Would You Wear a Long-Sleeved Wedding Dress?

My mother has very strong opinions about a lot of things. One of those things, last time I checked, was strapless wedding dresses. “They’re just not appropriate,” was the gist of her sentiment.

Well, they’ve since become the prevailing wedding-dress aesthetic, and while I’m not sure her tune has changed, I do know that long-sleeved wedding dresses now look surprising to me. Not wrong, but notable, in a quaint, Amish sort of way.

What do you think? Would you wear a long-sleeved wedding dress?

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    • Denise

      Bring on the long sleeves, PLEASE! Unless the bride is a size 10 or smaller and has the grace and posture of a ballerina, she should not be allowed within 500 feet of a strapless gown. That goes for the bridesmaids, too. Enough already with hunched shoulders, tan lines, and little rolls of fat bunched up at the top of the dress near the armpits. Enough already with the damn flip flops, too. They turn your wedding ensemble into the sartorial equivalent of the mullet. No, I say bring back long sleeves, painful shoes, and whatever else it takes to put the “special” back in “special occasion.”

      • Diane

        Right there with you on being sick of flip-flops!! They’re for the beach and public showers at the gym, not for the most photographed occasion of your life. As for the ‘wear something flattering for your body type”, I also agree. I’m a size 10, but most of it is in my bust and strapless dresses look horrible on me – I need support that they don’t provide. Please give us some options!

    • Lexie

      Yay sleeves! I really dislike the idea of a strapless wedding dress.

      But I also equally dislike the idea of an all-lace sleeve.

      I think the off-the-shoulder strap is really underappreciated and I’m already scouting styles for my wedding…

    • Eileen

      I might – my mom did, and it looked gorgeous (and not at all old fashioned): satin sleeves with lace cut-outs. But I think I’d worry about getting pit stains/too hot in general.

    • MontreatGal

      99% of women in America are not made for strapless gowns. How many times have you seen a bride in a strapless gown, you are looking at her from behind, and there is back-fat oozing over the back of the dress? Bring on the sleeves! I am 100% in favor of sleeves.

    • Nadine

      I bought my wedding dress a couple weeks ago, tea length and strapless.

    • Harry87

      Many dress companies have removable boleros that will match their line of wedding dresses, so to me, the simple solution is to cover up in the ceremony and let go at the reception. Done and done.

    • Somnilee

      My mother wore a wedding dress that had sheer, lacy sleeves.
      Following in that trend, if I were to wear a dress with sleeves (which is a possibility, I have nothing against them), I’d either have full length sheer sleeves as in the photo, or sort of elbow length fabric sleeves.

      On strapless dresses, I don’t mind them and would wear one myself, but at the last wedding I went to, the bride had gained so much weight she looked like she’d eaten one of the bridesmaids and it was NOT a good look.
      That said, spaghetti strap dresses annoy me the most.

    • Hannah

      I went wedding dress shopping a couple of months ago and only found one dress with sleeves, and it was $9000.

      I ended up buying a beautiful dress with straps (and gloves) for $399 and I couldn’t love it more, but I had my heart set on a dress with sleeves (partly for the aesthetics, partly because of a self-mutilation problem when I was a teenager) and it was disappointing that no stores stocked any.

    • porkchop

      That is an EXCELLENT point about posture. There are ways to look gorgeous in strapless even if you are a big girl, but you can’t stand/sit up that straight all day without practice, and strapless brides/bridesmaids usually end up with those photos where they’ve gone limp against the boning of their dress and their shoulders have rolled over their bust. yick. I’m all for more choices in wedding gowns–short sleeves, long sleeves, wide straps, whatever.

    • Lindsay Hartman

      I think the most important thing for a wedding dress is feeling beautiful. I don’t care if it has sleeves, straps or none of the above, as long as you feel like the most gorgeous woman in the world that day. And as long as you don’t have snarky people at your wedding to criticize your dress instead of being excited to share an important part in your life.

    • Sheri

      That first comment is pretty cruel. I’m sick of the “big girls should cover their fatty fat fat! parts” idea. Fear and concern over other people’s wobbly bits (or lack thereof) is a sick waste of time. I think fat girls can wear pull off strapless as much as any other body type. The bride’s wedding gown can be whatever the hell she wants it to be, regardless of her size. Her body, not yours.

    • Robin

      When I got married, I was bound and determined to wear a long-sleeved wedding dress. Unfortunately, there just aren’t any out there. David’s bridal can tack some lame-ass sheer sleeves on for about $200 extra but I found that to be unacceptable. I ended up making my own sleeves and had a lovely, off the shoulder sleeved wedding dress.

