How to Choose Plus-Size Dresses That Flatter
Dare to Wear a Dress
There is just something about a dress that screams "woman!" Wearing a dress is a sure-fire way to feel more like a woman, bring out your inner girl and lift your spirits. Why don't we wear more dresses? Wearing a dress takes a bit of courage—it's a bold move. The dress has a little bit of "look at me" in it and sometimes we might not want to be noticed. This article has some great tips for choosing a dress on your plus-size body.
Plus-Size Dresses From the Past
The first source we will consider when looking at how to wear a dress are beautiful women from the past. We will go back in time to an era when "plus size" was not unusual but considered beautiful. What can we learn from the women of this time? Let's examine first some paintings from the Renaissance era and see how they wear their dresses.
The first lady we will look at is from a painting by Titian called The Woman At Her Toilet. The women is thought to be a model. We don't know her name but we do know that Titian chose her to appear in several of his works. The other painting we will examine is by Peter Paul Rubens and it is also named The Woman At Her Toilet. Both of the women would be considered plus-size according to today's standards.
What can we learn from these Renaissance beauties and the way they dress? Let's take the lessons from them to apply to today's dressing.
Principles for Choosing Plus-Size Dresses
- Create a corset by drawing in the smallest place in your body. Look for a dress that creates a waist for you at your smallest part, often right below the bust line. If the dress does not have this shape built into it, consider accessories such a belt or a scarf to create this silhouette. If you are blessed with a natural waist, emphasize it. If you don't have much of a waist, create a faux waist by cinching in the smallest part of your silhouette, either through the cut of the dress or by accessorizing.
- The skirt part should flow out from the waist or create a waist. This creates a pleasing silhouette. Notice how their skirt is made to flow outwards. When the skirt part flows out, it camouflages a large tummy and hips.
- Emphasize your assets. Both of these dresses feature an open neckline that emphasizes the women's neck and bustline. Flattering necklines for the plus-size woman are the v-neck the sweetheart neckline and the scoop neckline. Some plus-size women feel that because they are big in some places, they are "not allowed" to show off their best parts. This is nonsense! None of us are perfect but showing off our best parts does bring less attention to the other parts.
Good Dress Style Choices
Here are some specific styles to consider when shopping for your plus size dress. These styles are great for many plus sized women, but be sure to try different styles on, to see how they work on your particular body. All of these dresses help to create that fantastic hourglass silhouette.
- A-line dress is a classic shape that tucks in at the waist and gently tapers down. This kind of dress is flattering for most body types.
- Pintuck dress is one of the most recent trends that is very beautiful. It is actually a modified A-line style that features a flowing skirt for a flirty look.
- Wrap (or faux wrap) dress is a shape that is very compatible with a bigger woman's body because it is adjustable to any body and hugs the curves very well. Just be sure that there is enough material in the dress to cover your body.
- Maxi dress is a style that can be attractive for a plus size girl if care is taken to choose the right style. For maxi dresses, be sure to maintain a defined waist and do not allow that loose "mu-mu" look. As well, you may wish to consider a side split to break up the bulk of a maxi dress. An open neckline at the top also helps to offset the long length of the dress.
- Shark bite hem dress is a very lovely style that features an asymmetrical hemline. This dress line is very flattering for a bigger girl because it creates a diagonal, which makes the woman look less big.
- Con dresses are known as bar dresses and are very tight. For evening wear, they can be very attractive and tend to tuck a woman in very well. These dresses are very revealing, though, and do tend appeal to women in their twenties.
Why a Dress Is Your Best Friend
Remember that a dress can be your best friend. Many plus size women shy away from dresses because they think they are for the "skinny girls" but it is not true. A dress allows you to show off your curves in a way that no other piece of clothing can.
Just be sure to avoid the mu-mu style or anything that has no fit. Don't go for boxy, shapeless dresses, either. One more style to avoid is the long, shapeless "prairie dress" so popular in the late 1980s. So, go for a flattering shape, and you can look feminine and beautiful in a dress.
I hope you enjoyed this article and found it useful. As a plus-sized woman, I enjoy writing about fashion that is good for a more voluptuous body. I have also written about plus size tops. If you are into working out, you may want to check out my hub on plus size workout wear. I also wrote about some of the best ways to accessorize your plus sized outfit.
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© 2012 Sharilee Swaity