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The Big Woman - Prasantt Ghosh

For decades, larger sizes have been the Cinderella of fashion, neglected by shops and the fashion pages. Even though more ranges cater for bigger women, they still lack the colour, style and price offered by their standard – sized counterparts.

But help is at hand. A style guide that will show you how to look you best, not by succumbing to every new diet or exercise regime, but through the gentler arts of deception.

With our easy – to follow plan, you can look wonderful without having to that, take more exercise or spend money.

Who has not found what seemed to be the perfect top only to discover the collar is a disaster, the clothes on the bustline too much for an ample bosom or the sleeves so tight they make you look like a sumo wrestler.

To avoid such pitfalls, the first step is to discover and body shape. What matters is getting the right fit and ensuring a flattering style.

Honesty is vital. There is no point in deluding yourself the garment fits when deep down you feel uncomfortable and the cut. Clothes should be perfect or have the potential to be the cut. The worst thing you can do is compromise. Don’t assess the fit with a single twist in front of a mirror. The need to see yourself from the front, sides and behind to judge the cut. Look out for the bell – take horizontal pull lines. If the back, they mean the size is too small, at the front, they mean the cut is too straight for your shape.

Beware gaping collars, which frequently occur if you need to increase your size to get a fit across the bust or back. See what adjustments are possible to get a more tailored fit or try a different style. The golden rule is tight clothes making you look bigger and looser clothes make you look smaller.

Wear a leotard, body or swimsuit and ask a friend to assess your body shape. The key to clever dressing lies in recognizing and making the best of your shape.


Full hips/ big bottom. Wear fabrics that drape rather than conceal. Skirts should be flirty and floaty and not to luminous. Wear long tops that go beyond your fullest point and end where you taper inwards. Dark colours draw loss.

Heavy thighs. Long line Panty girdles or tights with built in support from tummy to thighs are vital. These take off inches and provide support. Avoid tight trousers.

Heavy lower legs. You do not have to wear trousers. If your calves are large wear tea length which end just above the ankle. Keep colours medium to dark and shoes in flesh colours.

The first is modesty, the need to hide one’s body from the sight of others. This can be done very easily. And cannot by itself account for all the changes of fashion through the ages. In any case, ideas of what is might ad wrong in dress vary from country to country. The second is protection against the cold or wet or in tropical lands against heat.

Open your wardrobe and look critically at your clothes. If – like nearly half of Indian women – you are size 16 or over, the chances are that your fashion failures outnumber your successes.

The problems are familiar; trousers that accentuate hips, dresses that outline every bulge. Like millions of large, healthy, attractive women, you face an apparently insoluble dilemma – finding fashionable clothes that both flatter and fit.

Short neck; opt for a V-neck, open buttons at the collar or mitigate rounded necklines with an oblong scarf tied low, long chains or ropes of stones or pearls. Avoid high collars, cowl necks and shoulder pads.

Double chin - Distract the eye by dusting beneath your chin with soft bronzing powder. Use makes up to emphasis eyes and lips and apply blusher high on cheekbones to face.

Full bust keep it simple from neck to waist. An elegant, loose fit over the bust is more slimming than something lighter. Collar details bring the eye upwards. Make sure your bra is properly fitted.

Big tummy. Make sure there is no strain over the grip and fastenings close easily. Opt for blended fabrics that crease as easily as natural fibres. Long tops look best but avoid waisted styles.

Heavy arms; the key is loose fitted sleeves. Layering with a waistcoat takes attention from the arms., as does as or oblong scarves or chunky beads in summer roll up your cuffs and show off your lovely forearms.


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