Oprah dress thin

The Right Clothes Make You Look Thinner Instantly

As we always tell our clients, a v-neck is a curvy gal’s best friend. The high neckline, in the dress on the left, fills in Oprah’s upper body -making her look round and top heavy. However, the v-neck on the right instantly breaks up the bubble shape and replaces it with a sexy silhouette.

Another slimming feature is the placement of the belt. Never wear a belt at your true waist (left photo). It visually slices your body in half, creating a clunky look. Instead, empire belts on dresses are always most flattering. As you can see on the dress to the right; an empire waist nips you in at the smallest part of your torso (just below the breastbone) and instantly eliminates girth through the middle.

Lastly, remember our mantra… Extra Fabric = Extra Girth! Notice all that extra pleating around the waistline?  This is a no-no for anyone trying to look slimmer.  Extra fabric looks like extra you; causing you to inadvertently look sizes larger when you wear bulky clothing.

One of our very perceptive readers, Maren, put it perfectly, “it’s so annoying because extra fabric seems so safe and hidden – but it really isn’t doing you any favors.” So true!! We think we’re hiding our figure with extra fabric but we’re really only adding to it.  Fitted clothing (not tight!) is always the most flattering option.

Notice that the pleating on the dress to the right doesn’t add bulk because it’s super light and sheer fabric -which is fitted to her body.

We feel for Oprah and know what it is to struggle with looking good sporting a fuller figure. But many times our clothing is the real problem – not the scale! With the Secrets of The Fashion Code any woman – at ANY size – can learn how to dress herself slim – and sexy!

Thanks for reading!


Rebel Wilson Rocks LBD

Which LBD does Rebel Wilson rock?

The dress on the right is of course the most flattering. Why? Because any woman who is not model thin looks best in a V-neck; it creates a flattering hourglass figure, vs. a boxy, blocky shape (left photo).

Also, wearing clothing that is too tight (left photo) grabs areas you’re trying to hide and actually makes you look heavier, instead slim and sleek (right photo).

Finally, if your knees aren’t you best asset, bring dress lengths down to the mid knee- it still gives you a sexy look, while camouflaging a problem area.

Rebel shows us that women in Hollywood (and everywhere!)  can look sexy at any shape or size if they simply know the secrets of dressing slim.

xoxo  Ruth

Model Vs. Average Woman - The Fashion Code


Did you know the average American woman is a size 14 and 5’4” tall?

Yes, you heard that right, size 14.
So it’s no surprise the clothes we see on models never quite look the same on us regular sized gals. On the left, we see a fashion model (size 2) in a $230 designer shirt.
On the right, we see the exact same shirt on a plus size model, who is the approximate size of the “average” American woman, size 14.

Extra fabric equals extra girth

The wafer-thin model appears effortlessly chic in this blouse and ready for an elegant pool party, while our average sized gal looks like she’s wrapped in a down comforter and ready for a marathon night of Netflix binge-watching. The model on the left is so skinny, that the extra swaths of fabric in this shirt help give her a few well-needed curves, but on Miss Average American Gal all that extra material makes her look twice her size -not to mention decidedly less stylish than her slender neighbor.

Why does the woman on the right look larger and less stylish in the exact same shirt? It’s because very few of us have the same proportions as the Average fashion model, who is 5’10” and a size 2. Therefore, most of us aren’t going to look the same in clothing as the uber thin and super tall. So we need to ask ourselves… why do we base our clothing purchases on someone who looks nothing like us???

And it’s not just about being thin. If you’re vertically challenged the fashion curve (pun intended) gets exponentially more difficult. For instance, a size 6 may have won the skinny lottery but if she’s not as tall as an NBA player, good luck wearing so many of today’s trendy designs, like the one above. Now before you throw your favorite Nordstrom’s Anniversary sale purchase back in the bag and go into hiding with a pint of Ben & Jerry’s, read on…

…the solution is actually quite easy once you know The Fashion Code Secrets on how to dress for your proportions. The first Secret- and this works on EVERYONE is… oversized clothing makes you look just that, oversized.

Even fashion models look better in more tailored, form-fitting clothing, as you can see below. More importantly, the “Average American Woman” (below right) looks sizes smaller and vastly more stylish in fitted (but NOT tight) clothing.

Oversized clothing is the average gal’s style kryptonite. (And by average we mean anyone who isn’t a supermodel.) It’s almost impossible to look good in voluminous garb -unless you’re rail thin.

Dress Slimmer

The easiest way to look slimmer is to dress slimmer. Put your clothes on a diet, not you. As stylists we have seen this time and time again – by trimming off the extra fabric that so many of us like to hide under – you can instantly appear sizes smaller. This is true for ALL women, sizes 8-18 and beyond. Get ready for compliments. You’re welcome.