    • Fran

      I’m in total agreement with Denise. I’m tired of seeing wearing clothes that just aren’t suited for their body type. Just say no to back boobs and other exposed body parts that could use a little concealment.

    • Marissa

      My fiance’s one request about my dress was that it have long sleeves. He was, of course, being sarcastic and trying to come up with the ugliest/most difficult thing he could think of.

      I am anti-sleeveless not because of back fat (ouch!), but because it’s such an unoriginal look to have that same dress that everyone seems to wear. I actually think people choose it because it does seem to look good on everyone.

      I chose more of a v-neck tank with a slight mermaid bottom. Yes, it sounds ugly, but I swear it looks good. At least long-sleeved dresses are more original, though possibly a little 80s.

    • MelbaToast

      I think any body size can potentially look good in a strapless dress, provided it actually fits them right. Gain a little weight before the ceremony, and you start having problems.

      That being said, for those of us who feel uncomfortable wearing strapless gowns, and don’t want to spend our wedding day constantly tugging at the dress or keeping our lungs in a perpetual state of inhale just to feel like the dress isn’t going fall off while everyone is watching, it’s a real challenge to find a dress with straps. And no, the attachable/optional spaghetti straps or cap sleeves the bridal shops pull out to sell you a strapless gown in disguise aren’t good enough. How about they design beautiful, non-old fashioned gowns for those of us don’t want to feel naked until AFTER the reception?

    • Chelsea

      I’d never go strapless – not because of my body type, just because I don’t think they’re that pretty. Poofy sleeves are definitely out of the question, but something simple like in the picture is beautiful. I’ve always wanted a halter-top dress.

    • Rose

      Non-strapless options have to be made more available, if for no other reason than to give brides an option to NOT look like every other bride in the last decade. I have nothing against a well-made strapless gown worn by a bride with a suitable body type and attention to posture. I happen to look pretty outstanding in a strapless dress. However, I would never wear a strapless wedding dress because I don’t want to look like everyone else. I swear, all of my friends wedidng gowns look exactly the same. Oddly enough, strapless gowns have become too conventional!

    • Betsy

      My wedding dress was strapless, but it came with a long sleeved lace bolero that I wore all day. The effect was the same as a dress with sleeves. I liked it a lot, because as a thin girl with large boobs strapless dresses are my nemesis, and because I hate the way strapless looks on pretty much everyone. It baffles me that so many people would choose that style for their wedding day when almost no one looks good wearing it.

    • Ethel Rose Mileski

      I have been to too many weddings where the bride spent the entire evening tugging at a strapless gown. I even went to one where the bra showed in back. I vote for something the bride is comfortable in and she doesn’t have to worry if her boobs will come out of the gown when she is dancing.

    • Nancy

      I found that the strapless dress works for no one. Big chested girls look awful in them but are the only ones who can hold them up and small chested girls look good but will have the dress fall off halfway through the ceremony. Bring back straps and sleeves, lord knows we could all use them.

    • Nadine


    • Betty

      I got married almost 8 years ago in a renaissance-style wedding gown with long, dangly sleeves. I still love that gown.

    • Z

      There’s a whole world of middle ground between strapless and long sleeved…

    • SG

      Strapless weddings gown are a recent trend, unfortunately. I’m not a particularly modest person, but I’ve always felt strapless is just not appropriate for a serious occasion like a wedding, nor are those sexy, sheer corset Pnina dresses I see on “Say Yes to the Dress.” BTW, I did have long sleeves on my dress but my wedding was 15 years ago.

    • Christina

      Yes, I would wear a long sleeve dress. Just b/c it has sleeves doesn’t mean that it isn’t pretty. I have seen strapless and short sleeves just as pretty with sleeves.

    • miku

      i think i will not be wearing long sleeved wedding dress bcos here in the philippines it’s so hot..:)

    • Panda Oso

      I always knew I would wear a more modest wedding gown (high neck, long sleeves, lace — check out Nicole Richie’s wedding gown). Not because of any religious belief or parental nagging, but because a wedding is a certain type of event. It’s not a nightclub, it’s not a birthday. It’s not the moment to show off how sexy I am. It’s a moment to show what a classy grown woman I have become. One day my children and grandchildren will look at those pictures and I want them to be proud.

      And for those who say they can’t find a long sleeved gown: contact the original dress designer and ask them to modify the gown especially for you.

    • abegail

      im not going to wear a long sleeve wedding dress,old fashioned.

