Coats for All Shapes, Body Shapes that is.

5 body shapes and the right coat

Coats for body shapes

Winter is Here!

Winter is here now and most of us are spending a large part of our lives in coats.

Now that you understand your body shape the next question is “What is the best coat for me?”. Here are the five basic shapes and the best coat silhouette each one.

Sassy Gal (aka inverted triangle) Body Shape

Your broad shoulders give you a great natural posture and make coats look great on you. The object is to create more of a curvy silhouette. Choose a fitted and belted jacket. Big flap hip pockets add to the look you are going for. Don’t get carried away with fancy or oversized collars – stay classical. Going with a small check pattern will also draw attention away from the shoulders and add to the overall look you want.

Lady Diva (aka hourglass) Body Shape

You have the shape everyone is going for just don’t lose it in the bulkiness of the coat. Keep the coat a fitted one with a v necked collar. Emphasize the v neck and wear your coat with the collar button open – use a scarf to keep your neck warm. You can sport the hip pockets and wide collar – just as long as the waist is fitted snugly. Don’t chop yourself in half with a tie belt. It will trash your silhouette. If you wear a belt make it a buckled one over a fitted coat.

Earth Goddess (aka apple) Body Shape

If it is warm enough you can still employ the Rule of Thirds and leave your coat open down the front. Otherwise, look for a coat that has a pattern or design going down the center front of the coat (perhaps even around the neck in a shawl collar. Keep the elements simple and steer away from big lapels – a lapel less duster style coat works best on you. Add a long scarf hanging around your neck and traveling down your center front to break up your torso into those thirds. You can sport simple beautifully

Lady Peacock (aka pear) Body Shape

Like everything else in your wardrobe, you along can play with all the unique and different collars and lapels around. The funnel shaped collar is carried off best by you as are huge lapels and double ones. Wear all the scarves in all their unique ways that you want. With all your focus on the face and shoulders just let the coat skim your waist and hips and fall smoothly.

Lady of Movement (aka rectangle) Body Shape

Like the rest of your ensembles, keep it flowing. Your shape handles belted coats the best – letting the material puff out above and below the belting. Add hip pockets and dynamic lapels and you are set. Because you are usually tall for your size the three quarter length coat is best for you and keeps you in proportion.

Above all, buy a coat you love and feel great in! Dress to your likes and not to our shoulds and, above all,  have fun!



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What is your Bodyshape?? The answer in 3 simple steps.

What is your body shape? Previously I described the 5 body shapes and guidelines on how to dress. Next step is determining your particular shape.

That will take 3 easy steps with 3 simple measurements.

Step 1 – Prepare to measure.

In addition to a tape measure, there are a few other things you will need to before measuring.

First, leave your jeans for another occasion. They are bulky and act as a girdle.

Second, the less material between you and your tape measure the better. Lightweight garments are best. Tank top and leggings are perfect

Third, gather up your tools.

a good tape measure.

elastic. To determine where your waist is.

a mirror. This will help you find where you are measuring. A good friend would be a good substitute.

Step 2-The Measurements

Now, take that tape measure in your hands and start measuring

1- Bust. Making sure the tape measure is level with your bust across your back measure around the widest point of your bust. Do NOT pull the tape measure tight.

2- Waist. If you are not sure where your waist is, tie a piece of elastic around your waist and move around. It will settle at your waist. It is fine to pull this one a little tight. You are measuring over clothes

3 – Hips. The dreaded hip measurement is next. Hips in this context is the widest part of your body below your waist. Look at yourself sideways in the mirror to find this line and measure it. Do NOT pull tight here.

Step 3 – What Bodyshape are you?

You are a Lady Diva (aka Hourglass)  if your bust and hips are within 2 inches of each other and your waist is 7 – 8 inches smaller.

You are a Lady of Movement (aka Rectangle) if hips and bust are within 2″ of each other but waist is NOT 7 – 8″ smaller

You are a Lady Peacock (aka Pear) if hips are more that 2″ larger than your bust and waist is smaller than  bust.

You are a Sassy Gal (aka Inverted Triangle) if your bust is more than 2 inches larger than your waist and your waist is smaller than your bust.

You are an Earth Goddess (aka Apple) if waist is larger than or equal to bust.

