was successfully added to your cart.

Category Archives: How To…

mindfuldressingbanner

MINDFUL DRESSING: how to with purpose

By | How To..., Personal Style, Wardrobe Savvy, What to Wear | 5 Comments

Have you ever thought about the type of image you want to project?

It’s easy to think that this would only be something professionals need to think about but that’s not true. No matter what your lifestyle, professional or age your appearance tells others about you before you even open your mouth. How you present yourself will either attract or repel others far before you’ve had a chance to say a word to them. While I don’t think you need to lose sleep over the issue, if you have found that you are not getting the responses from other people you want, or the opportunities you know you deserve then maybe, just maybe, your personal presentation may need a little tweak.

Appropriate, Enhancing and Goal Effective

According to the fashion website Matalan, which polled 2,491 females, the average woman spends an average 16 minutes every weekday morning, 14 minutes on the weekend and up to 20 minutes pondering her wardrobe prior to a night out. That’s a heck of a lot of wasted time over a year!

A long time ago I discovered the power my clothes, accessories and grooming had in controlling the way I felt each day as a result how I behaved. This is exactly the same way that an actor only totally feels one with the character they are portraying during a full dress rehearsal. Our clothes help us perform the roles we need/want to play each day. They help us to ‘feel’ the part and can act like armour helping us to feel more confident and protected. 

This is not a new phenomenon, it’s been happening since man first donned clothes.  We covered our nakedness to for protection and confidence, and from that time onward adding and subtracting items became the way to inform others of our status, role, moods, and affiliations.  

Being able to look in the mirror and say - go girl, you rock is great. It fills us with confidence, hope and we stand a little straighter, more with more purpose and smile more frequently. Knowing we look the part releases us from our insecurities and allows us to get on with the job at hand. Of course, it’s not just ourselves that are affected by our appearance. Others too, respond to how we look, and the right appearance encourages others to give us more time to explain our ideas, opens doors and releases opportunities both socially and professionally.  In fact your presentation is a continual portrayal of you – it’s like a constant visual resume.

So it’s worth the time to think about and plan your appearance. Once you have your look together give it the final check by asking yourself – Is it Appropriate, Enhancing and Goal Effective?
MindefulDressing

The night before.

If you wait until the morning to decide what you’ll be wearing it only results in early morning stress and often a ‘this will have to do‘ outfit.  I suggest you decide what you are going to wear each night before bed – it only takes a few minutes and you’ll be able to sleep-in a little later.

To make the process as quick and easy as possible you’ll need to have an organized closet.

If your closet is unorganized set aside a day to organize everything in a way that it works for you. Some women prefer clothes of the same color hung together while others prefer the same type of garments together.  I hang the same types of garments together and with like colors together. You may even like to separate your work wear from your casual wear – it doesn’t really matter, the aim is to create a wardrobe where all your options are easy to see. 

If your wardrobe is crammed and you can barely move the clothes on the rack, the first thing you need to do is a closet cleanout.   Not only to get rid of all the things that no longer fit you, are out of date or season, are no longer your style etc, etc, but also to move all the clothes that are for another season to another location.  You’ll be amazed at the different this alone will make.

When thinking about your clothes for the next day consider:

  • what work will I be doing?
  • where will I be going?
  • what level of dress should I wear – smart casual, business casual, formal business?
  • what is the weather forecast?
  • who will I be seeing?
  • what do I want to achieve or what impression do I want to make?

By answering each of the above questions you’ll be able to easily sort out the available options and select the items you want to wear to create an outfit you’ll feel perfect in.I suggest you also gather up your lingerie, shoes, coordinating handbag etc so everything is ready to go.

A few more tips help:

  • Create clothing clusters: these are groups of items that work around each other (see image below).
  • Document great outfits: anytime you put together a new winner of an outfit, note all the garments and accessory pieces in a notebook -  better still add a photo!  It’s amazing how quickly we can love a look one day and a week later have totally forgotten what pieces we put together to create it (or is this just my 50 yr old brain?).  Within a few months, PretaStyler members will be able to do this for themselves with our new Look book creation functionality.
  • Rotate your outfits: Leave at least 7 days in between wears and be ever on the lookout for new items that will extend your cluster to create a few different outfits.
  • Have at least one special outfit you can lay your hands on at a moment’s notice so you never get caught with nothing to wear at short notice.

Classiccluster

Related Features:

Ann2015Blue

If you enjoyed this week’s feature
please like it on Facebook or Instagram
or leave a comment/question below.
Thank you.
Ann Reinten AICI CIP
Author


StoreClothesBanner

HOW TO STORE YOUR CLOTHES

By | How To..., Wardrobe Savvy | 6 Comments

In Melbourne Australia, autumn has well and truly arrived and it’s time to do a closet switcheroo – out with Summer clothes and in with Winter’s.  For you, it may be the other way round.

I both love and hate this task. I love the fact that I’m changing my closet as I’m usually sick of my present wardrobe, but I HATE performing the task. I only have myself to blame, since I’m the one who demands to store away my out-of-season clothes but, there’s a very good reason why. I really like having a closet full of only this seasons clothes as it makes things so much easier to find and the coordinates more obvious. 

So if you’re like me, now is the time to get cracking with the task – yes, this weekend. Storing your clothes should involve more than simply stuffing them in boxes. If you want your clothes last and look good next season, you need to take some care and store them away the right way.

Proper storage and a little organization will maintain the quality and integrity of each item so it can be worn again next season. The first thing in the process is to get rid of any items that you’ve hardly worn, for whatever reason and give them to charity if they are still in good condition. Then before restocking your closet give it a good clean and wipe the shelves. You’ll be surprized at hoe much dust can gather over a season. 

Wash and dry every single item prior to storage

This may seem like common sense, but you’d be surprised at how many people just throw clothes in storage containers without a wash. There is a huge difference between storing clean clothes and worn ones. Ensuring every piece of clothing is clean will prevent odor, mildew, mold, and other damage. Unwashed clothes may be harboring residues of oil, perfumes, or sweat that may cause discoloration or stains. Also, make sure that clothes are completely dry before storing them, especially if they are in a container of some sort. Moisture will cause a musty odor and even mildew.Woman Doing Laundry Reaching Inside Washing Machine Determine your storage vessels and pest control method

While there are a number of ways and places you can store your clothes I prefer a spare closet, I use the one in our spare bedroom. The main reason is I like to be able to go back in and get an item if necessary. Other ideal places are airtight vessels such as storage containers and vacuum bags, which are easily found in most supermarkets or old suitcases.

Pros and Cons

Plastic or airtight containers Plastic isn’t good for storing clothes. Clothes need to breathe, and plastic doesn’t allow that, so you’ll need to add in a humidity control desiccant packet for good measure to prevent mold along with a few cedar balls to kill any bugs.

Closets and breathable containers Bugs are your biggest threat. Bugs need air to breathe and dislike cedar oil in high concentrations. So, those cedar balls are a must. If your wardrobe is near a bathroom or tends to be damp, also place a few humidity pots as well but depending on the level of damp they may need changing at least once during the season.  To prevent you forgetting to add the task it into your diary. 

