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what to wear for your unique body typeThis is the second in a three part series on What To Wear to a wedding or other special occasion.  To view part one on what to wear under your clothes, click here.

Show your body some respect, give it lots of compliments and dress it up in a sophisticated manner! Quite honestly, where to shop, what to buy and what to pay are all valid questions, but before you can even tackle those you must answer the dreaded question, “what shape am I?”

A common answer is, “round– round is a shape!” Or many women have been brainwashed into thinking they must answer with an elementary school term (that is cute and non-offensive) such as pear or apple. Then there are those math types who need everything to have quadrants – I am a rectangle, triangle or even an inverted triangle.

Let’s just state the facts, Watson. We all simply carry our weight somewhere. Here are the basics, and if you consider ‘where’ you carry any extra weight a liability (or at least a fashion challenge) I have provided some styling tips to disguise those liabilities and potentially accentuate the assets at the same time.

Bigger on the top – simply put, your bust measurement is fuller than your hips and rear.

  • Draw the eye away from the bust line with neckline details.
  • Look for dresses with a bit of structure either in the fabric or the tailoring and give you a noticeable waistline.
  • Do not drape! Draped, loose fabrics make you look even bigger on the top.
  • Classic v-neck wraps draw the eye down for a slimming effect.
  • Consider dresses with A-line bottoms thereby balancing out your proportions to achieve the hourglass silhouette.




Bigger on the bottom – simply put, you are fuller at the hips and rear and smaller on the top.

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  • Dresses with fitted tops and an open neckline draw the eye up,
  • Full or A-line skirts help hide wider hip action.
  • If wearing a 2-piece dress be sure your jacket is not so long that is covers your tush, that will shorten the look of your legs.
  • Look for jackets that have structure, give you a waistline, and sit above the hip.




Curvy – simply put – you are curvy girl with a full bust, a defined waist and full hips resulting in the ultimate hourglass figure.

  • Do look for items that follow your natural curves and accent the narrowness of your waistline.
  • Wraps and classic sheaths with fitted waists enhance your classically Marilyn Monroe form. They accent a great waist and natural curves.
  • Look for adjustable-waist styles for the best fit.



Extra in the middle – simply put, there is a little extra in the middle resulting in your narrowest measurement being just above the natural waist at the ribs.

  • Empire waists draw the eye up, taking attention away from the middle and allowing a looser fit.
  • Neck details also bring the focus up, while full skirts and A-line shifts create an hourglass illusion.
  • Do look for tops with structure and bottoms with a little bit of volume to help proportion a midsection.
  • If wearing a 2-piece dress, look for a one or two-button fitted jacket with a stance that hits above the natural waistline.
  • Look for dresses with substantial fabrications cut in tailored-styling and smart details to carve out (or cover up) your middle.

XMidRuleNot Curvy – simply put, there is very little difference between your bust, waist and hip measurement.

  • Don’t attempt to wear clothing that doesn’t fit your chest or tush as  you’ll look like you are playing dress-up.
  • Fitted sheaths and classic shifts work well with your shape.
  • An empire waist or simple A-line skirt will help to create some curves.
  • Use substantial fabrications with texture or patterns to help create volume.
  • Shop for something sexy that shows a little skin!



Okay ladies – thanks for staying with me for week #2 on getting ‘wedding’ dressed (or just plain special occasion dressed).

Many of you have completed your week #1 homework – congrats!

Here’s the link in case you missed it –

Don’t forget to do your required homework all 3 weeks and you will be entered in a raffle to win a $50.00 Nordstrom Gift Card compliments of Doreen Dove Image Consulting (that’s me) so you can go buy yourself something smashing, sophisticated and stunning!

Homework for week #2 – Comment, add value and share any AHA moments on this post below and by all means if you have a specific question on shopping for your ‘shape’ email me directly and I’ll help you out!

WEEK #3 – STUNNING: Tune in for week #3…where we will talk about how to take that special occasion look to the STUNNING level! We’ll talk legs, shoes and jewelry. And no escaping it – there will be homework.  I am looking forward to ‘gifting’ someone with the $50.00 Nordstrom card so you can ‘gift’ yourself with something smashing, sophisticated and stunning!

Want to drop the Mother’s Day hint? Share this with those that love you! The Gift of Style –

Doreen Dove empowers women to use style as a tool to take strategic control of their image. She is an image consultant, personal stylist and professional speaker. Her extensive background in all aspects of retail has uniquely qualified her to work with women of all ages and professions, coaching them to personal style success.



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