Flattering Occasionwear 7


It is often the first thought when an invitation lands on your doormat: What will I wear?! So, I have applied the Flatter Fashion Tips to finding gorgeous outfits which are perfect for any wedding, christening or garden party so that you can RSVP in style!

You are looking for gathering, pleats, frills, bold patterns and decoration. Avoid darts and princess seams (the curved seam that runs from the waist up towards the shoulder) – however as with all rules there are exceptions: if the fabric is light enough or the decoration bold enough darts and seams won’t affect how a top or dress hangs on a flat chest (see the No1 Jenny Packham dress below as an example).

I visited two department stores and several high street names to show that you don’t need to travel far, nor spend a fortune to find an outfit that will make you feel confident at your special ‘do’. I have added the links to the stores’ websites and item details if I know them; but really this blog is to give you ideas of what to look for, I don’t want to take the fun out of spending time finding the perfect dress for you! (And yes, you will try on things that don’t work or don’t suit you…but that happens whatever your bodyshape so don’t let it deter you!)

Headscarves: Models own! The chemo curl has arrived so I am really into headbands and scarves at the moment: the pink bird scarf is from Peacocks, and the red and blue headband is from Primark. If your looking for headwear for a special occasion then I found loads of gorgeous scarves in charity shops during chemo, but Suburban Turban also do a nice range of pretty hats and scarves.

Shoes: grabbed off the shelf as I walked to the changing room.

First up is Monsoon:

The pink jacket is called ‘Victoria’ and goes with lots of Monsoon’s dresses. It also has no darts so hangs perfectly on a flat chest.

01cf41f93b75a3bf3d57cec94b031b173a2535b4e3 01847048c126ad97b0982a937d65c27f9188b87fc4

Camilla Print Jersey Maxi Dress

Jersey hangs beautifully, and with the gathered halterneck and waistband the pleats add lots of movement. The bold print adds depth and decoration. Baring your shoulders (or legs) is also a great way to draw attention away from your chest if you are feeling self conscious.

 

 

014979f69608c127b3807ce6c0961fe42e6479f4be 012cbfd0a9cb0cced723d1cee7ee75729f40a7d08e

Tiger Lily Dress:

Lovely floaty material with pleated neckline and bubble hem waist. Pretty pattern below the chest creates the illusion of a shadow.

 

 

0126d5e54f25ee7d41a04007b5faca49c5577842c3

Acacia Dress:

The chiffon fabric means that the bust creates gentle pleats, plus there’s lots of delicate beading to decorate the neckline and waistband.

 

 

01d6f9202f38930ac7ec412595918bf8538e7cb188

Aliyyah Dress:

A gorgeous vivid pink A-Line dress which skims off the chest.

 

 

0148b480971da391bab45ffd630b44eb161f66a470

Clover Dress:

Pretty lace detail across the chest with capped sleeves to add width and a floaty A-Line skirt.

 

 

01ffe2f426c25e349f4be679bc7387ad3888ca8c63 0175a6b59e1c4a3287e64a9d6d11dc6bac6bdeaad9

Erin Embroidered Maxi Dress and Claudia Cloud Jacket

I found this in the beachwear section and fell in love with sequined bodice, but this cheesecloth beach dress can soon be glammed up with a fancy jacket. I love it because it really shows off my flat chest!

 

 

013c46c16f4102a5189b48ad7dc2c4360426296417

Melinda Stripe Maxi Dress

Again, another dress that lays very flat on your chest, but the stripes create the illusion of a bodice. The V-neck is quite low but you could add a statement necklace or infinity scarf if you wanted to.

 

Warehouse

0104f08867bca5c452670d447482908ed98734f114

Micro Pleat Midi Dress:

My photo doesn’t do this dress justice; but as the name suggests there are delicate pleats from the yoke to the hem so it floats out beautifully from the neck. The armholes are quite deep so you could just see the ends of my scars.

