May 20th, 2011
by Seanna · Filed Under: Nutrition
Let’s keep talking about how to dress your figure well. Today’s topic: hips and thighs. To the gals who have been described as pear shaped (anyone but me?), read on.
Pear shaped means the hips and thighs are wider than the shoulders and bust, so balance and proportion needs to be created between the top and bottom. This can be done with clothing by visually increasing the top half (with beautiful and colorful tops, pockets, shoulder details, jewelry, jackets, scarves, etc.) and visually minimizing the lower half (in flattering pants and skirts in dark colors and simple cuts) and by NOT drawing attention to the lower half with tight, flashy garments that don’t fit or flatter. More below …
* Dark colors minimize. And since the idea is to minimize and draw the eye up from your lower half, choose pants in a dark solid color.
* Choose wide and straight leg styles that skim straight down from your hips. Avoid tapered styles and pants that are tight through the hips or thigh.
* Avoid pants that pull across the front at the zipper or hips. Choose flat front styles rather than pleats, which are best at creating a smooth, flattering tummy. And either wear side-pocket-less pants or have them sewn shut.
* Cargo styles with bulky patch pockets can add size to legs.
* A medium rise is great as it lengthens the torso and minimizes full hips.
* Again, go with dark colors. No prints.
* When you can, match the skirt, leg (tights, stocking) and shoe to create a long continuous line from waist to toe, elongating and slimming the lower half. If you go bare-legged, consider a nude colored shoe.
* Keep the volume way down; so that means nothing full or pouffy, which, while comfy, sadly add bulk. Choose slim a-line skirts, straight skirts, and pencil skirts that aren’t too tight.
* The most flattering hemlines for us are knee-length.
* Choose styles that have a defined waist that flow gently over the hips, like a wrap dress. Never wear a shift or column dress that obscures the waistline.
Tops and Jackets:
* Avoid shirts and sweaters that stop at the fullest width of hips, opting instead for hemlines that stop somewhere above or below them.
* Wear blouses tucked in or belted over the top. Again, don’t hide your waistline.
* Wear tops that are fitted and show off the top half of your body, thus minimizing the attention to the bottom half.
* Prints and bright colors are great for drawing the eye up.
* Coats and jackets that are long length and fitted at the waist are magic at balancing out a wide lower body. Large lapels, chest pockets and/or shoulder epaulets are great too.
* Choose a shoe with a little bit of heft, nothing too dainty and delicate. Even a half-inch platform adds weight to a strappy sandal or skinny-heeled style. Platforms are more comfortable and are super cute and available everywhere in lots of heel heights.
* In skirts, match your leg color (bare-leg, tights, stockings) to your shoe for a long continuous line.
The buzz continues to be about shapewear and I can see why. Panty lines and underwear waistbands that dig in can’t be comfortable and they just look bad. Oprah and hundreds of other celebrities, even the skinny ones, swear by them. Does anyone have thoughts or tips to share about shape wear? What brand and style do you like? Please share below!
I have a lot of experience with dressing a wide lower half and know these tips work. It just feels good being sure about what you’re wearing. Give these tips a try and let me know what you think.
How to Never Look Fat Again, by Charla Krupp
What Not to Wear, by Trinny Woodall and Susannah Constantine
The Science of Sexy, by Bradley Bayou