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Back Tomorrow

I’m sick, it’s a holiday, and I’m having technical/feed woes.* Taking today off, back tomorrow.

*If you haven’t seen updates in your reader, you’re not alone. Been trying to fix for three days. Hopefully resolved soon.

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Reader Request: Contradictory Figure-flattery Advice

conflicting advice

J. added this question to the suggestion box:

What about advice for when your sense of what’s flattering is self-contradictory? Most advice only addresses one dimension at a time, and sometimes the applicable bits of advice directly contradict one another. To give an example – I am very chesty but also have a tiny waist and an hourglass figure. Sounds easy: cinch in that waist with a belt. But I am also tremendously short-waisted and can’t wear anything but the narrowest belt at my natural waist. Therefore I should wear a very narrow belt, or wear the belt a little on the low side where I am still fairly slim. But I’m also short … I imagine that many women struggle with this same type of problem, and I’d love to get your advice.

Oh yes, it’s true, addressing one figure-flattery priority may monkey with another. And isn’t THAT aggravating? I wish I had a simple, straightforward solution for this one, but I’m afraid I just don’t. Here’s what I can tell you.

Prioritize your priorities

The most important and effective thing you can do is to decide which figure-flattery priorities take precedence within an outfit. If wearing a belt shows off your waist, but also emphasizes your short-waistedness, you’ve gotta pick one or the other. Is it more important to show that waistline, or to make your silhouette appear more balanced? Pick one, let the other go.

Adjust your eye and expectations

Figure-related advice can get really nit-picky. Add that nit-pickiness to the mental catalog of comments and observations about our bodies that has accumulated over the years, and you may end up with a distorted view. That floaty blouse could be the perfect color for your complexion and help you downplay your midsection, but it might simultaneously make your bust look bigger. As it turns out, THAT IS COMPLETELY OK. Not only is it extremely difficult to flatter your everything all at once, but in all likelihood no one but you notices the figure-related minutiae of your outfit. Try to let your eye adjust to things that may be deemed “unflattering,” but are really just fine. Then adjust your expectations of your outfits. One in 40 will be perfect, the rest will fall short. Luckily, most everyone else has that same track record, too.


Advice should always, ALWAYS be a jumping-off point. As J. points out, most style advice is given in a vacuum: Sure, it’s great to know how to make your legs look longer, but depending on your unique proportions those techniques might create disproportionality or add volume or do any number of other less-than-desirable things to your figure. So try to carve out some time to experiment. Say you’ve got a dress that makes your waist look great and your butt look not-great. What happens if you add a wide belt? A long jacket? A crinoline? What if the hemline were shorter? How about drawing attention upward with a statement necklace? What would happen if you put a skirt you love OVER the bottom half of the dress and leave just the top half showing? Sometimes, you’ll find a garment that is amazing in one respect and disappointing in another. It’s up to you to determine if there are work-arounds, or if you should just donate and move on.

Unsatisfying, no? For me, too, friends. But as Mick says, you can’t always get what you want, especially if what you want is for all of your outfits to flatter your entire body. I might’ve added that last bit myself.

Images courtesy Nordstrom

**Disclosure: Actions you take from the hyperlinks within this blog post may yield commissions for See Already Pretty’s disclosure statement for more details.

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Insomniac Sale Picks: Low-heeled Round-toe Dress Shoes

*In this late-night feature – which will run on Tuesday and Thursday of each week – I’ll gather up three fun items that are currently on sale online and share them with you! I would LOVE suggestions: Stylish wide-width pumps? Classic v-necked sweaters? Chandelier earrings? Petite dress slacks? What would you like to see featured?*

Kerstin requested a few picks for low-heeled, round-toe dress shoes, so here we go:

softspots salude

Softspots Salude – was $84.95, now $34.99

For some, these may be pushing the high end of low with a 2.5″ heel, but Softspots is a fantastic comfort brand and the chunky heel design should help makes these stable and walkable. Available in this tortoise print as well as two snakeskin prints, and burgundy patent in US sizes 6.5 – 11, including some narrow and wide widths. Size availability varies by color.

aerosoles red hot

Aerosoles Red Hot – was $79.95, now $35.54 – $68.95

These look a little square-toed here, but the top view shows a very rounded toebox. This style has a 2.25″ heel and gets high marks from reviewers. Available in this gray patent as well as black leather, navy leather, taupe leather, black patent, tan patent, and dark red patent in US sizes 5 -12, including some wide widths. Size availability varies by color.

walking cradles

Walking Cradles Craft – was $105, now $67.64 – $84.99

These are a pretty chunky shoe, but a great option if you want just a hint of heel and a cute round toe. This style clocks in at 1.75″ and is available in this navy leather as well as brown leather in US sizes 6 – 11, including some wide and extra wide widths. Size availability varies by color.

miz mooz athens

Miz Mooz Athens – was $109.95, now $44.99

These won’t be as versatile as the others, but they’ve sure got more pizzaz! That little heel is 1.5″ high and this style has a soft, padded footbed. Available in this red as well as gray/blue or black/brown in European sizes 36 – 39. Size availability varies by color.

Other not-currently-on-sale resources for low-heeled, round-toe dress shoes:

  1. Nordstrom – Lots of options from dressy to casual.
  2. Pikolinos – Great for gorgeous round-toe boots and booties. These burgundy ankle boots are amazing.
  3. Camper – Low heels and round toes are this brand’s trademarks. Love these sleek Mary Janes.

**Disclosure: Actions you take from the hyperlinks within this blog post may yield commissions for See Already Pretty’s disclosure statement for more details.

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