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Laraquan
09-11-2007, 05:45 AM
Hi all. I've recently gotten a bit worried about whether I'll be able to fit into most vintage garbs and vintage reproductions, even if I do lose a bit of weight I'm likely to be around 38, 30, 40 in breasts, waist and hips and I'm not sure just what era could fit my oddly hourglass proportions.

I know the 1920s is strictly out due to their focus on lithe, straight lines. Jersey dresses - mostly the repro ones I've found - seem to fit a dream and it sure does make some 1960s tailored jackets look just fine. The thing is, my favourite eras is the 1930s but can someone of my figure pull off that look? It seemed to be hourglass but somewhat more slender from what I've seen... Please advise.

As much as I prefer the 1930s, I can live with 1940s through to some of the more classic 1950s and 1960s styles. I just don't want to be chasing a dream I can't really achieve...

On the plus side, my hair has plenty of natural waves and with a bit of cream I can often achieve some nice 1930s-style waves without much bother at all!

NoirDame
09-11-2007, 05:55 AM
Just remember there were people of all size and body shapes in each era...

While it is true that we have gotten larger, there even then were ladies that needed larger sizes. Just go by measurements...or have reproductions made.

The 50s work exceptionally well for hourglass figures.

Don't give up hope! I'm trying to lose weight, too, but I just had a repro of a 40s dress made.

Laraquan
09-11-2007, 06:10 AM
That's another problem - a desire to lose 12 kilograms and a desire to buy new clothes. Gah!

KittyT
09-11-2007, 06:48 AM
even if I do lose a bit of weight I'm likely to be around 38, 30, 40 in breasts, waist and hips and I'm not sure just what era could fit my oddly hourglass proportions.


These are perfect vintage proportions! I am 36-29-39 and have no problem finding items from the 40s and 50s that fit me like they were custom tailored.

GoldLeaf
09-11-2007, 06:49 AM
This seems to be a common lament :)

I don't think I am overweight, and I rather like my figure. Take into consideration that I am also 6' tall, so I need to be larger fundamentally. I measure 36 to 38 bust, 32 waist, and 42 hips. I am a pretty standard size 10 US.

Suggestions have also been made for me that late 40's and 50's styles would suit my figure well. Having a garment custom made also means that they can tweak the garment to make it fit you well, but also keep the style of the era you are interested in :)

Helen Troy
09-11-2007, 07:20 AM
I am something like 37-31-38 and I feel your pain, sister!;)

For my wedding dress, I wanted 30s style but I soon found out that the most typical 30style does not look good on me. It was too clingy and emphazised my hips more than I liked.

What I did was that I used a original pattern, but my seamstress adjusted it to fit my body shape. I used this pattern http://www.vpll.org/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=25_27_22_98&products_id=253
but we reshaped it by moving the waistline to more of a empireline right under my bust. We kept the typical beautyful construction with the diamondshape on front and the skirts construction.

I think that worked very well, the dress came out woderfull. So I think this way of thinking is the way to go. And that must have been what the more voluptiuos ladies did back then, right? Taking the style but adjusting it to fit your bodyshape.

ssubialdea
09-11-2007, 07:49 AM
hourglass figures are great for vintage clothes, I'm a 38-28-40 and find that 40s and 50s styles suit me best (they're my favorite so that works out well) Even some early 60s dresses are great for hourglass figures. Wavy hair is also perfect for a vintage style.
Also, I have difficulty finding pre-40s vintage, if this is something you encounter you might try looking for more classic pieces and then use accessories, makeup and hair to tailor the look to the period you're going for.

epr25
09-11-2007, 08:41 AM
I think that you will be pleasntly suprised. When you are an hourglass you will find things that fit you better in vintage then in current clothing. I am 36 28 38 and about a vintage 16 some thing smaller due to my lack of chest. But really I don't think it will be that bad. I have said it before and I will say it again all you guys need to e-mail the vintage lady in my town. She has a ton of stuff that is larger sizes! retrose1 on ebay. Tell her what you are looking for.

BegintheBeguine
09-11-2007, 09:19 AM
My advice Laraquan is forget about losing the kilograms if it's proving impossible, buy the clothes anyway!
For the beginning of my long adult life I weighed about 92 pounds (42 kg) and the vast majority of my clothes were mod 1960s, also I wore flapper 1920s. Then when I gained a lot of weight in a short week it became obvious that 1940s-1963 styles looked much better on my 38-28-38 figure. However, 1930s modes offer something for every figure. They are truly classic styles. If you look at a classic clothing for women you will see elements of 1930s style. Twinset, gored skirt, pleated skirt, jacket over a simple dress, loose blouse with a bow, pullover sweater, fit and flare dress, pajama pants. These styles can be found in stores now if you look hard enough amongst the skimpy faddish clothes, and abound in sewing pattern catalogs.
Your lovely hair might be the key to the 1930s look, as whenever I wear any era clothing people always comment favorably that I look like I stepped out of the 20s, showing that the population doesn't differentiate between eras!

pigeon toe
09-11-2007, 10:21 AM
Be thankful for your figure! I wish I had more of an hourglass, I'm about 33-26-35! I can be an hourglass with a padded bra on though. :) I'm quite petite and short-waisted, so EVERYTHING goes to the tailor. Oh well. Vintage STILL looks way better on me than any modern clothes do.

roselily
09-11-2007, 11:12 AM
What always cracks me up is girls want to wear period clothing without dealing with the correct undergarments. Just like a Victorian gown isn't going to look right without petticoats and a corset. My grandma used to bind herself with Turkish towels during the 20's to get that boy silhouette.

imoldfashioned
09-11-2007, 11:28 AM
I usually wear an 18 in modern clothes (44-35-46). It's true that a lot of the vintage clothing out there is in smaller sizes, but I started being able to find a fair number of nice things once I got into the size 22 range and lower. I do wish more of those nice 1930's/'40's Lane Bryant things had survived--we have documentary evidence it was made so where did it all go?

Also, proper underwear makes all the difference--I have dresses where I can't even begin to get the side zip done up that fit perfectly when I wear a girdle. Everything just looks better when you're pulled in too.

zaika
09-11-2007, 01:01 PM
I'd love to have your figure! It sounds pretty normal to me, and I've seen many a vintage dress with your waist size so that the rest could be altered to fit.
Currently I'm...huge compared to the ladies who have posted their measurements so far. My waist is 43!! *gasp* :eek: I've only been able to find one dress that fits me perfectly, so...I'll be getting proper undergarments and repro's made once funds become available.
For me, it doesn't matter about size because there were big women in all eras. It's a matter of finding the clothes that look good on you and going out there with the intention of owning your beautiful look! Have fun with it! lol

dashiell
09-11-2007, 01:36 PM
In my uninformed opinion, the rule of thumb for the hourglass is whether a set of clothing has a waist where a waist ought to be. Sometimes waists are dropped (as in the twenties), sometimes raised. While an hourglass may be able to wear these styles and look great, too, I think the best bet is to stick with a natural waist if you have one. When I think of the thirties (in my uneducated way) I think of a natural waist, overemphasized shoulders, and underemphasized hips (not nonexistent hips, mind you). I think your figure could pull that off smashingly.

My two cents, and sorry for the ramble!

:D

Caledonia
09-11-2007, 03:19 PM
owning your beautiful look! Have fun with it! lol

I love that phrase! Says it all. Thanks for that Zaika :)

pretty faythe
09-11-2007, 04:21 PM
And in the 60's before the bra burning, it was binding your breasts with ace bandages!! (info from me mums)


What always cracks me up is girls want to wear period clothing without dealing with the correct undergarments. Just like a Victorian gown isn't going to look right without petticoats and a corset. My grandma used to bind herself with Turkish towels during the 20's to get that boy silhouette.

Josephine
09-11-2007, 04:46 PM
I usually wear an 18 in modern clothes (44-35-46).

I'm 43-33-43. Am I going to get into a bidding war with you for all the cute stuff on eBay? ;D


Also, proper underwear makes all the difference--I have dresses where I can't even begin to get the side zip done up that fit perfectly when I wear a girdle. Everything just looks better when you're pulled in too.

There is a dress I am eyeing on the bay that is about two inches smaller than me, that I think I will need a girdle for, as my rice cakes and water diet isn't working. ;) Which ones do you (heck anyone here!) recommend?

imoldfashioned
09-11-2007, 05:08 PM
I'm 43-33-43. Am I going to get into a bidding war with you for all the cute stuff on eBay? ;D
There is a dress I am eyeing on the bay that is about two inches smaller than me, that I think I will need a girdle for, as my rice cakes and water diet isn't working. ;) Which ones do you (heck anyone here!) recommend?

LOL! I'm on a clothing diet right now after binging for most of this year, so hopefully we'll steer clear of each other!

I swear by the Rago products--pretty and retro looking, they wear well and (most importantly) are effective without being uncomfortable. I used to get the long line shapers but now I prefer the open bottom girdle (model 1294, to be specific) with garters and a bra. I really want to get a proper corset someday but I'm too cheap to spend the money right now.

Laraquan
09-11-2007, 05:11 PM
Gosh, what lovely advice. Those measurements are all a couple years old, however. I've put on ten kilograms since then. Gotta get back to that shape.