    • Daryn

      I think that they should design more than one style of top for wedding gowns. I’m tired of seeing all sleeveless! The last wedding I went to the bride and the wedding party wore sleeveless dresses and they were constantly pulling there dresses up. The one in this photo with sleeves is beautiful, but most of them are ugly. It’s hard to find a pretty design with any kind of sleeves. And I’m tired of seeing cleavage!!! Even the ones with sleeves plunge so low. I have scars on my chest and would not be able to wear any of them. Some diversity would be nice!

    • Melanie Romasanta

      Wearing a strapless/sleeveless gown would actually depend on the kind of wedding. For instance, here in the Philippines, churches usually do not approve of sleeveless gowns. If you would be having a beach or garden wedding, a halter or tube gown would be nice. But the gown in the picture is absolutely beautiful. It would be a perfect outfit for the perfect wedding.

    • Jennie

      The dress above is gorgeous. Do you have the name of the designer? I’d actually love to wear it for my wedding! :)

    • Paige

      The type of wedding dress you wear just depends on your taste and if you are hot or cold-natured! Personally, I would prefer to wear a spaghetti strap wedding dress. It also depends on your religion and what you believe. Some people do not believe in showing much skin, but for others that is not an issue!

    • anne

      i wouldn’t mind wearing a long-sleeved dress. for me te lok is classic especially if the style is nice

    • Louise

      I think there are very few women who suit a strapless dress or ones with cap sleeves. ie only the very slim ones who have ‘good arms’ like Jennifer Anniston. Flabby white sausage-like arms or over fleshed shoulders and decollete look awful. I see those girls and I think – ooh tacky. Princess Margaret and Princess Grace are bride icons and they both had dresses with sleeves!

    • Sen Minerva

      Thank you for your enlightening me. I’m very confident in wearing long sleeves after reading all your posts. In fact, I’m going to wear a replica of the Royal Dress. But my neckline is different. That’s what it makes me MINE :) Good Luck :) I’m a bride of 2011.

    • Sen Minerva

      Thank you for enlightening me. I’m very confident in wearing long sleeves after reading all your posts. In fact, I’m going to wear a replica of the Royal Wedding Dress. But my neckline is different. That’s what makes it MINE :) Good Luck :) I’m a bride of 2011.

    • Jessica

      My mom and I talked about this for months after I got engaged. I always wanted a winter wedding and I did not want a strapless gown. Truthfully my search for a long sleeve, non-ball gown wedding dress started off on a discouraging note. Anything that I found was not up to date and mostly in the modest sites for religious requirements. Finally I have “The Long Sleeved Dress” and truly it is perfect for our 11/11 ceremony. http://www.mybigfatbeautifulwedding.com/Capriana-Long-Sleeve-Wedding-Dress-p/le1012.htm I can not wait to wear it. Long sleeves are not only appropriate, but can also be ontrend with the right style.

    • Kathy

      I’m so thankful that when I was married in ’92, long-sleeved wedding gowns were still in fashion. I would be so out of luck if I was married today! I don’t like the look of my arms, so I wanted to hide them. I’m not heavy, just don’t like my arms. Here is the dress I chose, for $300 (half price because the boutique was going out of business).


    • Mandi

      I wore a long-sleeved wedding dress 6 years ago. I always wanted long sleeves mostly because I don’t like the look of my arms. Almost nothing existed, except the ugly early nineties style long sleeves, so I designed the dress myself and my mother made it. My dress looked very similar to Catherine Middleton’s dress. I was very pleased to see her wearing a long sleeved dress, hoping that those types of dresses will become stylish again. The one pictured above is also gorgeous and I would’ve chosen it, had it been available.

    • Cici

      Everyone wears strapless…it’s boring. It looks so trendy that nothing looks regal or elegant about it. Sleeves show class and elegance. Something about silk or lace long sleeved wedding gowns just ooze sophistication.

    • Ana

      Of course, modesty(: It is good to be different.

    • MJ

      Im getting married this October and im struggling to find a long sleeve dress! Mine isnt a religious thing either its just that Ive always wanted one but all I find is strapless and sleeveless! All of them are beautiful but I dont like the look of my arms so I really dont wanna look back at photos and videos and keep looking at my arms. I think the look of a long lace sleeve is beautiful! If I could pull off a strapless gown it would be great but im not that luck so I gotta go with what works for me. I believe everyone should go with what works for them. Thanks girls!

    • Zee

      Hi….This dress is awesome. What is the material used and how much did it cost(if that`s not too personal, of course) because I love it and I want this for my wedding this year.


    • Zee

      Anyone please help me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!