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Bridal Lingerie Guide

Tips for choosing wedding lingerie!

We teamed up with Vintage Wedding Dress specialist Abigail of Abigail’s Vintage Bridal to give us some tips about wedding lingerie. Abigail came to our attention as several brides, after purchasing vintage bridal dresses from her, came to us for lingerie saying she'd sent them our way. Abigail sells and alters vintage wedding dresses with most of her brides selecting dresses from the 30s and 50s.

It turns out that Abigail is a great fan of What Katie Did and says that the correct underpinnings are essential for that authentic 1950s hourglass figure. Whilst modern bridal dresses incorporate corsetry as part of the design, in the past brides were expected to wear their own foundation garments, without which the dress (or the bride) will not look their best.

‘The first thing I do when I get in a new vintage dress is measure. The female ideal in the 1950s was to have a 10 inch difference between the waist and the hips. However to get that figure you need the right foundations. A lot of girls that come to me buy 1930s dresses, the 30’s was all about smoothing.

The right underwear is crucial for a Vintage wedding dress, I’d say that 90% of brides want to feel supported underneath their gowns. It’s all about structure! No sausage skin Shapewear for my brides!’


What Katie Did's Glamour Merry Widow is perfect for wearing underneath 1950s wedding dresses.

We asked Abigail ‘How important is the right lingerie for a vintage wedding dress?’ 

‘It is absolutely crucial! With vintage dresses women were used to cinching! It is how the dress is meant to be seen. Waists should be defined with Shapewear!’  Abigail keeps our Glamour Waist Cincher on stand by, as it instantly transforms figures giving women that nipped in waist essential for a 1950s look. She says modern shapewear does not give the same effect.

The Glamour Waist Cincher and Glamour Waspie are great for 1950s dresses. Emphasize a straighter figure by nipping in the waist and changing the look of proportions. By nipping in your waist; your bust and bum will look more  pronounced . A curvy figure will also benefit from nipping in the waist. A Cincher will create a wasp waist that compliment your voluptuous figure. As soon as I put a bride into a Cincher, the posture changes too which is essential for that prim look. A Merry Widow gives great support for a 1950s dress, it nips you in at the waist whilst still giving you lots of support in the bust.

What Katie Did's Glamour Corselette is perfect for wearing underneath smooth 1930s wedding dresses.

The 1930s is all about smoothing rather than cinching, the dresses tend to cling so lumps and bumps need to be smoothed. The Glamour Corselette is perfect for 1930’s dresses, it just gives you that little bit more confidence and smoothness. I’ve also had brides wear the Glamour Zip Underbust Girdle. It is super smoothing and hides what you’d rather not show.’  

Abigail recommends peach or nude lingerie as opposed to white as white sometimes shows through light coloured clothing. She's particularly fond of our Glamour Shapewear which, made from smooth satin and powermesh, is virtually invisible under clothing.

‘One of my best tips is to actually try the shapewear. Have an openmind, find out what works for you. When I have a bridal fitting I usually tell brides to try the lingerie even if they think they won’t wear one. Women that don’t often wear such feminine pieces can feel intimidate at first but are often very comforted by the level of support it gives.

Enjoy it, What Katie Did lingerie is nostalgic and glamorous!’ 

What Katie Did says.... 

Slip into something more comfortable for the bedroom! Our sheer Cabaret range is perfect for the boudoir!

Our Shapewear is great as wedding night lingerie, however, if you'd like to slip into something more comfortable why not try the ultra glamourous and utra sexy Sheer Cabaret Collection.

Corsets can take a while to mold to you. However, like a pair of shoes, corsets get more and more comfortable after each use. Unlike cheaper 'fashion corsets' What Katie Did corsets are made with spiral steel boning. At first the boning can feel rigid, however, the more you wear your corset the more your corset molds to your shape. Wear in wedding corsets before the big day for maximum comfort. Its also a great idea just to get used to the feel of wearing a corset for a long time.

Let us help you as much as we can! Bring your wedding dress (or a photograph) to the store for your fitting. We can assess how much structure and the fit you need.

What Katie Did's lingerie is perfect for wearing underneath a vintage gown. Missy Fatale wears a Cone Bra and Glamour Girdle underneath her dress.

 Photos by Katie Holt, Vintage Wedding Dress by Abigail’s Vintage Bridal, Modeling by Missy Fatale.  


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London Boutique: What Katie Did, 26 Portobello Green, 281 Portobello Road, London, W10 5TZ
Tel: 0345 430 8943

Los Angeles Store: What Katie Did, 3420 W Magnolia Blvd, Burbank, California, 91505 USA
Tel: 1 877 221 2472 or 1 818 955 7710 (from outside US)

Head Office:


What Katie Did,
Unit 8 The Old Mill, 61 Reading Road,
Pangbourne, Berkshire, RG8 7HY


Tel: 0345 430 8743 or
+44 118 976 7676 (from outside UK)

Registered in England with company number: 05752881