Cardboard Cardboard containers aren’t a good idea because they have a reputation for causing clothing to go yellowish and smell sale. 

For those of you who prefer more natural pest and humidity preventatives, you can try Lavender for the pests and you’ll get the added benefit of having nice smelling clothes and chalk for wicking the humidity. Neither however, are as effective.

Use mothballs with caution. Avoid mothballs as much as possible, since there are many effective natural options available. However, if this is your preferred storage protectant, place the mothballs inside socks so that it doesn’t damage the clothes. This is also an extra safety measure, if you have children in the house as well. Secure the mothballs within the socks with tape or a rubber band. Mothballs are VERY poisonous.  I personally know of a toddler who grew very ill suddenly and died, who was later found to have had part of a mothball up his nose which had poisoned him. 

storeclothesSource

Clean storage containers thoroughly before using

If you’re using storage containers be sure to give them a thorough wipe down and spray with disinfectant and toss in a handful of cedar balls into each box to deter pests.  Also, check the container for damage like holes, splits or cracks, etc. Replace containers, if needed.

Storage isn’t a one-size-fits-all task

Store each item accordingly. Don’t just blindly fold or hang anything and everything. Proper storage means your clothing will retain their original shape.

  • Sweaters: fold to prevent stretching and distortion.
  • Dresses: hang.
  • Pants: hang or fold
  • Trousers: hang to maintain their crease.

While it might be tempting to store your dry cleaning in the plastic bags they came in, resist the urge because these plastic bags can cause mildew and mold.

Pants or Trousers

See All of my Style Wisdom Boards on Instagram or Pinterest

Clean your shoes

During your seasonal closet exchange, you might overlook caring for your shoes. Footwear actually incurs the most abuse, especially during the winter season where there’s salt everywhere if you live in a place that gets snow. Before storing away your footwear, clean and disinfect them. Clorox wipes should do the trick for salt stains though it is not advisable for use on leather.

Shoes hold a lot of moisture so plastic boxes can be bad for shoes. If you have their original boxes, that’s perfect. Stuff them with scrap paper to help with moisture wicking and maintain their shape. For boots add boot inserts.  

Storing shoes

Source

Always store items in a clean and dry place

Cool, clean, dark and dry: these are the 4 important words you need to remember when storing clothing. Avoid places that have extreme heat or cold as it will affect the clothing negatively. Also, avoid sunlight since it can discolor clothing.

Clean dry place

Check on your stored clothes periodically

Don’t just store it and forget it. Check on your clothes every 5 weeks or so, just to make sure that everything is in order. Best practice when you want to wear the clothes again is too give them a wash so that when you wear them they are free of any dust or cedar odor. 

check your clothesSource

Invest in proper hangers

Weather hanging your clothes away for storage or in your ‘to-wear’ closet, the right hangers will make all the difference. Return wire hangers to the dry cleaners.  They look crappy in your closet and don’t do your clothes any favors. Invest in wooden, no slip hangers with wide shoulders for coats and heavy dresses that work wonders in securing clothes and maintaining the shape of the clothing.

Click here for a complete guide to all hangers, their uses and where you can purchase them from.

Coathangers1

 

Ann2015Blue

If you enjoyed this week’s feature
please like it on Facebook or Instagram
or leave a comment/question below.
Thank you.
Ann Reinten AICI CIP
Author


Groove Back Banner4

HOW TO REDISCOVER YOUR STYLE AFTER 50

By | How To..., Personal Style, Style Clinic | 14 Comments

Here it is from the horses mouth,…there’s no good reason to abandon your desire for style just because you’re 50. Even if you feel you once had style but lost it somewhere along the way, or you’ve never had it, NOW is the time to find it, embrace it, and love every minute of it. While I’m targeting the over 50s, this applies to women of all ages. Between our obligations, career, family and all the crap STUFF life throws at us, sometimes our style, sense-of-self, and confidence takes a dive. BUT, our ultimate success comes from our ability to bounce-back and YOU CAN.  It doesn’t take heaps of money, just an altered state of mind, some determination and time. It starts with a positive attitude and a willingness to put some effort towards the change. 

It starts with your mindset

How you think determines how you see the world and behave, and this in turn determines how others act and react towards you. A positive, interested and optimistic outlook creates a joyful spirit, eyes that twinkle and a face that holds a smile easily, as well as an appreciation for others, events and what you DO have.

My grandmother used to say to me as a child ‘If you don’t stop making that face, one day it’ll stay that way forever.’ Later I discovered this strange saying of hers had some truth about it. Psychologists call it ‘Muscle Memory’ and it stems from the fact that our emotions and attitudes are unconsciously leaked to the world through our posture and facial expressions. If you hold those thoughts long enough, your facial expression and posture will permanently part of you. I’m sure you’ve seen it, women with a permanently downturned mouth, dull eyes, a frown and stooped shoulders.  

We are naturally conditioned to look at faces to gauge a person’s personality and mood. What we see either draws us in or repels us. The good news is that once a potentially damaging mindset is recognized it can be altered and the body will follow suit. So, take the reigns and don’t let your current or past circumstances ruin your future.  Without a positive mindset, everything else I’m suggesting will be ineffective. 

Mindset1

A genuine smile makes you far more stylish than anything you’ll ever wear. 

Source: Image 1

Start following some trends

You shouldn’t be allergic to trends just because you’re 50. Following trends, keeping everything about yourself current, and sporting something on-trend is a must to looking stylish and confident. Whether it’s a new silhouette, color, or accessories, you should always select those that both appeal to, and suit you. Following trends doesn’t mean blindly adopting whatever what’s hot right now. Trend dressing beyond 50 is all about combining the trends into your own personal style. Over 50, the key, is to balance current trends with a more understated elegant aesthetic. You may opt for a bright color in a classic silhouette, an accessory or an on-trend shoe such as a leopard print athletic slip-ons instead of your worn-out runners. 

FollowTrends1

Source: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3

Get a new do

Getting over the 50 hump is a milestone, and it just might be the right push you need for you to mix it up a little bit more in the hair department. There’s nothing more enlivening to the spirit than a new do, the trick is to ensure it suits your face shape, coloring, lifestyle, and ability.

Women over 50 are best opting for shorter hairstyles since they are tend to lift rather than drag down the face. That’s not to say some over fifty women don’t look good with long hair but it definitely has to be in good condition especially and in a current and stylist cut.  Long gray hair is very tricky to pull off. 

This is the time in your life to cultivate a relationship with a colorist you trust. Adding some warmth to your look through skillful color will instantly boost your look. Even if you are cool toned, there are colors that add warmth without contradicting your coloring. One thing to stay clear of if you are coloring your own hair is going back to the same depth of dark hair as you may have had when you were young. This is always a disaster as it will be too dark for your current skin and eye color. Always go a few shades lighter; don’t rely on stronger makeup to make it work as this will only make you look older and harder.   

Click here for over 50 hairstyle inspiration.

