Saturday, 8 October 2016

What the Heck is My Body Shape? And Isn't Yellow Awesome?

I've been working with the assumption for some time, that my current body shape is a rectangle.  It has changed significantly in my lifetime, something that some experts say doesn't happen but I can assure them it does.  As a skinny teen and twenty-something I had a tiny waist, small bust and an obvious waist-hip definition.  My shoulders are slightly narrow and rounded and just slightly narrower than my hips.  Weight gain went to my thighs first, though not my bottom.  So, I considered myself a pear shape and dressed accordingly. 

Pregnancy, hormones, aging, hormones, weight gain, hormones...

I grew a large bust and thickened around the middle.  Despite having a definite bosom I tend to feel sort of large and shapeless.  A big block with boobs, is how I would describe myself.  I decided I was a rectangular shape though I come fairly close to the shape Trinny and Susannah call Vase.  At first glance it looks like I am rather lucky.  Sure, In confess I don't look too bad naked considering my age, but with clothing on it's another matter.

In their body shape analysis I think they are fairly generous in what they call a defined waist and as usual the advice is to accentuate the waist, belts, nipped in jackets, fitted dresses.  This just doesn't work for me.  I don't find accentuating my waist works at all.  A belt around my middle just says hey look here where there is barely a waist and for some reason I am extremely uncomfortable with a waist belt.  The end result might be a great figure and a scowling face.  Also, my lifestyle is much too casual for fitted dresses and nipped at the waist jackets. 

I'm just trying to figure out how to not look like a blob in jeans and a blouse.

In a recent post I used a photo of myself in jeans and a blue blouse, the way I would be dressed for a day at home. Of course if I suddenly went to the pub or the grocery store or for a walk around the block I would remain dressed like that.  I would just add the scarf and boots. 

I love the blouse, but I don't think it's terribly flattering because it's not fitted enough to my shape.  If I whittled down my closet to only things fitted to my shape I wouldn't have very much.

                                   Here she is, the large rectangle with boobs

                      And here ( yes I cropped off my head because I'm tired of photos of my face)

is a more casual look, distressed jeans and a tee shirt that skims my torso a little more.   My more casual look seems to be a little more figure flattering.

I don't know whether to just give up or perhaps I should give up blouses, since they style I need in a blouse is really difficult to find.  Or should I have some blouses tailored?  I don't have the skills to take in the side seams properly.  I'm afraid I would make a mess of it.

Blouse Requirements

style- fitted with seaming, no collar, scoop neck
other- natural fabrics and the right colours

I think that what is happening is that the size I need to buy for fitting the bust leaves the rest of the blouse looking sloppy.  Also, I am attracted to loose fits for comfort but have to admit they don't flatter me.  Or at least they leave me looking like a rectangle with boobs.

Even tee shirts are often box shaped and I do a partial tuck and leave the rest sort of slouchy.  I suspect that the way I dress makes me look larger and more shapeless than I am but I don't seem to be successful at fixing this. 

Perhaps I am asking myself if it's worth the cost of tailoring inexpensive tee shirts and blouses.  It will cost me more than the garments did, but if I like them and they are well made could it perhaps be worth it?

I am quite stuck.  I don't know if I am seeing myself accurately and I don't know if I should make any changes to my clothing or just forget about it.  Part of me definitely wants to insist that I do not have to dress to emphasise my shape because I am more than just my shape.  But another part of me does not want to be represented as a shape I am not.  Sometimes I think it's just that I don't recognise myself in photos.  In my head I am still a skinny girl with a slightly pear shaped bone structure.  Whose boobs are those?

On a cheerier note, I am wearing yellow today.  I love soft yellows, as you may know from a previous post, but have been scared of it for years.  I must have tried some unflattering yellow years ago and concluded that all yellows were ruled out.  I thought it matched my skintone too much-yellow face, yellow shirt.  Now I am mad for yellow, though I will admit it's specific yellows.  Muted, soft, slightly browned, I like it from cream to old gold and various versions in between.  I dyed today's shirt.  It was a white tee shirt previously and I'm very happy with the result.  It's slightly darker in reality than shows in the photo.  My camera doesn't like yellow and tends to whiten and lighten it.  My shirt is closer to the yellow on the left than the one on the right.

                                Apparently my favourite yellow is Naples Yellow


I'm dipping my toes in the yellow ocean and working my towards wearing more old gold and ochre.  

I've successfully digressed to my current obsession: yellow and gold.  

Please tell me in the comments what you think about my blouse situation.  What would you do, or advise?  Give up blouses?  Tailor the blouses?  Hold out for just the right blouses?



  1. I'm an hourglass - I've always been and still am, even with grown belly my measurements are still very balanced. Amazes me. This seems like a more or less full list of shapes, with many nuances that are not considered in traditional 4 types.

    Do you like A-line blouses? I think they look great on everyone! Very flattering shape. I love those with long lines, asymmetrical hems, shark hems etc. If you haven't seen, I posted a Melissa McCarthy denim shirt with faux leather leggings just recently on my blog. I think you would look awesome in something like this, and it's also super duper comfortable! I also think this blue shirt looks great on you! I don't see any problems at all.

    You are so much more presentable when you are home - ready for almost anything. I think even the Queen wouldn't offended if you open a door wearing this when she knocks. I am pajamas or stretchy pants kind of a girl. I rarely dress up at home. I wish I could live naked half of the time. :)))


  2. I try, but blouses are to constrained for me. I continue to be drawn to boho-ish tunic tops. I find them very flattering and forgiving...unless I'm deluding myself, which is possible. I say, if you're going to continue to pursue blouses, tailor them! I appreciate your thoughtful posts. I'm a pear who has developed a bust in later life, as well.

    1. Thanks for your input, Kathy. I too am drawn to boho-ish tunic tops but I am not sure if shapeless is terribly flattering on me. I suspect draped, flowy things look really good hanging from a set of wide shoulders over a thin torso. I ask myself, do people look at this and assume I have a waist under there or do I just look as wide and rectangular as this tunic? Then, I get rather peeved with myself for even caring. LOL Do you sew your own boho-ish tunic tops? They don't seem to be a thing in any of my local shops right now. I agree with you about the constrained feeling of many blouses. Of the few I have they don't give that feeling but the more fitted they are the more they do so I am complaining because my blouses aren't fitted enough to be flattering but if they were fitted I'd probably not like them. Maybe I just don't like that blue one I'm wearing above. Oh dear, sorry about this long and rambling reply. :-)

  3. You seem to have a handle on your problem already, Shawna, at least from what I see. That blue top looks great on you with your jeans. Tucking or belting can get rid of the too-roomy sense you have, as you know. But why no collar on the blouse? That blue one looks good with a collar.

    I think that body chart is too nuanced for anybody to know what shape s/he is. Heh. And who chose the name Brick?! Jerk. As for you and your "block," heh. All I can say is, you are statuesque - not many people have the joy of saying the same.

    And I laughed about you being tired of your face. Me too about mine. Gaaa!! Face face face face. I love your yellows. Have fun playing.

    1. Hi Melanie, big hugs!! The grass is always greener, isn't it? I do not want to be statuesque. I hate statuesque. LOL. I want to be ordinary, average size and not stand out and be told I must dress dramatically because I am tall. Not that I do what I am told. I want to be skinny and look great in shapeless draped things. Oh well. I have decided that the blouse doesn't feel right even if it might look right to some people and that is why it niggles at me. I have dressed the block and boobs with a peasant style blouse which I love and no it doesn't make my torso look any smaller but at least I love the blouse! YOUR face, I could never get tired of. xoxo


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