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What to wear to work in the summer

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Ah, summertime.

 

Love it or hate it, you still have to go to work and look like a decent human being no matter how hot and/or humid is it outside.

 

Although I am definitely in the #lovesummerhateeverthingelse camp with Leandra Medine, I realize that looking professional in the hot hot heat isn’t always the easiest accomplishment. That’s why I’ve decided to come up with a couple simple steps to getting dressed for work in the summer.

 

 

summer work 2

 

Step 1: Choose the right fabrics

Did you know that some fabrics can make you hotter than others? It’s true! Here’s a breakdown of what materials you should be wearing (and which you shouldn’t)

 

WEAR THIS:
  • Cotton, bamboo, and linen natural fibers. Natural fibers are ‘breathable’ meaning that they let air pass easily through them. The more air passing through the fibers, the more your body is cooled down (not to mention all the hot air isn’t stuck right next to your body). BONUS: they also dry fairly well.
  • Performance fabrics. These are specific fabrics that are designed to wick (aka: pull) water away from your skin and transfer it through the fabric letting it evaporate into the air. Think: your fabric yoga outfit. The tricky part is to make what is essentially work out clothes work appropriate (no fear though, I’ll show you some examples below!)

 

NOT THAT:
  • Wool. Wool’s specialty is trapping body heat which is why it’s so effective at keeping you warm in the winter. Even if you are opting for a summer sweater, be sure to choose cotton.
  • Anything plastic (that isn’t a performance fabric). Plastic fabrics are the worst in hot weather. Not only do they allow NO air flow, but they also take forever to dry out…meaning that you’ll sweat a lot and everyone will know. I use the term ‘plastic’ to describe these fabrics because they are literally made out of plastic (fun fact!). The most popular plastic fabrics are: polyester, acetate, and nylon. (IMPORTANT! Technically, performance fabrics are made from some of these same materials. The difference is that PF have been specially modified for athletes. A button down shirt from your local department store made from polyester IS NOT a performance fabric).

 

Step 2: Work around your classic wardrobe

Just because it’s summer, doesn’t mean you have to neglect your entire wardrobe. The first step to putting together a great summer work outfit is to have the right basics. (Not sure what the basics are? Click here to learn more about the 20 basics every woman needs in her closet.)

Once you have the right basics, you can build off of them for summer. Here’s an easy formula to doing just that:

1. Start with a skirt or pants (or tailored shorts if your work allows)

2. Add an undershirt (this soaks up most of the sweat, if you’re a sweater)

3. Choose a blouse that is sleeveless or short sleeve (you can stop here if you aren’t required to cover your shoulders)

4. If your dress code requires you to cover your shoulders, wear a light cardigan instead of a blazer

5. Top with fun accessories. Since you aren’t wearing as many layers, use accessories to make your outfits more interesting.

 

Keep reading to see outfit ideas using this formula!summer work 1

 

Step 3: Know the tricks of the trade

 

When you live in a hot place, you develop ways to work around the heat (and still look professional).

 

Here are my favorite tips:

 

1. Wear an undershirt.

I know I already said this, but it really does work! There’s a relatively new company that makes ‘sweat proof’ undershirts. I have never tried them, so I can’t vouch for whether they work, but if you have tried NUMI, leave a comment below and let us know!

 

2. Keep things as loose as possible.

A-lines skirts > pencil skirts. Swing dress > sheath dress. Loose blouse > fitted blouse. I think you get the idea. The more air flow you have, the better things will be. To achieve a more tailored and less bohemian look, tuck in shirts, belt tops and dresses, and add fitted clothing once you get to the office. See picture below.

image

3. Layers are just as important in the summer as the winter.

With the summer heat also comes severe air conditioning abuse. Keeping several blazers or cardigans at work allow you to still look professional without the need to walk across the city in a suit jacket.

 

4. Get your hair and makeup to play along.

Wearing your hair in a nicely coifed up do not only looks professional, but it keeps it off the back of your (hot) neck. As for makeup, you need some sort of setting spray or powder. Seriously. If you don’t, your makeup will take an unfortunate pilgrimage down your face as the day goes on.

 

Need some outfit inspo? Check out these ideas:

workoutfits1

(Can you tell which items are actually activewear? I’ll give you a hint: both dresses and two shirts are made from performance fabrics)

 

What do you love to wear in the summer when it gets hot? Tell me below in the comments!

 

Cheers,

Leslie

 

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How to wear shorts when you’re over 50

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How to wear shorts when you're 50+

“I can’t wear shorts, I’m too old for that”

It’s a comment I hear often from women over the age of 50 (and sometimes over the age of 40!)

They feel that hitting a certain number automatically takes away their right to wear specific types of clothing. Well folks, I’m here to tell you that it just isn’t true.

Saying you can’t wear shorts over a certain age is just as ridiculous as saying someone over a certain size shouldn’t wear a swimsuit.

I understand that you want to look age appropriate, but I have a little secret for you. It’s possible to wear shorts at any age and look age appropriate.

Here’s how.

1. Choose the right length

Obviously, you don’t want to wear daisy dukes, but just because you’re older doesn’t mean you have to wear Bermuda shorts. Finding the right length for your body is key to looking age appropriate in shorts. Essentially, you want your shorts to be no higher than where the inside muscle of your leg ends. To find that spot, stand in a superman pose with your legs slightly spread. The inside of your legs will get thinner as they go from your pelvis to your knee. Whenever they stop getting thinner and just go straight down, that’s where the muscle ends. Here are several pictures featuring women of different body types and shapes. The red line is where the inner muscle ends (and where your shorts should begin).

From left to right: Ashley Graham, Goldie Hawn, Julie Andrews

2. Keep it simple.

Leave the bright floral prints, polka dots, and stripes to your kids and grandkids. Opting for neutrals like white, beige, black, and navy are going to look more classy than cutesy. It’s also a good idea to choose shorts from more structured fabrics like thick cottons and canvases. These fabrics don’t wrinkle as easily, they don’t cling to your skin, and they look more pulled together (aka: age appropriate!) than linens and slinky polyesters. Keep it simple when it comes to pockets, too. Cargo pockets look bulky and will make your legs look bigger than they are. The more hidden the pockets, the better. If you need help coming up with a classic wardrobe of clothes, click here.

Washed Chino Bermuda ShortsWashed Chino Bermuda ShortsWashed Chino Bermuda Shorts7" Button-Hem Short Riviera Shorts with 6 Inch Inseam color Coral Blush

From left to right (LLBean, Eloquii, Talbots (other colors available), LOFT (more colors))

how to wear shorts and not look frumpy

3. Choose the rest of your outfit wisely.

If you’re showing more skin on your bottom half than normal, cover up more on top. A cardigan or long sleeve shirt will keep you from looking like you’re baring all. Also, try to pick tops that match the formality of your bottoms. In other words, if you’re wearing gym shorts, wear a t-shirt. If you’re wearing tailored khaki shorts, opt for a nice blouse (like a button down oxford). Pair nice shorts with the same tops you would wear with business casual khaki pants.

Here are several ideas of how to wear shorts:

outfits with shorts

Left to right (Casual daytime look, more professional look, very casual/beach look)

Creating a wardrobe of clothes you love can be hard, not to mention when you’re trying to achieve an age appropriate look. If you’re looking to boost your style (or even start out in the right direction) keep reading here about my classic wardrobe basics (and the 20 items that make up every great wardrobe- no matter how old or young you are).

How do you wear your shorts? I’d love to know! Comment below. 

xoxo, Leslie

 

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The pair of shoes you can wear with anything

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The only pair of shoes you'll need

 

Anyone who knows me (or follows my blog) probably knows that I’m a neurotic packer.

I absolutely love packing for trips. This, in and of itself, is weird (or so I’m told). But while the rest of world dreads packing and procrastinates until the last minute, I start planning months in advance.

My goal is to pack the least amount (I almost never check a bag!) but still have enough clothes to look really stylish and appropriate for my destination. Because of that, I approach packing like a puzzle. How many outfits can I make from the least amount of clothes? How many accessories do I need to make each outfit look amazingly unique, even if I wore it the night before? And, the question that brings us to today’s topic, what is the least number of shoes I can pack? (psst. My biggest packing tip is to only pack some of the basics from your wardrobe.)