ClaraB
09-11-2007, 05:37 PM
Basically any vintage garment with a 25-26 inch waist will fit me but often I find that the busts are far too large (nothing that a needle and thread can't fix most of the time). What I do enjoy about vintage clothing is that it tends to accommodate my large hips and provides a nicer silhouette than modern clothing. The thing that really gets me about sizing is the modern stuff. I am anywhere from a size 4 to a size 8 in modern clothing and generally hate how the clothes fit anyhow. My body certainly isn't made for this era, I'll be happy when this low rise jean and empire waist top trend is over.

On a semi related note, this is a thought that often pops up when I am vintage dress hunting: In 1953 my grandmother was 20 (the age I am now) and had an 18 inch waist and maintained that size through 20 years and 5 children. So I guess what I take from this is the idea that there are and always have been a variety of body shapes and sizes. There is no way I could have an 18'' waist unless I got rid of a few ribs and a few vital organs. Needless to say that in my dress hunting I have not seen any dresses that would have fit my grandmother, but I have seen plenty of dresses with a 38+ waistline. There are vintage items out there to accommodate all shapes and sizes, some just take more searching for.

epr25
09-12-2007, 05:17 AM
I have said this before. But I am selling off a large collection of clothes for a lady that has been collecting for quite awhile. I got a lovely black crepe dress from her last night that would fit allot fo ladies that have mentioned their measurments on this thread. I am going to get it up on ebay this weekend. Unless you guys think I shoudl put it in the classifides here. I have never had much luck doing that. What do you think?

KittyT
09-12-2007, 06:46 AM
There is a dress I am eyeing on the bay that is about two inches smaller than me, that I think I will need a girdle for, as my rice cakes and water diet isn't working. ;) Which ones do you (heck anyone here!) recommend?

There are quite a few Rago/girdle/foundation garment threads here where a lot of the ladies have made specific recommendations for the models they prefer.

Keep in mind that a girdle will smooth you out but it won't necessarily take much off. Also, in my experience, a girdle tends to take more off the hips than the waist, and my girdles only take about an inch off my hips.

imoldfashioned
09-12-2007, 07:08 AM
I have said this before. But I am selling off a large collection of clothes for a lady that has been collecting for quite awhile. I got a lovely black crepe dress from her last night that would fit allot fo ladies that have mentioned their measurments on this thread. I am going to get it up on ebay this weekend. Unless you guys think I shoudl put it in the classifides here. I have never had much luck doing that. What do you think?

If it's in my size range I'd definitely take a look at it in the classifieds.

epr25
09-12-2007, 08:26 AM
If it's in my size range I'd definitely take a look at it in the classifieds.

Ok i will try to get a good picture of it tonight. It's black so I will have to go when the light is good.

Miss 1929
09-18-2007, 12:35 AM
I used to be a size 2... now I am a 16.
Sadly, I am just as disproportionate no matter what size I am! I discovered long ago that the early 30s work the best - I am short waisted, large hipped, and fairly flat chested! 40s looks awful on me. 20s makes me look like a box.
So no matter what size you are, see what style plays up your good points and go that way! The beauty of wearing retro style is that we have all the decades to choose from - we don't have to be slaves to the current mode.

Eliza
11-01-2007, 02:10 PM
I guess from reading this thread, that with appr. 42" shoulders, 40" bust, 32.5" waist and 42" hips that I would be an Hourglass and that the 50's would suit me best?

I like Victorian and 20's through the 60's styles. I adore Audrey Hepburns style and styles of the 50's sex symbols. :)

Where would I find great 50's fashions, if indeed this is what would suit me best? What about the 30's and 40's? I know the 20's would not look all that fab on me.:(

Any non-vintage stores that would sell these styles?

http://img409.imageshack.us/img409/6948/1000778avatarqh1.jpg

lyburnum
11-01-2007, 02:42 PM
WhatKatieDid has a good way of working out your type of figure on their website:


Most of our garments are cut for a Vintage Figure, that is a figure with the hip measurement being 8 to 10 inches bigger than the waist. If you have a Modern Figure (waist less than 6 inches smaller than your hips -and for measuring hips we measure the widest part) it is advisable to go down one size in certain garments.

I've gotta say, that as someone with a small waist, I can hardly ever find vintage clothes that fit me, and they often need some sort of alteration. That's why I make a lot more repro clothes than buy them. I have a vintage figure (big hips), but a 24" waist, so most of the stuff I try on is far too big for me. I also don't have much of a bust which doesn't help :rolleyes: Most clothes I've seen come in larger sizes. I'm actually too afraid to get a waist cincher, as I feel I already have a small enough waist as it is and wouldn't like to find all my clothes were too loose all of a sudden :S

Eliza
11-01-2007, 02:56 PM
Odd thing is.... I do not consider myself all that shapely or Hourglass-y; I think of myself as fairly balanced, neither straight nor curvy... Hmm, well, I will check out that site that you mentioned and thanks for the suggesstion! :)

AllaboutEve
11-01-2007, 03:14 PM
WhatKatieDid has a good way of working out your type of figure on their website:



I've gotta say, that as someone with a small waist, I can hardly ever find vintage clothes that fit me, and they often need some sort of alteration. That's why I make a lot more repro clothes than buy them. I have a vintage figure (big hips), but a 24" waist, so most of the stuff I try on is far too big for me. I also don't have much of a bust which doesn't help :rolleyes: Most clothes I've seen come in larger sizes. I'm actually too afraid to get a waist cincher, as I feel I already have a small enough waist as it is and wouldn't like to find all my clothes were too loose all of a sudden :S

Wow what a teeny waist you have!!:)

What Katie Did is a great site, and the customer service is nothing short of superb. I swear by the Rago waist cinchers.
I normally find that the things that fit my waist don't normally fit my hips 36-26-39 but generally the 1950's things I try on are a better fit than things from the 40's. I definitely don't have the hips of a lady on wartime rations!lol

Eliza
11-01-2007, 03:25 PM
generally the 1950's things I try on are a better fit than things from the 40's. I definitely don't have the hips of a lady on wartime rations!How tiny were they back then? lol.

I am quite soft and squishy - I have no tone and I am rounded in the abdomen....so, I should try the 50's?

ETA:
It is the 50's that I thought I was playing with and I am looking for confirmation but maybe what I think is the 50's isn't lol

My skirt:

http://img218.imageshack.us/img218/4828/20004995dj6kd0.jpg

More 40's maybe??

A.R. McVintage
11-02-2007, 06:15 PM
Saw this thread and it made me think of a show called Carnivale (sadly gone now), set in 1934 that had a family in it with a whole range of sizes for women (momma on left, oldest daughter on right). A body's a body and as long as one is trying to take care of it (give me a few plaudits, girls, I went from a 52 to a 46 and am still losing) then we do the best with what the good lord put into our pot of genes.

http://www.cnn.com/SPECIALS/2003/coming.attractions/interactive/fall/carnivale.gallery/10.ettinger.huss.aday.gallo.jpg

And I'd dare someone to tell me this tomato doesn't ooze Mae West-ian appeal...ooh-la-la!

http://www.nelonen.fi/carnivale/images/nayttelijat/rita_sue.jpg

Miss 1929
11-02-2007, 08:53 PM
Wow, that is a wonderful loss! You're an inspiration!
And yes, I agree, that is a dame.

dahliaoleander
05-04-2008, 03:31 AM
Personally within 7 months or so I have supposedly gone up from a 34b-28-37 to a 36b-32-39! :eek: :eusa_doh: :(

My mother, when measuring me, even said I don't have a waist, I just go straight down,an fan out a bit at the hips. I told her "I'm a girl I'm supposed to have A coke-bottle figure... I'm not supposed to be straight!" She just nodded.

Is there an era for me?

I Barely fan out at the booty so... I guess I'm a semi-pear... I've always wanted the coke-bottle shape... since I was in kinder... its a pretty rude awakening..

I console myself saying I have plenty of time... Then that damned antagonistic voice in my head reminds me "Tomorrow's not promised!" and I get down again... :eusa_booh

Confound it all! Where's the coke bottle I wanted! :confused:

KittyT
05-04-2008, 07:49 AM
Personally within 7 months or so I have supposedly gone up from a 34b-28-37 to a 36b-32-39! :eek: :eusa_doh: :(

My mother, when measuring me, even said I don't have a waist, I just go straight down,an fan out a bit at the hips. I told her "I'm a girl I'm supposed to have A coke-bottle figure... I'm not supposed to be straight!" She just nodded.

Is there an era for me?


Well not everyone can have a perfect hourglass figure. We're all different. Try 20s styles, those would work well for you - there are plenty of gals here who would love to be able to wear flapper styles and can't because they feel their hips are too big and they don't have the right shape. Also, I know several of us have mentioned this before - GET A WAIST CINCHER. They really do work and most gals here report that they have taken up to 3" of their waist. They really will accentuate your waist and give you a more exaggerated shape. There's lots of info about them in the Girdles, Corsets and Underpinnings thread.

gluegungeisha
05-04-2008, 08:24 AM
My weight has been fluctuating terribly lately due to stress! I always accomodate my changing figure with the clothes I wear, so I don't look like I'm swimming in fabric when I lose a few pounds. Some girls gain weight when they're stressed; I revert to a prepubescent stick figure. Oyy...