Hair over 50a

Source: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3, Image 4, Image 5, Image 6

Get a makeup makeover

It’s no secret that our skin color, texture, and type changes as we age, and accordingly our makeup needs to be adjusted. A visit to a makeup professional (preferably on that understands and works with older women)  is a good idea. Consider this an investment in looking your best in your 50s and beyond. More than teaching you new techniques, you can seek out their assistance in editing your existing products and recommending better products for you. If you don’t have a large budget for your post-50 makeup makeover, simply make your way to the makeup counter in a department store. They have trained people there to give you free advice on your makeup application and style. You might even score some free samples!

Click here for make-up videos. Also here.

Makeup1Source: Image 1, Image 2/

Whiten your teeth

All those cups of coffee or tea, glasses of wine and even smoking over the years will have taken their toll your teeth. Now is the time to upgrade your oral hygiene and supplement with some teeth whitening. It’s amazing what an impact whitening your teeth will have on your appearance – it will really turn back the clock. There are various ways to go about the whitening process. Of course, your dentist will always be the best option. However, there are a lot of effective at-home whitening products as well as DIY whiteners you can make from common household pantry items.

whiterteethSource

Upgrade your eyewear

Glasses may have been apart of your life for some time but when you reach 50, the changes are you’ll be having the prescribed soon. I say, embrace it! Your eyesight problems are opportunities for some super styling. From prescription glasses to your sunnies, your eyewear can speak volumes about your personality and your style. Your face shape should be your number one concern when picking out frames but immediately after that is your personality. As you know I love my ‘stand-out’ eyewear, it highlights my style and often act as conversation starters initiated by others.

If you like eyewear that is a little different, you may have to search for optometrists and retailers that cater specifically for you. My glasses come from Funky Specs, a company that allows you to design your own frames. 

Click here for more on choosing the right eyewear.  

eyewearSource: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3, Image 4, Image 5

Find and flaunt your best bits

They say if you got it, flaunt it, and flaunting it shouldn’t stop at 50. Tastefully and with your eye firmly on chic sophistication, identify your best physical asset and dress to highlight and accentuate it. Celebrate your body and your beauty. Flaunt your curves in a hip-hugging dress over a figure affirming shapewear. Show off your lower legs with a midi skirt and cute shoes and take your toned arms for a night out with an elegant LBD. Flaunting your assets doesn’t mean showing lots of skin, it means choosing silhouettes that complement your chosen asset and work with your personality.

flaunt itSource: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3, Image 4

Smarten up your footwear

I like many of you may be starting to find that wearing high heels is not as easy as it was. Stilettos may no longer be a practical option unless you plan to wear them for very short periods. Luckily the fashion industry has been embracing the chicness of low heels and even, flats. Kitten heels, wedges, and flats with trendy details or embellishments are all great options for the gal that still wants her footwear to be fashion forward.

If you find you can no longer wear anything but comfortable, wide, unattractive shoes then, you answer is to keep your feet quiet and add an eye-catching feature high on your body. 

great shoesSource: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3, Image 4

Walk tall and move with purpose

I cannot stress enough how important posture is. Good posture is seen as youthful and confident. You may be wearing a fabulous outfit, but if you’re slouched over in your seat or walking with hunched shoulders, you completely lose your appeal. It’s important to conduct yourself with confidence—and great posture is a huge part of that. The basic ‘shoulders back, chin up’ is simple advice that can go a long way for you. However, there is also certain kinds of stretches or exercises that can further improve your posture.

In addition, always move like you’ve got somewhere to go and something to do. It doesn’t matter if it’s to the grocery, an important meeting, or lunch with the ladies, moving with purpose does your posture and overall image good. Moving with purpose lends you an aura of power and confidence, which only serves to enhance the stellar style you’ve already got.

walktallSource: Image 1, Image 2

Hang out with people like who you want to be

Like these ladies from the popular blog and documentary “Advanced Style,” amazing style comes in twos, threes, and fours. The people you surround yourself with influences your lifestyle and, of course, your manner of dress as well. It’s human nature to let your environment affect you, and the people you spend time with is a huge part of that environment. Filling your life with positive, inspiring people who value both their inner life and outward appearance is invaluable. Hold on to these people, they will make your journey richer and happier.

If you still find yourself wanting, reach for lifestyle inspiration on the Internet. The web is an excellent tool to be able to connect with like-minded individuals. It’s also a great way to gain the inspiration you want or you need for your style journey from your 50s and onwards. Check out this link for Instagram accounts you can follow and be inspired by.  

friendsSource

You may also like this feature I wrote some time ago: 50+ & FAB: fashion for 50 years olds

Ann2015Blue

If you enjoyed this week’s feature
please like it on Facebook or Instagram
or leave a comment/question below.
Thank you.
Ann Reinten AICI CIP
Author


TallerBanner

HOW TO LOOK TALLER

By | Figure Flattery, How To... | 16 Comments

I’ve always admired tall women; there’s something regal and elegant about being statuesque, just look at Taylor Swift (5’11″), Nicole Kidman (5’11″) and Jordin Sparks (6′) to name a few. For those of us nearer 5′ who like the idea of adding a little extra height to their appearance I thought I’d share a few clever styling tricks with you.

Draw attention to the top half of your body

Looking taller is all about drawing the eye upward and, the higher, the better. Use eye-catching statement accessories, bold colors, high-shine textures, and finishes, and/or interesting and detailed necklines and collars to draw attention to the area above your bust line.

eyes up1Source: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3, Image 4

 Wear a solid color or go monochrome

A monochromatic with your outfit will instantly makes you look taller since it does not break up your silhouette at any point. Wearing one color creates one long fluid line from top to bottom that is very flattering and makes for an impressive statement that tricks the eye into one continuous visual.

monotone

Source: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3

Avoid too many horizontal blocks of color

favorite technique of many stylists is managing color blocking within an outfit. The more horizontal blocks of colors within an outfit the shorter and heavier you will appear. In the photos below the number shown is how many blocks of color within each outfit, clearly demonstrating this effect.

How to Look Taller_Color BlockingSource: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3, Image 4

Wear a light/bright color above your waist

Wearing a lighter color above the waist; again draws the eye upward. To increase the effect make your bottom garment a dark color.

This Not This

Keep clothes close to your body

If you wish to look taller, highlighting your frame will serve you better than hiding it in baggy clothes. Loose clothing actually makes you look shorter than you are since it doesn’t show off the shape and it tends. Today’s stretchy fabrics are a far cry from those of even 5 years ago, with many having superior stretch within firm fabrics. These qualities provide larger girls with the perfect balance of slim fit and a flattering silhouette.

How to Look Taller_Keep Clothes CloseSource: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3 

Wear V necklines and open shirt collars

These slimming and height enhancing necklines draw the up and out, making you look taller.  The wider the V, the broader your shoulder will look.

Our eyes are naturally drawn to color contrast and so, by wearing a V-neck top in a contrasting color to your skin, it further enhances the look.

How to Look Taller_V Necks

Source: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3.

