Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Shortcomings? More like Awesomenesses!

We all go through body transitions in life.  If you didn't, you'd still be the size and shape of a newborn, which would really  kinda suck. Some gain weight and fight to lose every agonizing pound.  Some can't gain weight for love or evil and wish they could. Some develop a belly after childbirth that they can't shake.  Some have scars that won't fade or shouldn't fade.Some are still growing; some are still shrinking; some are still hiding things; some want to let it all hang out.  There are clothes and fads that help you mask your insecure regions and clothes and fads to help you show off the parts you love.  Each article of clothing has stuff it can do for you or parts that are not your friend.  You've seen this trying on clothes, when the shirt looked great on the rack and looks a frumpy sight on you. Today's post is on the parts you want to camouflage, stay tuned for the parts you want to celebrate.
I don't want y'all running  through this list hunting for things to hate about your body. Huh-uh. No way.  This blog is entirely about helping y'all look good and feel good, not just in cheap clothes, but in your own skin.  Looking for flaws does entirely the opposite of what I'm trying to do here.  I refuse have any part in fat shaming, skinny ragging, or any other form of body hate.  Don't bother with hateful comments, they'll get deleted before they even get published.
A Thick/ Stout/ Wide Neck
Throughout the years, the long swan neck has been lauded as the utmost perfection on a woman.  It's also something you're either born with or not.  The neck is a balancing post and moving mechanism for the 10-12 lb (excluding hair) human head.  A thicker neck is actually more evolutionarily sound, from a physics standpoint.  Unfortunately, women with an evolutionarily sound neck generally can only see that they don't have the long, graceful, easily damaged neck fashion wants.
If you are looking to disguise a evolutionarily stable neck, there are a few hints I can offer you.
  • Long necklaces and scarves.  You want these at least  to bust level, may longer.  Keep any pendants and scarf knots around where your cleavage starts (yes, even AA bra size ladies have cleavage) or lower.  These draw the eye down, making the neck appear longer than it actually is and balancing out the width.  Play around with different necklace and scarf length until you find the one YOU like and you're happy in.
  • Lower that neckline.  I'm not saying you want skankyho cleavage, but we're trying to elongate the neckline, and the easiest way to do that is to keep the expanse of collarbone area open. Aim for a v-neck or scoop neck (it doesn't hafta be really low cut, just not right at the neck.)  And fer the love of god, avoid collars.  Turtlenecks, mocknecks, mardarin collars, and button up done all the way up just makes it look even thicker.
Broad Shoulders
Congratulations.  You were blessed with a set of shoulders that would make an NFL linebacker jealous. While these are great for shoving people out of your way, they don't exactly make for the dainty physique fashion calls for.
  • Avoid shoulder pads, teeny tiny straps, and epaulets like the plague.  These will only exaggerate your shoulders.
  • Aim for short sleeves over cap sleeves, and keep the shoulders on your clothes free of ruffles and things that'll draw the eye to it.
  • Also aim for an unstructured shoulder. Raglans, kimono sleeve, dolmans, sweaters... if there's no shoulder seam, it'll probably be really good on you.
Thin Shoulders 
While most designers want thin, shallow shoulders, you're sick of yours.  Straps always slide off, shoulder seams never line up,and fer the love of god, who designed this tee-shirt!
  • You're the person fashion designers love, even if they don't design exactly for you. Epaulets, shoulder designs, structured and (minimally) padded shoulders, lace laden... these are all things you can pull off really easily and well.
  • Still would rather hide it than pull it off?  Structured tops and minimal shoulder pads, or layer with a blazer instead of a cardigan.
Large Bust
Bazongas, knockers, porn star tits... I've heard most of 'em.  When your boobs are proportionally large for your frame, you're simultaneously  teh awesomesauce because you have the big tits every woman wants and every man wants, and you're irritated because dressing those fuckers could write a book in and of itself.
  • Stay away from high necklines.  They make you look like you shoved a pillow down your chest.  If you do wear a button up, unbutton the top buttons and wear something underneath it.
  • On the other hand, shy away from the overly lowcut.  With large tits, it's extra easy to look like a skankyho.
  • ruffles, frills, all that jazz on the bust just draw more attention to it.  If that's you thing, go nuts, just remember that the more jazzhands your bust has, the larger it looks.
  • Don't you dare wear baggy sack shirt.  Wearing something with no waist below the tits makes you look bigger than you are, both in the boobs and in the belly
Small Bust
Flatter than a dinner plate?  Believe it or not, you're what designers want.  I know it's a bitch to find shirts that don't need tailoring down.