Since modern tiny sizes tend to be more accomodating to "straight" figures, I usually end up wearing more modern clothes when I lose weight...and then I accessorize accordingly.

When I'm at my healthy, happy weight, I'm a petite hourglass -- 33-23.5-35.5. 40's clothes seem to fit me best, but I've also had luck with Victorian and Edwardian pieces when they come my way holding reasonable price tags. I have a lot of 50's A-line dresses that fit beautifully, but wiggle dresses always seem to be too short-waisted for me (maybe they were just made for shorter ladies?), or too baggy around the hip bones (my widest hip measurement is around my butt, not the love handles).

KittyT
05-04-2008, 08:44 AM
(my widest hip measurement is around my butt, not the love handles).

It was my understanding that that's where hip measurements are supposed to be taken?

pretty faythe
05-04-2008, 08:49 AM
It was my understanding that that's where hip measurements are supposed to be taken?

7 to 9 inches below the belly button

Miss_Bella_Hell
05-04-2008, 08:54 AM
7 to 9 inches below the belly button


Yeah...butt area! I think we're all wider there than the "love handle" region! lol

ShortClara
05-04-2008, 12:43 PM
I have a lot of 50's A-line dresses that fit beautifully, but wiggle dresses always seem to be too short-waisted for me (maybe they were just made for shorter ladies?), or too baggy around the hip bones (my widest hip measurement is around my butt, not the love handles).

I'm short, but long waisted. That happens to me in many 50s dresses, too, with a waist at my ribs. Usually the hips are too narrow in wiggles tho, as I think I am an extreme hourglass a LA Betty Boop! Little In The Middle But She Got Much Back! I'm super proportional tho, as long as I stay with flattering silhouettes. No 20s stuff.

ShoreRoadLady
05-04-2008, 12:51 PM
DressADay posted a comment from La BellaDonna as an entry, and it deals with different body shapes and appropriate vintage eras. You might find it helpful - I know I did.

http://www.dressaday.com/2006/11/are-you-ruler-or-apple.html

Sadly, as a pear who loves the 30's and 40's...


It is very difficult for the Pear to create an Upside-Down Triangle Shape. This means that if you love the clothes of the 30’s and 40’s, you will need to be very careful in your choice of pattern, because the silhouette is diametrically opposed to yours. The good news is that it’s not entirely impossible; look at the pattern measurements as they are listed on patterns from those periods. The Bust is usually six inches bigger than the Waist; the Hips are usually nine inches bigger than the Waist. And what is that shape? Why, a Pear, of course! It does mean looking for 30’s or 40’s patterns that put the emphasis on the upper body, but that actually have pattern features that leave room for the lower body, with gores, etc. Beware the skirt with pleats all around, if you are trying to de-emphasize the lower half of the body!

gluegungeisha
05-04-2008, 01:20 PM
Yeah...butt area! I think we're all wider there than the "love handle" region! lol

Yeah, I didn't think my proportions were weird until I started trying on those darn wiggle dresses! My mom, sister and I all have similar proportions in the hip area -- narrow hips at the bone, and big booties. My grandma had it too, haha!

In my costuming class, the butt measurement was the "full hips" and the hip bone measurement was just, um, "hips at the bone." Some women are flatter in the rear and wider at the hips.

Magpie Annie
05-04-2008, 05:38 PM
I was a year-round athlete up through my first year of college, which left me with a very boyish 20's type frame... recently though I have not been so extremely active, and I started to get self conscious about my hip/butt area! :o Thankfully, now that I have started dressing vintage and vintage inspired, I have learned to embrace my curves (my hip/butt measurement is 39, 12.5 inches larger than my waist) Although I am not very large up top, I tend to have luck with hourglass late 40's early 50's shapes. I tend to have some issues finding actual vintage dresses that fit because I am 6'0... but I digress... I guess that my main point is that I am so glad to have found a way to embrace my figure instead of being ashamed of it! I will echo what Mr.McVintage said above, that any shape can look wonderful when well taken care of!!!

ShoreRoadLady
05-04-2008, 06:24 PM
Edited: Never mind. Suddenly my earlier post appeared again.

Spiffy
05-04-2008, 09:25 PM
Oh, but the best part of being an hourglass is going to thrift stores and seeing an adorable 80's sequined dress...and thinking "I can SO fit in that".....and then getting it stuck on your hips/boobs in the dressing room. That part is just AWESOME.
Can you tell that this has happened multiple times?:p

Magpie Annie
05-04-2008, 10:11 PM
Oh, but the best part of being an hourglass is going to thrift stores and seeing an adorable 80's sequined dress...and thinking "I can SO fit in that".....and then getting it stuck on your hips/boobs in the dressing room. That part is just AWESOME.
Can you tell that this has happened multiple times?:p


i am very familiar with this situation!!! lol

PrettySquareGal
05-05-2008, 02:30 AM
I think the ideal body for any era is a healthy one.

gluegungeisha
05-05-2008, 12:09 PM
Oh, but the best part of being an hourglass is going to thrift stores and seeing an adorable 80's sequined dress...and thinking "I can SO fit in that".....and then getting it stuck on your hips/boobs in the dressing room. That part is just AWESOME.
Can you tell that this has happened multiple times?:p

Hahaha, I've gotten vintage dresses stuck over my boobs so many times!! The weird thing is, I'm only a B cup! [huh]

I've learned NOT to go shopping for vintage dresses alone. Several times, I have had to poke my head out of the dressing room (or bathroom) of the shop and beg any random female passersby for assistance. Awkward!

newtovintage
09-30-2008, 12:49 PM
Hello ladies, my measurements are quite literally out of proportion. I am 38b - 35-49 and in modern clothes that is a difficult figure to clothe properly. I love the clothes of the 40's and am trying to find patterns for them so I can make my own. But I suppose I should have asked whether or not I could pull off the 40's styles. Any advice ladies?
Sarah

LelaViavonie
09-30-2008, 01:17 PM
I'm short, but long waisted. That happens to me in many 50s dresses, too, with a waist at my ribs. Usually the hips are too narrow in wiggles tho, as I think I am an extreme hourglass a LA Betty Boop! Little In The Middle But She Got Much Back! I'm super proportional tho, as long as I stay with flattering silhouettes. No 20s stuff.


Oh how I envy you :D

A LA Betty Boop.. she is dreamy **Sighs**

I do have a VERY hard time fidning stuff on Ebay in my size..
41-32-41.. I had never been measured until I decided it was time to start making my own clothes.. so when my step mother (seamstress) measured me.. I had her do it 4 times cause I didnt believe her measurments...

I recently lost 10 lbs (due to getting rid of stress in life) and eating differently. I really do hate how we can rise so fast.. and it takes soo much work to get it off! :rage:

I do agree that modern clothes just dont look right on me... the jeans.. FORGET IT.. low rise.. they are my worst enemy.. the only jeans I will buy are Levis or Gloria Jean.. cause she makes the High Waisted Shapers.. (gotta love Mervyn's) :D :D

RebeccaMUA
10-01-2008, 10:11 PM
Oh how I envy you :D

A LA Betty Boop.. she is dreamy **Sighs**

I do have a VERY hard time fidning stuff on Ebay in my size..
41-32-41.. I had never been measured until I decided it was time to start making my own clothes.. so when my step mother (seamstress) measured me.. I had her do it 4 times cause I didnt believe her measurments...

I recently lost 10 lbs (due to getting rid of stress in life) and eating differently. I really do hate how we can rise so fast.. and it takes soo much work to get it off! :rage:

I do agree that modern clothes just dont look right on me... the jeans.. FORGET IT.. low rise.. they are my worst enemy.. the only jeans I will buy are Levis or Gloria Jean.. cause she makes the High Waisted Shapers.. (gotta love Mervyn's) :D :D

OMG! we are almost the same measurements! I'm 42-35-42 and I actually recently lost 20 some odd pounds this past summer (food poisoning and graduating from college..less eating overall and definitely less stress eating) and i lost the most in my back and waist...not much on the hips surprisingly. Most jeans fit me fine as I am somewhat short waisted and unless they are super low rise they hit my hips just fine...but I hate most modern "trendy" clothes as they are tight at the bust, and loose at the waist. I hate it!! So I have recently come to love vintage styles (40-50's) because of my "hourglass" figure...and I am planning on having my mom help me make some lovely lovely clothing :D

Odalisque
10-01-2008, 10:16 PM
OMG! we are almost the same measurements! I'm 42-35-42 and I actually recently lost 20 some odd pounds this past summer (food poisoning and graduating from college..less eating overall and definitely less stress eating) and i lost the most in my back and waist...not much on the hips surprisingly. Most jeans fit me fine as I am somewhat short waisted and unless they are super low rise they hit my hips just fine...but I hate most modern "trendy" clothes as they are tight at the bust, and loose at the waist. I hate it!! So I have recently come to love vintage styles (40-50's) because of my "hourglass" figure...and I am planning on having my mom help me make some lovely lovely clothing :D

I too share your dislike for modern sizing. I'm 39-31-38 and I can rarely find a top to fit. It's either fitting on top and baggy in the waist or the reverse. For some reason, modern designers seem to have forgotten that women tend to have breasts. It's a conspiracy, I tell you!

