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What is a Neat Hourglass Rectangle Anyway?

Have you found your blogger body double yet ? I'm sure you have, but if not, go back to that post and find your double. Trust me, its...

Have you found your blogger body double yet? I'm sure you have, but if not, go back to that post and find your double. Trust me, its worth it!

Do you think I might be your body double? I'm so excited for you, because we can work through this together!

Today I'm going to bare it all. Ok, not really, LOL. But I am going to point all the things that bring me to believe I'm a Neat Hourglass/Rectangle. Maybe you'll agree. Maybe you won't. I'm definitely open to criticism. And even if you aren't my body double, you can use the techniques I used here to help better define your body shape.

For my own purposes, there are 2 different body calculators out there. One uses Bust, Waist, Hip to define your shape. The other uses Shoulders, Waist, Hip. You can use those to begin to assess your body shape.

HOWEVER, I feel the best way is to use that information and then take some really candid photos.

So step 1, take horribly unflattering photos of myself in a cami and leggings. You COULD do this in bra and undies. I'll save you from needing eye bleach. 😉

Take photos straight on to the camera. Then turn to the side. Then the back. Mortified yet? I am.

So what do we see?

Despite having a VERY large bra size (no one is debating that a GG cup is large), my bust looks pretty balanced for my shape.For reference, my over bust is 35". My underbust however is 31. Measurements say I still have wide shoulders (41") and the photos do too. They match width wise to my hips. Chances are, if I ever manage to get this weight to come off, I'll be back as an inverted triangle.

Hips don't lie. I'm not sure where or how it happened, but somewhere I got a butt. Maybe the 100 plus squats I do a day is finally paying off? Honestly, I'm afraid to lose weight because I'm really sure my butt will disappear. I also have hips. If you look carefully at the photos (I did the best I could to adjust the colors to make everything look crisp), you can draw the hourglass shape from bust to hips on the front.

Legs for days, or not. True story, I have a 26" inseam. That is from crotch to floor. Try not to laugh. But I have great legs. Somehow I ended up with tons of body between my waist and my hips and missed out on the legs and upper body. But we work with what we have, right? And these are great legs, so I always aim to show them off.

Where is my waist? If you're not sure where your waist is, you can tie a string (or piece of elastic like I did here) around your waist. Here's the problem. My waist is practically at my under bust. And then, my hips are down so low that the shaping is very gradual. But in tight clothes like this, you can see where it is at. Side view isn't as flattering though.

So what does all that mean? In my opinion (you're welcome to have a different one) my bust is WAY too big to be a rectangle. Like obnoxiously big. But my waist isn't quite defined enough to be a neat hourglass. I'm somewhere in between. And that's actually ok.

You see, so many people get caught up on the "I am xyz body shape so I should/shouldn't wear this or that." I'd rather focus on those things that I want to emphasize. So, things I love about my body. I have great legs (did I say that already, because it is true). My arms are thin and strong. I can use my bust to distract you from any other part of my body. Low enough neckline and BOOM, all you see is boobs. I try not to do that to anyone but my husband. 😍

So how do I use all this information?

I know that if I'm wearing an empire bodice, I need to bring my neckline up. Otherwise, all you see is boobs, even if it isn't that revealing.

If I'm going to wear an a-line or slim fitting bodice, then scoop the neckline or do something to draw attention to my bust. Otherwise, there's just too much fabric between my neck and the hem and I look like my upper body is super short (it actually is).

NEVER EVER wear a skirt that is below the knee unless it is full length maxi. That will chop off my legs to ugly little stubs.

Also, no true capri length (I prefer clam digger length). And honestly, if you're going to go above the knee, make it at least 2" above. Preferably, head for tunic length and add on the leggings. There's no better way to showcase legs than to SHOWCASE those legs.

I've been breaking some rules lately, and well, let's just say, things aren't going quite as I expected. Sometimes good, sometimes bad. I'm flexible and willing to keep trying. But if you look like me AND you see something you like, you can rest assured you'll probably look very similar. And if you look like me and you sew something you like, PLEASE tag me. I'm always looking for new styles!

***UPDATE: There has been some discussion about whether these photos were the best representation of my body shape. I tried taking new ones with a white top instead. My observations were thus:

#1- My black cami was compressing my bust, a lot, but was skimming my waist well.

#2- Wearing a white cami that doesn't compress my bust makes for a top that is at least 4" too big around the waist.

#3- Pinching out those 4" is not enough to fully show my waist shaping from underbust to hip.

#4- Not having a perfectly straight, head on camera position will make you look many levels of lopsided. :/ Anyway, here is an updated photo for reference. You'll just have to trust me that my bust is big and makes for a slightly too curvy rectangle, but a not shapely enough neat hourglass.

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  1. You & I are close, except you're more of an hourglass. My chest & waist are within an inch of you but my hips are smaller. It's really annoying for finding patterns since it seems to make me some sort of oddity to be larger through the bust than the hips. I've just started sewing for myself and...well...I've got a long list going, just need to muster up the courage and make some time to DO it.

    1. If I ever get this weight off, my bust will be at least 2" larger than my hips (I'm naturally an inverted triangle when I'm a lower weight). Are you familiar with the pivot and slide method of adjustments by Nancy Ziemann. It is a crappy way to do an FBA, but it works amazingly well when adjusting a dress or tunic to a smaller hip size.


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