How to Pick Prints – Curved or Angular


how-to-choose-printsHi Imogen,
I love your blog!
I am wondering if the type of prints (i.e. angular/curved prints) have anything to do with body shape.
I saw two ladies who coincidentally were dressed in black and white printed dresses. One has an I-shaped girl and the prints on her dress were bold and angular. If she desires to look fuller, would curved prints work better on her?
The other lady was X-shaped and has put on considerable weight after having 2 kids. She wore a dress with curved prints. While the size of the prints was proportionate to her frame, I thought the curved prints draw attention to her horizontally-challenged body. Is curved prints suitable for curvy ladies?
Or should prints complement face shapes (angular/curved jaw).


print shapes

Prints need to relate to face shape and features, but also have a relationship to your body scale and shape.

Angular prints must look angular – so a stripe that is pulled tight over a curved body will highlight the curves as we expect it to appear straight.

Curved prints will work better over a curved shape, but when you’re thinking about curves, too much will make you appear cartoonish and again highlight the curves.   Think of it as a soft line, not a circular line in the pattern.

Tips on How to Choose a Print – Curved or Angular

You want the shape of the pattern to be reminiscent of your shape and features, but not exactly the same as this appears cartoonish.  So I wouldn’t put polka dots on a very curvy shaped woman, but they would work on someone who has some curve, but not overly curvy.


Your scale also must relate to the size of the print.  Smaller prints suit smaller people, larger prints suit very tall people, whilst medium prints suit most other people.

Facial Features

Facial features are important in choosing prints as we relate the shapes of our nose, mouth, eyes, cheeks and jaw to all the details and features on our clothing.

  • If your features are more curved, then look for patterns which are mostly curved.
  • If your features are more angular, then more sharp patterns will suit.
  • If your features are a combination of curved and straight lines, then combination patterns suit you best.


And your personality also relates to the shapes of the patterns.  Straight lines in checks and stripes are more masculine, whilst curved lines in florals and paisley are more feminine and soft.


Plus then there will be the contrast of the print which will relate to you personal contrast levels.  You will notice a high contrast print more on a low contrast person and it will be less noticeable on a high contrast person.

As you can see, there are many aspects to choosing prints and patterns.

More Tips on Choosing Prints

3 Essential Elements to Choosing Flattering Prints and Patterns

Choosing Prints to Disguise Your Tummy

How to Choose Prints That Work With Your Colour Contrast

Expert Tips for Choosing Prints and Patterns with the Right Colours for You

3 Essentials You Need to Know About How The Size and Density of a Print Impacts on its Value Contrast

7 Things You Must Consider When Choosing a Flattering Floral Print for You

How to Rock Patterns on Your Lower Half – X and A Shapes

How to Choose the Right Animal Print for You

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