RebeccaMUA
10-01-2008, 10:39 PM
I too share your dislike for modern sizing. I'm 39-31-38 and I can rarely find a top to fit. It's either fitting on top and baggy in the waist or the reverse. For some reason, modern designers seem to have forgotten that women tend to have breasts. It's a conspiracy, I tell you!

Isn't it maddening?? The whole shift towards making clothes for women who have bodies like 10 year old boys (and no offense towards any ladies on here who have those body shapes!) is just not fair as the majority of women do not tout those body shapes! Anyways, I am glad there are others who feel my pain :)

Sunny
10-02-2008, 06:30 AM
Hello ladies, my measurements are quite literally out of proportion. I am 38b - 35-49 and in modern clothes that is a difficult figure to clothe properly. I love the clothes of the 40's and am trying to find patterns for them so I can make my own. But I suppose I should have asked whether or not I could pull off the 40's styles. Any advice ladies?
Sarah
Sure you can! What you'll want to do, at least at first, is go for designs that have wide, emphasized shoulders to balance out your hips some more. Emphasize the waist to show that you DO have a figure, not jsut a triangle. Use slightly a-line skirts that dart or taper in to the waist; no gathers or pleats at the waist. Goal is to increase width on top and minimize it on the bottom to even out your hourglass. You'll need to do some pattern modification, since the maximum comfortable waist/hip difference for a pattern is about 10", and yours is 14". But that's not a big deal.

For what it's worth, I am about 34-27-39, and I do a lot of early 1940s and late 1930s. It's great fun, and I love how I look in them!

One more thing: Definitely wear a girdle or shaper of some kind. Sounds like you and I both put on the fluff in the hips, and girdles work wonders for controlling it. Makes fitting a lot easier. Plus, when you've got extra fluff there, it's obvious in these clothes when you're not wearing the proper undies. ;)

LelaViavonie
10-02-2008, 07:54 AM
OMG! we are almost the same measurements! I'm 42-35-42 and I actually recently lost 20 some odd pounds this past summer (food poisoning and graduating from college..less eating overall and definitely less stress eating) and i lost the most in my back and waist...not much on the hips surprisingly. Most jeans fit me fine as I am somewhat short waisted and unless they are super low rise they hit my hips just fine...but I hate most modern "trendy" clothes as they are tight at the bust, and loose at the waist. I hate it!! So I have recently come to love vintage styles (40-50's) because of my "hourglass" figure...and I am planning on having my mom help me make some lovely lovely clothing :D

I just might have to peek in your closet :D lol lol lol

Lorena B
10-02-2008, 09:10 AM
I am a 34-26-39, despite i have some of the normal girl neurotic thoughts of being big (mainly waist down) i must say i prefer being as i am as to swap myself for a size zero body.

I mean, no offense but i think we girls with curves we can pull out a vintage style mainly dated from the 40's or 50's. dont you agree?

Anwen
10-02-2008, 11:21 AM
*sigh* Today I got a lovely 40s-style high-waisted pencil skirt with kick pleats at the back. My measurements are 44-36-48, and my rib cage (where the top of the high-waistline should hit) is 37. The skirt fit beautifully around the hips and bottom, but I swear it was actually bigger above the hips - I could pull it on (it was a suiting type fabric, not elasticated or anything!) without undoing it :(

On the other hand, if there are any fabulous apple-shaped ladies out there in the UK looking for such a thing, it was from the Littlewoods catalogue so have a look! Luckily, I can return it.

I also want to mention my lovely Triumph Doreen corselette, which has a similar style to the Rago one and fits me beautifully in the 42D size :D It takes an inch or so off at the hips, which is the most I'd want it to, and does an impressive job of flattening the stomach without being uncomfy :D I have a fairly tiny waist with it on, because at least four of the 36" waist measurement is sticking out at the front (I have PCOS and have gained quite a lot of weight recently, almost all of it on my tummy, gah) and I still have a very noticeable hourglass shape, so with the tummy flattened I am (without being immodest) decidedly va-va-voom! ;)

Lastly, I agree that the 40s look can be smashing for pear shapes, as it tends to be broad-shouldered (with pads, obv) which balances the shape wonderfully. This also does wonders for any plus size woman whose shoulders haven't miraculously widened with her increasing arm-girth* as it tends to do away with that annoying thing where things fit nicely on the shoulders but squeeze the biceps or fit the arms comfortably but hang off the shoulder sadly. Raglan shoulder pads are my favourite, as they have a nice natural shape, as opposed to the abrupt drop of the more traditional suit-jacket type pads.


*sorry, can't think of a more elegant phrase!

newtovintage
10-02-2008, 02:51 PM
Thank you Sunny for taking the time for a reply. I really appreciate it. Your answer was really helpful. Thanks again.
Sarah

Sunny
10-03-2008, 07:27 AM
Thank you Sunny for taking the time for a reply. I really appreciate it. Your answer was really helpful. Thanks again.
Sarah
You're very welcome! Let me know if you have any other questions. I'm always better with specifics than generalities. :o

Lillemor
10-03-2008, 11:39 AM
I agree with much of what I've read on this thread. Even though women are different heights and shapes the clothes on the racks hit a very small demographic.

My measurements are around 33-25˝-34 with minor ˝" differences all depending on the time of the month when I'm around 110lbs. I've gained a few lbs. over the summer but I've already begun to shed them and I'm confident that they'll be completely gone by the end of the month.

I've been a petite plus-size but I couldn't wear much of what was plus size because I wasn't tall (I'm still not), now I'm a petite 4'10"ft "normal" size EU36and I still struggle to find anything that fits right. I know that women of all different body sizes and heights feel the same way or have their problems.

I can only speak for myself but just because I'm no taller than many 12 years olds doesn't mean that I don't have bust, hips and bum! Oh and I've been through three births and I'm not one of the few lucky yummy mommies so I have "flaws" I'm not happy to flaunt

Hand-me-downs from my MIL who's 71 fits much better than modern clothes. Many women of her generation are around my height and are or were the same shape as me. I have no idea of whether I would actually find much authentic 1950s clothes that would fit me. I would love my wardrobe to include 1930s styles too but again I don't know if I can pull off the 1930s with my measurements?

I always associate the 1940s with tall, lean, slim hipped women with sharp/more mature, read; elegant facial features than me so that's the main reason why I've excluded the 1940s as an inspiration source. But there are some late 1940s styles I think can work.

MarieAnne
10-03-2008, 07:18 PM
I agree with much of what I've read on this thread. Even though women are different heights and shapes the clothes on the racks hit a very small demographic.

My measurements are around 33-25˝-34 with minor ˝" differences all depending on the time of the month when I'm around 110lbs. I've gained a few lbs. over the summer but I've already begun to shed them and I'm confident that they'll be completely gone by the end of the month.

I've been a petite plus-size but I couldn't wear much of what was plus size because I wasn't tall (I'm still not), now I'm a petite 4'10"ft "normal" size EU36and I still struggle to find anything that fits right. I know that women of all different body sizes and heights feel the same way or have their problems.

I can only speak for myself but just because I'm no taller than many 12 years olds doesn't mean that I don't have bust, hips and bum! Oh and I've been through three births and I'm not one of the few lucky yummy mommies so I have "flaws" I'm not happy to flaunt

Hand-me-downs from my MIL who's 71 fits much better than modern clothes. Many women of her generation are around my height and are or were the same shape as me. I have no idea of whether I would actually find much authentic 1950s clothes that would fit me. I would love my wardrobe to include 1930s styles too but again I don't know if I can pull off the 1930s with my measurements?

I always associate the 1940s with tall, lean, slim hipped women with sharp/more mature, read; elegant facial features than me so that's the main reason why I've excluded the 1940s as an inspiration source. But there are some late 1940s styles I think can work.

I'm almost the same! 33-26-34. I've always wanted to be curvy though. I had a baby six months ago and was hoping my hips would get a little wider but nothing has changed! I was really looking forward to filling some pencil skirts. I've thought of buying those padded shapers but never went through with it. I decided to try tight lacing, to narrow my waist and eccentuate my hips and bust. I got down to a 23" waist and my figure was super curvy but it was a little extreme. I wore a cardigan over my corset once and when it was buttoned up I looked like a corpse...totally not the look I was going for!

I know certain body types are more desirable than others but I think with the right clothes, you can at least create the illusion.

pigeon toe
10-03-2008, 07:43 PM
I have almost the same measurements as you two as well! I'm 33-25-34.5. My main gripe is that things are quite often very large in the bust when they fit me in the waist and hips. I have ample thighs as well, so it's hard for me to find jeans that fit. How come only "designer" type brands make high waisted jeans, but only make them for women with no thighs, booty or hips? It's a never ending source of frustration for me.

I also am petite (5'2") and have a very short waist, so I almost always have to get the waist altered in my vintage items. Actually, the only vintage items that I own that I didn't have to have the waist length altered in have the words "Teens" or "Juniors" in the tag.

That's funny that you say you've always wanted to be curvy, MaryAnne! You and I have almost the same measurements, but I've always been the "curvy" one in my group of friends. Then again, a lot of them are size 00s!

