Layered clothing is a manner of dressing using multiple garments that are worn on top of each other. Some of the layers have different, largely non-overlapping, functions. Using more or fewer layers, or replacing one layer but not
Outdoor and sportswear manufacturers favor layered clothing because, among other reasons, it allows them to offer so-called “technical” or “functional” clothes which are optimized for the particular demands of a specific layer. Such clothes are often made of advanced synthetic materials, and can be expensive.
Done right, layering can actually mask any soft, round areas you’re trying to play down. Here are eight tips for creating the layered look and NOT at the expense of your rockin’ curvy body:
1. Limit your layers. Three layers is probably ample.
2. Nice silhouettes. If your outfit foundation is a dress, choose a dress with a nice silhouette, well fitted but not tight around the breasts and hips, drawn in at the waist.
3. Structured pieces on top. Choose a top layer with a waistline — a cinched or empire waist, a belted waist, a blouse with well-placed darts, a fitted blazer, or a cropped jacket or cardigan, something with a waist.
4. Chill on the chunky. Go easy on the fluffy and the puffy, the thick and the woolly. Rule of thumb: Don’t add bulk around your bulk. For curvy women, the layered look is about adding color and warmth not bulk. If you’re trying to play down a large bust, wear an open neckline to draw the eyes up. If you’re trying to camouflage your belly, keep layers at your midsection fitted, not tight, rather than oversized and floppy. Oversized and billowy clothes or sometimes even baby doll cuts can actually make you look larger than you are.
5. Pair lightweight pieces under chunky fabrics. If you do choose a single chunky piece lightens it up with a light weight or a warm tone jacket.
6. Balance layered tops with slim bottoms. If you choose to wear several layers on top, keep the bottom half of your outfit long and lean. Try skinny-cut, tapered, or boot cut pants or tights. Elongate your body by matching your shoes or boots to your pants, leggings, or tights. Consider #7 when choosing your bottoms, too.
7. Use light and dark colors to your advantage. Since dark colors are slimming, you should wear darker colors in the areas you want to deemphasize. And no, that doesn’t mean wear all black or charcoal gray. That’s not great either. Look at your body with a loving but critical eye, and use whites and colors to emphasize your best features.
8. Wear simple jewelry and accessories. When wearing the layered look, stick with simple accessories like stud earrings, plain necklaces, and thin, light scarves. It’s really enough to have a few layers going on.