Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Whatch your balance!

Proportion is essentially the way various parts of your body relate spatially to the other parts:
  • how long your legs are in relation to your torso,
  • how wide your rib cage is in relation to your hips,
  • how low or high your breasts are on your chest, etc.
All this makes a big difference in how you look in various styles of clothing. Even a simple deviation in shoulder width can affect the way a garment hangs. This is the reason something that looks terrific on your best friend, who wears the same size as you do, can look terrible on your- and vice versa. It's also why some women look better, or worse, in skirts, tube tops, or Capri pants. Next week, we are going to approach the how to fine-tune your balance and we will build from there on. Again, do not hesitate to share your concern and to share this message with your friends.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Body Shapes or Figure Types

Summer is ending and vacations are over. Schools have began and almost everyone is back to work. - My last published blog said "Size doesn't matter, shape does". What did I mean? Everybody is unique, with few ideal figures existing. Virtually every figure has some figure variations - variations from that so-called ideal figure used as a standard for comparison and for clothing manufacturer. A few specific figure variations occur in typical combinations - those having to do with horizontal width or the size of shoulders, bust, waist, hips, and thighs - combinations so typical that we tend to recognize the stereotypical shapes and give them names. Typical body shape are often called figure types. They define how body parts relate proportionally to one another and to the total figure.
  • Ideal figure types, rare though they may be, are average in weight, appear similar in width in the shoulders and hips, with medium bust size and a small waist. They have a slightly curved abdomen, moderately curved buttocks, and slim thighs.
  • Tubular figure types are slim to thin and below the average weight range for their height, with generally straight body lines, and body angles. They have few to no obvious curves, with line movement in the vertical direction.
  • Triangular figure types are narrower in the shoulders and wider in the hips/thighs, with a low hip curve. They are often smaller in the bust and waist, narrower in the back, and rounder in the buttocks - generally straight lines above the waist and curved lines below. Emphasis is on the lower torso.
  • Inverted Triangular figure types are wider in the shoulder and narrower in the hips/thighs, with a high hip curve. They are generally large in the bust, wider in the back, and flatter in the buttocks - generally curved lines above the waist and straight lines below. Emphasis is on the upper torso.
  • Diamond figure types are wider in the midriff and waist area, narrower in the shoulders and hips/thighs, with a high hip curve and slim legs. The bust is often smaller and the buttocks flatter. Emphasis is on the waist area.
  • Hourglass figure types have full-rounded body lines, with proportionally small waist. Emphasis on the bust and hips/buttocks, but may shift quickly to the contrast in size at the waist.
  • Rounded figure types are generally above the average weight range for the height. Being larger through the figure, body lines are full-rounded curves, with line movement in horizontal direction and emphasis on width.

To determine Y O U R general figure type, dress in form-fitting clothing, in possibly a t-shirt and tights, swimsuit, or underwear. Wear no shoes. In a mirror, observe your body.

  • Do you have balanced hip and shoulder with defined waist?
  • Are your shoulders narrower than your hips?
  • Are you shoulders wider than hips?
  • Do you have balanced hip and should, no defined wait?
  • Are your body lines straight, angular, bony, not to few obvious curves?
  • Do you have a larger figure with rounded body lines?
  • What else do you observe?
  • What are the lines you love?
  • What are those aspects you least prefer?

Record your observations on a paper. Your basis bone structure is a genetic gift. It won't change with diet or exercise. The good news is that each silhouette type can look evenly proportioned with flattering wardrobe choices. Our mission is to nudge everything into perfect balance. Next week we are going to approach other body proportions. Till then, do not hesitate to share your comments and questions.