I always love hearing from my readers especially if there’s a burning fashion question they’d like answered. Late last year, I heard from a reader, Steph via my Facebook page who sent me the below message as she was on the hunt for a dress to wear over Christmas.
Hi Kate! Love your style!
I was wondering what fashion tips you could suggest for a curvier women like myself I am self conscious of my arms and upper body.
What kind of dresses would you suggest? Any tips would help I’m looking for something for Christmas Day.
I knew I wanted some expert input with Steph’s question so reached out to celebrity stylist (and someone who I’ve worked with on several occasions) Jess Pecoraro. Jess styles everyone from Jesinta Franklin to model Georgia Fowler and has worked with brands like Witchery, Topshop and eBay so I knew she’d have really useful and practical tips to share. Read on for some great tips for accentuating a curvy figure.
What are five key pieces a curvy woman should have in her wardrobe and why?
1. Good quality undergarments are just as important as clothing so invest in items that fit well and are made from quality fabrics to help with support and shaping the body correctly
2. A classic style black dress, this can be an A-line style, wrap style or
even a slip as it will be the perfect go-to for anything last minute.
3. Dark denim jeans or a dark trouser, the style may vary depending on
what you prefer but it’s a [wardrobe] must which can easily be dressed up or down.
4. Shirting that is slightly fitted and that isn’t too boxy. It’s another go-to
piece to have in a few colours.
5. A nude pump as they elongate your legs and are perfect for all occasions.
Are there any particular styles or silhouettes a curvy woman should avoid?
Styles which are boxy or have minimal shape are no go as they add extra volume and don’t show off your curves.
What’s the key to dressing to flatter a curvy figure?
Paying attention to the fit and fabrication of clothing is key. Select items that emphasise your waist as well as your curves by considering items which have a waist band, are slightly more fitted or are in a wrap style.
Is there a particular part of the body that a curvy woman should try and focus on with what she’s wearing?
This is very personal and may vary on different bodies yet focusing on your waistline will help show off your curves and give your body an overall nice silhouette.
Are there key accessories a curvy woman should have in her wardrobe? If so, what?
Key accessories to invest in are nude heels and sandals which will work back with any look and won’t add any extra volume to an outfit. Also a mix of neutral and black waist belts to style over dresses, shirts and even blazers to help define the waist line.
What are your tips when it comes to colour and patterns and prints when it comes to a curvy figure?
Bold block colours and darker shades are always best. Coloured panels also work and can give the illusion of a print without it being to over the top as long as the panelling is on the side which lengthens the body. Prints can be a bit tricky as they can sometime add more volume so go for more graphic and vertical lines.
What are your tips when it comes to swimwear for a curvy figure?
Go for simple shapes and darker solid colours. Higher cut briefs give the illusion of longer and leaner legs and for extra support try a bra style top or one piece with thicker straps (in built wire will give a better shape). A panelled one piece with side ruching will help draw attention away from your tummy area.
What are some go-to brands for curvy women?
- Spanx and Berlei for undergarments.
- Jets Swimwear and Monday Swimwear for swimsuits.
- Scanlan Theodore for good quality form fitting pieces as well as classic pieces to invest in.
- Good American for jeans.
- Viktoria and Woods for shirting with waist ties and great for overall neutral basics.
- Tony Bianco for all year round great nude shoes in all styles.
- Carla Zampatti for anything evening including the perfect black dress.
You can follow Jess on Instagram at @jesspecoraro