  • Look for unstructured shirts.  Knits are more friendly for you than a shirt with princess seams, because a knit will work with your curves instead of the princess seams being too big for you. (No, I didn't phrase that backwards.  The shirt doesn't fit you, not the other way around.) 
  • A wrap shirt is also pretty figure flattering in you, bercause you can pull it as tight as you need to get a flattering cut.
  • Shirring, ruffles, sequins and all that jazz will draw visual interest to the chest area and give  an impression of more depth in the area (hence, bigger boobs.)
Belly Woes
In older, less affluent times, a woman with a Rubenesque figure was considered hotter than Mila Jovavich and Gisele whatserface put together.  She could afford to eat to excess in a world of people starving to death. Even evolutionarily speaking, a woman with extra fat (to an extent) is healthier and more able to birth/ rear children in lean times.
  • Put the potato sack down.  I mean it.  No shape makes you look shapeless.  Put down the muumuu, step away from the blouson top. You want shape.
  • You want at least some structure. An empire waist, a well fitted button up, a tunic with side shaping, something. Wrap shirts work well, too, as they're adjustable.
  • Shirring, ruching, ruffles and decorations on the belly can either be very flattering or very disconcerting.  Done right, people think it's all the decorations.  Done wrong, you're suddenly about to pop out a podling.
  • I know this should go unsaid, but I'll say it anyways: wear the correct size. Too big and you look like a bad lady.  To small and not only can you not breathe, but it's VERY unflattering.  Wear the right size.  If you wear an XL and the 2X fits better, get the damn 2X.  The number of the tag means NOTHING. It's how it FITS.
Hips with a Side of Hips
 You've got "wide, childbirthin'" hips. Large hips are an evolutionary blessing.  Extra fat in the hips makes carrying a baby to term easier and gives extra padding to protect the growing fetus.  That still doesn't change the fact that women are, according to fashion designers, all the same size hip and finding a pair of pants that fit is a pain.
  • Keep hunting.  You'll find that one manufacturer that designs for your frame.  For me, it's Old Navy's The Dreamer.  A friend swears by Cruel Girl.  It's a long, hard slog, and I won't tell you otherwise.  Find pants that fit? Buy'em in every color and a large supply.
  • Believe it or not, you can pull off skinny jeans. Wear a loosely fitted top (like a tunic) and you're "dead sexay."  Boot cut and wide leg pants are more friendly on day when you're trying to camouflage and not show off.
  • Pencil, straight, A-line, wrap, and circle skirts are your friends. The first two show off your curves in a very 40's/ sexy way, and the others are very forgiving on nearly any figure.  All 4 styles will show off your womanly curves.
  • In general, extreme rises are not your friend. Low cut provokes the dreaded muffin top, high rise can look like you packed 5 quarts into a gallon bucket.  Some higher rises can look ok, but those are definitely a case by case basis.
 Soccer Legs
That's what we've always called large or athletic legs in my family.  Your legs can do more than most people can with their entire body, but fashion designers apparently use toothpick as figure models for their pants and skirts.
  • Wide leg pants.  I can't say this enough.  On people with soccer legs, wide leg pants just look like regular straight leg pants.  When they come into fashion, clean them out.  I'm not even joking.
  • Skinny pants.  Thick, muscular legs look damn good in something tight enough to show them off.
  • Unless you have wide feet, most wide shank boots won't fit.  Get something that's meant to have a rainboot effect and love the fact that they don't do that on you. I'm also in love with shoe boots and shoes without an ankle strap, because they look good but don't obscure the view of my legs.
  • Shorts and capris, by and large, just aren't your friend.  No matter where they're cut, they will still visually cut off an already wide leg. No bueno.  Skirts, on the other hand, are, especially a knee length skirt.
  • Still want to hide your awesome legs?  Fine. Wear a maxi skirt. Comfort, maneuverability, nad coverage, while still looking chic and hot.  No hobble skirts or ankle length pencil skirts, though.  Neither one is flattering to anyone.
Figure? What Figure?
For you women with minimal curves wondering where you fit into all this, voila.  Ruler, stick, cylinder, boy... whatever shape you call it, it's generally treated very indifferently in the fashion community.
  • Wear shirts that create a waist.  Wrap tops, empire waists, rushing, shirring... these can all produce a waist where there wasn't one before.  Wear belts and scarves at the waist, it does the same thing.
  • You'll hafta hunt for jeans too.  Clean 'em out when you do find 'em.  Skinny jeans look AWESOME on you.  Hell, everything but a flare and a boot cut looks awesome on you.

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