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Dressing for Your Body Shape

Things we all do everyday.... wake up, get dressed, and take on the day. This daily process looks different for everyone, but something we ALL have in common is the getting dressed part. We can't go out in the nude, because, well, it's illegal and for other varying reasons. Technically, you can do whatever you want at home so more power to you if you cruise around naked but eventually you'll need to leave the house for something or your heating bill will go up so much you will be forced to put fabric on your body for warmth and survival. Face it, there is no getting around the getting dressed part of our lives. For some, getting dressed is streamlined...They wake up and put on their uniform, the same thing everyday. If this is the case, there isn't much thought or planning that needs to go into the OOTD (outfit of the day). This isn't the case for others, especially for females, getting dressed takes, time, thought, and planning.

I have always been envious of men, because they can wear a variation of the same out fit every. single. day. For example, my husband has 3-4 pairs of Lululemon commission pants (they look like slacks but are way more comfortable) and about 20 collared Ralph Lauren shirts in different colors and patterns. He wears the same belt and shoes 5 days in a row. He literally picks whatever shirt is in the front of of the line in his closet and tosses it on, as he gets them dry cleaned he adds them to the back of the line. Zero thought goes into it, it takes him .05 seconds to get dressed and out the door. I am just shocked because I feel like as women we have to think about so many different factors like: "What do I have today, will there be lots of walking?" if yes. "I can't wear heels." If no. "Ok lets go with the heels but better pack a pair of flats just in case.", "Did I wear that skirt last week?", "Is it cold out?", "Do I have an event after work?", "Is this color to summery for winter?", ect. ect. ect. Not to mention we have to think about makeup, hair, and accessories to coordinate with every outfit. By the time we leave the house we have already made 117 decisions. Oh, and we haven't even touched on the fact that depending on how we feel in the chosen outfit it may or may not affect our mood for the day. It's like when you have a bad hair day you just feel...blah. If you're not feeling your outfit you feel, well... blah. Ok so moral of the story dressing as woman is complicated. There are a ton of ways as women to streamline getting dressed, and they take time, education, and commitment by the individual. Some of us simply don't have time for that, and that's where we come in as style coaches. BUT, before we get into all of that, there is one thing that as a woman we need to know/figure out and that is //what is your body shape?// Once identified, shopping and getting dressed gets much simpler.

Lets talk BODY SHAPE.... Your body shape is determined by two factors, the first: genetics and the second: diet & exercise. Body shape can be modified with exercise and diet but it is also predetermined due to individual genetics. Another thing to consider is that body shapes are exaggerated when there is excess weight, and bless 2020 because curvy and full figured healthy bodies are welcomed and celebrated.

We are going to touch on 4 body shapes, however, you may or may not identify with just one of these shapes. Lets be totally clear, all bodies are different and figuring out what works for you as the holistic individual is what is important. There are countless tips for each body shape these are just a few takeaways.

#1 Apple

Decription: Top heavy, with slim arms and broad shoulders, weight is mostly distributed around the midsection and boobs with slim legs.

Goal: To elongate the top half, accentuate your your legs and create the illusion of a small waist.

Tips: Dressing for any body shape is all about creating balance. Where you may carry weight in one area you can add volume to another the create the illusion of balance. With the Apple shape it is key to minimize the tummy area. You can do this by wearing loose layers or by accentuating the waist with cinching or a belt at the smallest part of your waist which often times is directly under the bust. Tops: The V-neck neck line is a great go-to for apple shape. It will create the illusion of a longer neck, and show off your décolletage and bust area-- distracting from the tummy. Stay away from light colored patterns, instead opt for dark colored tops and if you do wear a pattern make it dark colors. Tops that have rouging, or empire waist will camouflage stomach area. Do accessorize with a statement earring or necklace as they will draw attention to your face. Bottoms: Show off your legs if possible! A short A-Line skirt is a go for apple shape as it will show off legs while disgusting the stomach area. Dark boot cut or straight leg denim are good, becasue again they create balance. Don't go high waisted if you are apple shape as the band will hit you at the stomach, instead go mid rise.

Celebrities with apple body shapes: Jennifer Hudson, Drew Barrymore, Kate Upton,

#2 Pear

Description: Opposite of apple shape, bottom heavy and distribute weight on the bottom half, the width of hips is larger than chest. Shoulders are narrow and sloping, legs are more muscular, wider and fuller than the rest of the body with a well defined waist.

