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  • Writer's pictureSumbella

How to find your ‘fit’ (without following the 'rules')

Updated: Sep 6, 2021


In this series of articles we are thoughtfully exploring ideas to help curate your own signature style.


There are five parts in this series, and I've written mini, less-than-5-minute articles within each one for you to explore bit by bit.


This article belongs to defining.


1 Reconnecting

2 Defining

3 Auditing

4 Rebuilding

5 Sustaining


Enjoy this series~


The Quote


“And now I’ll do what’s best for me.”

- John Green


The Analogy


At 14 years old, Momoko Suzuki relocated from Japan to Los Angeles. Even though she hailed from a culture that itself has a distinct style, Suzuki would grow up to produce and design items of clothing that would resonate strongly with all kinds of 'bodies', from all around the world.


She would design clothing that boasted an ‘inclusive’ silhouette - one that adapts around the body shape of the wearer. Her loose fitting, comfort and function focused lines are such a success that they are often sold out within minutes of launching. Even sample sales of pieces that have defects are sold out rapidly! But if you were to look at Momoko’s own frame and body type, she seems to be petite and slim, an ideal candidate for dressing in certain ‘cuts’ or a-line dresses with belts clinched at her waist. But she doesn’t. She chooses to dress in a fairly loose fitting form (from all I can tell), continuing to honour her ‘inclusive’ silhouette approach even beyond designs for her brand. And it works beautifully for her. In every article I’ve read and photoshoot I’ve seen, she seems to be at peace and glowing with her sense of style.


How can we achieve the same, and defy ‘rules’ and ‘recommendations’ to truly find what makes us authentically look and feel good?

The Premise


In some cultures, a figure hugging silhouette is considered ideal. In others, a loose black dress (called an abaya), can often reveal more by a single difference in cut or with a belt. Body shape and the clothes that suit your ‘type’ can be a minefield. I prefer to go by intuitive preference before reading the rules and recommendations for my particular body type or shape. Every body is wildly different, both in shape and soul, so it’s important to recognise this before dismissing any fits you might actually really like. As with the colour palette, I tend to select a colour I truly love, even if it’s not ‘recommended’ for my skin type, because I know if I love it I’ll glow when I’m wearing it regardless of rules.


That being said, sometimes the rules can be a help. So here are some simple ones - by no means the standard:


'Inverted triangle' shaped Suggestions: A-line skirts and flared bottoms that sit tight at the waist, and balance out strong shoulders


'Pear' shaped

Suggestions: A-line skirts, clothes that fit around the waist and highlight the upper body


'Rectangle' shaped

Suggestions: scoop necks, trousers, accessories like bows etc.


'Hourglass' shaped

Suggestions: wrap tops, skirts or trousers that fit around the waist

There are several types of clothes I wear that I know don’t conform to what society might say suits my shape, and go against everything those four recommend above - but I love them and feel so good wearing them anyway that it’s a non-issue. Strangely, it’s often those same clothes/fits that will resonate with other people too. Kind of like the Momoko Suzuki effect.

The Steps


So how do you go about finding the kinds of clothes, cuts and silhouettes that fit you the ‘best’? These steps may help. 1- Draw


Sketch out 3-5 of your ideal silhouettes/outfits to help show you what you really like. Don’t let these be what you feel you ‘should’ wear, but instead what you love. 2- Notice


Which clothing styles you tend to choose already? Of those styles, try to discern which styles you really love, and which are just default. Are there any styles you just chose because they seemed to function well? 3- Evaluate


The four body types mentioned above, and the ‘recommended’ fits: and now notice - how do you feel about those recommendations? Do they match with what you’re comfortable with or wear regularly? And what you actually love? 4- Ask a stylist


I have a couple of friends who took this step to get professional help with figuring out their style, and it was a game-changing experience! Many stores have personal style consultants who can help. Summary


This process of finding your ‘fit’ takes a lot of discernment, and if you have extra parameters that you want to stick with in terms of clothing it can be tricky to figure out. Once you do find the styles and outfits / silhouettes that you most enjoy, it makes it much easier to put outfits together and select clothes that will aid your curated wardrobe.




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