Dress to Impress: The Ultimate Guide To Evening Wear Dress Styles

Written by Madeline's Boutique


Posted on April 30 2023

When it comes to formal events and special occasions, choosing the right dress style can make all the difference in your overall look and feel.

Here is a guide to some of the most popular dress styles for evening wear, prom dresses, mother of the bride or groom dresses, and other special events.

Here's a summary of different dress styles:



A classic silhouette that is fitted at the bodice and gradually flares out from the waist to the hem, resembling the shape of an uppercase "A". This style is versatile and flatters most body types. 

Picture is of an A-Line Dress by La Femme.






Also known as a trumpet style, this dress is fitted through the bodice and hips and flares out dramatically at or below the knees, resembling the shape of a mermaid tail. This style is ideal for hourglass or curvy figures.

Picture is a Beaded gown with cap sleeves and tulle mermaid skirt by Sherri Hill.






A shorter dress that typically falls just above or at the knee, this style is appropriate for semi-formal events or cocktail parties. It can come in a variety of silhouettes and fabrics.

Picture is a feathered cocktail dress by Portia & Scarlett. 





Frascara Style number 4222.  Tea Length Dress Sold By Madelines Boutique in Boca Raton, Florida and Toronto, Canada.

Tea Length or Midi

A dress that falls below the knee but above the ankle, this style is a great option for those who want something more formal than a cocktail dress but not as dramatic as a floor-length gown.  

It can come in a variety of silhouettes and fabrics.

Picture is a Tea Length Dress Dress by Frascara.



Fit and Flare

A dress that is fitted through the bodice and flares out from the waist, this style is similar to the A-line but more form-fitting. It flatters most body types and is great for those who want a more feminine silhouette.

Picture is a Fit And Flare Dress by Teri Jon.





Ball Gown

A formal and dramatic dress style that features a fitted bodice and a full, floor-length skirt. It is perfect for black-tie events, formal weddings, or beauty pageants.

Picture is a Ball Gown Dress by Andrea & Leo.





A dress style that features a short overskirt or ruffle attached at the waistline, creating a flared look. This style is great for those who want to add a little extra volume to their silhouette.
Picture is a red Peplum Dress by Chiara Boni.






Portia&Scarlett PS22538 Bodycon Fitted Dress. Sold By Madeline's Boutique.


A tight-fitting dress style that hugs the body and accentuates curves. This style is ideal for those who want to show off their figure and is great for formal occasions.

Picture is a Bodycon Dress by Portia & Scarlett.







A dress that features a structured bodice, typically with boning and lacing, to cinch in the waist and create a flattering silhouette.  Can be made in a variety of styles, including A-line, mermaid, and ballgown.  They are a popular choice for proms and black tie events, as they provide both style and support.

Picture is of a corseted cocktail dress Dress by Nicoletta Style Number NP145.




Off The Shoulder Dress

A dress style where the neckline sits below the shoulders. The dress can have sleeves or be sleeveless. The neckline can be straight or curved. The dress may have an A-line, mermaid, or fitted silhouette.

Picture is of a Off The Shoulder Dress by Alexander by Daymor.





Jovani Style Number 63994- One Shoulder Gown in Darkgreen

One-Shoulder Gown/Dress

A style of dress that features a single shoulder strap on one side of the dress while leaving the other shoulder bare. It's a great option for those who want to show off their shoulders and collarbone while still feeling secure and supported.

Picture is of a One Shoulder Dress by Jovani.





Jessica Angel - Style 636 - Pink - Prom Dress with ruching


A technique where fabric is gathered or pleated together to create a textured or ruffled effect. It can be used in various dress styles to add dimension and interest to the design.

Picture is of a Jessica Angel prom dress with ruching.





All of the dress styles above can be found in a variety of fabrics, such as silk, satin, chiffon, lace, or tulle, and can be embellished with sequins, beading, or embroidery for added glamour. When choosing a dress, consider the occasion, dress code, and personal style to find the perfect fit.

Visit our boutique in Toronto, Canada, or Boca Raton, Florida, where our highly skilled stylists will happily help you find the perfect dress for your next event.