You can be on a scale between two shape. Claim ownership of both shapes. I will clarify that on an upcoming post.

Right now, you can you can go to my website Istina Design  to read up further on what your particular body shape will look best wearing.



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You’re Not an Inverted Triangle!! You are a Sassy Gal





Our next stop in our exploration of body shapes or styles is the Sassy Gal. You are also known by the very unimaginative term of Inverted Triangle! That so does not match your personality and style. You developed those broad shoulders because you were a force to be reckoned with.

You’ve checked your measurements and the largest one is your bust. While your waist is in relative proportion, your bust is more than 2 inches larger than your hips. While we are not measuring your shoulders, they support your bust with no problem! In the old paradigm you would be a very geometric inverted triangle.   For an assist in figuring out your shape check out my BodyShapeFinder.

Your style is to take on the world on your terms. You just want to be careful to not overpower the people around you. Best way is to quiet down your strength and streamline your image. What is better than a hidden asset! Let the rest of the world relax so they can admire your sassiness and strength. What will help a lot in that streamlining are your legs. They are long in proportion to the rest of your figure and seem to go on and on.

You are around 14% of the population, making you the third largest group. You move the world forward. Unfortunately many retailers don’t acknowledge nor cater to your unique body shape or style.


What to Do?

You are one of only two body styles that can draw focus to your hips and have fun. No fear of making them look too big.

Since the goal is to streamline your figure (and bring the hips more in proportion to your bust) be quiet in the shoulders and let the fun fly at the waist and legs.


On Top

Go with necklines that enhance your height and focus on your face. Slashed necklines and button up shirt collars with the first button or two open are perfect. Deep v and scoop necklines that go long rather than wide are also good.

Go single breasted in jackets and other tops. Play down and don’t emphasize your shoulders. A perfect jacket would be one that cinches your waist and then flares dramatically over your hips. Vests are your best friends – morning, noon, and night.

Short sleeves draw attention to the breadth of your bust and shoulders. You are better off either sleeveless or with elbow or 3/4 length sleeves. When you wear long sleeves have fun with the cuffs.


On the Bottom

You can wear those skinny jeans and cigarette pants that most body shapes stay away from. With your long legs – show them off. Don’t hide them under wide legged or floppy jersey slacks. If you want loose fitting, go all the way to cargo pants with multiple pockets on the legs. Emphasize your hips with low waisted pants.

You can go to any extreme with your skirts. – waist cinching aka 1950s style to skin hugging pencil skirts. Long skirts are great because of the length of your lower torso.

Define your waist. Have fun with belts of all sizes and shapes.



Some good general rules to follow when shopping are:

Focus attention on your waist and hips

Draw attention away from your bust and shoulders

Emphasis those legs!!


Shopping Frustration Solved

When you go shopping you usually end up with separates since ensembles seldom work. If the skirt or pants fit then tops or blouses or jackets are snug in the shoulders and bust and forever splitting. If the shoulders fit them the bottoms bag. Frustrating.

You have been trying to shop and dress to look your best but most retailers have been ignoring your shape. What I am most proud of with Istina Designs is that the garments are designed and proportioned to the unique body styles. All my designs are tagged with the body styles they are best suited for. That doesn’t mean you can’t buy the garment if you are not that body style. It gives you guidance to find those designs best suited for you. Select your body style when ordering the outfit and it will be proportioned to your particular body style. No more gaping necklines!!!

Furthermore, since the garments are completed after an order is received, the garment will be proportioned to your specific measurements. Check it out!!! Shop Istina Designs!

For More Info

If you want more detailed info on your particular body style, Get my free e-book Know Your Body Shape.

We don’t always fall exclusively in one body style. We may fall between two shapes. (your hips and bust are about the same and your waist is only a couple of inches out of alignment for the Lady of Movement, etc). In those cases, pay attention to both body styles when shopping. For assistance there, pick up a Shopping Guide for your particular body style combo in the Istina Designs shop.

Final Note

Above all, don’t be so bound by the ‘rules’ that you select clothes that you don’t like. Enjoy the clothes you wear – that will generate the best impression. And have fun. That creates the most beautiful ensembles.


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Trunk Shows

To avoid the major markup that retail stores have to impose on clothing to cover the cost of retail I am using a different way to get my clothing to you - in home trunk shows. Invite a few of your [...]

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