Fashion Friday: Dresses (How to fit an Apple)

Better late than never, right?

Well, whaddya know, we have a request!

I’m not sure I’m the best person to offer advice on this issue, seeing as how I generally hate the way I look in dresses, and I’m sort of apple shape. At least, when I gain weight, I tend to gain it around my mid-section, so I consider myself an apple, but when I’m at my ideal weight I’m more of a rectangle.

Apples . . . rectangles . . . such lovely visual images I’m creating here today.

ANY-WHO. I think an apple shape may be the hardest shape to look good in a dress. Which is why you will almost always see me in jeans or a skirt and a top. But this post isn’t supposed to be about me . . . ahem.

Personally, and this may not be true for all apple bodies, but I don’t care for the flowy, jersey dresses that people SAY are flattering. I prefer structured dresses. My favorite dress is a sheath style.


If it fits well, a sheath lends structure and gives the illusion of a waist — a waist that most of us apples just. don’t. have.

I also think it helps an apple shape to have a V-neck or at least an open neckline. You don’t want it too deep, as most apples tend to be busty, but an open neckline helps to elongate the neck and gives a longer, leaner appearance. It can also de-emphasize the width of the shoulders. Add a statement necklace or some super special earrings to draw the eye up and away from the midsection, and you’re all set.

I also think it’s nice when the structured, sheath-style dress has a seamed waist that sets just a tad higher than your natural waistline, and inverted pleats don’t hurt. I tried on a dress last night that fit all of these criteria. Unfortunately it cost enough to feed my family for a week.

I actually tried it on in this fabric but the above photo shows the details of the dress better.

See how it has structure without being clingy or too fitted, the v-neckline elongates the neck and slims the shoulders, and the inverted pleats at the waist hide any extra pudding you don’t want to show. It’s a little bit too short for my taste, but otherwise, I think it’s a great style for an apple shaped figure. (And it might help my illustration if the model wasn’t a size 00, but what can ya do?)

Okay, here’s another similar dress, and this model is a bit more realistic.

Layering is always helpful.

When I’m feeling particularly thick around the middle, I throw on a loose cardigan and it helps camouflage the tummy. In the summer, a chiffon blouse over a lightweight tank top is a great look.

Layers also add interest. So it works well for you that it’s still cold in your neck of the woods!

Finally, chunky heels help balance out the thicker upper body.

Wedges are awesome. Platforms rule. Pointy toes elongate the leg. And you’re in luck. Those are the styles that are “in” this year.

Oh and also. Never, EVER, EVER wear shoulder pads. Pinky swear.

Aaaaand, one more thing. Make sure, you know, the girls are where they are supposed to be. Proper undergarments are a MUST to looking your best and camouflaging figure flaws. Or, shall we say, figure challenges . . . flaws probably isn’t P.C. anymore, is it?

Suffice it to say, if you haven’t had a professional bra fitting in a while, you may want to invest the time and money. It will be well worth it.

Anybody else have some helpful tips to add?

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