Goal : To enhance your waistline and arms and add dimension to your shoulders to create a balanced look.

Tips: Tops: With necklines you want something that will emphasize the width of your shoulders (again for a balanced look) boat necks, and Bardot necklines (off the shoulder) are the best two necklines for a pear shape. Statement sleeves and shoulder pads are an easy way to level out the shoulders. Go bold, or flashy with tops, bright colors, beaded detail, collars, patters, will accentuate arms, and top half. Again, for balance and to draw the eye to the upper part of your body accessories are an asset. Statement jewelry, hats, and scarves, are a great extra accessory to keep the focus up top. Choose tops that hit below your belly button and above your hips, so just above your hip bones. A-line cut, fit and flare, and wrap dresses are all great for a pear shape as they are fitted around the small waist and flow over the hips and legs. Bottoms: High waist pants are prime, even better a high waist flare or boot cut pair of jeans. Opt for dark colored denim, and pants to keep the bottom half understated. A go-to outfit for a pear shape is a belted blazer and boot cut jeans. Avoid short skirts, instead choose skirts that hit at the knee or ankle which will draw the eye to where the skirt cuts off which will lengthen the legs.

Celebrities with pear body shapes: Kim Kardashian, JLO, Ashley Graham, America Ferrera

#3 Rectangle

(This is my body type so I relate to all the rectangles out there)

Description: Rectangles have the same width as hips and bust, no curve around waist and flat shoulders. Weight is usually evenly distributed throughout body.

Goal: Create the illusion of curves.

Tips: Tops A cinched waist is the golden ticket for a rectangle. By cinching the waist, an hour glass figure will naturally occur because the shoulders and hips are the same width. Tops: Collared, pussy bow, and detailed tops are beneficial for a rectangle shape as they will add feminine detail to the small bust area. Rectangle shape has the luxury of going both loose or fitted with tops the key is to tuck into the bottom and belt creating a waist. Bottoms: Tight and fitted bottoms are usually best as they will accentuate what curves you may have. Wearing a boot cut or flare pant will add shape. High waisted pants are my saving grace because they not only give the illusion of a waist but they also lengthen the legs which unlike Cameron Diaz (see pic below) I need to do. Avoid wearing loose fitting top and bottom as the lack of curves to cling to will add weight to the appearance, as if you are wearing a sac. Jumpsuits with a waist band or tie are a great go-to piece as it is one piece with a tie to create the desired curves.

Celebrities with Rectangle shape: Cameron Diaz, Kate Hudson, Gwen Stefani, Natalie Portman

#4 Hourglass

Description: Hips and shoulders tend to be same width and the waist is much narrower. The hour glass body is a balanced shape that the other shapes try to immolate with clothing to create the illusion of a balanced hourglass shape.

Goal: Highlight the balanced proportions of the shoulders and hips by cinching the small waist. This is a very feminine shape and one of many famous models and movie stars.

Tips: Fitted clothing will show off your shape and flatter the silhouette. Tops: V-necks, scoop necks, peplum tops, and wrap tops, that tie at the waist and anything belted are all prime for an hourglass. Avoid babydoll and flow tops as they may hide the waist and create a potato sac look. Bottoms: Pencil skirts, and high waisted trousers are flattering for an hourglass shape, along with slim fit denim which will show the natural shape.

Celebrites with hourglass shape: Sofia Vergara, Brigitte Bardot, Dita Von Tesse, Scarlett Johansson

Creating balance is the name of the game when it comes to dressing for your body shape. If you feel as if you don't 100% identify with one of these 4 cookie cutter categories, you are not alone. In fact, most people are a mixture of two shapes. It is all about assessing yourself and experimenting with different styles. One way to start assessing is to think of the one outfit you feel MOST confident in. You know there's that one dress, pair of jeans , or blouse that just works everytime and when you wear it they compliments come flooding in. That is probably an indication that whatever style it is, it's flattering on your body shape, from there try to find different variations of that same cut or style. You can then build outfits around the flattering piece. This will be the first step to streamlining your wardrobe and feeling confident everyday. Bodies are so amazing and unique, embrace what you have, accentuate your assets, and take on each day with confidence without letting your clothes interfere.

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