Are you loving this!?!??! I sure am!!!!!!!!!!
Today we take a look at outfits that can work for business cassual for a variety of shapes. We've got a Rectangle, a pear, and another rectangle - no hourglass -no inverted triangle...... hahahah sometimes your body just doens't fit one mold, and that is when you get to just be YOU and choose what makes you feel beautiful.
Don't forget to enter yesterday's giveaway for patterns and fabric!!!
I know what you’re thinking. How on earth could it be possible that I have to finally embrace my shape? The answer is simple. We all have our own insecurities – insecurities show no prejudices – it doesn’t matter if you are tall, short, curvy, or thin, we all have insecurities. We are all human.
In order to understand where I am coming from, I have to take you back to my childhood and my teen years. As a young child, I was always small for my age. I was 4, people thought I was 2. In elementary school, we often lined up tallest to shortest. Of course I was always last in line. I despised walking to the back of the line as people snickered because I was so short. Fast forward to my high school years, where I overheard my biggest crush tell people he would never date me because I was too thin. Or the time I gave a presentation in Psychology on anorexia and had to endure comments that I chose that as my topic because they thought I was anorexic. In my 20s, I joined a gym with hopes of gaining weight.
I spent my whole life hoping to get a body that I was never meant to have – in hopes that people would just see me as normal – and I was failing to embrace the body I was given. In fact, the only reason I was shaming my body was because others were shaming my body.
I’ve always been small, I will always be small. It’s the way God made me. I can’t change the behavior of those around me, but I can choose to change what I believe. And I choose to stand proud – all 61 inches – and embrace who I am, who I’ve become and what I represent to those who love me.
When Suzanne started this BEAUTIFUL campaign, I wasn’t sure if I’d be brave enough to join in. I hardly ever sew for myself, honestly. It’s actually a weakness that I don’t feel I am worth the time and effort of it all. Luckily for me, Robin, Suzanne, and Jessica recognized that I never rewarded myself with my talents and planted a little seed. It was time – way past time. I accepted their challenge and challenged them back: find me something to sew that will break me free from this rut.
I never knew much about body types. I knew I was classified as petite (since I’m under 5’3”), but was shapeless an actual shape? It turns out, after plugging in my measurements in this calculator, that my body type is a rectangle. This means that my bust and hips are pretty much the same size and my waist is just slightly smaller. By choosing my clothing carefully, I could actually accentuate parts of my body, thus creating the illusion of curves. Gosh, I could have used this knowledge a long time ago!
The Davie Dress by Sewaholic is an all-knit dress with perfectly placed princess seams to highlight your curves (however small they may be). When Robin presented this pattern as my challenge, I was so excited! It’s exactly the type of dress I’d buy at the store. To find the perfect knit, I headed to Mabel Madison (they are having a 45% off sale!!!) – known for her luxurious Euro knits and woven prints. I thought about staying safe with a solid black (color of choice in my wardrobe), but decided this was my chance to at least take a little risk so I chose a rose floral on a black with white pin-dot background.
This pattern is actually drafted for a Pear-shaped body, but I was able to easily slim down the sides of the skirts to be proportionate for my measurements. I still made a muslin and brought in the seams a bit more until I felt like I loved it. And I really do!! It honestly felt like I was wearing a tee shirt all day, and yet teh look is perfectly appropriate for a casual office environment.
So to my fellow rectangles… if you like showing off the curves that you do have, this dress is perfect!
I’m glad I was challenged to get out of my comfort zone and participate. It feels very vulnerable to put my story and experiences out there, but I figured maybe people don’t understand that by commenting on someone’s size in a negative manner, it will always hurt. My two girls will likely follow in my footsteps in tiny stature and small frame. My 6 year old already experienced classmates telling her she was too small to play with them – in Kindergarten. We have got to stop shaming others, especially over matters that are simply out of our control. God has made us all shapes and sizes – that’s what makes us all so unique!
Hi again! It’s Denita from HattieLu Handmade! It’s official...summer has started in beautiful South Carolina. If you’re not familiar with South Carolina, the temperatures can exceed 100 degrees Fahrenheit on any given day. My typical wardrobe is blue jeans and a Clemson University t-shirt. I don’t wear shorts because they tend to ride up my thighs and I’m constantly pulling them down. I don’t wear dresses because once again the thigh issue. Gosh, my wardrobe is boring...isn’t it!
To my rescue is the Beautiful Campaign, Part 3: Dressing Your Shape. First, I had to determine my body shape. Then, I researched styles that would work best for my body type. Lastly, I tried to pull everything learned into one business casual outfit.
Let’s jump right in! Use this calculator to help determine your shape: http://www.shopyourshape.com/calculate-your-body-shape/. I’m a narly PEAR! What are you? So what’s so important about being a pear or any fruit shape for that matter? Identifying and understanding your shape can help you find clothing that is better suited for your body type. Yes, I know there’s more to life than being a pear! However, understanding what types of clothing compliment your body type is a great starting point to building your wardrobe. Often times, we all get in a rut (see my daily outfit above). The best way to break out of a rut is to experiment.
Pear shaped bodies are most often characterized as carrying the majority of weight in the hips and thighs, defined waist, narrow shoulders, and smaller bust as compared to the hips. Food for thought: you can change fruit shapes over the course of your life :) Here are some quick tips on dressing your pear shape:
Draw attention up toward the bust and face. This can be achieved by adding prints, boatneck tops, a scarf, and volume to your upper body.
