No matter your size or shape, the key to looking and feeling your best in your wedding dress is to find a silhouette that not only showcases your personal style but fits you perfectly. For petite brides, this means finding a wedding dress that flatters, not overwhelms, your frame. Luckily, there are tons of stylish wedding dresses out there that were designed with the petite bride in mind.
While we believe that all brides should wear whatever makes them feel the most beautiful, there are certain types of wedding dresses that work best for petite frames. "I find that plunging or slightly lower necklines will help to elongate the torso. V-necklines or gowns with straps help to draw the eye from top to bottom. Trumpet or sheath-style gowns are also a great way to lengthen the body," says Alison Chang, the Lead Designer at Lace & Liberty.
To help you find your dream dress, we've researched the best options with these features in mind. For something simple yet chic, we adore the Galvan London Pandora Satin Halterneck Midi Dress. Going for a glamorous look? Our favorite picks are the Galina Signature Floral Petite Wedding Dress with Removable Sleeves and the Markarian Rhett Dress.
From leg-baring mini dresses to stunning A-line gowns and simple slips, read on for the best wedding dresses for petite brides.
Best With Ruffles
Lulus White Satin Ruffled Flutter Sleeve Maxi Dress
Ruffles add the perfect finishing touch to this utterly romantic dress. Flattering from head to toe, you'll never want to take this frilly yet oh-so-flattering number off.
Price at time of publish: $89
For a Spring Wedding
Lulus Absolutely Stunning White Lace Off-the-Shoulder Midi Dress
What could be sweeter than this playful frock? Crafted from floral lace and featuring an elegant off-the-shoulder neckline, this tea-length number is dreamy for a spring or summer wedding.
Price at time of publish: $82
Sachin & Babi Detachable Train Wedding Dress
What could be more fun than a mini dress with an oversized bow and flowing train? We love this style for everything from the rehearsal dinner to the after-party. We can also picture this show-stopper being perfect for a courthouse wedding.
Price at time of publish: $395
Galina Signature Floral Petite Wedding Dress with Removable Sleeves
This floral embroidered gown is as romantic as ever for a formal or black-tie wedding. It comes with removable sleeves, making it an excellent choice for brides who are looking for a gown that boasts two looks in one.
Price at time of publish: $1,499
For the Minimalist
Galvan London Pandora Satin Halterneck Midi Dress
In liquid satin, this exquisite Galvan dress features an elongating halter neckline. The slim-fit silhouette drapes beautifully over the body and is designed to accentuate your figure.
Price at time of publish: $1,295
DB Studio Mikado High-Low Wedding Dress
Wedding dresses with high-low hemlines are a great choice for petite brides as they give you all the drama of a ball gown without overwhelming your frame. We love this simple and sleek choice that's at once elegant and flattering.
Price at time of publish: $300
For a Black-Tie Wedding
David's Bridal Off the Shoulder Satin Gown Wedding Dress
Just because you have a petite frame doesn't mean you can't don a fabulous ball gown! This off-the-shoulder stunner is ideal for showcasing your shoulders and décolletage. It's a beyond-elegant choice for a black-tie celebration.
Price at time of publish: $699
Best Asymmetric Hem
Anna October Snowdrop Asymmetric Maxi Dress
With a subtle high-low hemline, this maxi dress is designed to flatter your legs while the bustier bodice adds an element of sexiness to the silhouette. Pair yours with gold accessories and sleek sandals.
Price at time of publish: $805
Best Two-Piece Look
Lace & Liberty Milan Crop Top
Trendy, chic, and flattering, this two-piece set is perfect for petite brides who love a little edge. Pair this with statement earrings and a gorgeous veil to elevate the overall ensemble.
Price at time of publish: $400
Carolina Herrera One-Shoulder Silk Mini Dress with Bows
For petite brides, a short wedding dress is a smart and stylish choice. Show off your legs (and a statement pair of heels) in this playful yet architectural mini dress from Carolina Herrera.
Price at time of publish: $3,490
Reformation Alfred Jumpsuit
Want to wear a jumpsuit down the aisle or change into one for the reception? Go for this simple and sweet jumpsuit from Reformation. The fitted bodice is perfect for showcasing your figure while the slightly flared hem draws attention to your legs.
Price at time of publish: $278
Markarian Rhett Dress
From the tie sleeve detail to the crystal trim straps and belt, there's so much to love about the 'Rhett' dress from Markarian. If you're a bride-to-be who has an eye for fashion, this dress is the perfect fit for you.
