I’ve got good news and I’ve got bad news.
Bad news first. If you have curvy hips, a bum and/or thighs, finding clothes that fit and flatter can be a challenge.
Okay, so that’s not exactly news. Read on. It gets better.
The good news is that curvy hips are everything right now. Everything. According to Greatist, the Bootylicious body is the body type of the decade. There are songs and videos and magazine covers dedicated to the a fuller bum in all its fabulous femininity. (My body type, skinny and unathletic, went out in the 90s. But I’m not bitter).
So embrace your curves. And then put some clothes on them. Because nudity is only an option if you are Bey or Kim or Jen at the Met Gala. (I’m just going to bite my tongue on this one, and you all know how hard that is for me.)
And there’s more good news! Dressing your curvy hips doesn’t have to be a challenge or a chore. All you need to do is follow the rules for a Style Dial® 2.
You Might Be a Style Dial® 2 If…
- You have narrow shoulders and a defined waist.
- Your hips are curvy.
- Your waistline is short to average.
- Your legs are generally full.
Not all of these need to apply to you, but if most of them do, then you may be a Style Dial® 2. A Style Dial® 2 body type features curvy hips and a smaller, defined waist. As with the other body types, this is not about size, but about shape and proportion. If your waist is slightly less defined, you may be a Style Dial® 2 (3)! Follow the same clothing rules as a Style Dial® 2, but take a few cues from a Style Dial® 3 when it comes to tops.
The same fashion mantra applies here. If you’re struggling to find clothes that fit and flatter, remember: It’s not you. It’s the clothes.
How to Dress Your Style Dial® 2 Body Type
Women with Style Dial® 2 body types often have a love/hate relationship with their curves because, well, they have to dress them, and that can be tricky. Clothes aren’t always designed to accommodate feminine curves, and you can end up resenting your shape instead of embracing it. But your curvy hips aren’t the problem. Your narrow shoulders are.
Hate your shoulders. 😉
Balance is key to flattering any body type, and to achieve this balance, it helps to visually broaden your shoulders. The best way to do this is to emphasize the top of your frame, preferably the top half or even the top third, with strong horizontal lines, pattern, and other details. Read on for specific guidelines for dressing your gorgeous Style Dial® 2 body type.
Now that you know, or suspect, that you’re a Style Dial® 2, here’s how to dress for it!
(Oh, and as always, pictures in this story are linked for easy shopping, and Amazon links are for my affiliate store.)
The ideal dress for a Style Dial® 2 features a high or wide, horizontal neckline. Boat neck, scoop neck, crew neck, and collared styles are ideal. Also look for any detail at the top of the dress, from embellishment to pattern, color to collar. A consistent print all over the dress is fine, but even more flattering is a print at the top and a solid at the bottom. A straight, flared, circle or A-line skirt works best. Keep any details, including ruffles, flowy pieces or embellishments at the hem. For maximum flattery, a belt or banded detail should be at the high, empire part of your waist – generally the smallest part of the torso on a Style Dial® 2. A short statement necklace is another way of drawing the eye upwards and creating balance.
Many of the same rules apply here. Look for a horizontal neckline and detail at the top third of the blouse, whether that detail is a different fabric, sheer texture, a pretty collar or neckline, or embellishments. Anything to draw the eye upwards. Also look for a straight horizontal hem that does not hits either above or below the widest part of your hips. Empire style tops, like babydolls and peasant tops, are also flattering. A short statement necklace draws the eye upwards even more, and can hep make a favorite v-neck top or another vertical neckline more flattering.
A straight leg is the most flattering silhouette for a Style Dial® 2. The ideal style is made of a substantial fabric and falls in a straight line from hip to hem. Many so-called straight leg styles are misnamed and are actually bootcut or bootleg styles, so fold the hem up to the knee to check. If it’s narrower than the knee, it’s a skinny. Wider, it’s a flare or a boot. (I will post a video tutorial soon to illustrate this!) You can also wear a skinny pant, as long as the top that you wear with it covers the waistband of the pants and hits you at a flattering spot, above or below the widest part of your hips. Avoid any excessive detail, including zippers, buttons, etc, at the hip area.
The best skirt for the Style Dial® 2, besides the universally flattering A-line, is a circle skirt, sometimes known as a skater skirt. Don’t let the name throw you off. If it’s not too short, it’s a feminine, flattering silhouette. Ruffles, flounce and embroidery should be kept near the hem, and so should pattern. Keep it simple over those curves!
My cardinal rule for dressing your Style Dial® 2 body type (and any body type): Don’t put anything where you don’t want someone to look. In other words, if you’re trying to balance out your curvy hips, don’t further accentuate them with pockets, buttons and other assorted doodads.
I hope that these tips help you embrace your curves, and even flaunt them a little. Modestly, of course. Not sheer-dresses-on-the-red-carpet flaunting.
I’m sorry. There are some things the eye simply can’t un-see.
Nada Manley says
Thank you so much!
Nice article informative and well written. Will recommend this to my sister.
Nada Manley says
Thank you so much Denise! This made my day! I agree with you completely. We should take more of an interest in style as we get older, not less, because it’s more and more important that we look and feel our best. I hope you enjoy the style guides. Looking forward to hearing your thoughts!
Loving your style advice for women in their 60ies. I have arrived at this age and and surprisingly to some, am relatively fit and trim. I actually am more interested in looking stylish now, than when I was younger. I can’t understand why some people seem to lose interest in dressing well as they mature. I will look forward in future to reading more on your styling guides! Thank you.