Styling the Woman With Curves Featuring Mindy Kaling

I loath the notion that fashion is only for model types.  Everyone can have style.

Any body type can look beautiful, under the right conditions, but let’s be honest; It’s just easier to wear what you see on the runway if you’re skinny and relatively flat-chested with narrow hips.  It’s boring, annoying, wrong and sucks. –Garance Dore

Well said Garnace!  I love styling the fuller figured (also a term I don’t like) woman.  It’s rewarding to gift someone the sense of empowerment that accompanies great style.

Understanding what works for your body is just as important as understanding what doesn’t work.

One silhouette for the hourglass shaped woman to avoid is the empire dress.  Empire cut dresses narrow just below the bust and flare out to the knee or feet.  While you may have a small waist to show off, the rest of the body is left shapeless and larger in appearance than with other cuts.

Fitted pants can be difficult to find because of the hip to waist ratio.  If it fits in the hips, it doesn’t fit in the waist and vice versa.  Getting around this can be troublesome.  I recommend going with fabrics that have stretch and looking for easier to tailor cuts.  Certain types of jeans are much easier to tailor than others.  If in doubt, take them in to the tailor with the tags on and ask them if they can be fixed easily, you can always take them back.  Taking the time to have your clothes tailored will pay off in the long run.

Most woman seem to have a handle on what doesn’t work for themselves, so I will focus more on what does work for the hourglass shape.

The secret is to own your imperfections.  No hiding them or trying to change them– you learn to make something interesting out of them.  And clothes are there to help, not to be instruments of torture.  They’re at our service. –Garance Dore.

Let’s talk about how to make that happen.

Styling the Full Hour Glass body type Featuring Mindy Kaling
Pencil skirts are a must for the hourglass.  Narrow at the knee and fitted at the hips, the pencil skirt will show off the curves.  The proportions are of this outfit are nicely done as well.  The shirt  ends at the right length to elongate the torso.  Using sequins and pattern on the shirt draws the eye up and creates a slimming effect by drawing attention up to the slim waist and away from the hips.  The simple pink skirt acts as a blank canvas away from which your attention can be drawn.  Nude, white and other neutral colors also do this.  Photo Credit:  Instagram @Mindykaling
Styling the Hourglass Figure Featuring Mindy Kaling
This lovely fitted dress looks stunning on Mindy. Placing a belt at the smallest part of the waist (the natural waist), draws attention toward the narrowest area. The size of the print is also important. As a rule, prints larger than your hand can make you look larger. While this lace appliqué is a little on the larger size, the monochromatic color keeps that from happening.  Photo Credit: Instagram @Mindykaling
Styling the fuller figured hourglass featuring Mindy Kaling
Show off those legs! This hot pink mini shows of Mind’s sexy legs, but the bright color keeps your attention. Color is a great way to create a focal point. Photo Credit: Instagram @Mindykaling
She definitely knows how to draw attention to the right features. Notice how the direction of the print draws your eye up.
She definitely knows how to draw attention to the right features. Notice how the direction of the print draws your eye up. Photo Credit: Instagram @Mindykaling
Another great example of pairing a neutral skirt with print and color to create a focal point.
Another example of pairing a neutral skirt with print and color to create a focal point. Photo Credit: Instagram @Mindykaling
Using color blocking with side panels in a contrasting color is slimming. The focus is the pattern in the center of her dress, which causes your eyes to drift away from the sides. This is a useful trick for lots of body types. If the side seams are curved, you can even create curves that aren't there with color blocking.
Color blocking with side panels in a contrasting color results in a slimming effect. The focus is the pattern in the center of her dress, which causes your eyes to drift away from the sides. This is a useful trick for lots of body types. If the side panels are curved, you can even create curves that aren’t there.  Notice that she wears nude shoes so not to distract your attention toward her feet.  Photo Credit: Instagram @Mindykaling
Peplum tops and circle skirts are a phenomenal way to feature a small waist.
Peplum tops and circle skirts are a phenomenal way to feature a small waist and accentuate curves. Photo Credit: Instagram @Mindykaling

While the always stylish Mindy Kaling is an endless source of inspiration, other hourglass shaped stars to look to are Marilyn Monroe, Scarlett Johansson, Kim Kardashian and Kate Winslet.

Style speaks to the world before you ever say anything.  Make sure your style says what you want about yourself.

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Kate Thakkar

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