How To Look Taller_V Neck Contrast

Source: Image 1, Image 2

Wear high hip or shorter tops

Not for everyone, Hip length or shorter tops create the illusion of a longer torso. These are best worn by women who have a long torso.  The more youthful and slimmer you are the shorter the top can be and look good.  However, be mindful not to drown your torso; shaped tops or cinching the waist will work best when an illusion of extra height is desired.

How to Look Taller_Short topsSource: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3  

Wear heels the higher, the better

This one is a no-brainer. Is there a better way to look taller than slipping into a pair of high heels? If you want to create the illusion of even longer legs, opt for nude or skin tone heels that’ll blend into your coloring like a second skin.  

How to Look Taller_High heelsSource: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3

Wear platform shoes – but not chunky styles

If you’re uncomfortable with stilettos or high heels, platform shoes are a great option to get that height you’re coveting. Be wary of chunky styles though since they add bulk to your ankles, therefore shortening your legs and consequently, your overall frame.

How To Look Taller_Platform Shoes

Source: Image 1, Image 2

Add height to your hair or style it short

Adding height to the top of your head via full hair is a great way to look taller since it forces the focus to the top of your head. You can even magnify the effect of your short hair and emphasize your face even more with bold makeup looks like a bright lip or smoky eyes. When you chose to wear your hair up you will create not only extra visual height but you will also elongate your face, neck and slim your upper torso. Try a topknot for casual events, or add height with a front pouf for that undone glam look.

How To Look Taller_Hair Styles

Source: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3, Image 4

Wear an upturned hat or hair accessories

The main aim of looking taller is to make the viewer’s eyes move upward and focus there. Hats and hair accessories are helpful for this purpose. These outfit accouterments are also a great way to give your look a dash of the current trends. In addition, wearing hats that are wider than your shoulder width will also make you appear shorter.

How To Look Taller_Hats1

Source: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3

Wear medium-small to small to small prints

Oversized prints can overwhelm your body and make you look shorter (easily seen with the dress on Keira Knightly below), especially if you are petite. Medium-small to small prints are the best in lengthening. Medium to small prints don’t scatter the eye, and it’ll keep the eye focused on the overall silhouette.

How To Look Taller_Print SizeSource: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3

Match the color of your belt to your outfit and keep them medium to narrow

Wearing a belt can break up your body length (see the first image below), so when added height is your goal, it’s best to blend the color of your belt with your garment/outfit to not to disturb the continuity of your outfit. Lastly, when choosing belts keep it medium to narrow. 

How To Look Taller_Belts

Source: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3

Wear full-length pants, short shorts or knee length and higher hemlines

To begin, long, slim to straight leg pants will always trump skirts (even long ones) when it come to creating an illusion of greater height.

In between silhouettes, like midi skirts or culottes, can confuse the eye and cut up body length as evident with the pants below (same wearer). Full-length pants and/or skirts and short shorts or dresses will give you a solid silhouette and create the illusion of longer legs. Anything in between can be tricky and may make you look shorter.

How To Look Taller_Pants and Skirts Source: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3, Image 4

Wear high waists; dresses, skirts, and pants

Applying the same principle as wearing hip length tops, wearing high waist dresses, skirts, and pants will lengthen the torso producing an overall slimming and elongating effect.

How To Look Taller_High Waists

Source: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3, Image 4

Go vertical

What better way to look longer and taller than using vertical patterns? Don’t limit yourself to stripes. Use button front garments, pleating, and slits, open front jackets to create a singular line that effectively makes you look tall and sleek.

How To Look Taller_VerticleSource: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3

 

Keep your breasts high

Making sure that your girls are properly supported is more than just an issue of comfort. Saggy and ill-fitting bras will destroy even the most flattering streamlined silhouettes. Keep your breasts high and upright. Invest in great underwear, and believe me, this will help in your posture as well.

How To Look Taller_Correct BraSource

Stand up straight, with your chin up

 Even if you follow all these tips to the letter, faltering on this last tip may be your downfall. Posture is everything. Standing straight with your chin up and shoulders back is the quickest and easiest way to look instantly taller. Slouching does no one good. Standing upright lets you avoid back problems, all while radiating confidence and giving you a taller and more elegant appearance.

How To Look Taller_PostureSource

Apply these tips, and put on your widest smile. You’ll be the center of attention. Are there any tips I missed? If I have, feel free to add your own in the comments below.

Ann2015Blue

If you enjoyed this week’s feature
please like it on Facebook or Instagram
or leave a comment/question below.
Thank you.
Ann Reinten AICI CIP
Author


junge frau beim kleider aus ihrem schrank werfen

CLOSET CLEANSING

By | How To..., Wardrobe Savvy | 2 Comments

Every season it’s a good idea to perform a closet cleanout. 

Even if this job is a little distressing it is an important step in the process of reorganization. In every woman’s wardrobe there are clothes with invisible guilty tags attached to them.  They lie in wait to remind you of how much money you paid for them and how few times they have been worn.  Keeping these clothes will actually cost you money and they take up valuable space in your wardrobe.
Once to have committed to better buying habits, bad clothing purchases will become a thing of the past, so it’s time to forgive yourself and give them away.  
 
Before you start put your makeup on and style your hair.  This will make decisions easier if you need to try on your clothes.Take a close look at the items in your wardrobe and put each item into the following categories: 

AdobeStock_747363511. Items to Keep

  • Those that require no alterations to fit or proportion
  • Those that are in harmony with your personality
  • Those that are comfortable to wear and fit well
  • Those that flatter your figure and make you feel good
  • Those that are in good condition and repair

2. Items that Need Attention

  • Those with missing buttons, fallen hems, rips etc.
  • Those that are soiled
  • Those that require alteration
  • Those that require another item to be purchased before it can be worn

3. Items that Need to be Given Away or Discarded

  • Any item that is now too small or too large
  • Any items that no longer fit well
  • Any item that is out-of-date
  • Any item unworn for three years
  • Any item worn out, torn or stained
  • Any items that no longer fit your lifestyle needs
  • Any items that are an uncomplimentary style on you
  • Items in colours that are not complimentary to you
  • Anything you like in theory, but hate whenever you put them on
  • Dead underwear, the kind that has exhausted elastic and holes
  • Items that are not of the quality you now wear

 

4. With the Clothes that are Left

  • Remove those not in season and either store or pack them away until next season.  This will give you a clear view of what you have to wear and will allow the remaining clothes to breathe and not get crushed.
  • Remove clothes from wire hangers and replace them on hangers specifically designed for the type of garment.  These hangers will allow garments to hang in their natural lines and minimize the need to re-iron your clothes.

5. Make a Wardrobe Inventory of What You Have Left

  • Make an inventory. This will become the basis from which you will determine your clothing needs.  List each garment in your wardrobe, then add to the list all the items that it coordinates with including your accessories.
  • Try on all combinations – not all will look good once on the body.  If they need altering do not place them back in the wardrobe.  Instead bag them and place them in your car ready for when you next pass your alteration service.  
  • Place your clothing back in the wardrobe only after you have explored and noted all the possible combinations.
  • Take this opportunity to sift through your jewellery, belts and bags.  Remove any items broken, missing their partner or outdated.
  • Go back and examine your list.  Determine what items you need to buy in order to expand your wardrobe options. 