Shoes are a big deal. For one, they take up a lot of room in a suitcase. They are also extremely important when it comes to enjoying your trip. You don’t want to get blisters on the first day from bringing shoes that don’t fit well.

I just went to New York City for the weekend to meet up with my sisters. Activities included everything from walking around the Met to going out and laying out. I needed a shoe that would look great with a fancy dress, jeans, and a swimsuit. It was a tall order.

What did I end up choosing? A cute pair of black mules. The picture below is the exact pair of shoes I wore.
target black muleBlack Mules from Target ($24.99)

Since I had copious amounts of time in airports and cars this past weekend, I got to thinking, “Is there one shoe you could pretty much wear with anything?” The shoe above did just that, but what happens when that shoe is outdated? And that’s when I got my follow up answer; it wasn’t about the exact shoe itself so much as the type.

The picture above, is a fancy flat. If you’re not familiar with that term, don’t feel bad, I literally made it up in the Delta lounge last weekend. More on what makes a fancy flat fancy later, but I want to hit on why this type of shoe will always be around:

When that fancy flat gets outdated, another fancy flat will take it’s place.

Just think about the last couple years of fashion when it comes to flats: ballet flats were all the hit (a la Tory Burch), then loafers, and now mules. In a few years (or months) another flat will take the place of mules.

So what makes a fancy flat fancy?

So glad you asked. It’s some sort of embellishment or attribute that takes the shoe from completely casual to gussied up. It could be an actual embellishment like tassels (see above) or rhinestones. Or it could be as simple as using leather or satin instead of canvas or some other cheap substitute.

This is the secret to having a shoe that can go back and forth from a maxi dress to a swimsuit.

Below are two flats. The one on the left is just a normal, casual flat while the other is one I’d consider ‘fancy’. Can you tell the difference?

Galinsky Loafer

Left (Toms $49.95), Right (Aldo $59.99)

The two shoes above are very similar, but because the one on the right uses leather instead of canvas and has a pointed toe, it looks fancier. Crazy how such a small change can make a big difference right?

Both shoes will look great with jeans, but only the one on the right will look good with fancier skirts, dresses, and even work pants.

Keep reading to see the top 3 reasons why fancy flats are so incredible.

you can wear these shoes with everything

 

The top 3 reasons why the fancy flat can be the only shoe in your closet:

  1. It’s a flat, so it’s easy to walk in. If you have one shoe in your closet, it better to be easy on your dogs.
  2. It’s fancy (or part of it is dressed up in some way) so the casualness of the low heel is contrasted with the more formal embellishments or materials. These two qualities ying and yang to create the perfect shoe that can work just as well with jean shorts as it can a silk slip dress.
  3. What’s en vogue changes enough, that by the time you wear out your pair of fancy flats, another pair will be on the market (which means you are always in style)

 

I love fancy flats, and think they’re so important, that they actually made my list of the top 20 items you need in your closet.

 

 

Looking for more fancy flat options? Try these:

Renzo Flat

DSW $44.99

Rodney Pointy Toe d'Orsay Flat, Main, color, Pink Snake Print Leather

Nordstrom $83

Sunflower Studded Mule Slide

Bergdorf Goodman’s ($347)

 

As you can tell, not all fancy flats have to be plain black (although that is pretty versatile!) Pick a pair that works well with the color scheme of your closet or opt for neutral colors like beige and black to get the most wear! They also don’t have to be fancy priced. The pair of mules I took to New York were less than $25. I’d say that’s a win-win.

Do you have a pair of fancy flats that you love? Tell me below!

xoxox,

Leslie

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The Best Swimsuits for Every Body Shape (2018)

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To celebrate the official start of summer, I want to talk swimsuits.

Did I hear a groan? What’s that? You don’t LIKE shopping for swimsuits?

That’s weird. Just kidding.

It’s not weird at all. In fact, most women I talk to absolutely dread bathing suit season. They either don’t like their bodies, or they have trouble finding swimwear that fits. (Sound familiar?)

Well, fear not, because I want to help make swimwear season a little less horrible for you.

Below, are my top swimwear and cover-up suggestions for each body shape. If you’re not sure what body shape you are, take this easy quiz.

Enjoy! (and happy swimming!)


 

 

Pear

If you’re a pear, look for bathing suits that are basic (aka: boring) on the bottom and fun up top. This draws the eyes away from your bottom half and up to your top half, making it look larger (which is a good thing).

Off the shoulder tops, ruffles, and lace up styles are all really popular this summer. Look for ones that have those features around the bust or shoulder area (like the swim suits below!) High cut legs are also really in this year and will look amazing on you. Don’t be afraid to try them.

If you’re self conscious about showing off your hips/butt in a swimsuit, try adding a neutral colored sarong (like the first picture) to your outfit. This will help cover your butt and hips without making you look short and stumpy (which is what those skirt bathing suits do when the skirt hits across the widest part of your hips)

Main Idea: 

Wear this…ruffle sleeves, embellished necklines, and off the shoulder tops with neutral bottoms.

Not that…Hipster bikini bottoms and lots of detail around the hips/butt. Avoid skirts/shorts/bottoms that hit across the widest part of your hips. 

Want to know what top 20 items every woman needs to have in their wardrobe? Check it out here.


 

Inverted Triangle

 

If you’re an inverted triangle shape, look for bathing suits that are basic, or more boring, up top and have more details around the hips and waist. This visually makes your hips look bigger (in a good way!) and draws attention away from your broad shoulders.

As seen below, pom-poms, ruffles, and high waisted swimsuits are all in this year. Choose swimwear with ruffles around the hips (like the last pic), or other similar detailing like peplums, horizontal stripes (like the second pic), or bright colors.

Your best cover up is going to be a fun sarong. Go crazy with colors and textures, like in the one below, or keep it simple with one bold hue. Whichever you decide, make sure it makes a statement!


Main Idea: Wear this…ruffles, patterns, skirts, and horizontal lines on the bottom part of your suit while keeping the top half boring. Usually triangle style tops are better than bandeau. 

Not that…off the shoulder tops and anything embellished around the upper body!

Want to know what top 20 items every woman needs to have in their wardrobe? Check it out here.


 

Hourglass

Hourglasses are the ones who never complain about swimsuit shopping, because they look good in pretty much any swimsuit.

If you like showing off your curves, keep your swimsuit simple like the second picture. If you like a more modest look, go for a retro looking one piece.

Your best cover ups are going to be ones that come in at the waist. That means that they either have elastic, a tie, or a drawstring around the waist. Long robes with ties (shown below) will look especially good.

Main Idea: 

Wear this…balanced swimwear that doesn’t have too much going on up top or on the bottom. 

Not that……..(there literally isn’t anything! You’ll look great in pretty much everything)

Want to know what top 20 items every woman needs to have in their wardrobe? Check it out here.

Rectangle

If you’re a rectangle, you’ll want to look for swimwear that makes you look curvier than you are. You can do this a couple ways: 1) by adding volume to your hips and bust, 2) by accentuating your waist, or 3) both 1 and 2.

The model in the middle picture below (and under the apple example) are both rectangles. Look for one pieces that accentuate your waist, like this tie waist option below. Look for bikinis that have an equal amount of visual interest (ruffles, ties, colors, etc.) on the top as on the bottom, like the second picture below. Any sort of seaming or tailoring that draws the eye into your waist and back out is also good (you can see examples of this under the apple swimsuits).

You can wear almost any cover, so why not go dramatic? The Tory Burch caftan below was made for your body.

Main Idea: 

Wear this…suits with fun trim, accented waists, and princess seam details. Hipster bottoms and bandeau tops work well for you. 

Not that…solid, athletic suits will make you look like a child, or pro swimmer.  

Want to know what top 20 items every woman needs to have in their wardrobe? Check it out here.


 

Apple

Similar to the rectangle, apples should focus on swimwear that makes them appear to have a defined waist.

