Written by Nadia
Winter is upon us – bringing us sharper winds, shorter days and a fashion opportunity.
Between summer and winter, winter is definitely a more fashionable season, with so many things to play with, from shirts, pull-overs all the way up to leather jackets and fur coats. But with choice comes a decision crisis – that is why Shop You’s Ai stylist, “U” has chosen some winter garments for you to explore, matched to your body shape.
An Apple-shaped body is basically ‘circular’ in the middle, so you might have smaller shoulders, hips and legs, but a large chest and round belly with undefined waist. Try a V-neck top to break the width of your chest and take the line down, preferably in a thicker, stiffer fabric that doesn’t cling such as raw silk or linen. A more flowy V-neck tee such as this one from Witchery can also flatter an Apple beautifully when paired with skinny pants or jeans such as these from Forever New. A good rule of thumb is if your top is long and loose you need a slim lower half for balance.
If fun fashion is more important to you than a flattering cut, Apples can rock a strapless dress (Apple Jennifer Hudson is all the proof you need) and this one from C/MEO Collective off those slender pins too. As is true with any shape, when it comes to jackets, hem length is key and Apple hems look best when they end at the hip or upper thigh.
If you’re smaller at the shoulder and chest but your body starts to go, ahem, Pear-shaped at the hip, then, like me, you’re the other fruity silhouette. It took me years to figure out my figure and now I wouldn’t have it any other way. Once you know how to flatter your bottom half you can go all out crazy up top. Splash out on statement tops that will stand the test of time, like a classic Cotton On checked tank, and pair with a flattering high-waist, pleated skirt such as this one from Stella MCcartney. If Missoni has a couple of zeros too many, opt for a top with theatre or detail around the neck or shoulder line to draw attention upwards – we’re talking pussy bows, embroidered collars, cowl necks. Cinch in the waist and choose flared, A-line skirts (keeping gathering to a minimum). You can work horizontal stripes along the narrow upper area so have a few Country Road handy for your high-waisted flared or boot-cut jeans. Be proud of that derriere like your Pear idol Beyoncé.
Probably the most famous shape thanks to Marilyn Monroe and all her phenomenally proportioned successors, the Hourglass has similar sized bust and hips with a well defined waist. While it’s best to avoid high necks, ruffles and bows up top (a generous chest makes these looks Mumsy at best), you can get away with many other styles, including bodycon dresses and straight leg jeans. The ultimate go-to for an Hourglass is the wrap dress. Splurge on one by the Queen of wrap dresses Diane Von Furstenberg or look equally sexy on a lower budget in this beach-babe number by The Fifth.
Rectangles, you may miss out on a fruity description but rest assured you can pull off almost any style. Also known as the more flattering ‘Athletic’, this body shape (with consistent measurements and undefined waist) might feel lacking in curves for some but there are plenty of fix-ups for that, from push-up bras to voluminous skirts. Confident Rectangles can pull of wildly printed playsuits and the voluminous sleeves plus belted waist on this one from Finders Keepers add curves to an up-and-down body. Alternatively, if you’re on the petite side, choose a fancy high-necked blouse such as this one from CUE and team it with a pair of teeny denim cut-offs from ASOS. Avoid wearing boxy styles such as boyfriend jackets as this can make you look even straighter.
Less talked about but still as relevant is the Inverted Triangle, another athletic shape often seen on female sports stars with broad shoulders and smaller everything else. While you should probably avoid necklines that make you broader on top such as the boat and halter, not to mention puffy sleeves, you can have more fun at the lower end than most other shapes. Draw the attention down in bright or patterned palazzo pants like these from Sheike or try this show-stopping skirt by Forever New with a pared back top from Portmans.