Ann2015Blue

If you enjoyed this week’s feature
please like it on Facebook or Instagram
or leave a comment/question below.
Thank you.
Ann Reinten AICI CIP
Author


Close up of a beautiful woman looking at the horizon with a hand in forehead

THOUGHTS FOR A NEW YEAR

By | How To..., Inspiration, Psychology | 22 Comments

2016 is about to dawn and with a new year comes the promise of new opportunities, fresh starts and better and exciting times ahead.

Whatever your dreams, to achieve them you’ll need supportive friends, a positive mindset and a sound plan to keep you on track. Big goals require courage, commitment and resilience. With every set-back you rise from, you’ll grow stronger and wiser – so never, ever give up. Those who reach their goals are rarely the brilliant or talented but those who have persevered long after others have given up.

This week’s post is a collection of wise words from the many people who have influenced my life (especially my parents).

New Beginnings

~ Never be satisfied until you have found your purposeNever stop searching for why you were put on this earth and what your God-given talent is.

~ Find something that you are passionate about. Passion creates the enthusiasm that delivers boundless energy and will inspire others to believe in you. 

Build your future on integrityBe a person of your word. The unity of passion and integrity is a powerful force. 

Don’t do or say anything you would not want to read about in tomorrow’s news – you are a person of influence, whether it be to your friends, your children or your clients. If you lie, cheat or mislead you imply to others that it is acceptable behavior. 

Take a little step toward your goal/dream every day – even if you can only spare five minutes. 

Appreciate the journey – many successful people will tell you that once they arrived at their goal, they realized that the journey was the best part.

Associate with people whom you wish to become like – the old saying ‘lay down with dogs, rise up with fleas’ has its basis in fact.

Try to make wise decisions – the choices you make will affect your future just as they have created your present circumstances, take the time to think things through and seek wise council. 

Expect to make mistakes - They are life’s most valuable lessons. Failure only comes when you have not learned from a mistake and you repeat it. 

Expect things worth having not to come easily – Success is the reward for struggle and hard work.

Never forget your potential - even if others do.

~ No matter how much you look forward or dread something, it always passes; nothing is permanent so hang tight and appreciate every moment.  

Find someone who believes in you – negative people will only rob you of your potential.

~ Hugs your kids often and call your parents every week. Tell them you love them – they need to hear it more than you realize.

Evict your personal critic – when your inner voice starts to undermine your confidence, send it packing. 

Create a personal success file – and add to it daily, even if it is something small. Read it once a week to remind yourself of your progress. 

Do something nice for another person daily – without expectation of return. This can be as small as letting a car in, during peak hour or giving someone a genuine compliment. 

Spend time with your friends and family – they are your most valuable assets. Life is short and its length unpredictable, so get up now and go phone someone. 

Nurture yourself – eat well, exercise, get enough sleep, take regular time-out and spend time with those who love you. 

Value yourself – Don’t feel guilty if you occasionally spend money on yourself or buy something frivolous. Shrouds don’t have pockets and you’re definitely worth it. 

Occasionally do something silly - The best stress-reliever and depression-buster is laughter. 

Pray for guidance and expect an answer.

woman beauty portrait with summer white hat and sunglasses, studio

HOW TO LOOK SOPHISTICATED

By | Beauty, How To..., Personal Style | 11 Comments

When you think of sophistication what words spring to mind? Worldly, refined, elegant, current, calm, grown-up, confident?

It’s these adjectives that help you gain insight and direction to achieve the look.

Another way is to think of women you think of as sophisticated. For me it’s celebrities like Olivia Palermo, Kate Blanchet, Anne Hathaway and Halle Berry. Each of these women look impeccable and in control even in the most casual of circumstances. The peak of the sophistication can also be seen in prominent personalities like Princess Kate Middleton, Queen Rania of Jordan, and of course, the ultimate in power dressing, Scandal’s Olivia Pope. Lastly, I can’t talk about sophistication or elegance without mentioning the one and only late Aubrey Hepburn.

Elegant Celebs

If you’re now thinking, ‘this sounds like it’s going to be expensive‘ relax I assure that it’s not necessarily so and even on a budget you can look polished. So here’s my 15 ways to look polished from your head to your toes:

Face First

With all looks, the most important place to start is at the top with your face and hair. It’s the first place people look, so your makeup, skin and hair will all need to look as pleasing, refined and finished as the rest of your look.

Like all things deemed ‘polished’ your makeup should be ‘flawless and understated’. This means blending your makeup to create a smooth, subtle finish. Don’t put on too much liner and sweep a beige or taupe eyeshadow on your lids for a subtle sheen. The next step is mascara to open up your eyes, blush for a healthy glow, and lipstick.

Use lip liner to prevent your lipstick from running throughout your day. The key to having a polished makeup look is to make sure it is set for the rest of the day. A spritz of some facial toning water will ensure your makeup won’t budge or smudge.

Elegant Makeup

Video Tutorial

Get Styled

Nothing says polished as much as a great style; perfectly cut and beautifully maintained it will beautifully compliment your makeup and finish off your outfit. Fashionable but not avant garde you hairstyle portrays femininity and control. The most refined looks are smooth to sleek while casual elegance is displayed as controlled waves. If you like parts then a side part is the one most favored by socialites.

Hair

Dress Up Your Hair

An easy and quick way to dress up and polish up your hair do of the day is by adding hair accessories. Whether it’s a topknot or a ponytail, a bejeweled hair accent will make you look more glam and will make you stand out in a chic way. If you’re wearing your hair down, a scarf headband or a sleek patent one will have the same effect.

Hair2

Stand Tall

Aside from the physical aspects of your look, from clothes to makeup, your posture and carriage carries a lot of weight when looking polished. Slouching will definitely ruin the look of a beautiful designer dress or a structured blazer. Always stand and sit up tall. Keep your shoulders square. It also helps to visualize your head attached to a thread being pulled upward.

Posture

Dress Modestly

When it comes to sophistication, err on the side of caution. The surest way to achieve real sophistication is to be modest yet chic. Look for modest necklines and hem lengths and fits that are not too revealing. When you want to wear a short mini skirt covering your legs with dark tights will instantly elevate the look. In general the more covered you are the more likely you are to be moving in the right direction. 

Modesty

Source: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3, Image 4

Think Structure and Tailoring

Keep an eye out for structured silhouettes; tailored separates, semi-fitted jackets and even classic structured bag shapes like satchels, doctor bags, and frame bags are all great additions to your wardrobe and great foundations to your polished look.

Nurture an eye for quality and pay more for the items you’ll wear the most. These pieces will be your investments and better quality means superior fit and fabric. If higher-end pieces are out of the equation for you, opt to get off-the-rack, fast fashion, or discount pieces altered to fit your body. A little cinching here or a little hem shortening there can work wonders in making a garment look more high quality and have a more elegant feel. Perfect fit should be your number one goal when shopping, as this lends a polished look instantly.

