fashion · outfits

Outfit: Belts are our friends!

Tunic: New York and Company (thrifted)

Belt: Merona

Jeggings: Charlotte Russe

Shoes: Kensie Girl

What better way to celebrate a new year that with an outfit composed almost entirely of pieces I wouldn’t have worn a year ago?  A year ago I would have said no to tunics, belts, and jeggings.  I now realize that I can wear all three – it’s all in the proportions!  Because I have skinny calves, jeggings and leggings look great when worn with a top long enough to totally cover my upper thighs.  Belts work if I belt at the natural waist – because I have a high waist I thought I needed to belt lower for evenness – not so!  I also have high hips, and belting lower just makes my legs look short, and my waist look wider.  The size of belt I can wear varies with the outfit, and I find that stretch belts reduce the uncomfortable feeling.

I have always thought that I was pear shaped, because my hip measurement is larger.  In fact, one of the reasons this top works is that the extended shoulders balance out my bottom half, giving the illusion that I’m hourglassy.  But I was always confused because I don’t meet all the criteria for a pear shape, in particular the fact that I have relatively skinny ankles and calves.  Recently I discovered the inside out style blog, where I found that I may actually be an 8 shape (high hip hourglass.)  The advice for that figure type works really well for me, except for the prohibition on flared skirts, which I think work well on me as long as they flare from the natural waist (though not an a-line skirt… those are really bad on me, though they work for pear shapes!)

Also: glasses!  This may be only the second time in 4 years that I’ve worn my glasses on the blog.  I don’t typically wear them, because I have a really bad left eye, which causes my eyes to appear different sizes.  But I have an eye infection right now, so no contacts for me!  I’m thinking of getting a pair of oversized frames, now that they are back in style – those always worked better on me, and besides, when you have really bad vision the tiny frames aren’t so good – I have amazingly terrible depth perception!

This is the top that caused me to buy McCall 6242 – they are pretty much identical, with slightly different shoulders.  I thought I couldn’t do this style, but with a belt for waist definition I love it.  Without?  Not so much.  If you aren’t convinced yet that belting works, here’s what this outfit looks like without the belt:

I kind of look like a big rectangle.  I plan to make a few more tops like this from the McCall pattern and wear them in the spring and summer.  We are having unseasonably warm weather (yesterday it was 62 degrees!) so I’m getting it out early!

17 thoughts on “Outfit: Belts are our friends!

  1. I think you look great in glasses. You’re right: the belt really helps tie that look together. I don’t think I would have tried wearing an outfit like that in the past either, but seeing this on you makes me want to try something similar. It’s fun to experiment, isn’t it?

  2. I think the belt really works!
    I recently discovered that blog too, and think it is really helpful, a recommended read for sure.
    I’m an ‘8’ too, and I think I recall her saying full gathered skirts were OK if they were of the 50’s underskirted variety. I liked hearing this as I’ve just made one and was wondering if I should go the underskirt or not!

  3. Let me start by saying- the glasses look very cute on you. I too wear contacts and only wear my glasses when I HAVE to, but yours look nice and I hope your eye (eyes?) get better asap.
    When I was reading this, I was struck by the thought of- I wish I knew my body shape well enough to be able to articulate what I can wear and can’t as well as you have.
    Oh, and cute top too 🙂

  4. You would never recognize me in my glasses. My vision is so poor that even skinny lenses make my eyes look like little peanuts. And just forget about peripheral vision. Eye infections are the pits! I hope you recover from yours quickly.

  5. You are so right about belts. I only have a few but they really help me to highlight my best feature; my waist. Belts are so great that they even made jersey maxi dresses wearable this past summer!

  6. Great link to the different shapes. I always had trouble identifying my shape too because I don’t slot easily into the pear, hourglass or apple categories. I have wide shoulders and hips. But my bust is in the A cup range. From the link, I would be an “8” shape.

    I agree with you. The belt looks great on you.

  7. Ugh! Eye infections seriously suck! I like that outfit, thanks for directing me to the McCall’s pattern–I almost never look at McCall’s, but I’ve been thinking about trying a shirt like that, and had been wondering about pattern ideas. I still don’t see myself ever wearing jeggings though…

  8. I’d never heard of an “8 shape” before, but I think I might very well be one — interesting! I’ve always referred to myself as having a “compressed hourglass” because of my short waist.

  9. I’m also an hourglass shape with hips that are both high up and somewhat wider than my bust. Belts work wonders. I have trouble finding them small enough to fit my waist, but when I do, I snatch them right up.

    The thing about being in my 30’s, though, is that I stopped disliking my hips. Hated them in my 20’s. Now? They’re great. I look great. Anyone who says otherwise can go bite me. I guess that’s the privilege of growing into one’s body.

  10. Boy the confusion over body types! But definitely the belt does the trick.

    Also, I’d have to agree with you about glasses. My depth perception is questionable with glasses and the transition from contacts to glasses at times make me look like a real clutz (sp?).

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