 

 

01ea01cea31ea6eb869ba61af21a52996cc145f8aa

Pleated Belted Dress.

Similar to the dress above, but with slightly more defined pleats and a Grecian/Roman-style bodice which adds width across the chest.

 

 

01749a6e42aec8663e2bdbb0c77a2926b87bea7694 01d9eecd4b72878f01f3ba647327dd1fc886bc632e

Bardot Ruffle Dress

The name of this loose shift dress says it all! Bardot + Ruffle=Flattering. Lovely chambray cotton makes this a lovely relaxed, cool dress. This would also work really well if you are unilaterally flat.

 

 

01692050a10459d2568e155f3e8e55816b97bb7291

Zip Through Midi Dress

I love this! Really light cotton, with pleated neckline and gathered waist. Throw on statement earrings and a wide-brimmed hat and youe done!

 

Phase Eight at John Lewis

I picked up a navy pashmina scarf on my way into the changing room – have a look here for ideas on how to tie scarves to decorate your chest.

01f83874c06d20daaf985f647f1507c99c95949861

All three of these dresses work well on a flat chest because they have pleats, gatherered necklines and waist, and bold patterns. Phase Eight have dozens of dresses like these in different colours and patterns (so many that I couldn’t find the name of these three!) so I definitely recommend looking here for the perfect dress.

01f080736a9e1e4c275fc72165adf971866d57de88 01ec503237aedc55fc7ad72b242b1fe6eae3c4d23c

01dc5a7de548b37f860099a952dbcef424961981cf

016a53d905581551f682e8452aae2339b7098c7b4b_00001 017d2b1a18f2b61bd1cd896768d6c8b87840d3cb88

 

Hobbs at John Lewis

018f644bbe5052e6c9655607d17d24cbced5777a14017b2d89acf82e49d24fed1f83a99d09f93ffa8ce3

Hobbs ‘Marnie’ dress – very similar to Phase Eight: floaty fabric, bold pattern and lots of draping!

 

Mint Velvet at John Lewis

01fb959cc5f6387e848b2d18452b39d47595a11512_00001 01d0765e2bb888ce0780e8d0bbeb46ac160c8c8531_00001

‘Nicolette’ Print Dress

Mint Velvet do lots of flat friendly tops and dresses because clothes are quite unstructured. Pricey but lovely!

 

Coast

0197e48d0e8f6b13ed2b3b17fad9bffa2f5a40d0ae Coast have absolutely nailed the changing room experience – the assistant was in an evening dress and there were sparkly shoes in there waiting for me!

01c6c1ec7efa4b67f267c464855d416c8db37a3584

‘Lydia’ Bow Crepe Dress

This floaty A-Line dress looks great on a flat chest, and would work really well if you are flat on your right side.

0111ec429e5745b409db3329551265cabb51c44380

Havanna Stripe Trousers and Irkime Bardot Top

Flowing top with gathered waistband teamed with statement trousers.

 

 

014dfa2ca7a86c6397c277ebd0745c5543a955f786

‘Penita’ Jersey Dress

This dress fits where it touches (as my Mum would say), but the ruching all the way down the front means that it doesn’t look clingy. The asymmetrical neckline, ruching, and bold colour make this a really eye-catching dress (and I think is proof that if you find the perfect dress that makes you feel confident no-one will notice that you are completely flat). If only I had somewhere to wear it!

0110977b9bed79daa7716f96e143e596c670288876

Havanna Trousers and Tipped Tasha Top

This is a jersey top with a sheer overlay and bubble hem so it drapes really well. The contrast binding adds simple decoration across the chest.

 

Debut and No1 Jenny Packham, both at Debenhams

01fbc25dcd68e7cf816f08b42f06417479322f6d21

014a98cc7a9d9c868a85fbeb69d45135ab052f3f06

Debut Pink Floral Bead Embellished Neckline Dress

The beading around the neckline is a lovely way to add decoration, the pleats and floral pattern both add movement to this floaty A-Line dress. Great for showing off your shoulders.

