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  • Writer's pictureLucy

How to Achieve Your Ideal Body Shape Through Illusion Dressing

Updated: May 25, 2023

There's a whole bag of tricks that stylists have at our disposal to help clients look and feel fabulous. Using the concepts of colour, silhouette and style, you can instantly minimise common figure challenge areas, highlight your favourite features, and achieve your ideal silhouette.

Would you like to create more curves?

Would you like to look slimmer?

Would you like to highlight certain areas of your body, while minimising others?

Illusion dressing is designed to help you achieve all of that!

Fundamental to this concept is understanding how the eye moves across the body according to where we put the focus, through the use of colour, garment construction, design features and elements and texture.

It can help us look taller and slimmer, as well as change or alter the look of our body shape for something different.

Horizontal lines

This is the easiest way to create width, curve and shape, but also tend to shorten and broaden the body. Be aware that a horizontal line can be created through your clothing anywhere there is a line and this is where our eye is drawn first.

They are created through:

  • Where a garment ends on your body (i.e a hem or sleeve line)

  • Seams added within the garment (such as waistbands)

  • Design elements such as epaulettes, pockets or the print of the fabric itself (i.e stripes)

Here's how to make these lines work in your favour:

✔️ Never place a horizontal line across an unflattering area or a point you don't want to highlight (such as a fuller tummy)

✔️ Strategically use them to balance and create proportion between your upper and lower body (i.e a strong shoulder blazer will balance a bigger bottom half)

✔️ Place lines anywhere you want to draw attention to or broaden (i.e your slimmest point, or narrow shoulders).

Vertical lines

Vertical lines do the opposite to horizontal and are the easiest way to create the look of a longer, slimmer body shape.

They also create the illusion of height, which can minimize any width in the body.

They are created through:

  • The outline of a garment (such as an open blazer, V neck)

  • Seams added within the garment (such as princess seams)

  • Design elements such as vertical pleats or the print of the fabric itself

Whenever you want to look taller or slimmer, make sure you have some vertical lines in your outfit:

✔️ Add an open jacket, blazer or cardigan

✔️ Try a shirt with slim, vertical stripes

✔️ Choose front pleated pants or skirts

Diagonal lines

These have the same effect as vertical lines as they draw the eye across the body, helping to visually lengthen and slim. The greater the length of the diagonal line, the more slimming and lengthening its effect.

✔️ Try wrap dresses

✔️ Look for other diagonal lines in the garment, especially in areas that you want to appear slimmer.

If you'd like to find out more tricks of the trade to improve your personal and professional image, book your complimentary 30 minute style chat with me.


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