Understanding and dressing your unique body shape



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“Understanding and Dressing your Unique body shape

You may not realize how important this little bit of knowledge is to how you look in your clothes, but trust me, it is REALLY important. 

The whole idea of understanding how to dress your body is to be able to leverage one of the most important communication tools, your clothing.

Optimizing your assets and minimizing areas that you aren't as happy about allows you to step out powerfully everytime. Without a good understanding of this, you could actually be attracting eyes to your less than flattering parts and hiding your great assets!

When you implement these tips you will be able to shop intentionally and get dressed effortlessly allowing you to show up as your highest and best self.

There are 5 main body shapes. I will describe the silhouette and provide clothing and styling options for each. Keep in mind these are guidelines, not rules! There are no rules. My tips are to help you feel confident as you introduce yourself to the world.


Key tip #1: Choose clothing that mimics your body shape for the most flattering silhouette

Key tip #2: Choose fabrics that will not compete with your shape. Where you are curvy chose soft flowing fabrics to move with your curves; where you are more angular choose crisp, straight fabrics

Here are the body shapes:

The Hourglass (X)- The hips are equally proportioned to the bust/shoulder area with a defined waist.

  • You want to highlight your waist, because you have one! No empire ot high waist
  • Fitted jackets and tops with shaping around the waist
  • Soft drapey fabrics to move over your curves
  • Low, open necklines
  • wrap dresses
  • Belting garments is flattering

Triangle (A) - Also known as the Pear; full hip area, defined waist and narrow shoulder and small bust (sometimes)

  • To balance the lower body, you can choose as much excitement as you want above the waist, i.e. colour, print, ruffles, puff sleeves, off the shoulder styles
  • Mimic your A- shape (bottom half) with A-line skirts
  • Wide leg, boot cut, flare pants lengthen the leg and camouflage your hips
  • accentuate your waist
  • mid to high rise pants are best
  • No low rise pants, will draw attention to the wider hip

Inverted Triangle (V)- Wider top (shoulder/bust area) and narrow hips

  • No additional detail in the bust area is needed; no ruffles, buttons, horizontal stripes etc
  • Vertical stripes are great here as this brings the eyes down
  • V-necklines are flattering as they minimizes the bust
  • All of you excitement is below the waist
  • Go to town with pleats, buttons, colours, tulle, pattern
  • Distressed and light jeans work well

Rectangle (H)- Virtually no difference in width of the shoulders, waist and hips; athletic build

  • Top and jacket in boxy and straight cut to mimic your body shape
  • long straight jackets and cuts
  • stripes and plaids work well
  • Do not belt at waist, drop and empire waist styles work well
  • Low rise pants belted will exaggerate the hip line, which is good for you

Oval (O)- Also known as the Apple; full midsection i.e. bust, tummy and hips

  • Goal is to elongate the midsection
  • Do not belt, this will bring eyes to tummy area
  • soft flowy fabrics for your curves
  • empire waist looks great
  • tunic over leggings is a good look
  • details above bust; so statement necklaces and hats