Lillemor
10-04-2008, 05:56 AM
Pigeon Toe, what modern US. dress size do you wear? I buy EU36 even though in some brands I could theoretically buy the smaller size EU34 but like many women who've been through some pregnancies, I like to have ˝-1" of room to hide lumps, bulges, etc. in.:o At 4'10"ft I can sometimes wear bootcut pants and jeans as regular length except they usually float at a stupid length right around my ankles so I can't wear them without boots and not look dorky.:rolleyes:

Don't get me started on coats! Short coats can pass for long coats on me and jackets fit like short coats but if the waistline is well defined, my waist may not be in the waistline of the coat.

Often times 1 piece dresses does this stupid thing in the back because I'm so short waisted and I'm not straight up and down or even close to it so the fabric in the back folds over and that's not a very flattering sight IMO. So I have to pass up on dresses that look lovely on all other parts of my body.:(

I don't really own anything vintage that I'm aware of but plenty of "old lady" thrift and as I stated before, my MIL's hand-me-downs plus newer retro clothes that falls into late 1940s-1950s-early 1960s. All of the retro stuff fits so-so because the designers have taken modern "considerations" in the cut and fitting of the garments. I buy all of the retro stuff from online shops/magazines that have a mature target group.

If I could afford it, I'd shop at the same places as my MIL.

deadpandiva
10-04-2008, 01:43 PM
Hello ladies, my measurements are quite literally out of proportion. I am 38b - 35-49 and in modern clothes that is a difficult figure to clothe properly. I love the clothes of the 40's and am trying to find patterns for them so I can make my own. But I suppose I should have asked whether or not I could pull off the 40's styles. Any advice ladies?
Sarah
I am 36b-28-42 and I have a hard time finding 40's dresses that fit. My favorite era is the late 30's/early 40's but 50's dresses seem to work better on me. I do still wear alot of 40's stuff the skirts just need to be A-line or full.

Leila de la May
10-04-2008, 02:06 PM
I'm almost the same! 33-26-34. I've always wanted to be curvy though. I had a baby six months ago and was hoping my hips would get a little wider but nothing has changed! I was really looking forward to filling some pencil skirts. I've thought of buying those padded shapers but never went through with it. I decided to try tight lacing, to narrow my waist and eccentuate my hips and bust. I got down to a 23" waist and my figure was super curvy but it was a little extreme. I wore a cardigan over my corset once and when it was buttoned up I looked like a corpse...totally not the look I was going for!

I know certain body types are more desirable than others but I think with the right clothes, you can at least create the illusion.

I'm also quite symilar to few of the girls who have posted lately at a petite height 5'2 and 34-25-34 measurements. My waist 'sounds' fairly small but I have quite a wide ribcage at about 31.5' (when lungs are empty) I find I lose a lot of definition at the waist when wearing clothes as it goes in and out to suddenly and to little to make a big enough impact. I have recently starting making my self an underbust waist cincher corset based on a late 19th century style corset pattern, I am hoping it will turn out well enough for me to tight lace with and that it might give me a little more definition at the waist. I shall let you all know of the results.

I also have trouble with vintage dresses, particularly 50s dresses being to tight around the ribcage and a little baggy at the bust but I normally manage to get around it somehow.

newtovintage
10-05-2008, 09:26 PM
I am 36b-28-42 and I have a hard time finding 40's dresses that fit. My favorite era is the late 30's/early 40's but 50's dresses seem to work better on me. I do still wear alot of 40's stuff the skirts just need to be A-line or full.

I love 30's,40's, and some 50's clothing, but 40's are definitely my favorite, especially the hair (Katharine Hepburn's is my all-time inspiration) and I have been looking and I've found I have several dresses that are actually 40's vintage and a few repros as well. I have one that is a 1942 dress and is A-line and looks fabulous on my shape. I attended a friend's Homecoming last night and I can tell you this, not a soul was dressed in anything like myself. People stared at me in shock. I thought it was rather humorous, really. But anyhow, back on topic. A-line or fuller skirts do look better on my figure than pencils skirts or skirts that over emphasize my hips. I'm really looking hard for a few pairs of trousers for the cold months that have already begun. Good luck with your vintage attire.
Sarah

graverobbergirl
10-10-2008, 09:46 PM
I've perused/skimmed the thread, but I haven't seen much talk about us poor, top heavy gals. I'm 43" Bust (spilling out of my 36D...which was hard enough to find, why don't stores stock this size?), 33" waist, and 41" hips.

I don't have many vintage style clothing items. I recently made a 40s outfit (thank god for simplicity's cup variations on the jacket, but I had to fray-check the darts in the front of the blouse), but that's basically it. I've tried fitted shirts (the one I made myself was the best), but modern ones in the stores (I won't touch the neo-70s babydoll stuff) as well as tees look horrible on me. They cling to the breasts and swim at the waist, and make my hips look nonexistent, too.

I guess, like everyone else posting here, showing off the waist would be the solution, creating the illusion that my hips balance me off.

I'm never sure if necklines should be high or low on me. I'm short in the torso, so I'm afraid that high ones make me look frumpy, and there's just a great mass of fabric hanging out there in front. But I'm not sure if I'm comfortable with low ones or if they'll make me look top heavy.

Also, I've heard that you should use dark colors on parts you want to slim down and lighter colors in opposition to them. Is there an era where it was fashionable to wear darker on top and lighter on bottom?

Appreciate any help from you gorgeous gals!

mackenzie
10-11-2008, 01:58 AM
Often times 1 piece dresses does this stupid thing in the back because I'm so short waisted and I'm not straight up and down or even close to it so the fabric in the back folds over and that's not a very flattering sight IMO. So I have to pass up on dresses that look lovely on all other parts of my body.:(



It does that to me aswell and I found out that it is partly because I'm short waisted and partly because my "back waist" is sitting higher than my "front waist". It is pretty easy to fix though, instead of passing on pretty dresses. just open the waist seam in the back, lift the skirt seam up to where it meets the bodice without any bulk. sew togheter again. It looks great and it gives me a really nice, clean line that I never had before.

Anwen
10-11-2008, 02:04 AM
I'm never sure if necklines should be high or low on me. I'm short in the torso, so I'm afraid that high ones make me look frumpy, and there's just a great mass of fabric hanging out there in front. But I'm not sure if I'm comfortable with low ones or if they'll make me look top heavy.


I know the feeling. I tried on this top:

http://i331.photobucket.com/albums/l447/anwensewing/top.jpg

which was really flattering, yet still fairly modest, as the ruffles broke up the vast expanse of fabric in the same way as a low neckline would break the space between neck and bust point, but obviously without resulting in showing lots of cleavage... So I'm going to try to make something similar.

graverobbergirl
10-11-2008, 10:48 AM
That's cute and a good idea, Anwen. (I'd like to see your take on it) Thanks! I'll have to try something similar and see how it looks.

NicolettaRose
10-15-2008, 07:59 PM
I'm about a 32D-26-35 like a modern 2/4, so most dresses from the 1930's fit great, since I have more of an hour glass shape. The 1920's work except for sometimes in the bust, but for some reason I always have to take stuff from the 1940's in. I have really narrow feet, so sometimes the shoes that are vintage tend to fit better in the width. Another decade that seems to be made for me is 1960's. I think you can pull off any era with the right padding or pinching.

Le.Raven
10-16-2008, 09:44 AM
I measure 38-27-39, and find that vintage clothing from the 1940s and 1950s fit better than anything else. Your figure would look great in clothing from those decades!

Miss_Bella_Hell
10-16-2008, 10:46 AM
I've perused/skimmed the thread, but I haven't seen much talk about us poor, top heavy gals. I'm 43" Bust (spilling out of my 36D...which was hard enough to find, why don't stores stock this size?), 33" waist, and 41" hips.

You're probably wearing the wrong bra size. You should DEFINITELY go in and be fit by a pro, think Macy's, or Victoria's secret, or anywhere else that does it.



modern ones in the stores (I won't touch the neo-70s babydoll stuff) as well as tees look horrible on me. They cling to the breasts and swim at the waist, and make my hips look nonexistent, too.

I guess, like everyone else posting here, showing off the waist would be the solution, creating the illusion that my hips balance me off.


The answer to both these things is tailoring. Buy to fit your bust, and bring them to the tailor to be altered to fit your small waist. Make sure there are darts that already exist in the items though, especially if it's patterned, so the garment can be altered cheaply.



I'm never sure if necklines should be high or low on me. I'm short in the torso, so I'm afraid that high ones make me look frumpy, and there's just a great mass of fabric hanging out there in front. But I'm not sure if I'm comfortable with low ones or if they'll make me look top heavy.

V-necks are slimming on women with large busts, however, don't be vulgar! If you can see too much cleavage, put a cami underneath. Too much cleavage varies with taste and occasion ;) Steer clear of ruffles or anything that adds bulk to your bust. Also steer clear of knits with stripes that bend a lot at the bust -- if it's supposed to be straight and it looks like a wavy line, put it back!



Also, I've heard that you should use dark colors on parts you want to slim down and lighter colors in opposition to them. Is there an era where it was fashionable to wear darker on top and lighter on bottom?

Appreciate any help from you gorgeous gals!

I wouldn't pay too much attention to this, though it can look cute for certain looks. Get fit for a bra and get a reducer if you like, that should do the trick.

GOOD LUCK! PS - you have a nice hourglass, ebay should help you in your vintage search. Your size is definitely on the bay. Don't give up!

kamikat
10-16-2008, 12:29 PM
I've perused/skimmed the thread, but I haven't seen much talk about us poor, top heavy gals. I'm 43" Bust (spilling out of my 36D...which was hard enough to find, why don't stores stock this size?), 33" waist, and 41" hips.

