How to dress thinner, (when you're feeling fat) 


Like many women Jane and Beryl have put on a little weight in the winter months. The burning question of January is not only how to lose weight but how to hide the damage in the meantime. At this time of year Jane and Beryl thoughts turn to their 'fat wardrobes' and their own perennial guidelines for camouflage dressing.





Here comes Beryl with her packed lunch...OK actually it's her blogging bag, all ready for her usual Wednesday blogging meeting with Jane. This comfy outfit is hiding a multitude of sins. The heeled boots are great because they elongate her stumpies and the top by LV Clothing £24 is trapeze shaped, which flatters most body types.




Guideline1: Nothing skin tight Jane and Beryl do not wear anything tight in January. Tight clothes, just emphasis the unseemly bulges, and nothing puts Jane and Beryl in a bad humour like a constricting waistband.

Just in case you do not believe them, here is Beryl in a tight frock with her new food baby. Also steer well clear of anything that actually grips you under the stomach, or as demonstrated here by Beryl you will get a 'boody-do'. What in heavens name is a 'boody-do', we hear you ask? This is an unfortunate state of affairs when your belly sticks out more than your booty do. Please also note how pitiful Beryl's bottom looks, injections of pig fat maybe coming, as eating mini-pork pies is clearly not doing the job.

Guideline 2: Buy a bigger size Yes they know that you don't want to hear this or spend any money, but not having anything that fits is truly demoralising, and you can always wear it next January. Jane's new trousers from M&S (£35) are proving to be a triumph as she bought them a size larger than usual  - and Jane and Beryl are advocating this if your weight gain has set in like rot and isn't going anywhere soon - then just go up a size and be damned. Comfier, looks better, no muffin...what's not to like?


Guideline 3: Wear a slip  Beryl has an extensive collection of vintage petticoats, that come into their own at this time of year. Jane and Beryl know that many women are resistant to these as they have the hint of the old lady about them, but they do what the name suggests and clothes hang better, and smooth out the back fat and other lumps. Jane and Beryl are not fans however of control underwear except on special occasions as they are far too much trouble on a day to day basis. A padded bra however can be a gift from the gods, instantly improving the bosom to waist ratio.




Guideline 4The fake waist  Over the years Jane and Beryl have learnt to look out for clothes that either have, or give the impression of, a nipped in waist. Having even the suggestion of a waist, gives a body femininity and shape. This is often achieved by a detail within the garment, such as the red velvet insert, as in Jane's Cadogan jacket. No need to do the jacket up, the job is done. 




 Guideline 5: Distracting patterns This dress by Emily and Fin £89 has much to recommend it in terms of subterfuge.The dark background is slimming while the pattern confuses the eye. The neckline broadens Beryl's shoulders thus emphasising her waist. The full skirt gives her figure balance. This is also a great shape if you carry your weight on the bottom half, as
no-one can tell what lies beneath.



Guideline 6Do not wear leggings,  if you are not actually coming or going to an exercise class. This is not a guideline but an order. Olivia Newton John is the only woman who ever looked good in leggings, and she looked like an X-ray of other women and was sewn into them on set. These will not make any part of you look thinner. Wearing a large shirt or jumper with leggings will just make you look like a tea-bag with legs. Cheap leggings are thin and nasty and show your knickers and expensive ones are no better. These belong to the wardrobes of toddlers. Get rid!


Guideline 7One colour or pattern top to toe This is something of a no-brainer and works every time. One colour and fabric elongates and streamlines the body as seen in Beryl's new sale purchase, a velvet Laura Ashley trouser suit, £100 in the sale. This does not have to be black, (this has a gold pattern) in fact too much black wearing, may make others suspicious of your motives. Often just wearing an eye popping colour, will have everyone telling you how marvellous you look, because you appear happy and confident.


Matching boots and skirt, elongate the leg. 
A Zara maxi dress with empire line
waist makes Beryl look taller.











Guideline 8: Extenuate the positive, eliminate the negative  This is the art of showing off your best bits, while hiding your worst. Jane is the queen of this and calls it 'smoke and mirrors'. (These images are not photoshopped ) For example, Jane who is 5 feet 6 inches and accumulates a little weight around her tummy and back, has long elegant limbs, a radiant smile, a lovely pair of knockers, gorgeous naturally curly hair and a talent for friendship. She likes clothes that skim rather than cling to her stomach, and dislikes showing her legs.
This outfit works a treat. The Paul Costello long skirt exaggerates Jane's height, and attracts the eye to her narrow hips, while the round necked corset type top by Caroline Charles slims her rib-cage and shows off the toned upper arms. 





Beryl, in contrast, is a measly 4 ft 11inches tall, and also carries her weight on her torso. But she has good legs, a wide smile, nice olive skin and neat ankles and wrists, and is known to be a hoot. Beryl and Jane only mention this because women tend to focus upon what they do not like, and fail to see what is attractive about themselves, which is often their personas. This dress bought from Collectif for £50 from Spittlefields Market, has perfect proportions for our little diva. The cap sleeves hide her armpits, and the dress sits perfectly in her natural waist.  

Guideline 9Divide and rule  This is a great ruse for anyone whose weight collects about their middle. The open pink coat (second hand Bruce Oldfield £50) not only has a nipped in waste, but when worn open with a darker dress LK Bennett £245, divides the body into thirds, the eye is drawn to the darker central panel, making people shout "there goes a thin woman,"  as you leave the house.




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Guideline 10: Statement shoes Statement shoes will also throw people off the scent of your weight gain. These beauties are LK Bennett and were bought for an amazing £30 in their sample sale. If they are looking at your shoes they are not looking at your bottom.

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