Seaming and pattern changes, like the one piece below look best on you. If you are looking for a one piece, make sure that the top and bottom have equal amounts of visual interest. The bikini below has a color, style, and button details that reflect evenly (for the most part) on the top as on the bottom. The way the buttons slop inward to the waist on the bottom and are on the middle of the top, visually create the illusion of a waist.

Elastic waist coverups are a good option for apples, as you can adjust the elastic to wherever you want your ‘waist’ to appear.

Main Idea: 

Wear this…suits with princess seams, pattern changes (like the Tory Burch above) and color blocking. 

Not that…muumuu bathing suits that make you look like a sack that is much bigger than you actually are. 

 

Want to know what top 20 items every woman needs to have in their wardrobe? Check it out here.

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How to dress an HOURGLASS shape

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Different styles throughout the decades tend to favor various body shapes. The 60’s claimed the rectangle, the 80’s the pear, and the 40’s were great for apples- to name a few. What about the hourglass, though?

If you’re an hourglass and you’re feeling left out because the decade of styles that looked best on your were from the 1950’s…DON’T. Your time has come again.

Thanks to the Kardashians, the hourglass shape is back in and hotter than ever. This is especially good news for extreme hourglasses (ie: you’re curvier than most) who might have trouble finding outfits to fit their bodies.

So, no matter what you think about the Kardashian kids, give them your thanks, because their celebrity status is driving fashion trends (which means you don’t have to rely on ‘retro’ style clothing to make your body look as incredible as it is!)

 

Keep reading to find out:

  • What an hourglass shape actually is (pssst, if you’re not sure, check out this post and take our quiz!)
  • Celebrity hourglass examples
  • What to wear 
  • What NOT to wear
  • Sample Capsule Wardrobe

 

Please note that this post contains affiliate links. I use affiliate links in the form of clothing suggestions in order to help you best discover (and locate!) clothing that will work best for your body shape. If you click on the affiliate links, I will earn a small commission at no additional cost for you. Thank you for supporting us, so we can continue to give you quality content. ~LF

You’re an Hourglass If…

You know you’re an hourglass shape because you have these two attributes:

  1. Your bust and hips are pretty much equal widths
  2. You have a defined waist that is noticeably smaller than your hips/bust

 

If you’re still confused about your shape, check out my original blog post on shapes (and how to dress any shape no matter if you fall neatly into a category or not)

 

Celebrity Hourglasses:

I already mentioned the Kardashian kids (and I did throw one in for good measure) but here are several other stars with hourglass shapes.

 

See the source imageThis fitted dress is a huge success at showing of Salma Hayek’s hourglass curves. 

 

Source: New York Daily News

Sofia Vergara  

 

See the source image

Ah yes, and then we have Kim. What I like about Kim is that there are literally millions of paparazzi shots of her wearing everything from sweatpants to going out clothes (like above). This is nice because it allows hourglasses to see what they might look like in different outfits, without even having to try them on. Thanks, Kim!

The Main Idea:

In the original blog post about DRESSING YOUR SHAPE, I talked about my easy secret to always knowing what will look good on you regardless of shape. The secret is to always wear clothing that make you look like an hourglass. If you missed the post, you can read it here.

Essentially, dressing for your shape is all about using clothing, jewelry, and other accessories as an optical illusion to make us appear a certain way.

The optical illusion is formed when we distract the viewer away from one part of our body and attract their eyes to a different part.

Here’s the thing though. You don’t have to use any optical illusions to make you look like an hourglass because YOU ARE an hourglass. Your only job now, is to preserve your hourglassness.

 

 

What to Wear:

Remember the main idea here: preserve your hourglass shape. If you wear something voluminous up top, you need to match that visually on the bottom. For example, a loose t-shirt looks best tucked into fitted wide leg pants. Likewise, a full skirt is best evened out with some eye catching detail up top (off the shoulder shirt, statement necklace, etc.). Whatever you do though, don’t lose your waist!! Make sure it’s defined at all times. (Pssst: want some help picking out the basics you need in your closet? Click here to hear about the 20 basic items everyone needs)

Here is what to wear, when it comes to different types of clothing:

    • Tops/Blouses: Fitted shirts are going to look best on you. Make sure to choose shirts that have equal interest above and below the waist (example: the first shirt is off the shoulder AND has volume below the waist). This is really only important if you plan on wearing your shirts untucked. You can wear any neckline.

    • Blazers/Jackets: Wear anything that comes in at the waist, or accentuates the waist in some way.

    • Skirts: High waisted skirts are going to look best on you. Flared skirts or other types of skirts with volume at the bottom are also good choices because they even out the volume of your hips.

    • Pants: Wide leg, boot cut, and flare pants are your friends. Much like the skirts, the volume at the bottom of the pants evens out the width of your hips.

    • Dresses: Anything fitted (note! fitted doesn’t have to mean skin tight) is great and the simpler the better. If you’re really curvy, it may be difficult finding dresses that come in enough at the waist. If you have this problem, try belting the dress at the waist, or shop for adjustable dresses like wrap dresses.

  • Accessories: Belts are your friends. A good rule of thumb, is to choose belts that are compatible with your size. If you are a bigger build, choose wider belts. If you’re a smaller build, choose skinnier belts. This keeps the belt from overwhelming or underwhelming you. You can wear any jewelry that you want. Woohoo!
  • Purses: You also want to keep your bags in proportion to your body. If you are more a Kim hourglass, go for bigger bags. If you are a smaller hourglass (less dramatic curves) opt for a small or medium size bag.

What NOT to Wear:

  • Tops/Blouses: Anything baggy where your waist isn’t accentuated. (Like the baggy shirt below) Depending on the extremity of your curves, you may need to have a tailor on call to help make every item fit just right.
  • Blazers/Jackets: Avoid jackets and blazers, like traditional pea coats, that are straight up and down with no seams or detailing around the waist. They will make you look like boxes. (Exception: if the boxy jackets end above your waist or if you belt them)
  • Skirts: Low rise skirts that lie across the hips are generally not good.
  • Pants: Skinny pants make your hips/butt look bigger than it is. Low rise pants are also a bad idea. Rompers and jumpsuits are best to avoid as they will most likely not fit your curves without extensive alteration.
  • Dresses: You’ll want to avoid anything sack like.
  • Accessories: Avoid belts that don’t fit your body size!
  • Purses: Cross body bags that cut your body in half and take away from your figure!

Sample Hourglass Capsule Wardrobe:

A capsule wardrobe is a small collection of clothing where each piece can be worn with every other piece to make a maximum number of outfits. Below, we have put together a capsule collection for an hourglass with classic style.

You’ll notice that I tried not to pull anything over $200 to keep this wardrobe budget friendly!

Ps. Don’t forget to look under the collection to see how to put these pieces together for a week’s worth of activities!


Here are just a few combinations you can make for an entire week’s worth of activities.

Monday: (work) White dress + jacket + heels.

Tuesday: (work, then school meeting) Button down shirt + denim skirt + heels. Change from heels to sandals after work.

Wednesday: (work) Jacket + off the shoulder top + khaki pants + heels.

Thursday: (work, volunteering) Burgundy t-shirt + white dress (t-shirt is over dress) + gold belt + heels. Swap the dress for jeans and tennis shoes when you leave work.

Friday: (work, after work dinner date) Floral dress (safety pin the slit shut so it’s not so risqué) + jacket + heels. Unpin skirt and add gold belt at waist for date.

Saturday: (playground with kids) Burgundy t-shirt + jeans + tennis shoes.

Sunday: (baseball game, book club) Off the shoulder top + denim skirt + sandals.

 

Want more ideas for an hourglass shaped capsule collection? This e-book shows you how to choose the top 20 items every one should own, which versions you should wear for your body shape, and outfit ideas for work and play. Read more about it here! 

 

The Big Take-Away:

You literally have the shape that *everyone* wants. 

Long story short, don’t hide it! Make sure your outfits show off just how glorious your body is!

