100 lb. Club - Clothing question

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08-22-2007, 10:52 PM
Can someone give me some tips or point me to a website or something where I can find out what clothes flatter me the best? I know it sounds silly, but all these years I thought I was too fat to look good so I didnt care, just got whatever slob clothes were on sale (I really havent looked good at all in the stuff I wear). So as I lose and buy new smaller clothes I would like to buy things that are flattering. How do I find out what colors look best on me? Or what cuts or styles look best? I am very clueless about fashion but would like to at least buy what makes me look nice.

TEN pounds GONE, 100 to go.
My Blog:

Bobbie Wickham
08-22-2007, 11:47 PM
I don't have a website I can think of, but there are some general rules of thumb I follow (though body shape does play a role, of course).

Go as tight as you can manage. I'm not saying something that you squeeze into like a sausage, or stretch pants or anything, but overweight people tend to hide in boxy clothes, which only creates a larger silhouette. Also, v-necks tend to be more flattering than scoops or boatnecks--it creates a line that narrows (and can subtly accentuate cleavage) rather than a round or widened shape. Crisscross/wrap styles can accentuate or create the illusion of a waist.

I don't really wear pants since I think they look horrible on me--I'm pretty much a dresses/skirts girl, but bootcut tends to be better than a peg/narrow-legged trouser/jean--narrow legs just make everything above look extra-wide. Hems for skirts/dresses that hit at mid-calf tend to make legs look stumpy and can make your calf look wider/bigger.

As for determining what colors look best, it all really depends on your complexion. I'd Google "best colors for complexion" or something like that and there will be guides to determine your tones and the colors the flatter them.

Congrats on the 10 lbs and have fun with the clothes shopping.

08-23-2007, 12:07 AM
I dont know of a website. But if you have a Lane Bryant near you then you can have the sales people help you and they can give you some advice as to what would look good on you.

08-23-2007, 12:13 AM
Definately go with boot cut and v neck.

08-23-2007, 01:12 AM
I have learned a lot from watching "What not to Wear" on TLC - if you have cable, try to catch it sometime. They take regular people of various shapes and sizes and re-do their wardrobes with advice about what works for their body shape. I am also a huge fan of Tim Gunn (from Project Runway on Bravo) - and it looks like he's going to have a similar show starting in a few weeks on Bravo, so I am surely going to check it out!

08-23-2007, 01:37 AM
It's hard to tell you which styles will work best for you without knowing what body type you are. It's much easier if you would post your current (full body) picture, along with your height.

For instance, I'm hippy with a smaller waist, and what looks good on me, doesn't necessarily look great on someone who carries weight in their middle, kwim? It's hard to tell what shape people are just on the height/weight combo. Even when people are the same height/weight, often times we carry weight differently and don't look like we'd be the same weight, kwim?

Dr Geri
08-23-2007, 04:54 AM
I really enjoyed reading _Style is Not a Size_ by Hara Estroff Marano ($2 used on Amazon.com) for some guidance on flattering cuts and fabrics, and check out the _Color Me Beautiful_ series if you're interested in suggestions on clothing colors that work with skin tone and hair color.

The most flattering clothes in my closet are salwar kameez suits. I own ten of them! A salwar kameez is a three-piece outfit: the kameez is a tunic that falls somewhere in the range between right above the knee to mid-calf; the salwar is a pair of drawstring yoked pants that come to gathered cuffs at the ankle; and the dupatta (also called a chunni) is a six-foot scarf you wear around your neck or head. Although often Muslim women from India and Pakistan wear salwar kameez, you would not offend any religious or cultural sensitivities if you don't fit that demographic.

You can buy a salwar kameez stitched to order on eBay (search for "salwar kameez any size"). That way, you can tell them your measurements and get a custom piece. And we all know, it is body-skimming good FIT that is the most flattering in clothing. You order the fabric, and then most of the companies will let you choose the cut of the neckline and the cut of the sleeves, and you can choose either loose-fitting salwar or tighter-fitting churidar pants or western-fitting parallel pants. If you're more adventurous in your taste in colors and patterns, you can get custom-stitched sets dirt cheap at Priyanka's (http://www.designersoutfit.com/salesuit.php3), a company that caters to women of Indian descent living in the West.