I'm never sure if necklines should be high or low on me. I'm short in the torso, so I'm afraid that high ones make me look frumpy, and there's just a great mass of fabric hanging out there in front. But I'm not sure if I'm comfortable with low ones or if they'll make me look top heavy.

My measurements are very similar to yours. I wear a 36GG bra. No, the regular stores don't stock, I either go downtown to a specialty shop or get them online. You should avoid high necklines. The best thing to look for is a v neck or shirtwaist dresses (the bodice looks like a classic button down blouse). A v neck is slimming to a full bust and doesn't need to be too low to do the trick.

Miss_Bella_Hell
10-16-2008, 12:39 PM
My measurements are very similar to yours. I wear a 36GG bra. No, the regular stores don't stock, I either go downtown to a specialty shop or get them online. You should avoid high necklines. The best thing to look for is a v neck or shirtwaist dresses (the bodice looks like a classic button down blouse). A v neck is slimming to a full bust and doesn't need to be too low to do the trick.

I agree with all this...except...high necklines look great on me! However, I'm long-waisted, so that might be the difference.

kamikat
10-16-2008, 09:01 PM
I agree with all this...except...high necklines look great on me! However, I'm long-waisted, so that might be the difference.

I'm jealous! A high neck makes my huge boobs look even bigger.

Marzipan
10-17-2008, 07:07 AM
Lately I've been having trouble with my Stop Staring dresses as my waist has gotten about an inch wider (26, used to be 25). I actually had to sell 15 SS dresses on eBay!
But vintage seems to be hit or miss. I can wiggle into them with a girdle and be fine as long as I don't eat. ;)
But sometimes they're either too small or too big. I'm a 34-36 bust with a 26 waist, never measured my hips, but my bones are pretty small. I'm 5'3 and wear a 4P. I wish I had more of a waist though, sometimes I feel like a rectangle compared to the girls in my old 50's magazines!:rage:

Marzipan
10-17-2008, 07:08 AM
I'm jealous! A high neck makes my huge boobs look even bigger.

Me too. I look horrid with a high neck!

ShoreRoadLady
10-17-2008, 12:12 PM
I wish I had more of a waist though, sometimes I feel like a rectangle compared to the girls in my old 50's magazines!:rage:

Remember that those magazine models often had not only a waist cincher, but hip pads - to make the waist *look* smaller! :)

Lauren
10-17-2008, 12:25 PM
My measurements are the same for the most part as NicolettaRose, and late 20's through early 40s are the best fit for me. Ditto what ShoreRoadLady said- things were padded and cinched through all eras depending on fit. padding/cinching would make more eras fit.

Sunny
10-17-2008, 03:18 PM
Y'know, Lauren's and ShoreRoadLady's comments have pointed out an attitude shift that makes another difference between classic style and now. Nowadays, we expect our clothes to both (1) fit US, just as we are, lumps and bones and all, because COMFORT is prized, and (2) Make us look Good and Fashionable. Worthy goals, right? Pretty impossible. (Like the costuming analogy: You want it Cheap, Accurate, and Fast - 2 are achievable, 3 are not barring a miracle.) The results of impossible expectations are (1) lycra in every material under the sun so it "fits" but highlights every bone and lump and (2) up-to-date styling for all, regardless of dress size. And let's face it, there are some styles or, heck, design features that will never look good on certain shapes or sizes.

I think women back then were a whole lot more realistic. Either (1) they shaped their bodies to fit their bodies to their clothes, or (2) they wore clothes that fit their bodies and accepted the styles and look as it was.

Women today have accepted the comfort mantra so exclusively that the idea of shapewear is almost unknown. When it's used, it's for emergency special-occasions help and that's it. They've also run with the Do What You Want thing, which leads to size 3X micro minis or similar abominations.

I'm not sure where I'm going with this now... I lost my train of thought! :eusa_doh: But I heartily agree that most figures really can do most styles, with judicious use of shapewear. Don't limit yourself! My example:

I'm about 34-27-38. Not quite an hourglass, not quite a pear. You'd think those big hips would look best in 50s full skirts though, right? Wrong! They make me look as WIDE as a barn door! That's because my hips are wide, and although I shouldn't lose any weight, I do have flab and a lot of it gives me hip-widening love handles. So full skirts --> wide, flat hips. As for 1930s and 1940s? Slim hips, right? Well, if they're fitted to me (taper a dress size 18 for the hips to a size 16 for the waist), they're quite flattering. Later 1930s and early 1940s are slim silhouettes, but they're not actually tight. This makes a huge difference! And the slightly wider shoulder line (not the heavy pads of later 1940s) helps to balance the hips.

So for my "natural" body, late 1930s and early 1940s are the most flattering - despite the fact that my measurements are neither the ideal slim-hipped slim-waisted girl nor the true hourglass.

What happens when I use shapewear? I just got the Rago waist cincher (21). It brings my waist down to about 26. It does not reduce my hips. What it does is take the wide, flat love handles and turn them into the round hips of the New Look. Hey presto! Suddenly full skirts look not only tolerable but very good indeed!

That's literally what shapewear does. It modifies your shape - not necessarily your size - to really give you the look of the period. The Look is more than just the clothes and the hairstyle. It's the whole effect. It even gives The Look when you're not even trying to be particularly vintage It's how I get comments from nice old men at church choir about "you're really into the 1940s, aren't you?" when the only vintage-styled I'm wearing is an ordinary gored skirt.

What I need to do now is get a good girdle for my new 1930s evening dress. Oh, what a pity! I shall have to buy more lingerie! :D

i_am_the_scruff
10-17-2008, 03:35 PM
I've perused/skimmed the thread, but I haven't seen much talk about us poor, top heavy gals. I'm 43" Bust (spilling out of my 36D...which was hard enough to find, why don't stores stock this size?)
You HAVE to be joking?!! All stores seem to stock up to D-DD and no higher.

Although now bigger sizes are making an appearence, which is great because last time (which was a while ago) I was measured I was an F cup.

newtovintage
10-17-2008, 10:27 PM
Hello ladies! I have been recently reading a book by Marsha Hunt "What We Wore" and in it she seems to be trying to tell people that fuller figures should not wear 30s or 40s clothing. Is that true? I know that there were women of all sizes in every era, but my question is what era is best for someone who's DEFINITELY not a size 2. My photo in my avatar, the most recent one I have, is a picture of myself in a vintage repro 40s dress. Anyhow, can any of you ladies tell me which era would look best on me? I like almost all looks of the eras and quite a few before the 20th century. Can you please give me some advice? Thank you all in advance.
Sarah

P.S. As you might have guessed from my previous avatar, I really love turn of the century Edwardian styles and also the clothing from Little House on the Prairie. Always been a favorite. Those are options too. Any advice would be great. Thank you again.

ShoreRoadLady
10-18-2008, 01:02 AM
Hello ladies! I have been recently reading a book by Marsha Hunt "What We Wore" and in it she seems to be trying to tell people that fuller figures should not wear 30s or 40s clothing. Is that true? I know that there were women of all sizes in every era, but my question is what era is best for someone who's DEFINITELY not a size 2. My photo in my avatar, the most recent one I have, is a picture of myself in a vintage repro 40s dress. Anyhow, can any of you ladies tell me which era would look best on me? I like almost all looks of the eras and quite a few before the 20th century. Can you please give me some advice? Thank you all in advance.
Sarah

P.S. As you might have guessed from my previous avatar, I really love turn of the century Edwardian styles and also the clothing from Little House on the Prairie. Always been a favorite. Those are options too. Any advice would be great. Thank you again.

See Sunny's post a few back for lots of good info. I think what Hunt was saying was that wide-hipped women shouldn't go for 30s styles (although 40s I'd consider to be perfectly fine). I think it has less to do with *size* than *shape*, AKA silhouette. Presuming you're at a naturally healthy weight for *you*, it doesn't matter if you're a size 2 or not. You can probably wear just about any decade, as long as you choose your styles & outfits carefully.

Edwardian...lots of leeway there! True Edwardian styles, of course, take a corset, and I doubt you'd want to wear actual vintage, but curvier works well for Edwardian. Edwardian-inspired can be adapted to any figure.

My advice: To determine your shape, take your measurements (bust-waist-hip), and look at yourself in a mirror, both front and sideways (and take photos if you want a back view :)), and see how you fall into these general categories (http://www.dressaday.com/2006/11/are-you-ruler-or-apple.html). (Remembering that rules are useful, but were also made to be broken. :D)

newtovintage
10-18-2008, 03:23 PM
See Sunny's post a few back for lots of good info. I think what Hunt was saying was that wide-hipped women shouldn't go for 30s styles (although 40s I'd consider to be perfectly fine). I think it has less to do with *size* than *shape*, AKA silhouette. Presuming you're at a naturally healthy weight for *you*, it doesn't matter if you're a size 2 or not. You can probably wear just about any decade, as long as you choose your styles & outfits carefully.

Edwardian...lots of leeway there! True Edwardian styles, of course, take a corset, and I doubt you'd want to wear actual vintage, but curvier works well for Edwardian. Edwardian-inspired can be adapted to any figure.

