Planning Tip Tuesday: Wedding Dress Bustles

To make sure your night goes smoothly without any trips or rips from guests stepping on your wedding dress, it is important to have a bustle sewn into your wedding dress! A bustle refers to the sewing process of transitioning a wedding gown to function as if it has no train. There are many different types of bustles, depending on the fabric and style of dress. By doing so, it is easier for you to walk post ceremony and move around throughout the night. Each type of bustle works differently, so we’re here to explain the most popular and how each one works!

American Bustle (or Over Bustle)

This bustle is created by lifting the train up - using buttons, loops, or hooks - over the dress itself. The length of the bustle should be the same length of the hem so the dress is even all the way around. This bustle is great for ballgowns.

Photo by Dana Cubbage Photography

Photo by Dana Cubbage Photography

Austrian Bustle

This bustle gathers the gown’s fabric centrally down the middle of the back of the dress using ribbons sewn into the back seam of the gown to secure both sides of the dress together. This bustle is great for gowns with intricate details.

Photo by Monika Gauthier Photography

Photo by Monika Gauthier Photography

French Bustle (or Under Bustle)

This bustle picks up the train by hooking underneath the dress itself. This is commonly done with ribbons and has multiple pick up points to support the weight of the train and add extra flair to the dress.

Photo by Kate Supa

Photo by Kate Supa

Ballroom Bustle

This bustle makes the train disappear by folding the fabric in on itself by using multiple bustle points sewn around the bodice of the dress.

Photo by Aaron and Jillian Photography

Photo by Aaron and Jillian Photography

A few additional tips on bustling:

-Budget for the bustle: Be sure to ask about this when purchasing your dress, as this is typically an added expense. The cost will vary depending on the style of bustle you need.

-Take Notes: Someone will need to know how to do the bustle on the wedding day, so be sure to take notes or a video of the seamstress showing how to do the bustle so you can have a friendly reminder the day-of (especially if there are many steps involved). This is a perfect duty for the maid of honor or mother of the bride to learn!

-Bustles can break, so be prepared! No matter how carefully you bustle, there is a slight chance it might break. Dresses can be very heavy, and the very delicate bustle points may not hold, so be sure to have extra safety pins just in case! If you have a wedding planner, not to worry, we’ve got you covered with our emergency kit!