Choosing your wedding dress should be an exciting and fun experience, but when the shop owner comes out with dress terminology you don’t understand, it can become daunting.

To help you get your head around it all, we’ve chosen our ten most common words complete with definitions.

Drop waist

This kind of wedding dress comes with a bodice that is fitted to your top half, with the dress flowing naturally and slightly further down from your hips. This style works well if you want a train.


This word is used to describe a wedding dress that has a heart-shaped cut along the top. Its dip in the middle is smoother than a V-neckline.

Boat neck

The cut of this dress is classic and made to show off the collarbone by resting on the shoulder point.


This word can be used for any wedding dress which isn’t symmetrical, such as one shoulder strap and detail or gathering on one side.


This is another classic style where the dress has a very high waist or fitted just under the bust, with the rest of fabric free-flowing. This style is especially ideal for women who are pear-shaped.


For a simple design, this is a style that has no fitted waist or bodice, making the wedding dress fit in accordance with the bride’s body shape.


This is a term used for the length of a dress which ends at or just above the ankle.


This is simply a dress that uses the support of the bust rather than any straps. This design is ideal for a summer bride or if you plan to wear a necklace on your wedding day.


Tulle is a fabric that is commonly used in wedding dresses, made from a mixture of rayon, cotton, silk or nylon.


A mermaid dress is also known as a fishtail, because the fabric flares out at the bottom of the design. This is usually seen on dresses that are fitted right down the body.