At times, life has its ebb and flow, peaks and valleys due to the fluctuation of one’s weight because of varying circumstances—sometimes by our choice and other times by unforeseen occurrences. During this time, it can feel like our personal brand is going through a visual transformation. It is through this transitional time that we all want to feel and look our best.
From my years of experience as a fashion designer and style strategist, I have learned that the two most valuable attributes a person can possess are listening and empathy. When I have been asked to consult on a client’s brand these two characteristics are always what I lead with. What has made them take that step in wanting to improve their visual brand? For me, the most important and rewarding goal is to help any client thrive in varying environments. I have seen clients express negative emotions and insecurities when fluctuating in weight loss/gain. It presents challenges and sometimes results in them giving up on achieving their ultimate goal. I have put together some fashion and style tips to help others get through this progression.
Jersey Dress or Suit
This is a sure winner in the fabric department— it barely creases. The weight of a jersey also can play into camouflaging some areas that we all want to avoid bringing attention to. The heavier weight is more forgiving, but with the array of shape-wear that we have at our fingertips, a light jersey will work as well. This fabric also drapes beautifully which can be helpful in those challenging areas. This fabric typically has some stretch which is important if your weight tends to fluctuate.
This piece is a wonder. It can complete an outfit and provide a polished and elevated look while accommodating any weight concern. Be mindful of the fit even if you choose a slightly oversized silhouette. A baggy style is never chic—even if the trend labels “a slouchy look.” Paired with a denim pant, dress, or shorts for the warmer months, a jacket is always a winner!
Shirt and Shift Dress
These silhouettes are beautiful. While you are fluctuating in weight, they can be very flattering. The shirtdress is also chic when belted. This accessory can help highlight your waistline and shape during this transition. The shift dress is beautiful when paired with a jacket. This look can take you from day to night. If you are a little more conscience during this time, you may choose this silhouette, but do not allow the size to be too oversized or it can make one look less put-together.
Straight Leg Pant or Small Flare Leg
This tailored pant looks more proportioned and streamlined when transitioning in size. I would apply this to denim, choose darker shades, and choose a fabric with a little stretch. Whatever fabric you choose, it should never be too saggy around the posterior. This is a great choice to pair with a blouse that will allow you to tuck it in or leave it untucked.
Pencil and A-Line Skirt
I know you may be thinking – what? A pencil skirt? But too much extra fabric can amplify the problem. An A-Line skirt with not too much fabric can be flattering as well. You’ll never hear it enough, but tailoring is very important and choosing a high waist option is definitely more comfortable. From a dressy tank top on summer evenings to an all season cashmere sweater, you can pair this piece with a top of your choice.
Before you hit the stores, keep in mind these essential tips to looking your best during this phase.
- Simple is Best: Minimal patterns and monochromatic looks are best.
- Fit, Fit, Fit: Your tailor is your best friend during this time.
- Capsule Wardrobe: This is 6-10 piece wardrobe of the necessary items. Yes, you will wear them often, but you will feel your best and be able to mix the pieces.
- Accessories: Keep the wardrobe simple and make a statement with these pieces.
Remember that through this time, be kind to yourself. Perhaps it is a mani/pedi, a massage, or spa treatment. It may be as simple as getting together with good friends who empower you. Never forget to treat and reward YOURSELF!