It might feel odd the first time you wear a salwar kameez in public if you didn't grow up wearing them, but I've gotten nothing but compliments, compliments, compliments. You get noticed, but you are also modestly covered. And the clothes are light and comfortable -- sort of like working in your pajamas all day.

Oh, I should mention that I don't own stock in any salwar kameez companies, just a happy customer who feels like she looks good in these outfits no matter what the scale happens to say that year. :)

Geri :wave:

08-23-2007, 08:14 AM
I have learned a lot from watching "What not to Wear" on TLC - if you have cable, try to catch it sometime. They take regular people of various shapes and sizes and re-do their wardrobes with advice about what works for their body shape. I am also a huge fan of Tim Gunn (from Project Runway on Bravo) - and it looks like he's going to have a similar show starting in a few weeks on Bravo, so I am surely going to check it out!

Oh I'm a big Tim Gunn Fan too! I loved Project Runway and can't wait to see his new show!

08-23-2007, 12:47 PM
I don't really have anything to add to the above, but I did want to say "Congratulations!" on making the choice to look good. I just think that the decision to accentuate your best features and make the effort to dress as well as you can makes a huge difference in the weight loss journey. I know that when I started to become more concerned about the way that I dress (with a 13YO to guide me, actually!), I became much more aware of my body, and that has made a huge difference in achieving some weight loss success. I know that it will only enhance the success you've already had, as well! I also second (or third) the What Not to Wear advice. It's a fun show to watch, and gives very interesting perspectives.

08-23-2007, 01:03 PM
Great advice here. I like what Bobbie said and agree with the v neck cut. I stick to those generally AND for me black is usually slimming. I have a pairr of simple cotton stretch black pants with pockets, the kind you'd get at walmart or target. I think those flatter me the best and I wear them often.

If you really want, get a girdle to help hold the tummy in a bit.

08-23-2007, 01:32 PM
Tailoring makes all the difference. I'm still pretty big, but after losing my first 30 pounds I took myself to Lane Bryant and tried on a bunch of clothes tailored for big women, and they looked so much better than the cheap, boxy stuff you buy at Wal-Mart and the like. The cost is a lot higher, definitely, but it was worth it to get professional clothes that fit me right and gave me confidence at work. Of course, I look forward to the day I can buy well-made clothes that don't cost a fortune the way plus sizes always do, but in the meantime, tailoring is key.

08-23-2007, 01:48 PM
Hi Lynn,
I am not sure if I can help much, we are almost the same height, but may have different bodies. I have long legs and a short torso, so sometimes finding clothes( especially plus size clothes is a challange,plus I think half of the 47 lbs, ok well maybe a1/3 has been in my chest, I went from a size c to a B, I used to be a A before I had kids. So I can't wear anything low cut, because it would just hang down like a old dish rag. I have brown hair( with red highlights) and green/blue eyes. I like to wear almost any color except yellow. I also suggest as others did , tighter fitting clothes, all my shirts were just big tents, hiding my fat, now I know I would look good in tight fitting shirts. I am preppy sort of person, so I like chino pants, and button down shirts, but as I loose more weight, I will probably try and get some jeans, tshirts, maybe a dress or too. I don't know.
Lane bryant has some nice clothes, so does the Avenue, target has a nice dress pants and shirt selection.
Hope something of this rambling helped.

Mrs Quadcrew
08-23-2007, 03:43 PM
I agree, wearing clothes that "fit" versus loose baggy things makes a huge difference. It was difficult for me to get used to wearing things like that though - but now I love it!! (and folks notice you have lost weight much more when you wear the fitted things)

Hit the sale racks at Macy's and Kohl's - and there are some things you can find at Walmart too - and check out the Goodwill stores in your area, I have been getting my jeans there - getting them for $3 - $5. sure beats paying $30 as fast as I am going down sizes.