Structured

Source: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3

Choose the Right Fabrics

Conger up the vision of an elegant woman, can you imagine her clothes, can you describe the fabrics or fabric quality? Fabrics that portray a sophisticated image are of high quality (or at least appear to be), have a fine weave, a soft pliable hand(feel), little to minimal texture and are matte to a subtle sheen. Think silk, wool, cotton, cashmere, fine velvet, and microfiber. Dressed in these any woman will feel a queen.

Sophisticated fabrics

Source: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3, Image 4

Layer Elegantly 

Less is more when trying to attain the polished look, think non bulky and your half way there.. If you’re wearing a dress another additional layer, like a pashmina shawl or structured jacket, is more than enough. If you’re wearing tailored separates, a maximum of 3 layered items should be your rule of thumb.

Elegant Layering

Source: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3

Hue and Contrast

When trying to achieve a sophisticated look, steer clear of loud prints and neon colors which will put your look in more trendy territory. Subtle prints in a low to medium contrast are best. Neutral colors like black, white, navy, and gray are also your best bets. Beige and nude tones are a ladylike approach to the look. You can also opt for rich jewel tones, but bear in mind that it should still be rich or even muted but never bright or loud i.e. teal instead of turquoise, emerald or hunter green instead of bright acid green.

HueAndContrastSource: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3, Image 4 

Color Coordinate

Color coordinating your outfit doesn’t mean wearing one color from head to toe (although the monochromatic look is on trend), it means that to you should make sure that one element of your look visually relates to another. You’ll look more polished and sophisticated this way. For example, match the color of your lips with your belt and shoes, or you can match the red hue of your bag and shoes with red color in the print of your dress.

CoordinationSource

Accessories Count

Sophistication extends to every aspect of your look. From the mirror you use for touch-ups to your phone case, all of the things you wear and carry with you will reflect your lifestyle, disposition and act as an indication of the care you take of yourself. Everything sends a message, so if you whip out a raggedy wallet at dinner, it’ll certainly leave a bad taste in the mouth—despite having an ultra chic look.

Also a sophisticated look doesn’t necessarily need a lot of accessories. Keeping your accessories, especially your jewelry, to a minimum is a guaranteed way to look both appropriate and chic. Always opt for classic styles, in medium-small sizes.  Large and imposing jewelry might look too garish

Accesssories

Source: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3

Tips and Toes

From the tips of your fingers to what you put on your feet, every little detail matters when it comes to looking sophisticated. Make sure that when heading out for the day, your fingers are well manicured. Avoid nail art, or nail colors that are loud. A classic French tip manicure or timeless colors like taupe, beige, nude, soft pink, and red are all perfect. Round, oval or round-square shapes are perfectly in-sync with your look. Avoid long pointed nails they totally send the wrong message.

Also pay attention to your legs if they are being exposed. If your legs are perfect then ‘maybe’ go bare legged; however quality hosiery always presents a polished look. Exposed feet call for a perfect pedicure and they are best teamed with flats such a loafers for ballet flats or medium to high heels. If you’re going to wear stilettos, err on the side of caution and wear them in classic hue to avoid looking too sexy (forget ankle straps; they’re too sexy). A slight sheen or some patent shine can also be a nice touch.

Tips and Toes

Act the Part

 One of the best things about leaving this point until now is that looking the part often helps you feel the part. Like when an actor when they dress in character and only then truly feels the part so you too will start to feel more sophisticated and confident when you’re in character. When you’re confident you stands tall, look people in the eyes when they are talking, smiles and nods when you’re in agreement and is not afraid to introduce themselves or others,or introduce a new topic of conversation. Sure, it may take some practice but I promise you it will be much easier when you look and feel the part. Another bonus is that other people will open up to you and give you the floor when you have ‘the look’.

Proverbs

Think Mint Condition

Nothing can ruin a polished outfit faster than a loose button or a loose thread. Before you even put on each item of clothing, give it an once-over. Check for stains, wear and tear, or any quick sewing fixes that need to be made. If found, change or fix it before leaving.

Pressing Matters

A well-pressed outfit is essential to your look. Press your outfit in advance to avoid rushing out in the morning in wrinkled clothing. Invest in a good iron or steamer, it will go a long way in taking care of your clothing and looking polished 24/7.

Want More?  The Elegant Woman website

 

Ann2015Blue

If you enjoyed this week’s feature
please like it on Facebook or Instagram
or leave a comment/question below.
Thank you.
Ann Reinten AICI CIP
Author


A picture of four sexy female butts over white background

BODY BRIEF: DRESSING THE INVERTED TRIANGLE

By | Body Basics, Figure Flattery, How To... | 2 Comments

WomanBy now you already know that women’s bodies come in different shapes and sizes and Prêtàstyler is here for you throughout your style journey. We want you to embrace the natural shape
of your body.

This week it’s time to address the Inverted Triangle Body Shape.

Also called ‘V’, goblet, lollipop, you possess the Inverted Triangle Body Shape if you fall into the following categories:

  • You are larger above the waist than below
  • You have a large bust
  • Little to no waist definition
  • You are top heavy and may have have broad shoulders with narrow hips and legs

If you possess the Inverted Triangle Body Shape, these should be your main aims for dressing for your body type:

You should strive to:

  • Minimize your upper body
  • Create the illusion of a waist
  • Soften the appearance of your upper body, specifically your shoulders
  • Accentuate your lower body 
  • Celebrate your shape by wearing shaped garments over those that are straight

If you love your ladies (and so you should), and want to have them front and center go ahead by wearing curved necklines and bustline embellishments..  

Your upper body

Since this is the heaviest and most prominent part of your body, it is vital for you to master it. Mastering how to dress for your upper body entails many factors, which you can choose at your own liking. Some tips may work better for your lifestyle or your personal style preferences while others may not. The key to unlocking the mastery of the Inverted Triangle Body Shape lie in your mastery of how to show off your upper body in the right way, or balance it with the lightness of your lower body. Here are some tips:

  • Eye catching earrings i.e. chandeliers are a great way of attracting attention away from your bust, as well as softening the appearance of your broad shoulders. 
  • Never underestimate the impact of a good bra. The appearance of a well-supported bust line is already enough to make your look seem more polished. It will also make your torso look longer and it will hold up your shoulders straighter. Remember to adjust the straps to maintain the effect after each wash. 
  • Keep your upper body streamlined and free of excessive detail and fuss that creates volume. In this instance, less is truly more. 
  • Stick to tops in medium to dark solid colors and prints in muted colors or low contrast, these pieces will ensure that your upper half is not further emphasized. 
  • Vertical detailing is an excellent way to create balance with your lower body – look for the details like buttons, seams, pintucks etc. when shopping for tops. 
  • Show skin with medium to low necklines. Remember to always keep it classy, of course. 
  • Strap should be medium to wide. Spaghetti straps can look too insignificant to hold up a large bust. Thin straps will also serve to make your broad shoulders look even broader, and create an unflattering look. 
  • Necklines that narrow and elongate are best such as V-neck, deep U scoops and split necklines.
  • Button front and wrap tops with bust darts are excellent to add flattering shape and minimize volume. 
  • Garments in soft fabrics will sit over your curves best. 
  • Jackets with defined shoulders but not those that extend pass your shoulder line help define your waist.
  • Skip lapels whenever possible. Lapels style creates a much cleaner and slimming line for you.
  • Wear jackets and cardigans open whenever possible. This will make the appearance of your athletic and strong upper half appear more delicate and gentle. 
  • Avoid sleeves that end at the fullest point of your bust. [link to large bust post] ¾ sleeves sit at your sweet spot.

