Comfort over fit OR fit over comfort?
I think if were all honest with ourselves, we love to be comfortable especially at this time of year when the nights are drawing in and it’s getting colder outside. I love to turn the heating up and snuggle under my throw on the sofa and just hibernate 😊.
When it comes to what I wear, I am all for comfort, but I also want to look nice and feel put together. When I refer to comfort, I am referring to physical and mental comfort. For example, your Spanx digging into your tummy leaving marks isn’t nice physically, neither is walking around in a faux leather mini skirt that twists around your waist and looks like a belt when you sit down. You will be self-conscious about it all day, which is not good as It is just taking up your headspace which could be used for something more constructive.
I don’t feel we have to choose comfort or fit, we can have it all!! If you have a ‘’pain point’’ on your body such as your tummy, upper arms etc where you want to feel more comfortable, it just means it might take you longer to find that top with the perfect cut for your arms or that dress that skims over your tummy BUT is still comfortable to wear. Let me address a few of the main areas of your bodies that can be a ‘’pain’’ for you to style and show you how you can have it all with comfort too 😊
My ‘’problem area’’ has always been my feet. I used to be a size 8 but after having children, I went down to 7.5 and for any of you out there with this size foot, I’m sure you know the struggles.
I only go to certain stores to get my shoes, mostly Clarks or Marks & Spencer. Yes, they are not always the trendiest, but they are the most comfortable and practical for my everyday needs and I wear them forever, so for me they are a solid investment. Gone are the days of wearing shoes that look lovely but pinch my little toes to death and end up in recycling after a few wears.
If your pain point is your feet as well, I would suggest that you find your ‘’go to’’ shoe shops for your everyday shoes and pay that little bit more if you have to and just stick with those shops. If you saw my shoe collection, you would think It was quite boring for a stylist, but do you know what? I have the comfort and fit that I need for my lifestyle.
When you are going ‘’out out’’ and want to wear a heel, find something that Y-O-U can walk in. I have never been good at walking in heels, as I walk heavily and tend to lean to one side. If that’s you, try a block heeled pair of shoes, an ankle boot or a wedged heel.
The best bit of advice I will give you is to keep your heels in proportion to your frame. If you are plus sized, you are not going to feel comfortable in a pair of pointed kitten heels…Isn’t it much better to go out pain free than to be sitting in agony unable to enjoy your evening out?
If you have to wear heels for your job, consider wearing comfy trainers or shoes to the office and changing when you get there. I used to do this when I worked in the city and it made my feet so happy 😊
I get a lot of clients telling me their woes and frustrations about their midsection and how nothing looks good on them. First you need to deal with your body confidence issues and then be realistic about your body shape. If you lost 10lb tomorrow, you would still have the same frame, your body shape would NOT change. This is the number one thing you have to understand and be at peace with.
E-V-E-R-Y body shape has a tummy !! I am a pear shape, so I put on weight in my lower tummy, hips and thighs. I have a sweet tooth; I have had 3 kids via C section. Sometimes I work out at home, sometimes I fall off the wagon and I don’t. I walk everyday doing the school run and sometimes I eat bad. My weakness is apple crumble and custard. It’s life, but there are ways around your tummy 😊
I enjoy my food and so should you. If your clothes fit you comfortably and you’re doing a bit of exercise throughout the week, it’s ok 😊 don’t beat yourself up about it. We all have good and bad days with food, our moods go up and down, lockdown and everything in between hasn’t helped neither. The good thing is there is always room for improvement. If you fail one or two days in a row, it’s ok, just get back on it the next.
Boom, same skirt worn on my waist hides my tummy. Your waist is the narrowest part of your body and is where your skirt should be worn. The wide elasticated waistband is comfortable too.
Ok now you have come to terms with this, it makes everything easier, as we are all different shapes, we all carry our weight in different places. If you carry yours in your tummy, make sure your clothes are not too tight as it just makes you look bigger. If your clothes fit you properly, it can actually make you look slimmer.
