These terms are thrown around a lot in fashion but they really are worth knowing about, to make the most of your shape.
This is especially important if you are not very tall (like me). The way I think of proportion is that an outfit looks better if there is some contrast between the garments, for example:
- A long top and a short skirt
- A voluminous top and a tight skirt (or jeans)
- A cropped top or jacket with a midi skirt
A popular piece of style advice is to “get everything tailored”. While I do recommend tailoring for special occasion or investment pieces, it’s not realistic for a lot of people or for the bulk of your wardrobe. So it’s important to get the fit right before you buy.
If it doesn’t fit right and you don’t plan to have it altered, then go without. It won’t make you look and feel great so it’s not worth it (even if it’s cheap).
Some brands are starting to understand that there are body variations beyond size and have introduced ranges to cater for this, for example:
- Marks & Spencer Petite – designed for women 5 feet 3 inches and under.
- ASOS Tall – but it’s not just for tall people. I like their mini-skirts which have that extra bit of length compared to the main and Curve lines.
Here is my best piece of advice with regard to fit: Don’t be afraid to go up a size. The size on the label is irrelevant – what matters is how it looks on you.
If the next size up gives you room to breathe, stops buttons from gaping, and allows you to move your arms unrestricted, then that’s the right size for you.
I personally prefer my clothing a little loose rather than skin-tight. I don’t believe in suffering for fashion. When you feel comfortable you feel more confident, and confidence is key.