Discovering clothes that not only suit your age but also flatter your figure can be a daunting task. Many women face the challenge of sifting through racks of clothing, only to find options that are either too revealing or ill-fitting. If you resonate with this struggle, rest assured that you are not alone.
Fashion Trends Don’t Care About Body Shape
It is important to recognize that clothing fashion trends do not cater to every body shape. For any fashion trend, it will only suit one or two of the variety of body shapes, for example, if you possess a classic hourglass figure with well-defined hips and a slight midsection, you may find yourself disheartened by the prevalence of boxy and oversized garments that fail to showcase your curves. Or if you have an undefined waist and a bit of a rounded tummy, then when tucking in and fit and flare styles abound, you’ll find this is not a trend you want to partake of. This does not mean you have to forsake current fashion trends altogether. Instead, consider how you can adapt these trends to suit your unique body shape. By adding subtle adjustments such as cinching a loose-fitting blouse with a belt or tucking it in to create a defined waist, you can personalize the latest styles to accentuate your best features.
Explore Different Sizes
When you’re on the hunt for new clothes, keep in mind that sizing can vary quite a bit between different brands and even within garments made from different fabrics in the same store. The numbers on clothing tags don’t always reflect the perfect fit for you. One thing to be aware of is vanity sizing, where brands assign larger garments smaller sizes to make customers feel like they are slimmer, and it makes you more likely to buy (even if the garment doesn’t actually look great on you). Instead of getting caught up in the numbers, focus on finding the right fit that flatters your figure. You might be surprised to find that trying sizes both smaller and larger than your usual preference can actually offer a better fit.
Don’t forget that needing alterations is not a sign of failure or that there is anything wrong with you. Ready-to-wear clothing is made to be put on the maximum number of bodies (as in, you can get it on your body), not to make it flatter your body. Know that there is so much bad design out there too, and that it’s the clothes not your body, that can help you feel less frustration when shopping. Here are some tips on how to spot a badly designed garment for your body.
Define Your Kind of Comfort in Clothing
The notion of feeling comfortable in clothing encompasses various factors. Emotional comfort, mental comfort, and physical comfort all contribute to our overall well-being. When you express discomfort with the clothes you try on, it is crucial to identify the specific elements that are causing this unease. Take the time to define what comfort truly means to you. Consider your personal criteria for clothing, including how it makes you feel mentally, emotionally, and physically. For more details on mental and emotional comfort, check out my post What are Mental and Emotional Comfort with Regards to Personal Style?
Know Your Colours
When you have a defined colour palette, you’ll find is so much easier to buy clothing that goes effortlessly together and create a cohesive and versatile, mix-and-match wardrobe.
Here’s a great example – I bought both these garments years apart, yet because this turquoise is in my palette I knew I’d be able to wear them together. If you’d love to get your ideal colour palette you can get this with an online colour analysis or as part of my 7 Steps to Style program (if you’d love the entire image program that covers body shape, figure harmony, personality, wardrobing and so much more).
Explore Beyond Local Stores
Remember that fashion retailers cater to various body types and tastes. If local stores don’t offer the styles or colors that resonate with you, remember that there is a whole world of shopping possibilities beyond your immediate vicinity. Exercise patience and allow yourself the freedom to explore new options in the future. Consider exploring online platforms, boutiques, or commissioning custom-made pieces from Etsy sellers or dressmakers. You could even try learning to sew yourself to provide you with more control over your wardrobe and the ability to create items that perfectly suit your preferences.
Embracing a Discerning Approach
When it comes to finding clothes that truly resonate with your personal style and body shape, it’s crucial to shift your perspective from feeling “fussy” to embracing a discerning approach. In fact, I have noticed this remarkable trait among the members of my 7 Steps to Style community. By becoming more discerning shoppers, they are no longer settling for anything less than what truly suits them. This shift in mindset empowers them to curate a wardrobe filled with pieces they love and will actually wear, avoiding the common pitfall of accumulating clothes that go unworn.
By adopting a discerning mindset, you elevate your shopping experience from haphazard to intentional. Instead of filling your closet with impulse buys and ill-fitting garments, you become focused on finding items that align with your style preferences, flatter your figure, and reflect your unique personality. This level of discernment requires a solid understanding of your body shape, color palette, and style preferences, all of which can be developed through education and self-exploration as part of my 7 Steps to Style program. With a deeper understanding of your style, you can navigate the fashion landscape more effectively and avoid feeling discouraged when certain trends or garments don’t work for you. Remember that fashion trends come and go, and there will always be something that suits your unique style and body.
Remember that trends come and go, and the availability of suitable clothing may vary. Stay patient, keep exploring, and trust that you will eventually discover the garments that make you look and feel your best.