My advice: To determine your shape, take your measurements (bust-waist-hip), and look at yourself in a mirror, both front and sideways (and take photos if you want a back view :)), and see how you fall into these general categories (http://www.dressaday.com/2006/11/are-you-ruler-or-apple.html). (Remembering that rules are useful, but were also made to be broken. :D)

My measurements are 40-36-49 and I fall in the pear shape category according to that article. I would just like to know what would work best for me. I can make any era of clothing that would suit me. But I am not too great at deciding what looks best on my figure. I do need to lose a few lbs to be at a more healthy weight, but that will come with time and I don't want to have to wait to begin making and wearing vintage or vintage inspired. Thank you SRL for your time. I have been looking thru a copy of Everyday Fashion for the 30s and I have seen several dresses that were for "stout"/fuller figured women that look really beautiful, so I didn't know if perhaps I made my own and just fitted them to my proportions if that would work. Any thoughts? I have quite a few 40s vintage and vintage inspired pieces and a few 50s pieces. Anyhow, sorry for the long post.
Sarah

ShoreRoadLady
10-18-2008, 10:46 PM
My measurements are 40-36-49 and I fall in the pear shape category according to that article. I would just like to know what would work best for me.

There's probably tons of info on here that could be found in a search. I hesitate to say anything too authoritatively, since I'm pretty new to vintage myself. I can say what works for me, though...see my last paragraphs.


I can make any era of clothing that would suit me. But I am not too great at deciding what looks best on my figure. I do need to lose a few lbs to be at a more healthy weight, but that will come with time and I don't want to have to wait to begin making and wearing vintage or vintage inspired.

You're in business then; you can try some of the vintage patterns or the vintage repros. It's a matter of trial and error in many respects; you'll wear things that you think look great, and then wonder later (usually after a look in a department store 3-way mirror :eek: ), "What was I thinking?!" :)


Thank you SRL for your time. I have been looking thru a copy of Everyday Fashion for the 30s and I have seen several dresses that were for "stout"/fuller figured women that look really beautiful, so I didn't know if perhaps I made my own and just fitted them to my proportions if that would work. Any thoughts? I have quite a few 40s vintage and vintage inspired pieces and a few 50s pieces. Anyhow, sorry for the long post.
Sarah

Quite welcome, and no need to apologize. :) Long posts are appreciated here! I'm a pear myself; very narrow-shouldered and wide-hipped. Again, you'll have to turn elsewhere for knowledgeable vintage-specific advice, but here's what's worked well for me in modern/vintage-inspired clothing. Another note - don't just assume that you're a pear because your measurements fit, either. If you have wide shoulders, you may look more like an hourglass.

(And yes - fitting to your proportions is what it's all about. For instance, I find that a top that hits the fullest part of my hip is a no-no. Move the hem up a few inches, to the high hip (where the hipbone juts out, or a tad below), and the same top looks great.)

Gores are good; they give you lots of seams to accommodate the hips, and have a slimming effect. Knee-length skirts work well for me, especially A-line and trumpet styles (where the hips are slim, but the hemline flares out rather like a trumpet when in motion). Sleeves with gathers at the top help widen the shoulders and balance the hips. Wide belts emphasize the waist. I've also found that my tops need to "blouse" slightly in the back, instead of hugging my body. It helps balance out the rear. :) I suspect wide and elaborate collars, such as on those 30s dresses you're looking at, would be good too. And don't underestimate necklaces - they help draw the eye upward.

Hope that helped some. :) I'm still working all this out, myself!

SassyLindaB
10-19-2008, 04:17 AM
well I just got out the measuring tape...44 36 44...hourglass or what!...when did I go from a b cup to a d???

NicolettaRose
10-19-2008, 10:38 AM
SassyLinda, I like the color of your hair.

I don't think it takes an ideal body type to wear a certain style, I think anyone can really wear any era, because like someone said before, there was people of every size in every era. Ideal body types were just ideal, chances are like today, most people did not actually look like that, sometimes it is impossible or even unhealthy to have a certain 'ideal' body type, if we all wanted to have the ideal Kate Moss waif body of the 90's, we would have have to live on rice cakes and carrot sticks starve ourselves and become anorexic sticks.I say we celebrate the real body types of today, whether you are a size 4 or 14.

Bluebird
10-19-2008, 10:49 AM
Graverobbergirl!

Depending on where you live in Canada, you may have an Addition-Elle in your area (hopefully with a lingerie section). I buy all my bras there and I am a 42G. So your size is out there! They measure you and everything. If you are anywhere near Toronto, there are places downtown that carry even more amazing stuff! I'm sure that most metropolis' have a lingerie store that caters to the curvier woman! And Darn It, It's A Reason To Go Shopping!! lol

Hope this helps!

^_^bluebird

SassyLindaB
10-19-2008, 02:16 PM
Thanks NicolettaRose, it seems they keep changing the box on me, so my hair is a mix of maybe 4 reds and some black...I'm actually a blonde but with naturally thick eyebrows it made me look like a bottle blonde, so I opted for the red

HadleyH
10-19-2008, 02:48 PM
I know the 1920s is strictly out due to their focus on lithe, straight lines.

I dont think that you should consider the 1920s strictly out, but just expanding a little on that idea and related to ideal bodies for the eras :

"The 1920s and 1960s both bucked the trend of the curvaceous women. Ann Bolin an anthropologist at Elton College suggests that during periods of liberation like the 1920s when women has just gotten the vote and the 1960s when the Pill became available, the ideal shape for women deemphasized their reproductive characteristics - the nourishing breasts, the wide childbearing hips."

I don't know if this is true or not, but i thought it was interesting.

bettier
10-20-2008, 07:42 PM
I find some places have the dresses made that fit me perfect. I like Stop Staring dresses, although I have had issues with quality. The measurements are almost always perfect. I take tries everywhere, and in other places, it just doesn't work out. My measurements aren't how I would want them. I'm a 36d, 28, 40. I have a bubble butt, and very large hips. :eek: I don't know what era I fall into..

PS
10-21-2008, 05:59 AM
Bettier, we are nearly twins. Im a 34D-28-40-ish depending on my workout regimen that month! lol
I find the 50's suit me best, but I do have to have most things altered to fit my bust, because I have to buy to fit my hips.

Marzipan
11-11-2008, 07:55 AM
OK, so I just measured myself properly for the first time.

Bust: 32C
Waist: 26
Hips: 32

I'm 5'2 and about 111 lbs.

What era do you think suits this body type?

Thanks!

pretty faythe
11-11-2008, 12:32 PM
I've perused/skimmed the thread, but I haven't seen much talk about us poor, top heavy gals. I'm 43" Bust (spilling out of my 36D...which was hard enough to find, why don't stores stock this size?), 33" waist, and 41" hips.!

I am a bigger top heavy girl than you are, but I have found that if you are looking at regular dept stores ie Wal-Mart, Target, any DD that you find there doesnt really give you much of a choice for something with support and a nice shape. I have been getting mine lately from cirque, a Layne Bryant company. (42DD/DDD)

(please forgive any mis spellings and obvious typos, I havent had my nails done in ages and am getting used to the length again lol)

ScotchWhisky
11-11-2008, 02:38 PM
OK, so I just measured myself properly for the first time.

Bust: 32C
Waist: 26
Hips: 32

I'm 5'2 and about 111 lbs.

What era do you think suits this body type?

Thanks!

Your measurements and mine are quite similar...

Bust 32D
Waist 23
Hips 32

4'11" and about 85lbs. (Someone once told me that I'm virtually the same size as Veronica Lake... if only I had the face, too!)

I find the 40s and 50s looks best for me because of the nipped in waists, which are flattering to me because my waist is so small. One of the reasons I started looking at vintage clothing is because I find that modern styles are intended to ride lower down, not at the true waist, and if you have a small waist as you and I do, it's more flattering for it to fit at the smallest part of the waist.

I tend to forgo the 50s because I prefer a-line and pencil skirts to fuller skirts (this is a personal preference; circle skirts look fine on me), but I do toss in some late 30s suits and things. 1920s and early 30s are not usually good for me, because my chest is too big; you might find the same problem.

I know that you're going for a very authentic 1950s look right now, but I would suggest that when your year is over, you might look into a slightly higher hemline. You're short like I am, and often the longer, mid-calf hems cut off my legs at the wrong spot and make me look sort of dumpy. A hem that hits at knee-length, give or take 1.5", suits me best and you might find that's true for you too.

If you're going for 40s, I would also advise you to think about forgoing shoulder pads. On me they're a little overwhelming, because I'm short and also small in the hips, like you are. They make me look cartoony and triangle-like. [huh]

Sorry for the essay! I hope some of that was helpful. lol

Marzipan
11-11-2008, 03:04 PM
Thanks so much for your post, Scotch!

Wow, a 23 inch waist! So jealous! After having my child I lost lots of weight and decided to put more on but now that I'm thinking about a 50's waist again, I think I might start eating healthier. :)

Do you find that dresses are hard to fit because of the breast and waist ratio difference?

I'm staying away from the 20's. I saw Marilyn in a flapper dress and she looked a little dumpy. And that was Marilyn so who knows what I would look like...

