Wedding Dress Guide: Necklines

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Most brides will be firmly on either side of the strapless/sleeve debate, you will either feel comfortable with a strapless gown or you won’t! The options, however are much greater than strapless v’s sleeve. Continuing on from our wedding dress guide on skirt shapes, we’re talking today about necklines.

V neck wedding dress with A line skirt

Beatrix by Amanda Wyatt

All women are built differently, and all women suit different things, which is why not every wedding dress will suit everyone. Knowing your shape and what works well on your frame will help when it comes to dress shopping.

With that in mind, we’ve had a look at the choices of necklines available, who will suit them and who simply, won’t!



A strapless bodice can be cut straight across, sometimes with a notch or side peaks, they are usually figure hugging and work with most skirt shapes.

Strapless A line dress with belted detail by Benjamin Roberts

Benjamin Roberts

Wear if… you have broad shoulders as the neckline will balance you out.

Avoid if… you have a very small chest, although a good bra will help!


The sweetheart neckline is quite low cut, shaped like the top of a heart with the back usually cut at the same height as the front, but without the curvy heart shape. A less obvious dipped neckline is also shaped but generally not as low, whilst a Queen Anne neckline has a more accentuated neckline and higher back which is joined by a sleeve.

Sweetheart wedding dress with beaded detail by Justin Alexander

Justin Alexander

Wear if… you are happy to display an ample cleavage, tastefully.

Avoid if… you are not a fan of showing off your décolletage.

Halter Neck

A halter neck has straps that wrap around your neck, sometimes featuring a backless design. Some halter neck designs feature a high neckline covering your chest with lace detailing.

Halter neck lace wedding dress by Maggie Sottero

Maggie Sottero

Wear if… you have great shoulders and if you want your back on display.

Avoid if… you have either broad or narrow shoulders or if you need plenty of bra support.


Bateau, or boat neck features an elegant sweeping wide line following the curve of the collarbone and helps boost a small bust.

Simple bateau neck wedding dress with clean lines by Jesus Peiro

Jesus Peiro

Wear if… you want to cover up your décolletage, or if who have a small bust.

Avoid if… you have a large bust as this shape will over-emphasise this.


An asymmetrical neckline is different on the left and right side of the bodice usually with a one shoulder strap design.

One shoulder wedding dress by Romantica of Devon

Romantica of Devon

Wear if… you don’t need to wear a bra.

Avoid if… you don’t feel comfortable showing off your shoulders.

Off the Shoulder

As it suggests a gown with an off the shoulder neckline is gently supported on the top of your arms and shows off a delicate collarbone and shoulders. A portrait neckline is pretty similar although your shoulders will be slightly more covered. Both styles are ideal for brides with great collarbones.

Off the shoulder wedding dress by Alfred Angelo

Alfred Angelo

Wear if…
you have great collarbones and an ample chest.

Avoid if… you have broad shoulders.


A plunge neckline is not for the faint hearted! With a deep V shape at the front of your gown you have to be very comfortable with the amount of flesh on show! This style will flatter the bust line.

White wedding dress with plunge neck detail by Amanda Wyatt

Amanda Wyatt

Wear if… you have the confidence to carry it off.

Avoid if… you have either a very small or large sized bust.


image credits

strapless Benjamin Roberts| sweetheart Justin Alexander| halter neck Maggie Sottero| bateau Jesus Peiro| asymmetrical Romantica| Off the shoulder Alfred Angelo| plunge Amanda Wyatt

4 thoughts on “Wedding Dress Guide: Necklines”

  1. gracie says:

    what designer is the very first dress from?? theres no image credit for it?

  2. Claire says:

    Hi gracie,
    Oops – sorry. The dress is Beatrix by Amanda Wyatt – just added the credit now 🙂

  3. MrsSwift2be says:

    I love the Beatrix by Amanda Wyatt! Any idea where to find this dress in Ireland?

  4. gracie says:

    Thanks a million claire! I love the dress, so romantic 🙂

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