Choosing The Right Cocktail Dress

One of the most versatile dresses that were ever designed for wear on special occasions is the cocktail dress. While the events for which cocktail dresses are worn are usually late afternoon or early evening affairs that are too casual to be called black-tie events, many cocktail dresses can now be worn elsewhere, depending on the cut and the material of the dress and the accessories worn with it. To wear a cocktail dress to a more formal event, all you need to do is to accessorize accordingly, perhaps wear more flashy pieces of jewelry and heavier makeup. If you need to wear something dressy to the office for any reason other than the usual skirt or pantsuit, you can wear a cocktail dress that is not too flashy and just throw on a blazer and slip into sensible office shoes. Many current styles of cocktail dresses are no longer limited to being party wear anymore. Choosing what style of cocktail dress to wear, however, can be very tricky for most women. After all, only a few women could claim to have truly perfect bodies, and most women who do not fall into the supermodel category prefer to hide the flaws of their figures. Wearing a one-piece dress such as a cocktail dress can easily reveal those flaws if the dress does not fit the wearer’s body type. In picking out the right cocktail dress to wear, a woman should always consider her body type – whether she is top-heavy or bottom-heavy – and find something that will balance out her figure. If she is bottom-heavy, her aim should be to draw attention to the upper part of her body and to her face. If she is top-heavy, she has the option either to emphasize her cleavage or to wear something that will pull the eyes to her legs. What kind of cocktail dress would suit a woman with a bottom-heavy figure? As said above, a woman with a bottom-heavy figure would want to hide the thickness around her hips and thighs. A good cocktail dress for her to wear would be a dress that fits closely around the waist but without the seams pushed out by extra padding around the abdomen and has a skirt that flares out around the hips and thighs. A cocktail dress with a full skirt would be perfect for a woman with a bottom-heavy figure because it will definitely hide whatever flabbiness and bulges that she wishes not to be seen around her lower body. Another option available for a woman with a bottom-heavy figure is a cocktail dress that sports an empire-style waistline. A cocktail dress with an empire-style waistline has the waist placed higher, thereby pulling the eyes towards the shoulders, the neck and the face. It also drapes and skims over the lower body. The only risk with wearing an empire-style cocktail dress, however, is that the empire-style cut is often used on maternity dresses, and so a woman wearing such a dress may be mistaken to be pregnant. And yet another choice open for a woman with a bottom-heavy figure is a cocktail dress that is either sleeveless or strapless, also with a flaring skirt. Again, baring the arms and the shoulders is effective in drawing attention away from the hips. As for women with top-heavy figures, she could either emphasize her cleavage or her legs, as mentioned above. If she wants to put focus on her legs rather than her cleavage, she can wear a cocktail dress with a solid-colored top paired with a patterned skirt. She can hike the hem of her skirt up to make it shorter and really draw the eyes to her legs. If she wants to attract attention to her ample cleavage rather than her legs, she can cover up her legs in a long-skirted cocktail dress but reveal a little skin on her upper body with a low V-neck or plunging neckline. In fact, she can draw the eyes to both her top and her legs by wearing a short cocktail dress with a low neckline if she wants to. What she should not do is to wear a cocktail dress with an overly busy top because it will make her upper body appear larger and skew the balance of her figure. Accessories also help to keep the illusion of balance on a woman’s figure aside from wearing the right kind of cocktail dress. Bottom-heavy women can wear flashy earrings, necklaces or chokers, while top-heavy women can forego the necklace and opt for a bracelet instead. However, she should buy her cocktail dress first before figuring out what accessories, bag and shoes to wear. Cocktail dresses are versatile dresses that can be worn on any occasion that requires some degree of formality...

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Prom Dresses Guide: Find the Prom Dress that Flatters Your Silhouette

Prom time is almost here and choosing from so many styles and shapes of prom dresses isn’t easy. It takes time and patience to try on all those prom dresses, hoping to find just the right dress for your special evening. You should first find a prom dress that flatters your body type, or silhouette. Use the guide below to find out what type of body shape you have and which prom dress will best complement your shape. Determining Your Body Shape It’s important to determine your body shape before you start shopping for prom gowns. Once you know which types of prom dresses will best suit you, you won’t waist time trying on those that won’t. Are you Thin and Tall? Here’s a way to tell: Your body is straight and slender, has few or no curves, and your bust is average in size. Your height is 5′ 6″ or taller. If you meet these criteria, you’ll want to buy a prom dress style that adds curves, shows off your long legs, flows gracefully to reveal your slim silhouette, and adds fullness to your chest. Try on dresses with several different neckline styles including v-neck or an open neckline to see which looks best. Also, dare to try a dress with a cutout back. Some prom dress styles to consider are empire, sheath, ball gown, and a-line. Are you Petite? If you are 5′ 3″ or shorter with a small build and an average sized bust, you’ll want a dress to complement the petite such as an empire, sheath or a-line prom gown. With a slit, you can make your legs appear longer. Or, you can look much taller by wearing a dress with a short hemline. The hemline might be ruffled, handkerchief, hi/low, or asymmetrical – whichever best suits you. There are also a-line and empire styles to take emphasis off your waistline if you are short-waisted. Your neckline could be sweetheart, halter, or v-shape. Do you have an Hourglass, Pear, or Apple Shape? With an hourglass shape, you are curvy with a medium-to-large sized bust. Your bottom is rounded and you have curvy hips. You can show off the curves with a sheath dress or de-emphasize them somewhat with a ball gown or a-line dress. To place more emphasis on the upper portion of your body, choose a dress with an embellished neckline. With a pear shape, you are probably bottom-heavy, meaning your hips, thighs, and bottom are larger than the upper portion of your body. Choose prom dresses that flatter the upper half of your body such as a-line, empire, or ball gown dresses with a circular halter neckline. Or, a strapless dress might do the trick. If your body is apple-shaped, your mid-section is probably heavier or thicker than other parts of your body. Maybe your tummy is larger than you would like. Choose dresses that take the emphasis away from your mid-section. An empire gown might work best with this type of figure. An a-line dress can work well too if you have a bodice with boning to give it a slimming effect. Are you Athletic? Do you have a Large Build? If you are muscular, have broad shoulders, or a large bust, choose a prom dress that will give you a feminine shape such as a ball gown or empire style dress. The full skirt will immediately add shape at your waistline. With broad shoulders, you might find that trying to cover them with wide straps or sleeves will make them look even wider. Try on a few strapless prom gowns first. You might be pleasantly surprised! If you have a large bust, be sure your prom dress offers proper support. Choose v-necks or halters and either an a-line or ball gown. To draw attention away from your chest, wear a prom dress that has eye-catching details at its hemline. With a full figure, there are more styles today than ever in plus size prom dresses. Don’t feel uncomfortable on your prom night by trying to squeeze into a smaller gown. Find a dress that fits your body size and flatters your figure. More “Accentuating” Prom Dress Ideas There are even more ways you can accentuate certain areas of your body. Prom dresses can also come with stylish features such as beaded panels, a fully beaded bodice, accordion pleating, a jeweled beltline, embroidery designs, sheer overlays, trains, and removable skirts. Use these tips to get an idea of what style will work best for your body type before you start shopping. Check online to look at various styles and colors. Most online stores carry a variety of dresses including prom dresses, evening dresses, and bridesmaid dresses, so you’ll have no problem finding just the right...

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