 

And most, importantly, you’re gorgeous. Never forget that. 

xoxo, Leslie 

 

PS. Now that you know the rules, you can break them. 😉

 

 

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How to dress a RECTANGLE shape

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Rectangle shaped bodies have been called many other things over the years including ‘athletic shaped’ and ‘boy body shaped’. I don’t have a problem with the athletic shape thing, but boy body??? What is the difference between the body of a boy and a girl (literally, pre-pubescent they look pretty much the same). Although, to be fair, I also wouldn’t want to have a ‘girl shaped body’. That’s weird. So, let’s just call it rectangle and stick with that.

*rant over*

Now it’s time for me to tell you how great a rectangle body is. Did I just see an eye roll? Pull yourself together woman, I’m serious. You know why? Because rectangles can pretty much wear anything.

Let me explain. Rectangles are usually thinner and straight up and down. In other words, there are less curves to deal with. You know want that results in? The perfect frame to showcase clothing.

Have you ever wondered why 99.9% runway models (except Naomi Campbell who is an inverted triangle) are rectangles? It’s because it’s easier to put clothes on a rectangle than any other body shape. They look good in pretty much anything.

You know that friend who can wear a sack and look great? She’s probably a rectangle. Or has a ton of self confidence (which outranks any fashion rule btw).

 

Keep reading to find out:

  • What a Rectangle shape actually is (pssst, if you’re not sure, check out this post and take our quiz!)
  • Celebrity Rectangle examples
  • What to wear 
  • What NOT to wear
  • Sample Capsule Wardrobe

 

Please note that this post contains affiliate links. I use affiliate links in the form of clothing suggestions in order to help you best discover (and locate!) clothing that will work best for your body shape. If you click on the affiliate links, I will earn a small commission at no additional cost for you. Thank you for supporting us, so we can continue to give you quality content. ~LF

You’re a Rectangle If…

You know you’re a Rectangle shape because you have these two attributes:

  1. Your bust and hips are pretty much equal widths
  2. Your waist is pretty much the same width as your bust/hips (or within an inch or two)

 

If you’re still confused about your shape, check out my original blog post on shapes (and how to dress any shape no matter if you fall neatly into a category or not)

 

Celebrity Rectangles:

Celebrity rectangles are all over the place because they are so easy to dress.

 

See the source image

You see where Gwyneth Paltrow’s dress starts to flare out? Well, her body just keeps going straight down from there. The flared dress gives the illusion of a waist (by making her hips more pronounced). 

 

See the source image

Natalie Portman uses color blocking to give the illusion of a defined waist. 

 

See the source imageSee the source image

You thought Kate had the perfect hourglass shape? Not so! It’s all a trick. See the picture on the right? She didn’t just grow curves once she became royal (she just got a stylist). 

The Main Idea:

In the original blog post about DRESSING YOUR SHAPE, I talked about my easy secret to always knowing what will look good on you regardless of shape. The secret is to always wear clothing that make you look like an hourglass. If you missed the post, you can read it here.

Essentially, dressing for your shape is all about using clothing, jewelry, and other accessories as an optical illusion to make us appear a certain way.

The optical illusion is formed when we distract the viewer away from one part of our body and attract their eyes to a different part.

In the image below, you can see that her hips and chest fill out the hourglass, but the waist area does not come in. This means that we have to use an optical illusion to give her a defined waist. I call this: creating a fake waist.

Rectangles, you can get away with pretty much anything, sartorially speaking. With that said, your best looking and most attractive outfits are going to include the optical illusion of a waist.

Keep reading to discover how to create a fake waist.

 

What to Wear:

Remember the main idea here: we need to equally add volume to the top and bottom of the body to make the waist seem smaller (and more defined). (Psst. click here to discover the top 20 items every rectangle needs in their closet)

Here are several other cheats (aka: sneaky ways) to defining a waist:

  • Use color. Just make sure the color change happens at your fake waist (like the picture of Natalie Portman above).
  • Use gathering or ruching. This can make it look like you have a waist.
  • Use seaming. Seaming is where two pieces of fabric come together. Creative seaming (like in the last jacket shown) can make you look more curvy than you are.
  • Use a belt. Sometimes it helps to visually draw a line across your fake waist (the smallest part of your torso, remember??) using a belt.

Here is what to wear (and how to fake a waist), when it comes to different types of clothing:

    • Tops/Blouses: Choose shirts that make your top half seem bigger (thus making your waist smaller). You don’t necessarily need volume to do this. You can simply choose a boatneck, square, or wide V-neck neckline.

    • Blazers/Jackets: You can wear any jacket that you want as long as 1) your waist is defined in some manner and 2) any volume on the top of the jacket (puffy sleeves) is evened out at the bottom of the jacket (peplum) or with the pant/skirt (flowy skirt) choice.

    • Skirts: Just like the tops, you don’t want the skirt to overpower the outfit. The skirt should even out what’s going on up top. High waisted and A-line skirts are your best choice.

    • Pants: Keep your proportions equal. Bigger top means bigger pants…just don’t forget to wear a belt or make sure the shirt/pants are fitted at the waist. Any rise of pants works for you as long as you don’t neglect the waist!

    • Dresses: When looking for dresses, it’s all about the middle detail around your ‘fake waist’ (surprise, surprise, right???) Color blocked dresses, ruched (gathered) waist dresses, fit and flare dresses, and wrap dresses are all perfect for your shape.

  • Accessories: Belts are your friends. A good rule of thumb, is to choose belts that are compatible with your size. If you are a bigger build, choose wider belts. If you’re a smaller build, choose skinnier belts. This keeps the belt from overwhelming or underwhelming you. You can wear any jewelry that you want. Woohoo!
  • Purses: Take your pick of purses except for cross body bags.

What NOT to Wear:

  • Tops/Blouses: Anything baggy where your waist isn’t accentuated. (Like the baggy shirt and low rise skirt shown below)
  • Blazers/Jackets: Avoid jackets and blazers, like traditional pea coats, that are straight up and down with no seams or detailing around the waist. They will make you look like boxes. (Exception: if the boxy jackets end above your waist or if you belt them)
  • Skirts: Avoid skirts that are much more voluminous than your top. (Think: tank top with peasant skirt)
  • Pants: None! Go crazy!
  • Dresses: Almost nothing.
  • Accessories: Avoid belts that don’t fit your body size!
  • Purses: Cross body bags that cut your body in half and take away from your fake waist are bad.

Sample Rectangle Capsule Wardrobe:

A capsule wardrobe is a small collection of clothing where each piece can be worn with every other piece to make a maximum number of outfits. Below, we have put together a capsule collection for a Rectangle with classic style.

You’ll notice that I tried not to pull anything over $200 to keep this wardrobe budget friendly!

Ps. Don’t forget to look under the collection to see how to put these pieces together for a week’s worth of activities!

Here are just a few combinations you can make for an entire week’s worth of activities.

Monday: (work) Dress + blazer + belt (over blazer at waist) + heels.

Tuesday: (work, then school meeting) Button up shirt (tucked in) + skirt + earrings + black flats.

Wednesday: (work) Black bodysuit + crème pants + blazer + heels.

Thursday: (work, volunteering) Dress + belt + black flats.

Friday: (work, after work dinner date) Black bodysuit + skirt + jacket + earrings + heels. Take off jacket for date.

Saturday: (playground with kids) White top (tucked in) + black pants + Soludos mules.

Sunday: (baseball game, book club) Button up shirt (untucked) + crème pants + belt (over shirt at waist) + black flats.

 

Want to know the basics EVERY woman should have in their wardrobe (plus outfit ideas on how to put them together?) Just click here to find out!

 

The Big Take-Away:

Just because you don’t have a defined waist, doesn’t mean it should stop you from being a complete bad a$$ (I mean, did you see my celebrity rectangles above!?!?!) Focus on creating that fake waist and then accent the heck out of it! 

Or…ignore all the rules and go fashionista on the world (Natalie Portman is really good at that if you need examples) 😉

And most, importantly, you’re gorgeous. Never forget that. 

xoxo, Leslie 

 

PS. Now that you know the rules, you can break them. 😉

 

 

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How to dress an INVERTED TRIANGLE Shape

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I was a competitive swimmer in my childhood, aka: pre-puberty (when the hips joined the party), I was as inverted triangle shaped as you got.
 