ScotchWhisky
11-11-2008, 03:34 PM
I have one beautiful flapper dress that actually looks nice on me, but it is quite the diamond in the rough. You definitely need the coltish, straight-up-and-down figure to pull those off most of the time. Marilyn wore quite a few of them in Some Like it Hot, and although she still looked gorgeous (she is Marilyn, after all), they were hardly the most flattering dresses on her.

I do find that I have a problem with size disparity - for the most part my waist is a little smaller than most XS sizes, and my hips are a true XS, but my boobs qualify for a medium in most things. It just means I have to be more selective in what I buy, and some of my dresses and tops I have custom-made to avoid that problem.

As for a smaller waist, you could look into some era-appropriate waist cinchers to help get the 50s wasp-waist you're looking for. 26" is still very, very small for someone who's had kids! I'm sure you could find a corset that would take off 2-3" without any serous boning.

stephie.jean
11-23-2008, 03:06 PM
Hi, Ladies.

I am new to the Fedora Lounge, but I saw this thread and had to pipe in!

The reason I started wearing vintage in the first place (though not completely period, I like to mix and match eras and styles a LOT) is because the fit of vintage fits me _so_ much better.

I'm only 5'2", and usually a dead-on 36-24-36 (yup..."Brickhouse") and between 105 and 110...although right now I'm post-op on a knee surgery, and probably closer to around 36-25-36.5 or 37 and 115ish?

So pretty much, I'm an overexaggerated hour-glass, which I'm totaly okay with (umm..never used to be. As an ex-gymnast, when the hips and boobs came, it was really hard for me to accept...completely the opposite of what I always thought I should look like)...totally okay with, that is, except for extreme need for tailoring EVERYTHING. For pants, I can't even take in the back since I am very hippy with an "ample behind"...my tailor has to take from each side. Which gets pricey. Fast. I think I've put my tailor's kid through college already, and he's still in the womb for another 2 months. (I've signed up for sewing lessons--this should help the pocketbook)

And forget about flowy tops--I pretty much look like I have no waist and I'm pregnant. Adds an instant 10 lbs. So most tops I need taken in, too. Has to fit my shoulders and boobs, so the tops in the waist need to be taken in also.

But vintage, late 40s - early 60s, seems to fit quite well...I can even find skirts that I only need to hem and NOT take in the waist. I also find that some 40s shirtdresses can work quite well, and wide-leg trousers are my good friends. As for 40s--I can't do shoulder pads, though...I look like a football player in that case. As some other girls mentioned, I love the look of the 20s and 60s, but...um. They just don't work for me. At all.

Kitty_Sheridan
11-24-2008, 11:46 AM
I don't think there is an ideal.
I get a little annoyed as a hefty girl being asked 'ooh where do you get all your 30s and 40s clothes, they were all so skinny then'
Not true. Then, as now we are drip fed a boloney view of modern womens figures.

Will women in 2060 look back and say 'oh they were all so skinny then! they all must have looked like Kate Moss'

Well, we don't and here in the UK the average woman is a size 16+ and frankly, I don't want to be a twiglet. I love Deco art, but I'd rather be Reubenesque than look like a car mascot, all sharp hip-bones and flat chested!lol

K

Miss Hattie
11-24-2008, 01:15 PM
Ooow I get people saying ‘I bet you find loads of clothes as they were so small in those days’ all the time-, which I do but they never, fit properly (usually too big up top for me!) getting things to fit snugly around the hips and bum is not so much of a problem (23/34’’) but I have trouble finding trousers long enough in 30’s/40’s originals as I’m about 5’7 with longish legs- I had to add about 4 ˝ inches to one trouser pattern. I also have trouble with suit jackets and the length of the sleeves…. And when I get them long enough they are more often than not to big in the bust…..grrrrrr.:mad:

I only dress with clothes from the 30’s/40’s and try not to mix eras when selecting an outfit. Regards to dressing for my body shape I just stick to my era and find styles that suit me, just like any other person during that time would do. It’s really trial and error.

I don’t think there’s a normal or perfect body shape unfortunately we all have our ideals that are all different between us all. And if by some magic we got our ideal body shape I bet you we still wouldn’t be happy with it!lol

Haha Kitty I was reading the last bit of your post and it sounded so familiar then it twigged that I am the car mascot you described! (Just need the riley now!:D ) Oh and I wont take offence.:p

Miss Sis
11-24-2008, 01:24 PM
Miss Hattie, the Riley Mascot is an eagle, not a lady. We have one. :)

Miss Hattie
11-24-2008, 01:48 PM
Haha, thanks for that Miss Sis.- I can always change it:o , but I was thinking more along the lines of myself being the mascot inside the car:rolleyes: ! (Lucky you btw!:) )

Kitty_Sheridan
11-24-2008, 04:34 PM
I knew what you meant Hattie!

;)

Vintage Verve
11-24-2008, 06:14 PM
I don't think there is an ideal.
I get a little annoyed as a hefty girl being asked 'ooh where do you get all your 30s and 40s clothes, they were all so skinny then'
Not true. Then, as now we are drip fed a boloney view of modern womens figures.

Will women in 2060 look back and say 'oh they were all so skinny then! they all must have looked like Kate Moss'

Well, we don't and here in the UK the average woman is a size 16+ and frankly, I don't want to be a twiglet. I love Deco art, but I'd rather be Reubenesque than look like a car mascot, all sharp hip-bones and flat chested!lol K

Kitty I'm so with you on this one. As a more curvaceous gall (AU sized 14) I know I can find vintage to fit, it's just a bit of a challenge.

I think I saw someone say it previously, but we have to remember that pre 1960's that foundation garments were pretty much standard. I have a 34 inch waist, but if I found a good girddle or a waist cincher I could probably get this right down. Can any Aussie girls out there recommend a modern one I can buy perhaps?

I'd rather be Sophie Dahl in that gorgeous perfume ad when she was still a "plus size" model (paleeze :rolleyes: ) than scrawny Kate Moss.

x

miss_elise
11-24-2008, 07:05 PM
vintage verve...

apparently rago make very good cinchers and girdles. you can order them over the internet, but i also think Madame Circa (http://circavintageclothing.com.au/contact/) who is also a member here, has some, or can get some in...

Kitty_Sheridan
11-25-2008, 09:42 AM
I've been collecting since the age of 14 (when I was a flat chested skinny thing) but have a ton of clothing in all sizes and that goes from feedsack dresses to ermine trimmed evening wear and a couture label or two!

I like the Rago ones, a devil to get into lol and I have a few vintage ones that I wear for events.

Vintage Verve
11-25-2008, 10:45 PM
vintage verve...

apparently rago make very good cinchers and girdles. you can order them over the internet, but i also think Madame Circa (http://circavintageclothing.com.au/contact/) who is also a member here, has some, or can get some in...

Thanks Miss Elise, I will make sure I ask Madame Circa when I see her!

x

Goldfish
11-28-2008, 11:55 AM
These are perfect vintage proportions! I am 36-29-39 and have no problem finding items from the 40s and 50s that fit me like they were custom tailored.

I have the same measurments!!! Any brands you can recommend?

Sunny
12-01-2008, 03:09 PM
I have the same measurments!!! Any brands you can recommend?
I'm almost the same (34-27-38) and I also have very good luck. But I'm talking actual vintage stuff, almost exclusively from Ebay. No brands, sorry! The waist and hip measurements are the most important. Something big enough to fit my hips will almost always be fine in the bust.

Goldfish
12-01-2008, 06:56 PM
Thanks for your response, Sunny!
Hope we will not outbid each other on ebay then! lol
If you see something with your measurments that doesn't match your taste / meet your expectations, feel free to PM me ;).
If you can give me some recommendations how to dress well with our measurments I would be very thankful... I don't want to get on your nerves though... It's just that I try to build a new wardrobe and have no idea what to buy...

Sunny
12-02-2008, 07:19 AM
Thanks for your response, Sunny!
Hope we will not outbid each other on ebay then! lol
If you see something with your measurments that doesn't match your taste / meet your expectations, feel free to PM me ;).
If you can give me some recommendations how to dress well with our measurments I would be very thankful... I don't want to get on your nerves though... It's just that I try to build a new wardrobe and have no idea what to buy...

Well, I'm self-banishing myself from Ebay for a while - I've had VERY good luck over the last several months and my budget is very RED. :eusa_doh: :D But I may keep an eye out for things! What're your favorite years and styles?

The primary thing I avoid with larger hips is hip draping. A LOT of post-WWII styles (that weren't shirtdresses) had some kind of draping at the top front and/or sides of the skirt. It can be very flattering on slender or boxier figures, or even some super-proportioned hourglasses, since it adds curve. But for pear shapes, or hourglass/pears like me, it distorts the outline. It throws everything out of proportion and (in my opinion) it looks really bad.

Vintage Verve
12-03-2008, 10:36 PM
Thanks Miss Elise, I will make sure I ask Madame Circa when I see her!

x

Unfortunately Madame Circa doesn't have any in at the moment, due to current Aussie dollar value.

I have found a cincher on ebay that I've bid for, so will have to wait and see how I go!

Vintage Verve
12-18-2008, 08:44 PM
I ended up buying an underbust corset/cincher from What Katie Did in the UK, but it won't arrive her in Australia until the new year:
http://i182.photobucket.com/albums/x128/TooManyShoes/WKD.jpg

I will let you know how I find it.