The clothes on my back.
July 28, 2014 7:53 PM Subscribe
I'm a lady, it's hot, I'm shaped weird, I need something to wear that looks nice and isn't t-shirts, and my fashion sense is totally failing me. Relevant details inside.
posted by WidgetAlley to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (18 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Dear Mefites, I am at the end of my very short fashion rope. Can you help me find some tops to wear to work that I don't hate with every fiber of my being?
Context: I am a graduate student who will be doing some light teaching & TA-ing and a lot of meeting industry professionals in the fall. I am not expected to dress business or even business casual, but I feel better about a lot of my work and research duties when I look like I'm there to Get Shit Done. This means I usually wear nice, dark jeans, casual slacks, or sometimes pencil skirts. Shoes are flats, casual (not power) heels, or, for the rare months it's actually cool enough, boots.
Physical difficulties (of course!): I have an unusual bodyshape. I am definitely, definitely a spoon-- I have very broad hips, a big round ass, and quite a small waist (think a 12"+ difference in waist/hips). I'm also a weightlifter/ex-martial-artist, and I have developed trapezius, which give my fairly broad shoulders a slope rather than a square shape-- but my ribcage itself it quite small (I'm a 34 on the smallest clasp in bras.) I also have small breasts and do not fill out shirts that rely on boobs to give them shape very well.
Fashion sense: I am a dark brunette with warm toned skin, and I tend to wear a lot of neutral and autumn colors. If I were being picky, I'd say I skewed more towards the masculine and the feminine classic end of style rather than "trendy" or "flirty", but if that needs to change to make this work, I'll do it. What's more relevant here is what I DON'T look good in, and there's quite a list. I often can't wear tunics, even with a belt, because my waist/hip ratio is too large. I can't wear square-cut or draped things, because they hang off my shoulders and make look like a linebacker. On the other hand, things cut with too MANY feminine curves tend emphasize how sloped my shoulders are and be way too large in the chest. Dropped waists make me look like a sack, and empires are dicey under the best of circumstances.
Caveat: I also live in Phoenix and I routinely bike to school in 100+ degree heat. For this reason, my previous tricks, such complex layering, short sleeved sweaters, and scarves are pretty much out.
What I need: I don't need specific tops that you think I should buy (although that would be great too!) I'm a pretty experienced thrift store/Goodwill-er, but right now my problem is that I don't even know what I'm looking for. What kind of tops are structured not to look comically inappropriate on wide shoulders, small boobs, and a small waist? Examples would be stellar. I'd be thrilled for any ideas of what might look good on me!