Karen was 48, married with teenage children. She had recently achieved a significant goal by losing over 2 stone, and although overjoyed with this achievement, she still struggled with dressing her body. What she needed was support, guidance and practical tools.
Challenge: “Dressing the Figure of 8”
One of her Karen’s key concerns was her body proportions, namely her hip to waist ratio, which was proving challenging to dress.
Traditionally, Karen would have been categorised as a ‘Neat Hourglass’, and while the guidelines for this body shape would work well on her top half,
they would not apply to her bottom half.
I was quickly able to illustrate to Karen that these challenges were a result of her body shape – a ‘figure of eight’ – which follows a curved upper body shape, but is straight on the bottom half, meaning different guidelines apply to the top and bottom half of the body.
Figure of 8 Guidelines
• Choose fitted garments on the top half - Look for curved seams & fabric with drape
• Define your waist - Choose wrap tops, ruching & horizontal design detail at the waist
• Open up the neck area to elongate - Choose deep V necks & U necks, button down shirts & blouses
• Flow through the challenging tummy area - Choose tops that are fitted across the bust and then flow over the tummy
• Add width at the hips to create balance - Choose peplum tops or low-slung contoured belts
• Keep the silhouette on the bottom half neat & tapered - Choose slim leg trousers and skirts that taper inward at the knees.
The Next Step - Identifying Karen’s Style Personality
Dominant Style: Natural
It was clear from Karen’s intake forms that she fell into the "Natural Style Personality”
But during the course of our sessions, it became clear she also had a Secondary Style.
Secondary: Creative Style Personality
There was a strong ‘Creative’ element to her Style Personality, which was something she wasn’t fully conscious of prior to our sessions, yet which made complete sense to her and ‘felt right’, or felt ‘just like her’.
When Karen goes shopping, she now has a game plan – she can identify firstly what works for her body shape and then what pieces suit her Natural/Creative style personality.
“I have got my confidence back”