 

01b1ff8be7d112f943cfe17c8975784b50eda84bc2

No1 Jenny Packham Silver ‘Amour’ Evening Dress

A very elegant dress with a sequined bodice that has darts from the waistband but it is only loosely structured underneath so it gathers above the waistband, rather than around the bust area, which makes it look like part of the design whilst also adding a little volume.

 

Jacques Vert at Debenhams

01198094f50236b24285ca4d535b69d25c95bd8018

018f346fd35a014a9556a0c49e0e0a66d9a7bace7e

Jacques Vert Spot Dress

Draped neckline and gathered bodice adds volume.

011877b177b96f6847c4a1796bde2993f513b91a2e

Jacques Vert Spot Dress

Draped neckline and bodice again, but with detachable corsage which you could pin lower down if you wanted to add more decoration to one side of your chest.

 

01d52fdaa9981b031a68290a54001d56fab8bb5b98

Jacques Vert Clipped Spot Dress

Pretty fabric with generously draped neck and bodice

Oasis

019043a1cb93992d7d1d1c1c9c01fb1dfb268908ae There is a great range of dresses online (lots of bold prints and asymmetrical designs).

0181d49da7b3f1c7895581185dfc3e92170cd625af

Frill Side Shift Dress

A great way to decorate a flat right side.

 

01e0a42ca20cb16457666bbc64433ec3e2b66b1a97

‘Pleat Stripe Dress’

Floaty fabric with a tie waist, teamed with a  retro stripe print. The contrast piping across the yoke and the bold design around the sjirt adds lots of interest. I spotted the same style with a floral print called ‘Opium’ online too.

01477aadb833c6ef98d078a6922718ecaf2728afa6

Cowl Neck Dress

This is a great dress – the cowl neck is always a winner on a flat or uni chest, and the lace skirt adds decoration and draws the eye.

 

Wallis

01bd077e09b9baaf8248706f2407155383a525c741 I only found tops in store however there’s lots more online. I’m wearing them with the trousers I had on which are from River Island.

017f0468204ca5976bca49f83b04cda99eb00fc903 01af13a840aef8dee28c2999c3c151dca673801433

Ivory Floral Split Back Blouse

…Or split front! Someone had put this top on the rail back-to-front so when I took it into the changing room I thought it was a wrap-front style, then I spotted the security tag and realised I had it on the wrong way round. But it works either way as you can see!

 

0156ba844b5f5ffbbeda2e39b55cd37c1f7d783176

Unfortunately I can’t find this floral top on Wallis’ website; however they have a huge selection of tops and blouses with flattering layers, gathering and frills similar to this one.

 

01e8846517f80c034e776632804ff1ba4f7be895d8

Stripe Kimono Top

I love this retro design, it makes a nice change from plain Breton navy and white stripes and adds lots of depth and movement.

 

012afba1bdcdc3a5f71bbb79fee8632fbd178830e2

Navy Asymmetric Top

Lovely top if you’re happy going out flat but like clothes which skim over your tummy and hips. Through on a statement necklace or scarf for decoration.

 

H&M

01658aaeec103661e826b9d708b8d80e3a238d3caf

Chiffon Maxi Dress

This has adjustable tie straps (so you can wear it high enough to cover any underarm scars), as well as an adjustable tie waist band. The wide stripe pattern mean this could work well on a uni chest too, especially as you can shift the fabric across to add more pleats on one side if you want to.

 

 

017690ea4f8f2e6a1d011511f8b55742e562bda0c0

Sleeveless Maxi Dress

Fab pattern and gathered halterneck and waistband – great for showing off your shoulders!

 

My final piece of advice is if you like something then try it on!  The key is to find an outfit that you feel comfortable and confident in. As Roald Dahl said:

If you have good thoughts they will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely.

So have good thoughts about yourself and Happy Shopping!


Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

7 thoughts on “Flattering Occasionwear