I kick off my new series 'Body Hang-Ups - Style Queries' with a post on legs.
I thought the best way to start this post was to be honest with you about my hang ups with my legs and how I feel about them...
My thighs are big and meaty in proportion to the rest of my body. They are unruly; a place where I carry the most amount of weight and they are unapologetically dimply and very white. I wouldn't say I love my thighs. They carry me around and they have helped me carry two babies around. I have completed two marathons and despite all the fat they carry they are strong too. When it comes to my ankles and calves, they are of a medium scale however the below tips also work for larger ankles and calves.
Dressing for my thighs in particularly has sometimes felt problematic. I have felt many times that I want to hide the largeness, the softness, the dimples. During my style training and over the years of dressing my shapely thighs I've realised it's about finding clothing shapes that flatter them; clothes that make room for them and skim across them. Resulting in me, the wearer, feeling confident and gorgeous in them. I've learnt that it's not about hiding them. Coming from a place of acceptance and if you can muster it; love for the parts of us that make us feel insecure. I don't think I will ever say "I love my legs", but I acknowledge that I have legs and that they do so much for me, and I can do so much because I have them.
Here are my top tips for dressing big legs:
1. Buy clothing that fits.
I know this sounds obvious but how many of us have clothing in our wardrobe that is too big or too small? Sometimes we buy clothes without thinking; we might be in a rush or panic that day, or buying online late at night. We can find that the clothes don't fit our body the way we wanted them too; be they too tight or too big. Or may favourite - too tight in the legs and too big at the hips. Or maybe we have gained or lost weight. My advice is to ensure you are buying clothes that fit, where possible try clothing on, and remember to take back clothing items that you don't like (for whatever reason) in the stores refund timeframe. Also read the online sizing guide for the garment. If a retailer doesn't have a sizing guide online please let me know I will contact them about it.
2. Experiment With Different Styles.
A line skirts, culottes, straight leg trousers, tailored joggers, maxi dresses, midi dresses, dresses and skirts cut on the bias, wrap dresses, high waisted skirts and trousers. All of these will work with bigger legs. Have fun in the shops and try lots of styles on to see if they work for you. Some will look amazing, some will look ok, and others won't. That's all great as it's part of the editing process.
3. Too Much Fabric Is Too Much Fabric.
However a slightly loose silhouette is flattering.
I understand that you may have fallen into the trap of hiding your shape, but I promise you that too much fabric means the item doesn't fit your shape.
4. Know If Your Natural Waist Is High, Low, or Neutral and Work With It For Maximum Comfort and Style Points.
If you have a high natural waist you would probably feel more comfortable in high waisted trousers, or trousers that sit higher on your hips. If you are low waisted then a lower waist or a neutral waist will be more flattering on you. You can also wear high waisted trousers but be careful that they don't end up looking like they come up to your bust. That's not a good look but you know that.
5. Have Clothes Tailored To Your Shape.
Dressing for big legs can be difficult particularly if you have small hips. Try trousers that come to your natural waist which have a ribbon belt that you can tie into a bow for a current, beautiful silhouette. If you find that some trousers don't work for you please try some silhouettes that you haven't considered before. Also have your trousers tailored to your body. A good tailor will make high street clothes look designer as they tailor them to your body.
6. Too Tight Clothing Is Not A Good Look BUT That Doesn't Mean It Can't Be Figure Hugging.
I know you know this but I see many ladies and gentleman rocking some tight garment lines where the fabric is stretched tightly. I don't think it's good for your organs, skin or your image. That being said I love to rock a form fitting dress and know many other ladies of all shapes and sizes rocking similar dress and looking great.
7. Use Jewellery To Draw The Eye Upwards.
Beautiful earrings or necklaces. As well as embellished or patterned tops.
8. Wear A Nude Shoe
The right nude for your skin tone will elongate your legs
9. Try Maxi And Midi Dresses And Skirts.
Not all maxi dresses and skirts are created equal. Again shop around and try some different styles on.
10. Try Straight Leg and Tapered Trousers
They also elongate the leg.
11. Avoid A Tight Ankle Strap
If you have heavy calves this will only make them more prominent. They also cut you off at the ankle making us all appear shorter.
How easy do you find dressing for your legs?
Do you have big legs like me? If so which stores do you think cater for you the best, and which are the worst?
I'd love to chat with you. See you in the comments!