First off, I believe your should wear whatever you like, period. For that reason, I am always a bit reluctant to write a best-for-your-body-type post, as I hate any rules that dictate what we should wear. Over the years, I have been asked to write posts that offer some guidance on what silhouettes, best flatter specific body types. Being I am only one body-type myself, I can’t possibly know what it is like to walk in someone else body. But, from years of working with all body types in a retail environment, to studying what works well on different women, I have gleaned some insight as to what styles best flatter certain body types, and am happy to provide some guidance.
Tips I keep in mind, when pulling an outfit together:
- FULL ON TOP = SLIM ON BOTTOM or SLIM ON BOTTOM = FULL ON TOP. Again this is a guide, if you want to go full and flowy head to toe, or tight top to bottom, go for it! This is a place to begin.
- Show off your best assets – or fake them.
- Shoes make the outfit – do yours balance out the look or are they a distraction?
- Accessorize – long necklaces will draw the eye to the center and elongate your body. Short necklaces will draw the eye up, away from your body. Belts accentuate; be it your waist or hip, place them where they flatter best. Scarves can do wonders!
In order to create a look that flatters, you need to know your body type. From there, it’s all about proportion play and balance.
Show Off Your Waist!
If you are an hourglass shape, your upper and lower half of your body have the same width, and you don’t need to create a waist – just SHOW IT OFF! Belts are your friend. They accentuate your figure and your well defined waist line beautifully! Fitted sweaters that fall below the hip, lightweight semi fitted/fitted cardigans, or wrap-front styles work well. Define your waist, and steer clear of bulky shapes that hide your gorgeous hourglass shape! Bukky is a master with a belt – a must for our hourglass gals! The orange belted jacket with skinny jeans is perfection on Bukky!
Draw the Eye Up, Create a Waist!
Said to be the most common body type with women. Women with this body type are smaller on the uper half; that is, shoulders and the bust area, while the lower half, buttocks, hips, thighs, and calves are comparitively larger, holding most of the weight. For this body type, look to draw attention toward your upper half, and away from your bottom. Here, Melissa wears skinny on BOTTOM + fuller on top, then adds a crop vest – to create definition at the waist, and widen her shoulders.
Apple-shaped gals normally have slim legs and thighs where as their bust and abdomen fall out of proportion as compared to the rest of the body. Look for pieces that make your shoulders and waist appear narrower, while showing off your legs and chest. V-necks are great for drawing attention to your chest, as do wrap styles. Kanesha has a beautiful collection of loose fitting colorful – solid and print tops. I love how she paired a loose fitting pattern V-neck tunic with skinny jeans. Apple gals…above the knee v-neck shift dresses, skinny jeans and above the knee skirts are all your friends!
Create a V-Shape Silhouette!
Women with a strawberry body type, have broad shoulders, big bust, and narrow hips. Creating a balance between your top and bottom half is the key, to dressing a strawberry shaped body. Avoid anything that will cling, the preference being a V-neck blouse or semi fitted tee. Avoid ribbed, or turtleneck sweaters. Look for tops that drape, and avoid batwing styles as they draw attention to the chest. Amy’s cold shoulder non-bulky sweater pulls the eye to the shoulders and away from the chest and skinny jeans flatter her narrow hip frame. Thin knits, like cashmere, fine wool, or knit jersey will lessen bulk on top as well. Simply adding a long pendant necklace can take you far, as it creates the desired v-shape with whatever you choose to pair it with.
Create an Illusion of Curves!
I am a what one would call a Banana Shape; meaning my shoulders, waist line and hip area measuring almost the same. Well that sounds OK, right? What you may not know by looking at me is that even though I am 5’7, my proportions are like a petite person. I am short waisted and narrow shoulders and hips. So a tall petite banana! I opt for clothes that give an illusion of a more curvy body. Avoid tight fitting clothes, instead wear semi-fitted clothes, and avoid to much bagginess on top. As for the bottom, choose the skirts or pants that are slightly curvier. For example, skirts that adds flare to the bottom half create an illusion of having more curves down below.
For today’s look, I opted for a crop wide leg pant – one that is fitted through the hip with a drop waist. The drop waist makes my torso appear longer as does keeping a monotone color under my rust colored sweater. By tying my wrap sweater in the FRONT, the eye is drawn to the middle of my torso giving the illusion of a waist. Mules balance out the wide leg crop pant and a short statement necklace draws the eye up, adding color for interest.
What tips do you have for balancing out your shape? Do you use accessories or proportion play to create a flattering shape with your looks? Drop me a line or questions below, I’d love to hear!
Find more ways to dress your body type in Finding the Most Flattering Sweater for Your Body Type (HERE).
Did you catch this week’s KIMONO SERIES?
Get Caught up with some Style Inspiration in my 2 part series; How Real Women Style a Kimono (HERE) and How-To Tips in Kimono Style Part 2: Five 40 Plus Style Bloggers, 12+ Looks and Video Tutorial (HERE)
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I invite you visit my all NEW Video Based Real Estate Related Website, RickandSuzanneBell.com, where I partner up with my husband and business partner Rick Bell in the world of Silicon Valley Real Estate. We just published a new post in our video interviews, Transfering One’s Personal Residence Property Tax Basis to a New Residence (HERE), an informative interview with Dennis Young (CPA) of Craig, Young & Co., LLP regarding the guidelines and process under which one may be able transfer the property tax basis from their personal residence to a new residence following the sale of their home. Dennis Young (CPA) of Craig, Young & Co., LLP regarding the guidelines and process under which one may be able transfer the property tax basis from their personal residence to a new residence following the sale of their home. Come take a look!