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The best clothes for your shape

This dress from Macy's is perfect for a pear shape.  The full skirt makes hips appear more slim and the low neckline shows of cleavage and brings the eye up towards the top of the body and the chest.
This dress from Macy's is perfect for a pear shape. The full skirt makes hips appear more slim and the low neckline shows of cleavage and brings the eye up towards the top of the body and the chest.

Perhaps one of the most important things any woman can keep in mind when she's going shopping for a new wardrobe is her shape. No matter how classic or stylish the clothes she chooses are, if they are not right for her shape, they will never look stylish.  Many women fall into various categories when it comes to size and shape.  I will highlight three of those shapes in this article: pear, boyish, and hourglass.  These three shapes, can be the most common shapes women fall into when defining their shape.  Below, several clothing pieces for each shape and how to wear them will be discussed.

Jennifer Aniston at the 2010 Golden Globes.
Getty Images

The first shape, pear, is one of the most common shapes women find themselves in.  Pear shapes can be plus-sized or very tiny and thin.  The way a pear shape is defined is when the shoulders are narrow with a small chest and waist in contrast to wide hips.  No matter what size a woman is, if her measurements fall into this category, she is a pear shape. Pear shapes can also pull off a pencil skirt, too, as long as it is in a dark color and the top you are wearing has a detail on it, such as a print, shiny fabric or ruffles.  Some people do not like fitted skirts on pear shapes, but in today's world, with large hips being a good thing, it's sexy to accentuate them in a modest and tasteful way.  Also, it is a good idea to wear any kind of dress, like a wrap one, that emphasizes the tiny waist many pear shapes have.  As for wearing pants, wearing any pant in a dark color is a good idea.  Straight-leg,  and boot cut jeans in dark colors are always good ideas.  Skinny jeans should be avoided, but straight leg jeans are a good alternative, as they fit slimly through the entire leg, however, they don't fit as tight as skinny jeans do.  Pairing a long cardigan in a neutral color or a flowing slik top for going out at night with dark straight leg jeans and heels will give you a very well-balanced figure.  Also, wearing tops with large ruffle details at the neckline or sleeves is also a good idea, as this balances out your narrow shoulders with your wide hips.  Wearing boot cut jeans, the botom flare of the jeans, balances your hips, so with these, you can wear a more fitted top.  Whether you are going to New Haven or Hartford for drinks, or to work for a business meeting at Aetna or the Hartford,  the rule that you must balance your hips by either wearing dark on the bottom and light on the top, or fitted on the bottom and voluminous on top, is always good to keep in mind.

Boyish figures, often seen on models and other women in the fashion industry, can tend to look a bit androgynous if you are not careful with your details in dressing.  Boyish figures are the one figure that can effortlessly pull off the skinny jean, however, it may be a good idea to wear feminine details on top, as not to end up looking like a boy.  Another great tip is to add the illusion of hips with wide leg pants, or a large voluminous skirt.  Wearing an ultra feminine ruffle skirt or dress with large floral prints or a full skirt will make you look for feminine and balanced.  Boy shapes might also want to keep their hair chin length or longer, as the lack of curves on their bodies, with a short hair cut, could lend to an overall, boyish look.  This is not always true, of course, as some boyish shaped women with gorgeous feminine facial features like full lips or large eyes can still look feminine with short hair.  The best, overall, style tip a boyish shaped woman can use is to use feminine color and volume to her advantage when dressing.  There are more options for this shape, and therefore, more ways to make the body look for feminine.

The hourglass figure, perhaps, the most balanced of the three, is much easier to dress.  With this figure, you have a lot of leeway to wear whatever you choose, however, there is a tendency with this figure as well, to have a large chest.  Some style rules must be followed when you have large breasts.  Other hourglass figures, like Jennifer Aniston, have extremely symmetrical figures with medium size chests, hips and thin waists.  Although she has a toned athletic body, she falls into this category with her body type.  Hourglass figures look gorgeous in the wrap dress, since their slim waist and proportionate full hips and chest will be highlighted.  Another great look for an hourglass shape is a pencil skirt, this highlights the thin waist and draws attention to the symmetry between the hips and chest.  The best way, if you do have a large chest, to make sure your chest doesn't stick out too  much, is to wear a supportive bra first, and then to make sure most of your tops are not deep v-necks or scoop necks.  If you already have a large chest, a little cleavage is fine, but showing a lot is both unnecessary and distracting.  After all, when you go out for a night of fun at Mohegan Sun, or are shopping for some cute accessories at Westfarms, and especially if you're at work in downtown Hartford, why on earth would you want everyone staring directly at your chest? You want everyone staring at you, the whole package, and of course, your style.

Below, are several examples of items you can wear for each shape.  All of the pieces can be found at Westfarms Mall.  Have fun shopping.


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