UpperBody

Your waist

To give yourself the most flattering and feminine silhouette, it’s always a good idea to put the focus into your waist, or rather to create the illusion of one. Waist shaping or waist cinching garments or pieces give you a more covetable small waist and hourglass shape, and it also serves to be the balancing counterpoint between the upper and lower half of your body.

  • Nipped jackets, tops and sweaters will give the illusion of a waist and curvy hips.
  • Dresses that highlight the waist are ideal e.g. ruching, side tie, waist panel etc.
  • Belts are great so long as you are not also short waisted
  • Dark belts create a more defined waist than those that are light or bright, which might create the appearance of a wider waist
  • Wide pants with fitted tops also make your waist appear shapelier. 
  • Pants and skirts with no prominent waistbands
  • Just below the waist to hipster waists – no high waist styles.

Waist

Your lower body

Inverted Triangle Body Shapes are lucky enough to commonly have slender legs. Take advantage of your shapely and beautiful gams by showing them off to the fullest. This is the area of your body where you can really get creative and freely dress it up as you wish.

  • Have fun with your lower body. Look for details, design lines and shapes that will add curve and/or width to your hips and thighs such as peplums, horizontal stripes, sheen and shine to tiers and pleats.
  • Boot-cut and flare pants, since these pieces will balance your strong shoulders 
  • Straight, A line, gathered, tulip and trumpet
  • A word on A-line skirts: Do not go too wide if you are short, as wide silhouette A-line skirts will make you look shorter.

Celebrities who share your shape

As always, it’s always helpful to look to the stars for some sartorial guidance when it comes to dressing up for your body type. This is also a quick and easy way to garner some inspiration for your next look.

Jill Scott, Heidi Montag, Susan Sarandon and Christina Hendricks

For more information on how to dress a large bust see my feature: Marvelous Mammaries

InvertedTriangle Celebrities

Important: This information is only pertains to the triangular horizontal body shape. Your body has many other characteristics that also need to be taken into account and can alter some of the recommendations. Prêtàstyler is the perfect tool for finding your perfect garments and making you look fabulous from top to toe.

Ann2015Blue

If you enjoyed this week’s feature
please like it on Facebook or Instagram
or leave a comment/question below.
Thank you.
Ann Reinten AICI CIP
Author


Banner

HOW TO CREATE AN OUTFIT

By | Coordination, How To..., Wardrobe Savvy | 16 Comments

Getting dressed is a task that most women take for granted. They get up, stare into the wardrobe and pick out the first thing that springs to hand. Some end up looking great and others…well, not so much.

What you wear has a huge influence on how you feel and behave day to day. Socially and business savvy women know that getting dressed and choosing the right outfit is critical to the way the day will unfold.

When you look skillfully dressed, you feel more powerful, more confident and other people give you more notice and more respect. Knowing how to build an outfit is an essential skill to ensure you project the image you want and live the lifestyle you choose.

What you wear and how well you’re groomed speaks volumes about you and we are all unconsciously assessing others via their appearance every day. So it makes sense to look our best every day and that starts with the ability to create figure flattering and visually pleasing outfits.

Thoughtfully crafting outfits from the options in your wardrobe may seem like a daunting task but it’s really as easy as 1, 2, 3. In time, these steps will become second nature to you and building an amazing outfit will be a cinch.

#1. Think ahead9545e7309d8eafc3e63ed869f8e8b7df

It’s always easier to plan what you’ll be wearing the night before. When you have your outfit laid out and ready, it will make your morning much less stressful. This is a great bedtime ritual to make sure that your mornings start on the right note. Laying out your outfit the night before also affords you the time to explore a lot more sartorial possibilities.
Ask yourself:

  • What will I be doing?
  • Where will I be going?
  • What will the weather be?
  • Who will I be seeing?
  • What’s the level of dress that will be required?
  • What impression do I want to make? 

These questions are key to choosing the right outfit for your day. Don’t forget to lay out your accessories too. This ritual/habit will take the hassle out of your mornings and take the guesswork out of dressing up.

#2. Decide on your base layer

It is easier to put together your look once you’ve decided on the basic elements of your outfit. Here are the simple possible combinations for your outfit:

  • Skirt + top
  • Pant + top
  • Dress

The base layer’s look will of course be decided by the occasion or event you’re building the outfit for. The base layer will also decide factors like underwear, accessories etc. If your base layer is simple, that’s the time to get more creative or bold with other aspects of your look. If one or more base layer elements is a statement piece, that’s your cue to simplify the rest of your ensemble. 

BaseLayers1

#3. Lay the right foundation

The right lingerie or shapewear will make an enormous difference. You may think that what you wear underneath doesn’t show or is irrelevant—that’s where you’re wrong. Your underwear affects how clothes sit or drape on your body. Shapewear is a worthy investment in this department since it provides an excellent foundation for your clothing. It will smooth any bulges and it will make sure your clothes fit perfectly. The right underwear has the same effect, so invest in your bras and panties, ladies. Trust me, it will pay off. The right shapewear and underwear will kill wobbles and perk up your chest area. It will make you look your best. If you want to know more, click this link for my in-depth feature on Shapewear

018675-1200x1500-BeforeAfter-2Source 

#4. Layer as desired

Layering is a great way to increase the chicness of your look. So whether it’s for fashion or function, layering is necessary to building an effective outfit. 

  • For formality
    • In business settings adding an extra layer to cover bare upper arms will result in a more professional image. 
    • More formal settings are more about fashionable layering. For professional environments, adding a blazer to your look will result in a more polished and formidable appearance. For formal events like parties etc., layering with embellished jackets or colourful scarves is a great way to stand out and increase the stylishness of your cocktail dress or evening separates. 
  • For warmth
    • i. If you feel you are on the larger side look for light layers of extra warm fabrics e.g., cashmere. Fabrics like cashmere or Merino wool provide the warmth and insulation you need without adding extra bulk to your frame.

ii. Layering for warmth may be functional, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be trendy about it. Cozy cardigans in trendy prints like polka dots, stripes, or plaid is a brilliant way to add an extra dimension of style to your look. 

Layer1

#5. Shoe off

Any style conscious woman will tell you that a shoe can make or break an outfit and it’s true. Nothing can ruin a great outfit quite like a cheap or bad pair of shoes can. A stunning evening dress doesn’t look right with cork wedges, while a day of errands can get sabotaged with a pair of uncomfortable stilettos. Choose shoes that go with the overall images and vibe of your look. It is also important to know when to sacrifice comfort for style and vice versa. A day of walking should, of course, necessitate a comfy yet chic pair of sneakers while a fancy evening event is the right moment to put style above all else, and slip into a pair of amazing high-heeled pumps. For more footwear knowledge, go to my feature called, “Well Heeled.”