I know shapewear is sold as a ‘’gamechanger’’ for a flatter tummy but don’t believe the hype. I have tried a few and they just sit in my draw. When I look at them, I just see discomfort screaming back at me. This could be because of my body shape, as I have large thighs and find the pants dig into my inner thighs when I walk. I have also tried the tummy control shorts and I wouldn’t be prepared to wear them on a night out at the risk of not getting to the toilet fast enough😊. They also rolled up under my bra, I am 5ft4 so I was surprised they were long on me.
The best way around your tummy area is playing with your proportions. Accentuate the areas you feel more comfortable with such as wearing a fabulous necklace which draws the eye upwards to your beautiful face or have a nice embellishment on the hem of your skirt and have some fab shoes that will draw the eye to that part of your body. Make your best features your focal point
Wear elasticated waisted skirts that will be comfortable on your tummy. You should also wear them on your W-A-I-S-T as this is your smallest part, and hide your tummy under that waistband.
Wear high waisted jeans, they act as a nice comfortable support for your tummy and smooth you out nicely.
Look for lycra in your garments
Use layering of longline cardigans, blouses, shackets and so on to make you look more svelte
Think about where your sleeves end, you don’t want it to end at the widest part of your body. The same goes for your tops, don’t let them end at your widest part. You can also add a tuck here and there to make you appear slimmer too.
These sleeves end in line with my waist and the smocking detail. This will draw the eye to my narrowest part of my body.
Layering skims your tummy nicely and using different textures can distract the eye too.
wear dark colours underneath and a fun print or pattern on top as a layering piece. Dark matt colours recede, so the eye will not be drawn to your tummy area.
This skirt doesn’t have an elasticated waist and I am wearing it on my tummy. this is not flattering my shape at all
Much better, wearing it on the narrowest part of my body 😊
You don’t always have to fully tuck your tops in, just do a side tuck or ruche your jumper to the side. It will just skim over your tummy and hip area and make you appear slimmer. Imagine another layer on top of this and your tummy just fades into the background 😊
Try focal point dressing, a fab necklace draws eye upwards and the tights also add interest at the bottom
High waisted jeans give your tummy some support
If you are conscious of your hips, there are ways that you can feel more comfortable. Again, it all goes back to balancing out your proportions. I think this is so much easier to explain in pictures, so here goes.
In both pictures, I am wearing these tops at my hips which is my widest part. If you do this, you are adding bulk to this area and drawing attention to them. Of course, you can dress this way when you want to let it all hang out and be relaxed but consider wearing leggings or skinnies instead, to balance out your proportions.
This would be better as Its just a little tuck (French tuck) but it’s showing your narrow waist off
Peplum style tops do accentuate your hips, but I think it does it tastefully. Styling is all about compromise. I love wearing peplums because It nips in my waist and this one is in a nice stretchy material so is comfortable on my tummy and its shows off my slender upper body nicely so it’s a win for me. You could go for a darker colour one to start with.
Show off your shoulders 😊
If you have wide hips avoid stiff fabrics, as they will not flow over your curves.
When you buy jeans, look for ones with lycra in them and avoid patterns and details around the hip area. You can even go as far as sewing down your pockets, so they don’t draw attention to your hips. Accentuate the features you feel more comfortable with 😊
I have had some clients who didn’t feel comfortable in pleated skirts because of their hips but YOU can wear them. Just wear them high on your waist and style with a slouchy jumper half tucked in. You could try a heavier weight jumper than this and a wider pleat.
Have fun with it, wear your tops and jackets at your narrowest part.
You could add a similar colour belt to this skirt to cinch in your waist and add a gilet or a blazer to slim down your hips. It’s all about the layering. The details of the blouse also draw the eye away from your hips. I wouldn’t recommend a pleated skirt in faux leather because it is too stiff a fabric, but it is perfectly ok in a flowy material, remember ”fabric is king” 😊
I remember seeing girls at school in their PE kit looking so uncomfortable and self-conscious and I know there are some of you that still feel this way. Back then we had to wear white or a lemon polo shirt which did us no favours. Fast forward to now, you can do things to make you feel more comfortable, Y-O-U are in control of what you wear. I wish I had a model to show you how to style yourself better but I don’t, but I didn’t want to leave you out because I know this is a R-E-A-L struggle.