I may have been only ten, but I knew something looked off when I looked in the mirror (why is my head so small? Why are my shoulders so big and the rest of me is tiny?) However, being ten, I wasn’t quite smart enough to figure out that it was because I WAS A CHILD and SWAM 24/7. This is all quite funny now.
 
Although I’ve grown up (and have consequentially become an apple, spoon, and hourglass during different life stages), it is still a very personal thing for me to help women who have a negative body image because they are inverted triangles.
 
If you loathe your wide shoulders or big bust, YOU’RE THINKING ABOUT IT ALL WRONG. Your shoulders and bust are a positive, not a negative. In fact, you look incredible, so there are no negatives….only glorious opportunities. One of those opportunities is that you can go crazy with what you wear on your bottom half.
 
Flamenco skirt? Pleated pants? HORIZONTAL LINES on a pencil skirt? Yup, you can do it all.
 
Pretty great, right? And this is only the beginning.
 
Keep reading to find out:

  • What an inverted triangle shape actually is (pssst, if you’re not sure, check out this post and take our quiz!)
  • Celebrity inverted triangle examples
  • What to wear 
  • What NOT to wear
  • Sample Capsule Wardrobe

 

Please note that this post contains affiliate links. I use affiliate links in the form of clothing suggestions in order to help you best discover (and locate!) clothing that will work best for your body shape. If you click on the affiliate links, I will earn a small commission at no additional cost for you. Thank you for supporting us, so we can continue to give you quality content. ~LF
 

You’re an Inverted Triangle If…

You know you’re an inverted triangle shape because you have these three attributes:

  1. Your shoulders and/or bust are/is the widest part of your body
  2. You have a defined waist
  3. Your bottom half is smaller than your top half

 

If you’re still confused about your shape, check out my original blog post on shapes (and how to dress any shape no matter if you fall neatly into a category or not)

 

Celebrity Inverted Triangles:

Celebrity inverted triangles are more common than you think (and no, they’re not all athletes).

 

See the source imageSee the source image

Charlize Theron (or should I say, her stylist) is so good at wearing appropriate clothes for her shape and posing her correctly, you’d never know her shoulders were much wider than her hips. The picture on the left is more recent and the ruffles around her hips and down, make her look bigger on the bottom (to even out the width up top). On the right is an early career picture where she makes the classic mistake of wearing a tube top dress and the result is (obvious) wide shoulders and small hips.  

 

See the source imageSee the source image

The world of fashion is super weird, and these two outfits are no exceptions…but try to forget about the quirkiness of the looks and focus on Naomi Campbell’s body shape. The picture on the left makes her look like an hourglass (look at all that volume at the hips!) while the one on the right highlights her true inverted triangle body shape.

 

See the source image

Jessica Alba can rock pleated pants (or a pleated jumpsuit) like no other because of her inverted triangle shape. Notice how this jumpsuit accentuates her waist AND makes her hips look bigger without making her shoulders look bigger (ideal!) (PS. is anyone else really curious as to what she’s pointing at in this photo?)

The Main Idea:

In the original blog post about DRESSING YOUR SHAPE, I talked about my easy secret to always knowing what will look good on you regardless of shape. The secret is to always wear clothing that make you look like an hourglass. If you missed the post, you can read it here.
 
Essentially, dressing for your shape is all about using clothing, jewelry, and other accessories as an optical illusion to make us appear a certain way.
 
The optical illusion is formed when we distract the viewer away from one part of our body and attract their eyes to a different part.
 
In the image below, you can see that her bust and waist fill out the hourglass, but the hips don’t. This means that we have to use an optical illusion to give her wider hips while keeping waist and top the same size (ie: not making them visually larger).

 

What to Wear:

Remember the main idea here: we need to distract away from her top and waist (that keeps them at their normal size) while making her hips look wider.
 
IMPORTANT!! You don’t necessarily need to combine a million ways to fake a waist as shown below in the garment examples. Just choose one per outfit (example: you wouldn’t wear a peplum shirt with pleated pants, but you would wear one or the other.)
 
Here is what to wear, when it comes to different types of clothing:

    • Tops/Blouses: Remember, we are trying to draw the attention away from your top half and to your bottom half. You can do this by choosing items with defined waists and ruffles/peplums/volume in general below the waist. V-necks, scoop necks, and crew necks will be most flattering on your figure. Drop sleeve (that means the seam for the sleeve is lower on your arm instead of being on the top edge of your shoulder) tops are going to smooth out your shoulders and make them look less wide. 

    • Blazers/Jackets: We want to do the same thing with blazers that we did with tops. Look for blazers with more detail and volume below the waist. Tuxedo jackets and narrow lapels will look best on you. You will also look good in anything drop sleeve.

    • Skirts: Okay, this is wear things start getting fun. Feel free to go crazy with skirts. Colors, patterns, ruffles, volume, and fun details are all going to be your friends. This draws the eye from your wide shoulders to your bottom half and visually makes it look bigger (thus completing the hourglass). You can wear skirts that fit at your waist or your hips well.

    • Pants: Again, go ham. Colors, patterns, and volume are all your friends. You are incredibly lucky because you can wear trends that a lot of people can’t: booty shorts or just shorts in general, jogger pants, pleated pants, paperbag pants, etc. AND you can wear low rise pants actually work for your body type. If you don’t like volume around your hips, opt for wide leg pants.

    • Dresses: Forgive me for sounding repetitive, but keep the attention on the bottom of your dresses! Ruffles, stripes, and patterns are going to look best at the bottom of your dress instead of the top. Look for V-neck, scoop, and jewel necklines (they will draw the eye down instead of out). Love sack (and other loose types of) dresses? Simply wear a belt and your done!

  • Accessories: Belts are your friends. A good rule of thumb, is to choose belts that are compatible with your size. If you are a bigger build, choose wider belts. If you’re a smaller build, choose skinnier belts. This keeps the belt from overwhelming or underwhelming you. If you want to do something fun with your jewelry, focus on your fun watches, bracelets, and rings.
  • Purses: Cross body bags and other bags you carry lower (ie: not up under your arm) are going to be best. Hell, you can even get away with fanny packs.

What NOT to Wear:

  • Tops/Blouses: Strapless and off the shoulder looks are not the best for you. Dolman (or batwing) shirts should be avoided as it makes your top half look bigger. Also avoid shoulder detailing and patterns around the shoulders.
  • Blazers/Jackets: Wide lapels and boxy jackets are not good for you. Also stay away from excessive shoulder pads (all quality jackets have a little padding).
  • Skirts: Avoid tight body con and pencil skirts unless they have a pattern, bright color, detail that makes them stand out.
  • Pants: Tight skinny pants and jeans with no details are not doing you any favors (unless you have some sort of top as mentioned above combined with it).
  • Dresses: Strapless tube dresses are not good (remember early Charlize!!??) Also not good? Dresses that are baggy up top and then body con (or just fitted) at the bottom.
  • Accessories: Wear statement earrings and necklaces (if it’s a short necklace) with caution. Remember, you want the attention on your bottom half, not your chest area.
  • Purses: Short shoulder bags worn right under the arm are a no-no.

Sample Inverted Triangle Capsule Wardrobe:

A capsule wardrobe is a small collection of clothing where each piece can be worn with every other piece to make a maximum number of outfits. Below, we have put together a capsule collection for an Inverted Triangle with classic style.
 
You’ll notice that I tried not to pull anything over $200 to keep this wardrobe budget friendly!
 
Ps. Don’t forget to look under the collection to see how to put these pieces together for a week’s worth of activities!

Here are just a few combinations you can make for an entire week’s worth of activities.
 
Monday: (work) Button up shirt + navy pants + white blazer + heels + bracelets + watch + belt (in pant belt loops).

Tuesday: (work, then school meeting) Blue dress + heels. Swap heels for wedges for school meeting

Wednesday: (work) Pink dress + watch + heels.

Thursday: (work, volunteering) Button up shirt + navy pants + wedges + watch.

