Slip on a dress and look slimmer instantly. Add shape-wear and you can look up to two sizes smaller. All you have to do is look for the following design elements.
Strategic Seaming- Just as it states, seams that run vertically, diagonally across the body or are placed to mimic an hourglass do their job and make a woman look slimmer. Seams in the right places can make the all the difference in sheath and cocktail gowns.
Side Ruching- Wrap dresses, or faux wrap dresses provide camouflage for a thicker middle. Look for one with an inner Lycra panel at the waist line.
Color Blocking– Look for dresses with a strip of color down the center, or a graphic print. The sides and back should be a dark solid. This creates a narrow middle. Add a wide belt and you can fake a perfect hourglass figure.
Vertical Folds- Different than pleats which can flare out adding more width, vertical folds are sewn in place and create the illusion of height.
Twists- A v-neck coupled with a twist, pulls the eye directly to the décolletage and away from any problem areas. It also gives the dress an empire waist line. The rest of the dress can flow from the twist.
Pleated Waistband- Emphasize the narrowest part of the body with a pleated waistband. Look for one that falls a little higher than your natural waistline if that is a problem spot. In contrast, a small waistband, or worse, an elastic waist dress can actually add pounds to your overall look.
Dark bottom- Just as in separates, dresses with a dark bottom section and a bright or light top draw the eye upward and conceals hips. Add ruffles to the blouse portion and a high-waisted skirt and the look is even more slimming. This is an outfit that benefits from shape wear for the full slimming effect.
Crisp Tailoring- Sharp graphics on a tailored dress do much more for the body than a shapeless sundress. Brooks Brothers carries architectural and fashionable dresses that do wonders for slimming a figure.
More Slimming Tips
Toss the Potato Sack. You may think you are hiding in volumes of fabric, but shapeless dresses visually adds pounds. Look for body-conscious clothing that fits well.
Go Vertical. Folds, seams, patterns and piping that run vertical are best for slimming . Steer clear of horizontals, (but you already knew that.)
Get Balance. Women with a pear-shaped body can offset the bottom half with detailing on the top; ruffles, boat-necks, flutter sleeves. Top-heavy women can wear simple tops and flared bottoms. Avoid flimsy fabrics. Thin fabrics show everything, steer clear.
Where to Stop. Dresses that hit mid knee are flattering on most women. Mini skirts are generally not a slimming choice. Hemlines that end mid-thigh cut your legs at the widest point, making it appear even wider. Longer dresses that end mid-calf can have a similar widening effort.
Where to Shop. Check the ShapeFX website for great slimming options.