After girdles largely disappeared and before shapewear arrived, many women's sole foundation garment purchase was for their wedding day.

Today, shapewear is so common that many bridal salons carry a complete line so women can select their undergarments when they buy their dresses.

"A lot of gowns are all about the torso," said Kim Contreras, head of alterations at the Bridal Shoppe in St Paul.

That's why an old-fashioned undergarment has made a surprising comeback: the long-line bra.

While older versions were boned, paneled and often featured an imposing row of hooks-and-eyes, the updated version, which often extends to the hips, is comfortable, breathable and flattering. Even better, they work well under the widely popular strapless gown.

"Even thin brides might have a little back flab," Contreras said. "The long-line bra smooths it out and keeps everything in place without any tugging."