I don’t belt often as I’m an H shape and have a short waist with large bust, so belting at the waist draws attention to my boxy shape and makes my breasts look larger. But occasionally I do like the addition of a belt as it adds a detail to my outfit to make it more interesting.
Adding a belt can give a little more interest and detail to an outfit. Belts are great for those with defined waists (8s, As and Xs), they create a waist on the slim I shapes, but are harder to wear by those with undefined waists (Hs, Vs and Os).
- You can belt over a dress, cardigan or jacket.
- A self-coloured belt will draw less attention to your waist than a contrasting belt.
- Belting under your jacket or cardigan will create the illusion of a waist for those who lack them.
- A hip belt works better for Hs and Vs than a waist belt.
- Hs, Os and Vs can also all belt to the back (tie a belt on a trench or cardigan to the back rather than the front of the garment.
- Belt at your empire point rather than your waist or hip also can work for Os and Hs.
Here is a round up of some of my posts on belts:
How to belt when you don’t have a waist
Matching belts, bags and shoes?
And see how a simple belt can add that little difference to an otherwise plain outfit as Nicole Avery of Planning with Kids experimented with accessories.
Don’t forget to share your FABruary style challenge looks by using the hashtag #Fabstyle on twitter, instagram, pinterest etc. and linking to my social media accounts with @imogenlamport or posting to my facebook wall www.facebook.com/bespokeimage, alternatively you can always leave a comment here with a link to your blog or pic!
Fantastic summary. I’ve attempted to demonstrate in my blog that sometimes a wider belt can work on an 8 with a short waist, right now I have a noticeable shelf despite being generally slim, but the outfit with the wide black belt on my blog I can just about get away with, I feel. As opposed to an X, on whom the fat is always more evenly distributed, an 8 really does concentrate her flab on the high hip and lower abs and then bum (but not really much or at all on lower hip or thighs) (This is my experience of when I was 5 kilos heavier than now). There was also once a time when I was 6 kilos less than I am now and then clothes that are meant for an X rather than an 8 (such as skirt or dresses with more of a flare or wide belts) looked fine on me. The bone structure of me as an 8 as opposed to an X will always be different but perhaps the tendency on where one’s body concentrates the flab is even more important. Both an 8 and an X share the fundamentals of narrow waist-wider hips, which will always be key to how to best dress these shapes, but when very thin with no flab, the distinction is much less pronounced I’ve found.
Susie – you may turn from an 8 to more of an X when you gain weight (depends where you deposit the fat first!). Love the wide belt over the cardigan as well as the slim belts with your straight skirts!
That’s really interesting, based on my perhaps scant experience where they store the fat is the main important difference between an 8 and X (latter more down and just generally more evenly spread). Bone structure is also different but counts for less I always thought. As I said when I was slimmer with no pinchable fat on me, dresses and belts meant for an X suited me just as much as those meant for an 8. With more kilos now I have a shorter waist because of the love handles. When I was slimmer I had a less noticeable shelf/ less fat on high hips. If I got fatter I would have thought I’d eventually be an O, not an X. I thought it was quite unlikely for any body shape to turn into an X, I also thought that X-s are not very common to begin with, but you’d be born one. (Apparently H is quite common and 8 is not uncommon either, more common than X, yet other (esp non-Australian) stylists don’t even identify 8-s properly!)
Belting is a bit of an essential requirement for me, at times, otherwise I would look like a box. I’ll often wear a waist belt but am also fond of a wide belt around my hips.
That is a gorgeous skirt Imogen. Where did you get it??
It’s a few years old now. Got it from a boutique called Mon Amore Pris
In recent years I’ve tended to avoid belts, however I’m not one to turn down a challenge! First I tried a belt over my sweater (NOT a good look for me!) then I wore a waistcoat over the sweater and belt, which I decided would be acceptable.
PS I am now looking to see if I have any suitable sparkle for Saturday, lace (I think I ditched the lace when I moved to Spain five years ago!) and animal print.
This was an easy one because I’m belt obsessed 😛 Still, I wanted to push the envelope a little bit so I took an old outfit (a mixed grey and brown knit pullover over a light grey wool maxi skirt, matched with a dark brown velvet jacket, opaque tights and kitten heels) and added at my higher hips a “new” acquisition: a thick brown leather belt with an ornate silver buckle. I wrote “new” between inverted commas, because I actually had the cobbler make it re-using a buckle from an old faux-leather belt. I added also small pendant earrings and a statement necklace in silver and brown.The final result was a bit funky-grandma style: not bad, but it will suit me better twenty years from now! 😉
I wore a belt, but didn’t get a chance to post it yesterday, so here it is, a day late!
I liked this combo a lot. How should it be improved?
Good Morning from Canada: My comments refer to your picture in the black top and belt.
Although I think your upper half looks great, I’m not in favor of your skirt or shoes which don’t do anything to enhance your figure. Shoes with ankle straps always make legs look shorter and the skirt (what on earth is going on there ?) takes the eye away from the lovely look of your top half. I’m all for being creative witih ones outfit but not at the expense of understated elegance.
Beatuy in the eye of the beholder but I can’t state strongly enough that the picture diminishes your expertise as a wardrobe consulltant. That sounds a little harsh but it really bothers me, after many many years as a fashion consultant, when I see something that doesn’t do justice to a person of your standing. I’m more into the classic way of dressing and I’m often at odds with other professionals showing pictures (before and after) mainly witih clothing obviously too tight which is not the case here. On lighter note, I have a rather large button which states that “everyone is entitled to my opinion”, and I’m not having a good day so I “spoke my mind”. However, on the whole, I really enjoy reading your e-mails and viewing the videos although I do have a problem at times understanding what is being said due to the accents but that’s not your fault. I hope you will classify this as constructive criticism and not be offended……….kindest sregards……Catherine
One of the things I love about style is that there isn’t a one size fits all approach. I have a more creative dressing style than you by the sounds of it, which is why you don’t like my skirt, it’s all about deconstruction, which those who are more classic dislike. And yes I know that ankle straps shorten legs, but the thing is, sometimes I don’t care, because style is also about not just following all the rules (which I know) but also about breaking them and expressing your personality.