Saturday, 5 July 2014

Image Consultant - which shape is best for you

This is the third part of the image advice that we are getting from Sherna of Your Style Journey.  You can check out her advice on colour here. and on print here. This week it is all about body shape.

Dressing for your body shape

If you pick up a fashion magazine, flick through the pages, and look at all the models, especially those in the ads, you will see that most of them are young, beautiful, tall and very skinny.  That shape is not normal!  The average fashion model is about 178cm tall, weighs 52kg and is a size 8.  The average kiwi woman is 162.5cm tall, weighs 72.6 kg and is a size 14.  

The ideal body is also considered to be 8 heads tall, but the average person is only about 7.5 heads tall.  Most clothes are designed to fit an ideal body, but the majority of us do not have an ideal body.  Therefore when it comes to dressing successfully and looking good, one of the key solutions is to understand your body shape.   That way you can dress your body so it looks balanced, highlighting your assets, and minimising your flaws.

Body shapes

The X body shape is the most balanced of all body shapes.  Shoulders are in line with hips, a defined bust and waist, with neat hips and bottom.  When dressing:-
  • Choose clothing that falls smoothly over your curves and has clean lines.
  • Wear tops that reveal skin at collarbone or cleavage.
  • Avoid boxy, straight and oversized clothing that hides your curves.

The V body shape has wide shoulders and narrow hips.  Your aim is to diminish your top half and refocus attention below the waist.  When dressing:-
  • Darker coloured plain tops, with lighter, detailed bottoms.  Printed pants are a great option and a current trend.
  • Keep shoulders free of detail (e.g. epaulettes and padding).
  • Add volume at waist and hips to balance out shoulders (e.g. tulip skirts, boyfriend jeans)

The I body shape has a long lean figure with balanced hips and shoulders but very little waist definition.  Your aim is to give the illusion of curves.  When dressing:-
  • Enhance your bust line with details (e.g. ruffles, gathers).
  • Highlight your hips, bottom and thighs (e.g. detailing on pockets of jeans).
  • Use texture and layering to add volume (e.g. faux fur caplet).

The H body shape has balanced hips and shoulders but a thick waist with little or no definition.  Your aim is to refocus attention away from your waist by adding interest above the bust or below the hips.  When dressing:-
  • Avoid detail at the waist (e.g. belts), if you belt wear it at your hips.
  • Add detail above the bust (e.g. jewellery) and below the hips (e.g. interest at hemline).
  • Soften the body shape, opt for round necklines as opposed to square and flared pant legs over straight.

The O body shape carries weight in the mid-section.  Your aim is refocus your attention above the bust line or below the hips, whilst elongating the body.  When dressing:-
  • Keep detail in clothing above the bust line or below the hip.
  • Choose fabrics that drape over your curves and don’t cling.
  • Don’t tuck in tops, choose long tops with vertical detailing.

The A body shape has narrow shoulders and wide hips.  Your aim is to create fullness and width above the waistline whilst minimising hips and thighs.  When dressing:-
  • Shoulder detailing to balance shoulders with hips (e.g epaulettes, padding).
  • Lighter/brighter colours on top, darker/ plainer colours on the bottom.
  • Bootcut  trousers/jeans will help accentuate your curves in all the right ways.

The 8 body shape has balanced hips and shoulders, is full busted with a small waist, and curvy hips and bottom.   Your aim is to minimise your curves and elongate the body.  When dressing:-
  • Choose fabrics that drape but don’t cling, wrap dresses are a good option.
  • Accentuate your small waist (e.g peplums, belting,  semi-fitted clothing).
  • Keep clothing line straight and clean, avoiding flared skirts and trousers.

Knowing your body shape allows you to select styles that will flatter you, enabling you to look great and feel great. 

What body shape are you? 

Want to know more about how to dress for your body shape, proportions, and scale, contact  to book your style consultation today!