Nicky Hambleton-Jones has years of experience helping all ages, shapes and sizes to get the most out of their wardrobes and is best known for playing style advisor to the nation on the hit TV show, 10 Years Younger. Here, Team LBD gets the low-down from The Makeover Queen herself on the key LBD looks that will get you looking fabulous and body confident this season.
What’s your body type?
Start by looking at your body in all its glory. It doesn’t matter what shape you want to be or what you once were, look at yourself NOW, this summer, to find what is truly going to work for you.
Rhubarb – straight up and down
Create extra shape with clever prints that give an illusion of curves in all the right places. The Mascara Contrast Bandage Dress, £149, is fantastic for boyish frames as it features diagonal stripes which draw focus to the hips and waist, while encouraging a larger bust too. The monochrome pattern ensures this is smart enough for work wear with a tailored jacket and can also be brought into the evening with a pair or platform court shoes.
Apple – round in the middle, usually with a larger bust and tummy
There’s no cutting corners with a large bust and the goal here is balance. Be sure to elongate your torso to draw attention away from your tummy and bust, and instead focus on your slender legs. Go for a dress that skims your body as opposed to clings. The Silence Beyond Syllables Terracotta Black and Oyster Dress, £62, is an excellent choice as the colour combination is cleverly placed to break up the width of your tummy and waist, while the square neck line is high enough to make a large bust look smaller. Team with a fabulous necklace to add extra pizazz.
Pear – proportionally larger on the hips, thighs and bottom
Help minimise the hip and thigh area and go for a dress that will draw attention to the upper part of the body, which will no doubt be slimmer and narrower if you’re a pear shape. Make the most of your fabulous arms, back and busts with the The Style Standard Estima Dress by Margit Brandt, £84.99, – the delicate spaghetti straps are great for broadening shoulders so will balance out large hips, while the maxi skirt will allude to longer, slimmer legs.
Strawberry –larger shoulders and bust than stomach, thighs and bottom
Avoid bandeau or strapless dresses at all costs as these styles will cut you straight across at your widest part and only serve to accentuate your broad shoulders and large bust. Instead, go for a v-neck detail which subtly reveals a sophisticated cleavage. I love the long sleeves on the Hedonia Gabby Dress in Black, £65, which is excellent for helping to conceal and shrink wide shoulders. The body-con effect of the dress also highlights slim hips and torsos too, bringing attention away from the upper body area.
Hourglass – small waisted with curvy bottom and bust
If you’re lucky enough to be an hourglass figure, you will have enviable, balanced curves – something most women strive for! For this shape, you really must show off your assets and opt for a dress which hugs you in all the right places and reveals your tiny waist. A peplum dress is fantastic for making your hips and bum look smaller whilst maintaining that hourglass silhouette. The Kate Fearnley Fontaine Dress in Black/Ivory, £183, is incredibly structured so ensures your curves are tamed while the monochrome palette is perfect for both day and night.
I’ve also teamed up with SPLENDA® to launch its ‘Small Steps’ campaign, to help ladies across the UK keep going on their healthy resolutions. Visit www.facebook.com/splendaUK to find out more.