Friday: (work, after work dinner date) White blazer + jumpsuit + heels + belt (over blazer at waist). Take off blazer and put belt over jumpsuit, and add bracelets for date.

Saturday: (playground with kids) Navy tee + linen pants + mules.

Sunday: (baseball game, book club) White t-shirt (tucked in) + blue skirt + wedges + watch.

 

The Big Take-Away:

 
Keep it simple up top and go crazy with your pants and skirts. Seriously, have some fun. 
 
And most, importantly, you’re gorgeous. Never forget that. xoxo, Leslie 

 

PS. Now that you know the rules, you can break them. 😉

 

 

 

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What to wear if you’re APPLE Shaped

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An apple shaped body (also sometimes called an ‘oval’ shape) is the most common shape along with pear. So, if you think you’re the only one who struggles with extra weight around your waistline, you’re not alone. 

I’m one of the only women I know (besides my mom…hmmm) whose extra weight doesn’t go straight to their thighs and butt. Nope. It goes directly to my mid-section. And then it hangs out there as long as I’ll let it. I think the record time was two years (I gained my freshmen 15 when I was a senior in college…you, know…because I’m an overachiever).

When I look back at pictures from my senior year in high school and freshmen year in college, I can’t help but laugh. I had no idea what to wear. I wasn’t used to having an extra fifteen pounds around my middle and my outfits confirmed that.

*Note: I just spent 30 minutes looking through high school/college pictures for a hilarious example of said outfits. I decided the results were too terrifying to post in a public spot. I’m sure you’ll understand*

The thing was, my body didn’t look bad (albeit not being healthy). My shape wasn’t bad, but the outfits I put on it were terrible.

Long story short, learn from my mistakes and dress your beautiful apple body in a way that it will love.

Keep reading to find out:

  • What an apple shape actually is (pssst, if you’re not sure, check out this post and take our quiz!)
  • Celebrity apple examples
  • What to wear 
  • What NOT to wear
  • Sample Capsule Wardrobe

 

Please note that this post contains affiliate links. I use affiliate links in the form of clothing suggestions in order to help you best discover (and locate!) clothing that will work best for your body shape. If you click on the affiliate links, I will earn a small commission at no additional cost for you. Thank you for supporting us, so we can continue to give you quality content. ~LF

You’re an Apple If…

You know you’re an apple shape because you have these two attributes:

  1. Your bust and hips are pretty much equal widths
  2. Your waist is slightly wider than your bust and hips

 

If you’re still confused about your shape, check out my original blog post on shapes (and how to dress any shape no matter if you fall neatly into a category or not)

 

Celebrity Apples:

Celebrity apples are all over the place, although you might not be able to tell it because they dress so well (how sneaky!)

My absolute favorite celebrity example of an Apple is Oprah. Why? Because her size is more in line with the ‘average’ woman’s (aka: all of us who aren’t celebrities) and she wears a lot of normal outfits that you can easily copy.

Image result for oprah outfits

See what I mean about normal outfits!!?? This is by far my favorite Oprah look because it makes her look like she has a waist and it’s slenderizing, but it’s not a big muumuu. 

 

Image result for catherine zeta jones outfits

Catherine Zeta Jones wears a ruched dress that accents her waist area (thus making us think she has a really defined waist…or a waist at all). If you were to locate her actual waist in this picture it would be much lower than where the ‘fake waist’ optical illusion is happening. More on the fake waist phenomena below. 

 

Image result for drew barrymore outfits

Drew Barrymore uses a wide belt and contrasting colors (white, blue, and brown) to make her seem narrower in the middle

 

The Main Idea:

In the original blog post about DRESSING YOUR SHAPE, I talked about my easy secret to always knowing what will look good on you regardless of shape. The secret is to always wear clothing that make you look like an hourglass. If you missed the post, you can read it here.

Essentially, dressing for your shape is all about using clothing, jewelry, and other accessories as an optical illusion to make us appear a certain way.

The optical illusion is formed when we distract the viewer away from one part of our body and attract their eyes to a different part.

In the image below, you can see that her hips and chest fill out the hourglass, but the waist area does not come in. This means that we have to use an optical illusion to give her a defined waist. I call this: creating a fake waist.

Apples, you can get away with pretty much anything, sartorially speaking, as long as you make it look like you have a waist (without adding too much volume to the top or bottom).

THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT!! Your new ‘fake waist’ is probably not going to be where your real waist is (around your belly button). It is going to be the smallest part of your torso and that is, most likely, going to be closer to your boobs. Really don’t have a real waist? You can literally make your fake waist under your boobs. This is especially handy if you are petite.

Go back up to the picture of Catherine Zeta Jones for a minute. Where does your eye first go when you look at her? My bet is her waist. Only, it’s not her real waist…it’s her fake waist. You can literally create a waist wherever it benefits you most. Remember that.

Keep reading to discover how to create a fake waist.

 

What to Wear:

Remember the main idea here: we need to distract away from her top and bottom while making her new fake waist the main attraction.

IMPORTANT!! You don’t necessarily need to combine a million ways to fake a waist as shown below in the garment examples. Just choose one per outfit (example: you don’t need the first striped shirt shown AND a belt unless you want to)

Here are several cheats (aka: sneaky ways) to defining a waist:

  • Use color. Just make sure the color change happens at your fake waist
  • Use gathering or ruching. This can make it look like you have a waist. See image above.
  • Use seaming. Seaming is where two pieces of fabric come together. Creative seaming (like in the last jacket shown) can make you look more curvy than you are.
  • Use the column of color method. This is literally when you have a boring (neutral color and no details) open cardigan or blazer over a more interesting blouse. The eye automatically goes to the column of color of the blouse that you’ve just created and it visually cuts off the sides of you where the cardigan is, resulting in a more long and lean look. If you scroll down to the ‘wear this not that’ image, you can see this being played out (Except I used a long necklace to attract the viewer’s eye instead of a bright colored shirt).
  • Use a belt. Sometimes it helps to visually draw a line across your fake waist (the smallest part of your torso, remember??) using a belt. In the celebrity pics above, this is what Drew Barrymore and Oprah have done.

 

Pssst: Want to have a full wardrobe laid out for you (that’s bigger than the one below)? Just click here to learn more!

Here is what to wear (and how to fake a waist), when it comes to different types of clothing:

    • Tops/Blouses: If your shirt is untucked, you’ll either need to make sure it has detailing around the waist (ruching, gathering, faux belt, peplum, color change, etc.) or you’ll need to add a belt. Alternatively, you could tuck in your blouse to high waisted bottoms. Here are a few examples of tops that give the illusion of a waist.

    • Blazers/Jackets: Take it from Oprah, an unbuttoned jacket or cardigan is your best friend. It’s a casual way of drawing the eye into the space that is open (where your shirt is underneath) and it makes you look thinner and taller. Closed blazers and jackets work as well, but much like shirts, you should make sure that the garment nips in at the waist or has ruching, etc. Uneven hemlines (short in back, long in the front or vice versa) are going to look best.

    • Skirts: Once again, you can get away with a lot, as long as you define that fake waist. A high waisted skirt in a different color as your shirt counts as defining the waist, as does a color blocked skirt. (Remember, we’re defining your new fake waist, not where your waist actually should be) Just above the knee and maxi are going to be your best lengths.

    • Pants: You want wide leg or boot cut pants. A larger amount of volume by your calves will even out your body and keep you from looking top heavy. Just look at Oprah, she never wears skinny pants. High waisted pants are your friends and keep the hemlines as long as possible to lengthen your frame.

    • Dresses: When looking for dresses, it’s all about the middle detail around your ‘fake waist’ (surprise, surprise, right???) Color blocked dresses, ruched (gathered) waist dresses, and wrap dresses are all perfect for your shape.

  • Accessories: Belts are your friends. A good rule of thumb, is to choose belts that are compatible with your size. If you are a bigger build, choose wider belts. If you’re a smaller build, choose skinnier belts. This keeps the belt from overwhelming or underwhelming you. If you don’t like wearing belts, you can just choose to work with the column of color optical illusion (long open cardigan/blazer + under shirt the same color as pants + pants). This makes you look long and lean without the need for a belt.
  • Purses: Take your pick of purses, but please, no fanny packs.

