26 Short Wedding Dress Ideas That Actually Work | Wedding Spot Blog

26 Short Wedding Dress Ideas That Actually Work

Mar 20, 2020
By Wedding Spot

Looking for non-traditional dresses with a higher hemline that look stylish and classy? We’ve got you covered with over 20 short wedding dress ideas that work. Discover suggestions, shoppable links, and inspiration board images to add to your wish list. Then, see examples of short wedding dresses worn by celebrities along with practical tips for accessories such as shoes and veils. 

Explore 26 short wedding dress ideas that actually work:

The best short wedding dress ideas offer unique twists on classic designs, play with unexpected features and accessories, and provide brides with an opportunity to show off their individual style. 

Budget-friendly ideas

1. Wear an A-line short wedding dress with lace appliques and contrasting bow detail for a pop of understated color. Choose a thin bow for a dainty accessory or a large one to make your waist the focal point.

2. Go with a dress that has a high-low hem and pleated bodice to show off your wedding shoes without fully exposing your legs. Wear shoes in funky colors, designs, or styles since your feet are on display anyway. 

Find the perfect wedding venue!

Get Started Free

3. Try a short midi gown with rhinestone details for a flowy yet sophisticated take on the trend. Aim for a sweetheart neckline for a summer look or a halter neck with or without sleeves for cold-weather weddings.  

4. Pair a short dress with long sleeves and a scoop neckline for a balanced look. Bring attention back up to your face with a delicate lace top or waist accent. 

5. Mix knee-length skirts with backless tops for a sexy yet classy look. Add a bow and flower crown to make it even more stylized. 

Ideas with a mix of traditional and nontraditional styles

6. Show off your legs without exposing a ton of skin with a thigh-high slit. Copy this Lihi Hod example and include off-the-shoulder sleeves for an even more glamorous look. 


A post shared by 𝐋𝐢𝐡𝐢 𝐇𝐨𝐝 (@lihihod) on

7. Stun guests with an asymmetrical hem design. Go with a small accessory like a bow, feather, or applique at the waist to complement but not overwhelm.

8. Don a fluffy tulle high-low dress with exposed shoulders for a breezy take on a classic short wedding dress. Show off your legs with this shorter hemline dress but keep the traditional tulle train to balance out the look. 

Vintage ideas

9. Look for a high collared, V-neck wedding dress with sleeves, tiny buttons, and a short hem for an extra classy look. Wear your hair pinned back to keep attention on your décolletage and face. 

10. Complement your dress with polka dot lace sleeves. Add a polka dot lace veil instead for a whimsical addition. 

11. Blend new and old school wedding designs with strands of pearls over an exposed back and a small jeweled headpiece. Pair with satin T-strap shoes and stacked pearl bracelets to complete the ensemble. 

Ideas for the beach

12. Buy a spaghetti strap and tulle gown with dual leg slits. Check out prom dress websites — they have tons of great white spaghetti strap dress options for brides of any age. 

13. Choose a textured skirt overlay for a short satin dress to add some visual interest. Swap out textured fabrics and strings for beads or sparkly sequins to create a shimmery effect that mimics how sunlight bounces off the water behind you. 

14. Look for removable tulle. Keep this extra layer handy for after the sun sets since temperatures tend to vary drastically at waterfront weddings.  

Ideas for short wedding dresses with pockets

15. Focus on off-the-shoulder and tea length, full skirts if you want your dress to have large pockets. Pair with cream-colored high heels to highlight the elegance of this style without overshadowing your own beauty. 

16. Purchase a dress with a flowy satin skirt that also holds your lipstick and mints. Stuff your products in a beautiful mini wedding zip pouch before placing it in your pocket so you don’t have to worry about accidental spills or makeup smears. 

17. Add beaded antique floral appliques to your dress with pockets to make it even more original. Choose bead colors that bring out your hair, just like the burgundy accents to do for this model on Pinterest

Ideas for short wedding dresses paired with boots

18. Concentrate on brown cowboy boots if you want a look with a lot of personality. Place a decorative western belt buckle to your wedding bouquet to accent the theme without overwhelming your outfit. 


A post shared by L A U R E N (@lipstickandlunges) on

19. Look at shiny gold faux snakeskin boots for a boho outfit. Choose off-white all-over lace with a unique hemline to show off this high fashion style. 

20. Search for stunningly unique lace-up vintage lace wedding boots if you want an unforgettable moment. Check out these statement-making shoes on Pinterest for inspiration. 

Short wedding dresses on Amazon

21. Seek out lace-up closures and vintage rhinestone detailing for a dress that makes a real impression on guests and not your budget. Accessorize with a small pearl droplet necklace to finish the outfit. 

22. Dig for ideas with flounce sleeves for a touch of added sweetness.  Large patterns make this overlay more contemporary than vintage. 

23. Search for a colorful short dress and have your wedding party wear white for a nontraditional yet stunning look. Take a peek at this beautiful pink bridesmaid dress you can totally use as your wedding dress. 

Short wedding dress ideas taken from celebrities

24. Charlotte Casiraghi’s dress had a unique vintage Baroque pattern, long sleeves, and three statement bows down the middle. 

25. Whitney Port’s dress had a high-low hem skirt and textured lace overlay.


A post shared by KAREN WILLIS HOLMES (@kwhbridal) on

26. Olivia Palermo’s understated dress had a thigh slit and tulle underneath to create depth, plus a smooth long sleeve and high neckline top. 

Discover answers to frequently asked questions about short wedding dresses:

Are tea length wedding dresses in style?

Yes, and brides can pair nearly any combination of necklines, designs, or accessories they want with this unique yet timeless hem to make it their own. 

What shoes go with a short wedding dress?

Open-toe, strappy heeled shoes go with a short wedding dress. Or pair it with cowboy boots, vintage velvet block heels, or embellished T straps to personalize your look.

Can you wear a long veil with a short wedding dress?

Yes, as long as you crop it to your elbow height or pair it with a high-low hem.  

Complete your look with the right style and bouquet choices!

Now you know dozens of ideas that are budget-friendly, available on Amazon, pair well with trains, boots, and pockets, and look great in vintage styles or at the beach. Next up, narrow down your wedding dress style to figure out the best option for you. Then top it off with one of these beautiful bridal bouquet ideas

Find the perfect wedding venue for your budget!

Search Venues
Wedding Spot

Wedding Spot

The Wedding Spot blog is designed to help couples navigate every step of the wedding planning journey. From before the engagement to after you say “I do,” our goal is to give you the tips, ideas, and inspiration to prepare for your big day — and all that comes with it.