AVOID anything that adds bulk to the hips and thighs. Meaning dropped waists, long sleeves with lots of accents at the wrist, and busy patterns on your bottom.
For my business casual look, I chose Colette Patterns’s Juniper, Jasmine and Anise. All three are great staple pieces for a business professional. Juniper showcases a trouser leg that is not tapered and is not wide. The pants skim my hips at the fullest point and “fall” straight down. I chose a sand colored fabric to keep it simple. Your attention is focused more on Jasmine. The bright pink polka dot immediately draws your attention to my upper body. You’ve forgotten I’m wearing pants! I slightly modified Jasmine by removing the tie at the neck. The lower bound neckline is more appealing to me. The show stopper is Anise. The jacket really gets your attention in a bold red garbargine. Anise and Jasmine compliment each other without clashing.
Check out my post about Beautiful Campaign, Part 1: Swimsuits here. You’ll see the two great options for pear shapes. Still want more inspiration! Check out my Pinterest board FULL of ideas for dressing pear shapes here.
I’ve learned a lot about myself over the last few months. When I decided to challenge myself, I discovered myself. I am beautiful because...I am loved unconditionally.
As always, I love to see what you create! Don’t forget to post on our Facebook page.
Until we meet again! Remember, it’s all about the sewing!
I have LOVED reading about everyone's shape all week and how they flatter the best part of their body. I am here to share my style with you in dressing my rectangle shape for Pattern Revolution’s Beautiful Campaign. I am so honored to be a part of this amazing and FUN group and have only sewed for myself with a push and encouragement from PR ladies. I chose to sew Made by Rae’s Washi Dress for my business casual look.
FIGURING OUT ONE’S SHAPE
I’ve always thought I was a rectangle (AKA boyish shape). I used a body calculator I found online to confirm this with my measurements (bust, waist, hips). It said i was an hourglass. An HOURGLASS?!?! One look at me and you can see that is not true. I am not curvy. I am tall (5’9”), thin, with skinny legs and small chest. But my bust is the same measurement as my slim hips (proportionate) so that’s why the calculator came up with it. So use your judgement when using some online tools. You know best!
LOVING ONE’S SHAPE
I’ve always been thin. I used to be much thinner (but my waist is slowly getting wider and more rectangle as I near 40). I got teased growing up, with some kids asking if I ate. The worst was one boy yelling “Flatso” EVERY DAY out of the bus at my bus stop. I dreaded it, every day, and was so shy I never said anything. I wish I would have stood up for myself and the confident woman I am today would. Or maybe just have punched him…..HaHa. Needless to say, I have issues with my small chest. One boyfriend said to me while we were dating “You could get any guy you wanted…..IF you had a bigger chest.” Why thank you for that lovely compliment? (Needless to say, it didn’t work out with him)
Yes, being thin is great, but on the downside, I have little curves, small boobs (less so after breast feeding two kids), skinny legs, and big feet (thank you dad with size 15 feet!). But over the years I have definitely grown into my body and have come to love and appreciate it. This is especially thanks to my loving husband of 11 years that thinks my body is perfect and wouldn’t want me to change a thing. We all have our issues. Big or small, we all have our parts that make us BEAUTIFUL. I am so thankful to PR’s campaign where we can all celebrate who we are!
Ok. Back to the dress. I’ve admired Rae’s Washi dress since it came out. But back then, I wasn’t sewing for myself yet so never bought it. I love the flowy and comfy style. That’s just me.
I love dresses with POCKETS! I love the little cut out detail on the front of this dress.
I got this linen fabric for $3/yd at Joann’s Memorial Day sale. I love it! I originally had the sleeves per the pattern, but they stuck out and I didn’t like them on me (I have broad shoulders and possibly could be an inverted triangle) so I tucked them under and stitched. I also would love this sleeveless (next time). Instructions were great and pattern was easy. It was my first time to use elastic thread and I’m happy to say it went perfectly. I tried something new and can check shirring off my list (the back of the dress is shirred for easy on/off). YEAH!!!!!
DRESSING A RECTANGLE
Reading online, a rectangle should use belts and emphasize their waist. I NEVER wear belts and rarely wear something tight enough to see my waist. FAIL. But I don’t care. I dress for my personality and for my Colorado lifestyle. Tight is not for me. I like to keep it loose up top and show off my legs.
I have my dream job. I’m an art teacher at my kids’ school. I actually get PAID to bring art, creativity and fun to kids in K through 5th grade. They cheer when I enter the room and are so sad when I leave! Art gives them a break from math and reading and tests! AND I can have lunch with my kids whenever I want. It’s the best. So business attire for me is very casual. Of course that means no spaghetti straps, low cut/really tight shirts, or short dresses…. Heels are very rare, but occasionally I’ll dress up. My go to outfit is a dress with leggings, fun jewelry, and ballet flats. I tend to like Bohemian/Artsy clothes so I gravitate toward flowy dresses/shirts and I love colors but am attracted to blues, greens, greys the most. Here’s a collage of some the clothes I’ve sewn for Pattern Revolution or for pattern testing.
There’s so many great patterns out there for women and so little time!!!! Go have fun and wear what makes YOU feel beautiful!
Till next time!
Ellen from ellzabelle