 

What NOT to Wear:

  • Tops/Blouses: Anything excessively tight on the waist. If you’re going to wear something tight, make sure it is a nice, thick material. Also avoid anything too loose unless you accenting your fake waist in some way (like adding a belt).
  • Blazers/Jackets: Avoid jackets and blazers, like traditional pea coats, that are straight up and down with no seams or detailing around the waist. They will make you look like boxes.
  • Skirts: Avoid wearing any skirt whose waistband sits directly across your hips. This will make you look unnecessarily wide.
  • Pants: I know you love leggings, but they aren’t your friends. Leggings will make you look like a popsicle. Now, I like popsicles just as much as the next person, but I want to eat them…not look like them. Also avoid pants that are low rise, as they make your hips look wider.
  • Dresses: If you’re a small apple, you might be able to get away with a sack dress. So, if that’s your style, go for it. If you are wearing a sack dress or muumuu to hide your stomach, STOP. You don’t have to hide your stomach so much as just move your waist up higher. Avoid anything tight that clings around the stomach.
  • Accessories: Avoid belts that don’t fit your body size!
  • Purses: Fanny packs and other cross body bags that cut your body in half and take away from your fake waist are bad.

Sample Apple Capsule Wardrobe:

A capsule wardrobe is a small collection of clothing where each piece can be worn with every other piece to make a maximum number of outfits. Below, we have put together a capsule collection for an Apple with classic style.

You’ll notice that I tried not to pull anything over $200 to keep this wardrobe budget friendly!

Ps. Don’t forget to look under the collection to see how to put these pieces together for a week’s worth of activities!

Here are just a few combinations you can make for an entire week’s worth of activities.

Monday: (work) White long sleeved blouse (tucked in) + red pants + heels + earrings.

Tuesday: (work, then school meeting) White blazer + white lace top + denim skirt + loafers.

Wednesday: (work) White blazer + dress + belt (under or over blazer) + loafers.

Thursday: (work, volunteering) White tank (don’t tuck in) + creme cardigan + jeans +  belt (over or under cardigan) + Tory Burch flats.

Friday: (work, after work dinner date) Polka dot halter (tucked in) + red pants + white blazer + heels + earrings. Take blazer off and add earrings for the date.

Saturday: (playground with kids) White tank (don’t tuck in) + jeans + Tory Burch flats

Sunday: (baseball game, book club) Velvet tank top (tucked into skirt) + creme cardigan + denim skirt + loafers.

 

Click here to find out the top 20 items every woman needs in her wardrobe (plus outfit ideas on how to wear them)

 

The Big Take-Away:

Just because you don’t have a defined waist, doesn’t mean it should stop you from being a complete bad a$$ (I mean, did you see my celebrity apples above!?!?!) Focus on creating that fake waist and then accent the heck out of it! 

And most, importantly, you’re gorgeous. Never forget that. 

xoxo, Leslie 

 

PS. Now that you know the rules, you can break them. 😉

 

 

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What to wear if you’re PEAR shaped

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It’s great knowing your body shape, but if you don’t know what to DO with that information, it can be quite pointless. That’s why I’ve written a series of blog posts that will help you always find the perfect outfit.

The first post is going to be about the pear shaped body. A pear shaped body (also sometimes called a ‘spoon’ shape) is the most common shape along with apple. So, if you think you’re the only one who struggles to find dresses that fit your bust AND your hips, you’re not alone. 

Keep reading to find out:

  • What a pear shape actually is (pssst, if you’re not sure, check out this post and take our quiz!)
  • Celebrity pear examples
  • What to wear 
  • What NOT to wear
  • Sample Capsule Wardrobe

 

Please note that this post contains affiliate links. I use affiliate links in the form of clothing suggestions in order to help you best discover (and locate!) clothing that will work best for your body shape. If you click on the affiliate links, I will earn a small commission at no additional cost for you. Thank you for supporting us, so we can continue to give you quality content. ~LF

You’re a Pear If…

You know you’re a pear shape because you have these three attributes:

  1. Your bust is smaller than your hips
  2. Your waist is defined (in other words, you have an obvious waist)
  3. Your hips and bigger than your bust area

 

If you’re still confused about your shape, check out my original blog post on shapes (and how to dress any shape no matter if you fall neatly into a category or not)

 

Celebrity Pears:

Thanks to the Kardashian clan, big hips and butts are having a moment right now. Here are some celebrity pears who are really rocking it (or should I say, their personal stylist is really rocking it!)

See the source image

Rihanna uses a wide V-neck to draw your eye up and out (making her top half look bigger)

 

See the source image

Beyoncé shows off a monochrome suit. Notice the wide leg pants and the long jacket (hits lower than the widest part of her hips). It’s also hard to see because of her hair, but her jacket is fitted at the waist and features a wide lapel and scarf (that, once again, distract the viewer’s gaze upward)

 

See the source image

America Ferrera uses black to draw attention to her waist and her upper body. 

 

The Main Idea:

In the original blog post about DRESSING YOUR SHAPE, I talked about my easy secret to always knowing what will look good on you regardless of shape. The secret is to always wear clothing that make you look like an hourglass. If you missed the post, you can read it here. You may also remember the graphic below, and how we need to ‘fill out’ the top of the hourglass.

Essentially, dressing for your shape is all about using clothing, jewelry, and other accessories as an optical illusion to make us appear a certain way.

The optical illusion is formed when we distract the viewer away from one part of our body and attract their eyes to a different part.

In the example below, the dark neutral skirt is boring, thus not meriting much attention. The striped shirt on the other hand, draws your eye upward and from side to side (because of the stripes), thus making her top half seem bigger than it is. All of a sudden she looks like an hourglass shape, even though nothing else has changed.

 

What to Wear:

Remember the main idea here: we need to distract away from the hips/butt and draw the attention upward. The following are several ways to do that, with an explanation of how it works. (Want to take a shortcut? Click here to see the 20 items every wardrobe needs and what that looks like for your body shape)

    • Tops/Blouses: You want to choose tops that are fitted UNLESS you have something that is defining your waist. An important part of keeping that hourglass shape, is to make sure your waist is visible. There are two ways to keep your waist visible: 1) wear a top that is fitted, especially around the waist, or 2) Make sure you have on a belt or your loose shirt is tucked into a pair of pants or skirt with a waistband. You also want to draw attention upward, so your tops are the place to go ham with colors and patterns. Boat necks and wide V-necks are going to be the best option for you.

    • Blazers/Jackets: Make sure any blazer or jacket you buy is nipped in at the waist. Look for blazers/jackets with more detail on the top than bottom. For example: you would want to choose a jacket with a wide lapel over one with a peplum. A wider lapel brings the eye up and out while the peplum brings it down and out (making your bottom half look bigger).

    • Skirts: Pencil, A-line, full (circle) skirts. A lot of pears don’t think they should wear full skirts, but just the opposite is true! A full skirt can do a wondrous job hiding your hips and butt and making them look smaller than they are. The key is to choose dark, neutral skirts with little detail (that are boring) so the eye has no choice but to look upward to your fabulous necklace, shirt, piece of distraction on your top half. Skirts just above the knee and longer are going to look best on you.

    • Pants: Opt for wide leg or boot cut pants. When you have more volume at the bottom of your pant leg, it evens out the fullness of your hips/butt. The bigger your hips/butt the bigger the bottom half of the pants need to be. The top of any pair of pants, should be as smooth as possible (no extra pleating or detailing) and should be fitted through the knee area.

    • Dresses: Dresses can be difficult, especially if your bottom half is much larger than your top half. If you’re wearing a dress alone, fit and flare dresses will almost never steer you wrong. Dresses with detailing or fullness at the top (like an embellished neckline or full sleeves) are also okay. If you have a dress that you love, but you think it makes you look bottom heavy, try layering more distractions (a blazer, necklace, earrings, etc.) to your top half.

