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Wedding dress styles: The mermaid dress

At, we’ve noticed a definite revival one wedding dress silhouette in particular: the mermaid. Like a real mermaid, the mermaid dress is half and half: half sheath and half ball gown. But this silhouette has come a long way since the 1990s when it first became popular.

Simone Carvali

The mermaid of the 1990s was a direct reaction to the poufy, Princess Diana-inspired ballgown wedding dresses of the 1980s. Sleek and slick all the way to the knees, or mid calf and then poofed into a fishtail train, it was very dramatic, but wearable only by a handful of women. To wear it well, you had to be tall, with a nice chest and backside, and no visible body fat. Or, you had to own really good shapewear (which actually wasn’t as good in the 1990s as it is today).

Back appeal

Today’s mermaid silhouettes are a little more… forgiving. While the mermaid is still not the silhouette for the bride who wants to hide her body, it can be a great look for the slender bride, the more petite bride or, as this Simone Carvalli dress makes clear, the bride who sees her backside as a fabulous asset.

Up next: Modern & playful >>

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