Price at time of publish: $2,895
Danielle Frankel Liv Mini Dress
Danielle Frankel is known for her eye-catching and fashion-forward designs, and this mini dress is no exception. We love it for the bride who isn't afraid to go for a daring and different look.
Price at time of publish: $3,990
Shona Joy Balloon Sleeves Mini Dress
With a distinctly '80s vibe to it, this mini dress is perfect for the bride-to-be who loves vintage-inspired pieces. Wear your hair up to showcase the dramatic balloon sleeves.
Price at time of publish: $320
Best Shift Dress
Amsale Bow Back Shift Dress
Amsale's 'Little White Dress' collection is a petite bride's dream. While it's hard to choose just one favorite from the collection, we love this shift dress for its sleek yet sweet aesthetic. The back bow detail adds a bit of whimsy while the structured silhouette keeps a clean and crisp look.
Price at time of publish: $385
Reformation Joana Silk Dress
Reformation's 'Joana' silk dress is a gorgeous option for petite brides looking to wear a simple slip wedding gown. The strapless neckline and soft sheen of the fabric make it flattering and sexy, to boot.
Price at time of publish: $278
DBR Bridal Tea-Length Sweetheart Pearls Bridal Dress
If you're not drawn to floor-length gowns or mini dresses, consider meeting in the middle with a tea-length dress. This embellished number feels appropriate for a wide range of celebrations from micro weddings to courthouse ceremonies and formal soirées.
Price at time of publish: $154
Selkie The Ivory in Bloom Bridal Gown
Selkie is known for its whimsical, fairytale-like designs. If you want to feel like a true princess on your special day, opt for this ultra-frilly number featuring the brand's signature puff sleeves and unique ruffles throughout.
Price at time of publish: $575
David's Bridal Sequin Leaf-Appliqued High Neck Petite Gown
Classy and understated, this floral sequin gown is perfect for a garden wedding or outdoor setting. The high neckline and waistband are sleek and flattering, and the subtle flare of the skirt helps elongate the silhouette.
Price at time of publish: $200
Reformation Butterfly Dress
Simple yet elegant, this gorgeous midi dress is perfect for boho brides and casual spring ceremonies. The flutter sleeves and ruffled hem add a romantic vibe, while the structured bodice creates a clean and flattering fit.
Price at time of publish: $298
Meet the Expert
Alison Chang is the Lead Designer at Lace & Liberty, a custom design wedding dress brand based in San Francisco.
What to Look for in a Petite Wedding Dress
Silhouette and fabric
For petite brides, shopping for a wedding dress is all about finding a silhouette that flatters your frame without overwhelming it. As a petite bride, you'll want to experiment with different dress silhouettes and hem lengths. A-line and fit-to-flare silhouettes are always a flattering choice for petite body types while mini and midi dresses are great for showing off your legs and elongating your frame. Our favorite minis are the Shona Joy La Lune Balloon Sleeve Mini Dress and the Sachin & Babi Archie V-Neck Back Bow Mini Dress.
When it comes to fabrics and prints, keep in mind that sometimes less is more. While we're all for brides making a bold fashion statement, oversized prints, heavy fabrics, and all-over embellishments might overpower some smaller frames.
Style and aesthetic
"I think a lot of it depends on personal style and the aesthetic of the wedding. If you're a minimalistic bride, crepe, satin, chiffon, and charmeuse are some of the most common fabrics. If you like romance and a bit of whimsy, then lace, sparkle, and beading might be the way to go. Most of our petite clients prefer delicate laces to ones with larger patterns," Chang advises.
"The best advice I can give to any bride is to be open to trying on a variety of dresses and styles and, of course, wear a gown that makes you feel beautiful and amazing no matter the style!"
What dress silhouettes work best for petite brides?
Dresses with A-line and fit-to-flare silhouettes as well as dresses with short and high-low hemlines are some flattering choices for petite brides. As Chang recommended, trumpet or sheath-style gowns are also a great way to elongate your frame.
What wedding dress silhouettes should petite brides avoid?
"Many petite brides believe they can't wear A-line or ballgown styles because the amount of fabric will overwhelm them," says Chang. "I think it’s entirely possible for petite brides to wear A-line and, personally, I think that the fuller skirt can elongate your legs! It all comes down to personal preference and how much fabric you're willing to have on for the entire day."
Why Trust Brides
Contributing writer Sophie Moore is a former fashion editor at Brides and is an expert in all things bridal attire, from couture wedding gowns to the perfect "something blue" accessory. She researches and sources the best fashion items for brides, grooms, wedding guests, wedding parties, and more.