  • Jewelry: This is the time to go crazy with statement jewelry. Necklaces, earrings, and brooches are all your friends…and the bigger the better. Jewelry is a really great and easy way to draw the eye upward towards your face.
  • Purses: Opt for shoulder bags that you can put right up under your arm. Clutches are a great option also.
  • Bathing Suits: Click here to read my entire blog post on choosing swimwear for your body shape!

What NOT to Wear:

  • Tops/Blouses: Anything baggy that hides your waist (like the t-shirt in the picture below). This will just make you look thick around the middle (which you aren’t!) and like a big triangle (also not desirable). Avoid blouses that end right along the widest part of your hips. They will make your hips look wider than they are. You will be better off, 9 times out of 10, with shirts that are shorter rather than longer.
  • Blazers/Jackets: Avoid shapeless blazers and jackets. They will just make you look big allover. If you like a certain look (like a peacoat) opt for a version that is fitted in the waist. Avoid jackets and blazers that end along the widest part of your hips. Just like tops, you’re almost always better off going shorter than longer when it comes to jackets.
  • Skirts: Avoid bright colors and patterns. Horizontal stripes are always a bad idea, and vertical stripes can work at times (especially if you’re petite!) Avoid mini skirts as they will make your hips/butt look like one big (and super weird) rectangle.
  • Pants: I know you love leggings, but they aren’t your friends. Save your leggings and jogging pants to wear at home. Low rise pants are also a no-no. The higher your pants are, the better you’ll look.
  • Dresses: You are too sexy for sack dresses and other shapeless dresses. They will make you look like a big triangle (which you aren’t). Fitted tank dresses are also a bad idea if worn alone, because they usually don’t have enough interest above the waist, to distract the eye away from your hips. Avoid drop waist dresses like the plague.
  • Jewelry: Bracelets are rings are okay to wear, just don’t go too crazy. When you are standing up and relaxed, your wrists usually hit around your hipline. Loud bracelets or rings will draw attention to that area.
  • Purses: Avoid large purses that hang low (that you would fall around your hip area) and cross body bags. Both are going to draw unwanted attention to your bottom half and make you seem bigger than you are.

Sample Pear Capsule Wardrobe:

A capsule wardrobe is a small collection of clothing where each piece can be worn with every other piece to make a maximum number of outfits. Below, we have put together a capsule collection for a Pear with classic style.

You’ll notice that I tried not to pull anything over $200 to keep this wardrobe budget friendly! (yes, I know the necklace is expensive but you can find similar ones for far less.)

Ps. Don’t forget to look under the collection to see how to put these pieces together for a week’s worth of activities!

Here are just a few combinations you can make for an entire week’s worth of activities!

Monday: (work) White t-shirt + white cardigan + black pants + heels + shoulder bag + belt (over cardigan).

Tuesday: (work, then school meeting) V-neck blouse + black skirt + black blazer + heels. Take off blazer for a more casual look.

Wednesday: (work) Blush dress + black blazer + belt + heels.

Thursday: (work, volunteering) Turtleneck + black pants + shoulder bag + heels + necklace. Change from heels to tennis shoes and white t-shirt for volunteering.

Friday: (work, after work dinner date) Pink tank top + black skirt + black blazer + heels + clutch. Take off blazer after work for a sexy date night look.

Saturday: (playground with kids) White t-shirt + jeans + tennis shoes.

Sunday: (baseball game, book club) V-neck blouse + jeans + sandals + shoulder bag.

 

Want more ideas for a pear shaped capsule collection? This e-book shows you how to choose the top 20 items every one should own, which versions you should wear for your body shape, and outfit ideas for work and play. Read more about it here! 

 

The Big Take-Away:

You have a hot body…don’t sell yourself short. Keep it dark on the bottom and bright (or patterned) up top and have fun with the accessories! Anything that makes people look up (from your hips) is a good thing. And never, ever forget to accent your waist. 

And most, importantly, you’re a stud muffin. Never forget that. 

xoxo, Leslie 

 

PS. Now that you know the rules, you can break them. 😉

 

 

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What’s your body shape? Take our quiz!

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You may have heard someone say (not going to lie, it was probably me) how important it is to dress for your body shape…but what exactly does that mean?
 

 
Although all bodies are unique, they are still human bodies and have the same basic features…hips, bust, waist, etc.  The size of your hips, bust, waist, and shoulders end up making a shape and are thus classified into different categories with the intention of helping you dress great based on the size of your features.
 
There is no one fashion god (sorry Anna Wintour) who decides what the names of these shapes are, so you may see different ‘shape’ names across the internet. Don’t freak out. I’ll help you figure out what conventional shape you fall into AND how to dress for your body regardless of the official shape you are.
 
Before you take the quiz, though, I want to introduce the 5 body shapes that are most common: pear, inverted triangle, hourglass, rectangle, and apple.
 

 
Ready to get started?
 
I made this really easy quiz. It will help you decide which of the 5 most common shapes you identify with. Under the quiz, I’ll tell you my little secret to dressing for whatever body shape you have, and also provide links so you can read more about your specific shape. 🙂



 
Yay! Hopefully you took the quiz and know exactly what body shape you are.
 
But what if you don’t? What if you don’t feel the answer is accurate?
 
Fear not! Not falling into one of these 5 categories isn’t the end of the world.
 
Here’s my little secret to looking amazing no matter what shape you have (even if I don’t have a name for it!) 
 
You want to dress in a way that makes you look like an hourglass.
 
That’s it. That’s my little secret.
 
First, you’re probably wondering…why an hourglass?? That’s a reasonable question, and the answer goes all the way back to our Neanderthal ancestors.
 
Back when we were cave men and women, we had two jobs: stay alive and procreate. The people best suited to stay alive were physically fit and healthy, while those more likely to procreate had good features for childbearing and rearing. Now, think back to the hourglass figure. It has a fuller bust (milk for babies!), defined waist (all that exercise running from tigers!), and wider hips (great for pushing out kids!) So, the things that kept us alive many era ago are still ingrained in our subconscious and thus, we are attracted to people with hourglass bodies because they are ‘more likely’ to be able to stay alive and procreate. It sounds really crass, but that’s what we’re working with. That, and the fact that people like symmetry, so a full top that balances out a full bottom is visually pleasing.
 
With that said, you can use two simple fashion tricks to help you look more like an hourglass:
 
Trick 1: Draw attention to the parts of your body that DON’T fit the hourglass mold.

Trick 2: Downplay parts of your body that DO fit the hourglass mold. 
 
I know what you’re thinking. That sounds counterintuitive. But stay with me here. Look at the person below as an example.
 

 
This woman has wide hips and a smaller top half (she’s a pear!) Her bottom half already fits the hourglass shape, as does her waist. The part that doesn’t fit is her top half. So, using the two tricks above, we need to downplay her hips and waist and draw more attention to her top half. Drawing more attention to her top half VISUALLY makes it look BIGGER, thus completing the top part of the hourglass. Downplaying her hips and waist doesn’t necessarily make them look smaller as much as helps the top half look bigger.
 
I know that sounds confusing, but we do this ALL the time when getting dressed and don’t even think about it. If you have big hips, you may choose to wear a bright colored shirt and dark pants. That is downplaying your bottom half and bringing the attention to your top half. See…I told you it wasn’t that hard.
 
Here are a few ways to ‘draw attention to’ and ‘downplay’:
 
Draw attention to an area with: stripes, prints, patterns, color, accessories, jewelry, detailed clothing, etc. (In the example above, we use a shirt with a bright pink horizontal stripe)
 
Downplay an area by wearing: darker colors, simple clothing, less contrasting items, etc. (In the example above, we used a dark, neutral color skirt)
 
For each shape, I’ve gone into way more detail (including lots of pictures and outfit ideas!) about how you can look like an hourglass. Check out the links below to see more examples of what it looks like to use these two tricks of downplaying and drawing attention!
 
How to dress a PEAR shape

How to dress a RECTANGLE shape

How to dress an HOURGLASS shape

How to dress an INVERTED TRIANGLE shape 

How to dress an APPLE shape

 

Happy Styling!

xoxo, Leslie

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