Forget what you know about “body type”
Good news for women! You are not a fruit or a geometric shape. Magazine articles and quizzes want to categorize you to sell you on whatever clothing items they need to promote in that month’s issue.
So forget about all of it.
Fashion is architecture: it is a matter of proportions. – Coco Chanel
Instead of looking at your body type critically, and by critically I mean harshly judging yourself, consider this ignore what you don’t like about your body and look at your bone structure and frame.
In her book “The Pocket Stylist” Kendall Farr advises there are three types of body frames for women. The good news is that your frame is based on your bone structure NOT your size.
Freedom from looking at your body frame (not your body type)
How you fill out your frame is determined by your weight. Also, your frame never changes. Once you can dress for your frame, you stop dressing to hide your flaws, cover up, hate on your thighs, and you can stop thinking you need to lose weight, and more!
When you dress for flattery for your frame, everything else comes into place beautifully. This should feel very liberating.
What about size?
Now that you’ve become familiar with your frame, evaluate if you are bigger in areas of your body relative to others. I take the approach presented in the book “Dress Your Best.” Is your body bigger on top (bigger busted), having a “little extra” in the middle, bigger “on the bottom?” Instead of dressing to hide or conceal those “problem” areas, instead what can you do accentuate the areas of your body that aren’t the so-called problems?
Consider creating structure around your shoulders to draw attention away from your bigger middle, consider lengthening your leg through tailoring of pants or footwear to de-emphasize your hips, or how about lengthening your torso to help minimize your bust? These are just a few examples of ways you can deemphasize a problem area by focusing on a different part of your body.
Height is a consideration, too.
Don’t forget about your height. Are you petite (generally considered 5’4” or less) or tall (generally 5’8” or taller)? Are you balanced in proportion, is your torso long and legs shorter, or is your torso short with long legs? What can you do to either balance your proportions OR elongate your legs (if you want to appear taller or leaner)? Even if you don’t want to appear taller (and not everyone does), I have yet to have a client come to me saying they want to look shorter and dumpier. I am not suggesting you need to lose weight, wear 5-inch stilettos or other drastic measures.
If this seems difficult or complicated, this is how a stylist can help as we look at you objectively and see all of the wonderful parts that make you “you.”