If you have a fuller silhouette, with maybe a full tummy, heavy thighs or arms, finding clothes that will love your body can be difficult. By following a few golden rules, it could become a lot easier for you.

One of the top reasons why many women avoid coming to see an image consultant is because they feel they are overweight and don’t want to have to look at themselves in a mirror for a few hours. They prefer to wait until they have lost a few pounds to make their appointment. They wait and wait some more, struggle losing the dreaded pounds and at the end never come.

They can no longer wear most of the clothes they have in their wardrobes. They don’t want to throw them out or donate them “in case they can get back into them one day”. They now dread shopping for new clothes.

If you are reading this and think “that’s me”, then it is now that the help you get from an image consultant will be at its most valuable and confidence-boosting for you. Don’t wait to be a stone lighter. You can visually lose pounds by adjusting the way you dress your body at it is now.

An image consultant is here to help you flaunt your best bits and hide what you don’t like. It is voyage of discovery in the tricks of making you look slimmer. You will learn what makes you tick when it comes to dressing, what turns you off, what will work for your silhouette and what won’t. Most of all, it will make you a savvy shopper and a stylish woman, whatever the fashion dictates.

This is no magic. You’ll come out looking the same as you came in, but you will be armed with knowledge and your go-to wallet full of information to help you make great choices next time you shop for clothes. It is your hard work after this that will bring changes. Unless you have plenty of time to browse and money to buy right after your session, it will be a labour of love of several months.

Until you pick up that phone, message or call or send an email, and make an appointment with French Dressing, here are a few tips to get you started:

Dressing your fuller silhouette: what to do – Colours

Remember the golden rule of colour I told you about when discussing 5 suggestions to de-stress when you dress:

Dark colours minimise.
Light colours maximise.
Bright colours attract attention.

Bear this in mind when you want to hide the parts you dislike or draw attention to your much loved bits. We all have light and dark colours in our palette. We do not all have bright colours. Your personalised palette of colours will reflect the shades that compliment your skin tone, eyes and hair colours.

By getting your colours done, you will learn whether you can wear dark colours all over, or whether you would be looking better with a contrast, or whether blue tone colours are to be avoided. At the end you will have a wallet of 42 different shades of colours and crucially you will learn how to wear your colours.

Joanna, who had put on weight whilst going through the menopause, told me: “my favourite bits are my eyes“.  She has beautiful green eyes with a dark line around the iris, in stark contrast to her dark brown hair. Wearing her brightest colours made her eyes sparkle. Her face looked much fresher. This in turn encouraged her to apply her eye make up, her blusher and lipstick everyday. She bought a few fab tops too. “I carry my wallet everywhere and check my purchases against the swatches. Just with colours, my confidence has grown a lot“, she said.

Remember to wear your colours well, not only to suit your own colouring but also to emphasise the right bits of your body.

This is why “just colours” is not enough. It is only part of your story. A Style session will take you to another level, and this is where the true transformation happens.

Dressing your fuller silhouette: what to do – Pattern

Warning: If you have a dominant Classic personality, please do stay seated and drink your tea. You may be joined by the City Chic personality.  All will be well in the end.

Pattern is a great head-turner, as long as it is on the right area, of the right size and of course in the right colours (read again the previous paragraph). Not everybody suit big flowers or vertical stripes. Not everybody will look great in a brown animal print.

Pattern comes in all shapes: vertical, horizontal or diagonal stripes, paisley, flowers, geometric, abstract, dots, etc. And of course in all sizes: small and beautiful, large and bold or simply medium.

Pattern does hide a multitude of sins as the eye keeps travelling and does not know where to stop.

Where you wear pattern and what the type of pattern is best for you will depend on your body shape, your scale and your proportions too. This is what you learn during your Style session.

As you have guessed by the opening line, your style personality will dictate whether you are comfortable wearing pattern. Those with a dramatic personality will love it. Those with a romantic personality will look for the dainty flowers, lace or butterflies. Those with a City Chic personality will accompany the ones with a Classic Personality for a walk away from this brouhaha.