Btw, the average plus size model is 5’8” tall and size 8-14. Yes. We said Plus Size. Sigh.
Alright, maybe it is time to break out the Ben & Jerry’s.

But seriously, isn’t it time we give ourselves a break and stop trying to squeeze ourselves into clothing that isn’t made for us? It’s not about diets and or being able to wear single digit sizes, it’s simply about knowing The Secrets to what makes us look great – whatever our shape or size.



Sign up for our FREE MONTHLY BLOG on more Secrets to looking slimmer, younger and more stylish-regardless of your shape, size or age.

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This week’s secret to dressing like a European is something you notice on both men and women as soon as you step off the plane in Paris, Zurich or Rome ……and that is….. THE FIT OF THEIR CLOTHING. You may have observed on a trip to Europe- or just on a tourist you’ve seen here in the States, that European clothing fits differently. So what is the difference between the fit of American and European clothing? Are the clothes made differently over there? Are all Europeans dishing out the big bucks on tailored designer garments? Or is this secret to style classified information that one must be geographically destined to understand?

It’s none of the above. In fact, this “fit” secret is quite simple once you know it, and it is….“EXTRA FABRIC = EXTRA GIRTH” – ALWAYS!

For those of you who follow the Fashion Code or have heard us speak, you know that our mantra…“extra fabric = extra girth” is not only a secret to dressing like a European, it is a secret to creating the perfect outfit as well. With good reason. It is virtually impossible to look svelte and chic if you’ve got extra fabric hanging from your body and your clothes aren’t properly fitted. The ONE exception to this Secret is people who are rail thin and tall (think six foot tall anorexic runway model). They actually need a little bulk in their fashion diet. However, less than 1% of the population has this skyscraper-like body architecture.

In fact, the average American woman is now 5′ 4″ and a size 14, so we’re going to assume that more of our readers are closer to this American”norm” than the model’s norm of 6 feet tall and a size 0.  Interestingly enough, most European women are not very tall themselves (barring some Northern countries like Sweden and Norway). The French and Italians are especially small, so they work with this rule of “extra fabric = extra girth” almost religiously. And we don’t know about you, but when a stylish French or Italian woman is reverently following a fashion rule- we ‘re going to add it to our own fashion bible!

To illustrate our point, we’ve taken the SAME OUTFIT on our model below and put it on a “fabric diet”.  As you can see, by simply getting rid of the extra bulk in her shirt, sweater and accessories, she looks atleast 15 pounds thinner and incredibly more stylish.

So what does “EXTRA FABRIC EQUALS EXTRA GIRTH ” mean exactly – and more importantly how can we emulate this important style secret stateside? It simply means your clothing should always fit your body; never being too big or too tight. Clothing should skim your body- no matter what your size or shape.  Also, avoid wearing thick, bulky fabrics like the oversized, cable-knit wool sweater pictured on the left.  As you can see, it makes her look frumpy as well as two sizes larger than the thin, well tailored cardigan on the right.

We know…we know…many of us get embarrassed when we’ve put on a few pounds. The obvious solution (we think) is to hide it with larger clothing like a bigger shirt or wide leg pants. Unfortunately this solution can backfire in a sizable (pun intended) way. You see, no one knows if it’s air underneath all that extra fabric or if it’s you – and unfortunately they just assume it’s you. What does this do to your look? Well, not only does all that extra fabric end up making you look sizes larger, but it makes you look miles less stylish as well. Well dressed European women seem to know this intuitively. In fact, you rarely see the well heeled in anything oversized or bulky. Even full-figured European gals wear clothing which fits well and they never try to hide their curves beneath mounds of fabric.

The secret “EXTRA FABRIC = EXTRA GIRTH “ applies not only to clothing, but to shoes and accessories as well. For example, you won’t see our stylin’ continental cousins in chunky white tennis shoes or Uggs. If they are wearing tennis shoes, they are most often streamlined to the foot (and worn in dark tones). They understand that a clunky white “block” at the end of their leg makes them look shorter and loses them points in the style department. We, of course, can do this on our end of the fashion pond by choosing sleek, uncluttered footwear in deeper tones which recede…Also, if its elegance and sophistication you’re going for, stay clear of Uggs. They will shorten and widen your legs quicker than you can say garden gnome.

Now lets come full circle with last week’s European Style Secret – “Less is more”.  Not only is less clutter in your closet a huge help in finding a stylish outfit every morning, but in addition – paring down all the extra, over-sized, bulky American clothing will leave you looking sizes smaller and much more stylish as well.   So make sure any new additions to your closet are a perfect fit and you’ll leave women of all nations wondering what’s your secret to looking so stylish.

until next week…..