08-23-2007, 06:51 PM
Oh thank you so much everyone for the advice!! I feel more "worthwhile" just reading them. Like I am worthy of looking my best. And I am! I am 5'7 and I have been told I have perfectly balanced proportions (when I am not obese). My legs and torso are I guess average, not long or short. I gather my weight in my belly like a pregnancy. I look 7 months pregnant, ugh. I have no skinny parts of me. I have nice ample C cup boobs which I think are my good feature. I have a waist, for sure, and am not an "apple" shape. Underneath all this fat I am very curvy and hourglass shaped. You can see a picture of a full body shot on the very first page of my blog (link is below).

As for my coloring I am Irish/German and fair skinned, a bit pale but not totally white. I get red/pink in my face easily with any sun so my face always looks kind of rosy (I hate that). I have blue eyes and longish, wavy/curly medium brown hair which has a reddish/auburn tint to it in summertime. No freckles. Does that help? Ideas on my colors?

I will do some more searching. I dont have cable so I cant watch that show but I will see if it has suggestions on their website. Thank you :)

TEN pounds GONE, 100 to go.
My Blog:

08-23-2007, 07:14 PM
Lynn from what you're describing sounds like you should be working the hourglass thing, girl! I would go for some dresses cut 50s style dresses that will make the most of your curvy shape for evening wear, and maybe some nice tops that cinch in at the waist for more casual wear.

Here in the UK they have GREAT show called "How to Look Good Naked" where the stylist takes women of ALL shapes and sizes and puts them into flattering clothes without surgery. Go check out the website, they did makeovers on women with all different body shapes this season and I bet you'll find someone similar to yours. I learned a lot of great dressing tips from this show.

Link: http://www.channel4.com/life/microsites/H/htlgn/series2_index.html

08-23-2007, 09:27 PM
I have a book called Flatter Your Figure (http://www.amazon.ca/FLATTER-YOUR-FIGURE-Jan-Larkey/dp/0671762966/ref=sr_1_6/702-2490894-7040831?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1187914547&sr=1-6)by Jan Larkey. She has a system for figuring out proportions that uses two sticks and some string -- no measuring allowed -- and a "helper" person to determine what kind of cuts, styles, etc. are most flattering to you, irrespective of size.

Bobbie Wickham
08-23-2007, 10:41 PM
Lynn, it sounds like you and I have a very similar body type. Though I am way overweight, I still have an hourglass--I have big boobs, my waist definitely curves in, and flared hips (and my belly and butt is definitely where a lot of my weight settles). Buying clothes that show off my waist definitely makes me look thinner than I am.

In addition to the previously-mentioned wrap dresses, I get a lot of dresses with ties or sashes at the waist (not huge 80s style bows or anything)--it allows me to draw things so it narrows over the waist and then flows over my stomach, hips and butt, providing a bit of camouflage for those problem areas. Though their website is kind of a pain and it takes some looking, I have a lot of luck with dresses on QVC--stylish and they carry a nice range of sizes. Nordstrom, if you have them where you are, also has a lot of nice things in plus-sizes--tailored, as people have mentioned, not just huge.

I also like tailored button-down shirts--the kind that can go under a suit jacket or be worn alone. If you don't button all the way, you have that v-neck, and decent-quality ones tend to be tailored to dip in at the waist and flare again at the hips. Pair it with a nice A-line skirt and you have a very crisp, classic look. I also like wearing these with denim skirts for a country-casual look and if you are a jeans-wearer, they look good with those, as well.

I have darker hair than you do, but I do have pale skin with pinky undertones. I try to stay away from whites and beiges for tops since a) they can make you look bigger and b) really wash me out. I tend to like pastel shades--lilac and eggshell blue, as well as blue-based (rather than orange, which clashes with my skin tone) reds or dark pink. I also like black--because I have enough pink undertones, I don't look like a reanimated corpse and it is slimming.

Overall, though, I look for dresses that show off that waistline and give me a bit of boobaliciousness. If you've got 'em, may as well (tastefully) flaunt them. Basically, try stuff on, see what colors and cuts and styles you feel best in. As cliche as it is, if you feel you look good, that will project.

08-24-2007, 07:14 AM
I was also going to suggest "What not to Wear". Here is the UK there's a couple of books based on the series which you might be able to pick up cheap on Amazon or Ebay. The show really empahsizes the idea about wearing more fitted clothes on larger women and I do agree with them. However tailored garments and not always easy to find without paying a fortune.