unconventional quality to them. 

  • Are structured wedding dresses flattering for all body types?

    Yes! A structured wedding gown generally has boning in the bodice that provides a shapely, flattering look on all brides. 

  • What type of wedding is a structured wedding dress best suited for?

    Structured wedding gowns are generally more formal-looking and are an excellent option for a black-tie or cocktail attire wedding. However, there are several mini and midi structured dresses that would look incredible at a beachside or casual wedding as well. 

About the Author

Contributing writer Melony Forcier is a recent graduate starting her career path in beauty and fashion journalism. Before graduating, she interned with both Boston Magazine and Foundation PR. Additionally, she served as a fashion editor for Boston University's lifestyle magazine, The Buzz.

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