Firstly, get a good bra fitting from a bra store that specializes in bras for a larger bust such as Bravissimo. They know what they are talking about and have the expertise. There is nothing worse than underwires digging in or straps leaving marks in your shoulders.
Be mindful of your posture, hold yourself correctly. Stand up straight with your shoulders back, your boobs are not going to go away or look smaller with hunching yourself over. All you will end up doing is giving yourself a hunched back.
Flatter your large bust by wearing a V neck to break them up so they don’t look like one large mass on your chest. I know some of you feel uncomfortable with this concept as you think ‘’too much’’ is on show, but you can add a camisole underneath in a co-ordinating colour to make you feel more comfortable.
Avoid frills, horizontal stripes and pockets details around your bust area and make sure your short sleeves do not E-N-D at your bust, it will just make them stand out more. Go for a 3-quarter sleeve, wide straps on your vest or a cap sleeve instead. Again, layering will work for you as well.
You could go for a medium weight fabric in a longer length and add a camisole underneath if you want to feel more comfortable.
This is my beautiful Godmother Monica, thank you for being my model xx 😊
Layering pieces just give you that extra comfort factor
Whatever you choose to wear, OWN it with confidence
Go for soft draping flowy fabrics, such as a waterfall cardigan that you can layer over your fitted tops to feel more comfortable.
I am sure you have great legs, so play up your features you feel more comfortable with and wear a fun pair of tights. You could wear a lovely textured skirt or metallic and shiny fabrics. Just have fun with it.
Whether you are naturally small or have become small after childbirth, I got you. I understand how you feel. I have never been big and fluctuated over the years, with breastfeeding and all that jazz, but having a good, padded bra has helped a lot. If you feel uncomfortable in this area;
Avoid open or deep necklines and very tight or clinging tops
Narrow vertical stripes are not your best friend
Go for horizontal stripes instead
Add details at your bust like ruffles, patterns or patch pockets
Try a puffed sleeve to draw the eye to your slender arms
Wear lighter colours on top and darker on the bottom, it will make your bust appear bigger
If you are flat chested and feel confident enough, you can rock lovely backless dresses, tops and plunging necklines (just add nipple covers)
On days when I want to feel really relaxed, I pop on a bralet, these are great under lounge wear and I wear them with ease. Primark do some lovely cheap ones. If you haven’t tried them, give them a go. The comfort level is divine 😊.
Wear lighter colours and a nice neckline on top and go darker on the bottom and always have fun with your shoes 😊
It is still important to get measured and fitted properly as well and while you’re there have a try of a padded bra and a multiway bra. I have tried push up bras and I didn’t find them comfortable, but I live in my softy padded bra and sometimes wear my strapless padded bra. It makes me feel more confident, fits well and is comfortable 😊.
A pattern, a puff sleeve and showing your ageless shoulders all detract attention from a small bust. You can add a necklace as well, I am wearing a padded strapless bra to feel more comfortable & confident.
A pattern distracts the eye from your small bust. This was a try on I was doing at Oasis back in the day, I would personally pop a vest underneath this to feel more comfortable and not flash anyone. The tie is also defining my small waist and flowing over my hips
Well I think I have covered the most common ‘’pain points’’, and I hope you can see that you CAN have it all, 😊 comfort and fit all in one outfit. If you have an area of your body you struggle with, get in touch, or leave a comment and I will give you some advice😊.
The most important thing to remember is that none of us are totally happy with our bodies on a daily basis but they are A-M-A-Z-I-N-G and if you are H-E-A-L-T-H-Y, that far outweighs any ‘’hang ups’’. Let’s embrace them. Flaws and all with confidence. Keep being Uniquely You xoxo