Add shoes1

#6. Accessorize

Accessories are so much fun! This is the part where you can get playful with your look and experiment a little bit, all within the bounds of good taste of course. Accessories are also a great way to integrate current trends into your look, and it’s also the outfit element where you can insert more of your personality. Embellishments such as jewelry, scarves, and hand bags can add air of uniqueness to your look. Here are some things to consider when accessorizing your look:

To attract attention to your best area

Think about which areas of your body you want to highlight and consider accessorizing there. If you have an enviable waist, wear a statement belt. If you want to draw attention to your face consider wearing a statement necklace. You get the idea.

Complete the look

An outfit isn’t complete without accessories. Think about a basic white tee and jeans. Worn by itself, it seems so drab. But add a long gold necklace, a printed scarf, and/or some colorful bangles and your humble white tee and jeans combo is ready for a night on the town.

Add some fashion influence

Accessories are look-at-me pieces that instantly communicate your fashion sensibilities. Whether you’re a trendy or classic girl, your accessories will reflect what your style is to a T.

Pull all the items together into a cohesive outfit

Don’t just put together accessories randomly. You should also consider how the accessories relate to your base layer and the rest of your look. All items should look harmonious.

If you’d like more information on accessories, go to this link. 

Add Accessories1

#7. Count your points

At this stage your outfit is complete the only thing left is to check your focal points to ensure your out fit is visually pleasing and figure flattering. In the following image, all 3 outfits consist of a pant and top. The first two appear lacklustre because each has only 2 focal points (top and pants). The 3rd has a belt that adds a much-needed 3rd focal point (top, pants and belt).

  • A focal point is anything that draws your eye to it.  

Aim for 3 to 4 focal points in one look. Less can be boring and more focal points may start to look too busy. All the outfits in the photo below meet this number. 

Bad GroupFocal Points

#8. Check yourself out

While it may be tempting to step out of the house unchecked, don’t do it. Some of your outfits may look better on the hanger or in your head than they do in reality. Always check your appearance in a full-length mirror before leaving the house. You can even take a mirror selfie while you’re at it. If you have doubts about something, trust your gut and remove it. 

log

#9. Log your outfit

It’s so easy to forget all the different outfits you can make. It is super helpful for your style journey to log your outfit to see how your looks change and progress, and to help keep track of looks or pieces that you like and don’t like. You can note down the items that make up each outfit while keeping a photo diary. Keeping an outfit logo is now made easier than ever with social media hashtag and apps that keep track of your #OOTDs (that means “outfit of the day”).

recordSource

Ann2015Blue

If you enjoyed this week’s feature
please like it on Facebook or Instagram
or leave a comment/question below.
Thank you.
Ann Reinten AICI CIP
Author


A picture of four sexy female butts over white background

THE BODY BRIEF: DRESSING THE RECTANGLE

By | Body Basics, Figure Flattery, How To... | 4 Comments

shapeDressing for your body type correctly is one of the most important parts of curating your style and projecting your desired image or style persona into the world. Never underestimate the value of knowing yourself and your body thoroughly. This kind of in-depth knowledge about yourself can prove to be extremely useful when dressing up for the life you want to have.

Today in The Body Brief we are focusing on the rectangle body shape also known as that “H,” column, or banana. If you belong in this body shape category, you possess the following key characteristics:

  • You have little to no waist definition
  • Your hips tend to be a similar width as your full bust
  • You have straight hips and may have a flat or small bottom.

It’s a common misconception to think that all rectangular body types have overtly boyish figures. Some women with rectangle body shapes don’t appear athletic on account of softer shoulders. The important thing to remember for this body type is that the absence of a prominent waist is what needs to be paid the most attention to. It’s all about creating the illusion of a defined waist.

Embrace your body, rectangle body types are relatively easy to dress. Once you master your problem area (the waist), you’ll be well on your way to being a fully-fledged style maven.

The main aims when dressing the rectangular body shape are:

  • Draw attention upwards
  • Create the illusion of a waist.
  • Add dimension to your shape.

Draw attention above the bustline

Never underestimate the power of an accessory or high placed statement style element to give your overall appearance high impact. It’s a great way to integrate trends into your look as well as ensure that the attention is above your bust line. 

EyesUpSource: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3, Image 4

Master your upper body

  • Never underestimate the impact of a good bra to hold your girls up and lengthen your torso and remember to adjust the straps to maintain the effect after each wash. 
  • Add flattering curves to your shape by experimenting with clothing shapes and fabric textures. For example, a top with volume tucked into a slim skirt or pants will work wonders in creating some curvy illusion as will wide pants with a fitted top.
  • Garments in soft fabrics will add softness and femininity to your straight shape.
  • Structured garments in stiffer fabrics will also look fabulous if they have waist definition.
  • Curvy embellishments and shapes such as lace, ruffles, shawl lapels, wrap dresses and tops will look wonderful one you. 
  • Jackets with defined shoulders will assist in help define your waist.
  • Whittle your waist by wearing tapered or slim sleeves.
  • Avoid sleeves or design lines which end at or near your waist as the strong horizontal line will visually add width to your torso.
  • If you are full busted show more skin with medium to low necklines.

Curvier

Source: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3, Image 4

Whittle your waist

This is the most important body part/area for you to get right. The goal is to create a silhouette with a subtle hint of a waist or alternatively, to bypass the waist with a waistless floaty garment. 

When it comes to your waist the key is to keep it understated and bulk free. Gently waist shaped garments are best at giving you the illusion of a waist but straight shifts and tops will work too. 

  • Belts are not your Enemy

    Belts are great for creating a waist when you know the right width and styles to choose. In addition, dark belts are best at creating the illusion of a waist.If you have short waist, avoid all small belts that will draw undue attention to it.If you have a long torso, you can use all manner of belts and belt buckles exposed under an open jacket is also a great way for you to gain waist detail.Never belt your waist belt tightly; it just creates a look that is unnatural and unflattering to any type of shape. 

WaistSource: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3, Image 4

Have fun with your lower body

  • Because of your straight hips you can wear almost any style of pant. Those with pleats are especially attractive on you.
  • When it comes to skirts, you can have fun with shape from A-lines to contoured skirts with a strong structure. These pieces will all look fabulous on you.

Lower BodySource: Image 1, Image 2, Image 3, Image 4

Follow your muse

Finally, If you find yourself lacking style inspiration you can look to celebrities which share a body type. Here are some celebrities to look to for rectangle body shape style inspiration:

  1. Cameron Diaz
  2. Nicole Kidman
  3. Hilary Duff
  4. Queen Latifah
  5. Gwyneth Paltrow
  6. Natalie Portman

Celebs

Important: This information is only pertains to the rectangular body shape. Your body has many other characteristics that also need to be taken into account and can alter some of the recommendations. Prêtàstyler is the perfect tool for finding your perfect garments and making you look fabulous from top to toe.

Ann2015Blue

If you enjoyed this week’s feature
please like it on Facebook or Instagram
or leave a comment/question below.
Thank you.
Ann Reinten AICI CIP
Author