Thursday, August 14, 2014

Dressing an apple shape - Camryn Manheim

SIA is having a girl crush on Camryn Manheim. 

Camryn is an apple shape in a plus size & she manages to look every so stylish because she knows how to dress for her shape.  

Her looks revolve around the following formula:

* basic neutrals (or strategic colour/print placement), 
* usually in knits or sheer wovens 
* with a flare from under the bust (empire bust)
* open necklines always (expose decolletage not cleavage)
* often bell sleeves to balance the bust
* often bracelet sleeves to expose the wrists
* fabulous jewellery/necklaces in fine layers - nothing chunky which bounces around the girls. 

Does anyone notice what she wears on the bottom? 
Usually black pants but it doesnt matter. 
She does it so well, that all the attention is on top, near her face. 


A line, vertical blocks of grey, covering the bum. 

Layering the jewellery over simple pieces. 



Another A line. The sheer sleeves & the
bell shape of the sleeves adds allure. 

More formula - sheer sleeves, open neck,
fitted boobs, floats over the hips. 

This is stunning & likely to be Max Mara. Open neck, sheer sleeves,
embroidery creates vertical lines, A line. Easy. 
An open blouse with ruffles helps to slim her front.
Three quarter sleeves add to the allure. 


This looks works in some ways & doesnt in others. It's way too long for her, swamping her.
The jeans are also way too wide. For a more feminine look, I would also swap the shoes for something with a low vamp. Otherwise not too bad for a non black boho look. 

Again, A line, bum covering, arm exposing, narrow pant legs but I would
substitute a shoe with a low vamp which exposes some of the foot.
Notice how to bright colour is limited to the front of the top - not making her look like a ten tonne tessie from a bright colour being wrapped around her torso. 

Notice the vertical lines on the lace pattern?
Also the band of lace that sits just under her bust
& emphasises that as the narrowest part of her torso.
This is how a "tent" top should work. 

Another gorgeous top - low cut, band under the bust & notice the
wide paisley band on the hem?
That helps to give it an A line shape which flatters her hips.
Also love the sheer sleeve panels. Sheer stops tops being too covering up. 
Another gorgeous empire line - but this one has an issue -
the section below the bust isnt long enough.
A one thirds to 2 thirds split is more attractive than the 1:1 of this top. 

More empire line, more layered necklaces, more flattery.

Another empire line - notice how this has a
vertical centre panel like it is a top & a cardi?
Great slimming vertical lines. 

This isnt an empire line (there is no seam under the bust) - but the way
the print is printed to reveal the white background is a terrific way of creating an A line.  

Pin tucks create a snug bust, floaty below the bust.
Bell sleeves add balance to a large top half. 

This top is magic.
Black upper minimises the bust, fanning into a print at her border.
Open neck as always. 
The age old trick of a scarf which isn't too bulky or wide sitting over the girls. 

This is one of the few I am not a fan of.
Why? The dark colours under her bust look
like they are sitting half on her bust & half off.
It seems to cut her off in the bust, looking too small in the cups.
I do however like the vertical dark lines flowing down the centre of the garment. 


Not a fan of short structured jackets like this on a plus size.
I would prefer clean lapels (ie: no lapels) and
that necklace doesnt work with such a heavy velvet fabric.
It may have been better of the top coming out from under the jacket was a bit floatier
& had a shape slightly different to the hemline of the jacket. 


This is gorgeous, showing you that structured can work on a plus size.
Longer line, clean lapels, contrast top.
Notice the cuffs are not too long?  Perfection. 

Another stunning business look. Probably from The Practice.
Probably expensive but stunning. The neckline, the cuffs. Perfection. 

This one has one big fail & that is that the grey band is not wide enough to
cover her breasts and highlight the
narrowest part of her torso immediately under the breasts.
Because the seam joining grey & black falls across her breasts,
the narrowest part of her torso is hidden. Not flattering. 

Love the way to necklaces are layered to mimic the scoop neck of the top.
This woman leaves nothing to chance. 

No one has fat shoulders. Expose one.
Simple. Easy. Why aren't you doing this?

Leave the neckline open, wear a cami underneath,
make it a print & all lumps
& bumps are hidden/covered. 

Low neck cardigans like this with one button done up always work well.
The shape has to be an A line, though - no straight up & down.
When you see one, grab it. 

Similar neckline cardi in a tie dye look. Perfect. 
Low neck, fitted bust, flare under the bust, bell sleeves,
sheer & vertical beading in your best metal.
It's a formula. Use it. 

This looks like a wrap knit, again fitted in the bust, open neckline. 





Floaty fabric & sheer sleeves. 

A wrap shirt (or dress) acts like an empire line as long as it starts
 to secure just under the bust & never  at the waist. 

The fitted A line knits she wears on Extant.


Do up one button or hook. & let the sides float outwards.
Never do up more than one button unless it's tailor made. 

Notice how she does the brocade outer up so only a small section is
coming together? Notice how that section is just under the bust?
Totally strategic. Totally works.  



Even though orange isnt her colour, the correct shade
of red in the jewellery & the lippy rocks this look. 

Please be really careful with high necklines. This is a pose &
anything looks good in a pose.
The reality may be a whole other story. 

This print is fattening. The only reason she remotely gets
away with it is b/c the pattern is printed in an empire line.
Very hard to find this in real life. 

Be careful with prints larger than the size of your fist - they can be fattening. 

When SIA grows up......

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