Dressing your fuller silhouette : what to do – Bodyline

The key to looking slimmer is to cleverly hide the bits we love the least. Often when trying to hide a challenging area, the most common example being a fuller tummy, we hide the whole part of body, in effect piling on the visual pounds. There are many ways of dressing our body that will make us look slimmer.

An image consultant will help you find out what your body shape is and give you the sacred rules to dress it so that you focus and emphasise on your best bits.  Surprisingly, your body shape is best discovered from the back. Ask someone to take a photograph of you with a T-shirt on, from the back, and look at what you see.

Do you have a defined waist that you believed did not exist? Are you bigger in the top half? Do you have shorter legs than your body? Should you wear a fitted top? A long top? What will be better close to your face: a round neck, V neck, halterneck cut?

If you don’t know what your bodyline is like, you may not be dressing it well and to your advantage.

Lesley swore she had a round body. When we looked at body shapes in detail, she exclaimed: “I carry all my weight round my tummy – I am the round one“. Closer inspection, still fully dressed, looking at her from the back, I made her realise that she had a well-defined waist, that in fact her bottom half was bigger than her top half. So we tweaked the rules to rebalance her body shape and ensure that her problematic tummy was minimised.

Dressing your fuller silhouette, be kind to yourself:

Nobody has ever died because they were wearing clothes that did not suit their physical characteristics.
Every person who dresses well for their colouring, personality and silhouette always feels fabulous, lose visual pounds and save pounds in money! It could be you.

Dressing your fuller figure – Where to shop

Let’s talk shops. I am not affiliated in any way to any of the shops I list below. I know some are working well for the confused ladies who despair in the shops they usually visit.

Dressing your fuller figure – Where to shop online

The world is your oyster here. The choice is immense. If you are up to size 18, most online retailers will cater for you.

The online retailers below cater specifically for higher sizes. I will not go through each one in detail. I leave that for you to click away to them.

Bravissimo & Pepperberry (also on some High Streets)
Studio 8
Kit and Kaboodal
Scarlett & Jo
Next Curve Collection

Do visit ebay and Amazon too.

Do you know of others? Please let me know and I’ll pass on the information to my clients.

Dressing your fuller figure – Where to shop on the street

Department stores such as Marks and Spencers, Debenhams, John Lewis or M&CO will have bigger sizes (and they are also online). They will follow fashion. If what’s in is not for you, don’t even be tempted!

TKMaxx Plus Women section has some unique great quality clothes.

You may also find excellent selection in larger garden centres.

The best independent gems, local to Dundee & Angus areas, include:
Forever Curves in Dundee opposite Dundee Contemporary Arts Centre
Woodlane of Doune near Falkirk
CompletelYou in Arbroath Westport
The Wardrobe at Marian’s of Perth
Flairs at Letham (Angus)
Karen B in Broughty Ferry stocking the excellent Masai range of clothes.
Twice as Nice in Newbigging, near Dundee. A dress agency which is mostly open by appointment. You and you only amongst gently loved clothes!

They may not have a website, but they will have a Facebook page. Check them out and do go and visit them. The service is excellent and they will understand your challenges.

Never dismiss charity shops as they are treasure trove of beautiful clothes!

Where do you shop? What is your favourite haunt? Let me know!

Dressing your fuller silhouette, be discerning:

The aim is to feel fantastic when you have clothes on.
If you don’t feel fabulous when you try the clothes on, don’t buy, or if you can, return them (check the terms and conditions with your local independent boutiques).
It must be love at first try otherwise you won’t wear it. You will be wasting your money and it won’t do anything for your self-confidence.
Your wallet of colours and style cards are there to guide you make the right purchase for you. Don’t hesitate to take it out of your bag and check.

  • Are you still hesitating about visiting an image consultant? Let’s have a chat. Contact me today.
  • Has reading this left you wanting to know more for yourself and dress better? Book a full image session.
  • Do you know someone who would benefit from reading this? Share the blog with them.

You can have a wee browse round this website too to discover all my services.

Like and follow my Facebook page.

Be like more than 700 women who have found the courage to come to French Dressing, the tenacity and continued rigour to apply their own golden rules and who have grown in confidence since.