LOL I think you’re a riot! But far too harsh on yourself.
OK, I will admit that the second one wasn’t the best example. This one is probably better:
The reason I chose this dress – and I’m not saying you should choose this dress; it’s just for illustration purposes – is that it shows off the waist while covering the belly. That’s what you’re aiming for.
Compare it to this kind of dress which covers the belly but practically hides the waist – you can’t really tell whether the model has a small waist or not, because the dress flares out at that point. They are both a-lines, but can you see the difference?
Of course you can choose to hide the waist as well if you want – it’s totally your choice – but that would be mistaking yourself for an apple figure instead of an hourglass. I am an apple, and I didn’t have much choice but wear an a-line because I had no waist to show off. You are lucky, because having a waist gives you a lot more options. You’ll probably surprise yourself.
Also, it depends on where your belly sits. Sometimes it’s a bit higher up and sometimes it’s lower down. If you’re an hourglass, I’m betting that it’s lower down (if it were higher up, you wouldn’t have as much of a waist). That means that you have a bit of room to play with and can have a dress that is fitted around the hips, so long as it flares out at the widest part of your belly, or just above it.
You’ll probably need to try on a few dresses to get the dress that hits you in the right place.
As the others have said, please don’t give up. It’s likely wedding dresses will be more flattering on you than any other dress you have tried on. Structure is your friend.
For your info, here is a thread on the Bee featuring true apple girls – those with bellies but who don’t have the waists that hourglass girls have. As you can see, a lot of them are rocking a-lines that are a bit fitted around the hips, so there’s no reason why you can’t.
Dresses for ladies with larger bellies? (True apples!)