Tuesday, April 6, 2010

The New Professional answers questions, too

Yes, this is my blog where I post pictures of myself.  Whoppee for me.  But I like to answer questions, too (yes, ones that are not about me).  For example, this request my friend Beth made a few weeks back.  Beth just had her daughter Juliette a couple of months ago--on Superbowl Sunday, to be exact (I stopped by after the big game)--and the pretty mommy wants some fashion advice.  Let's take a listen:

I have a styling dilemma! I am attending a wedding at the end of May in Georgia and need to look cute in my post-pregnancy body that won’t fit into anything I own. Suggestions? (Oh, and I’m on a budget!) Thanks : )

Well, Beth, have I got some fun options for you!  I love dress shopping (if only I had more occasions to wear dresses).  Beth is one of those naturally tall, slim gals that looks good in just about anything.  So I'm sure one (if not all) of these options would look stunning on her!  Georgia in May averages about 80 degrees, so no coverups needed!

A few overall tips to address anything you might want to hide on your body:
  • Emphasize another part of your body (got great gams but don't like your tummy--hike up the hemline!)
  • Bring attention up to your face with eye-catching jewelry or a flirty scarf
  • Keep any fabric or additional details (beading, embroidery, ruffles) in areas you want emphasized
  • A stiffer fabric will hold its shape better and keep from sticking to your figure
  • Floral and geometric patterns (other than stripes) are more forgiving visually

Option 1: the maxi dress

One of my favorite childhood memories is my grandmother and her muu muu dresses.  Taiwan (where she lived) is tropical--meaning very hot, humid summers.  Maxi dresses are what I think of as a younger, more versatile version of the same flowy, airy goodness.  This cute number has a breezy bohemian feel:

I also like this dress and this dress, both from Forever 21, and this one from Kohl's (toss a cami underneath for modesty).

Option 2: empire waist

This style might seem like a no-brainer, but be careful on the fit--empire waists, when worn wrong, can actually make you look more pregnant (even when you're not).  The key is to make sure the waistband isn't too tight, causing the excess fabric below to puff out too much, and to make sure the bottom of the dress angles out into an A-line.  Also, if possible, avoid stretch jersey-ish fabrics for this fit.  This goes for dresses and tops.  This one from Target has pleats to keep the skirt from puffing up at your belly:

Some other cute empire options: Kohl's, Kohl's, and Macy's.

Option 3: structured dress

I'm going to admit--structured dresses are a favorite of mine because they hold their shape instead of molding to yours. Depending on what you want your dress to do (hide a tummy, minimize curvy hips), you can go with a straight cut or a-line skirt.  The classic cut of this Target dress never goes out of style:


Another Target option here, one from Macy's, and JC Penney.

I don't know if I've helped you narrow it down at all, Beth, but I am available to be your personal shopper (can you tell I'm starting to miss shopping?).  To keep with the officewear theme of this blog, a knee-length structured dress could work well with a cardigan as long as it's not too revealing, and a maxi dress is great for casual Fridays in the summer (with peep-toe wedges and a cropped blazer).

Got a question for The New Professional? Shoot me an email!


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