Beyond Sizes

Plus size clothing is elegant clothing specifically designed for people whose bodies are larger than the average person’s body structure. A popular plus model magazine opines that “In the fashion industry, plus size is identified as sizes 10-14, super-size as sizes 1X-6X and extended size as 7X and up”. ‘Plus sizes are sizes 14W – 24W. Super sizes and extended sizes are used interchangeably for sizes 26W and above. Sometimes the size 26W is included in plus size”.

A relatively new alternative term for plus size (or large size) gaining consumer and editorial favour is curvy. In a euphemistic sense, curvy is regarded as less offensive to those that wear larger sized clothes. There are so many choices out there for commercial dressmaking patterns, so how do we know what to choose? Think about what suits us and our body shape – forget the apples and pears
and let a remarkable advice be shared on defining your body shape and some general guidelines about which styles to choose that will suit you best.

Pattern companies often list multiple body types on one pattern and we have found over time that it doesn’t really help. Our guidelines are a little more straightforward with four body types based on straight and curved lines.

Your clothes and accessories should follow the external lines of your body. You need proportion to create a balance and a visual
harmony between all areas of the face and body and you do this with clothing design, texture, colour and pattern. The aim is to create illusion but first know your body shape :

  • What is the line of difference (if there even is one) between pretty and professional?

You are known by your fashion sense at every occasion. One helpful rule is that you can often appear professional with one particularly girly element to your outfit; it’s when the whole outfit is super froufy that it starts looking unprofessional. So, for example, a bright pink blouse could be fine when it’s paired with a grey suit but not if it’s paired with a pink skirt. Or ruffles might be fine if they’re on a grey or black shirt, but less so if they’re on a purple polka dot dress. (But that one element should generally not be skin — i.e., don’t expose mid-thighs, cleavage, your back, the entirety of your shoulders, etc.)


Curve Curve Round face,curved shoulders, hips, defined waist, curvy thighs. Rounded, curved necklines, revers and soft collars, details with curves or gathers, dolman sleeves or fitted, highlight a curved waist.
Curve Straight Round face, curved shoulders, straight hips, no defined waist, straight thighs & hips, As above, at the top, as below for the bottom half.
Straight Straight Angular face, straight shoulders, ribs, hips, undefined waist, straight legs. Square or angular necklines, peak collars, notched lapels, square pockets, flitted sleeves, horizontal or vertical details.
Straight Curve Angular face, straight shoulders, ribs, curved hips, defined waist, curvy thigh. Square and angular detail at the top,curved and soft detail and shape at the bottom.
  • Learn how to dress for your body

To really feel confident in your clothing, we suggest embracing your best features. Maybe you love your legs, but prefer to conceal your mid-section or vice-versa! If you know which areas to flaunt and which mask, you’re sure to feel great about your style.

  • Never walk out the door feeling unsure about an outfit choice

We are all for experimenting with your style, but if you are uncertain about an outfit before you leave the house, odds are you won’t feel 100 per cent confident about your look once you’re in public.

  • Know the best colours for your skin tone

Explore your closet this summer and experiment with different colours to find out which hues work best with your complexion.

  • Define your personal style

This is the easiest way to always feel sure about your outfit? Identify your signature look—not only will this
personalise each outfit, but having a go-to look will also save time when you’re deciding what to wear each day.
All in all, the more time and dedication you invest in getting ready, you will reap good results.

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