Power Shopper

Belt Up!

BY February 14, 2012

Skirts and dresses feature strongly in this year’s spring/summer collections, and living in Southwest Florida makes it a breeze to wear one. The two big trends this season are fashion opposites: the flapper-style straight dress and the swishing, pleated skirt. Both of these looks provide the perfect opportunity to wear a fabulous belt.

If you fall into the “I love belts but they never look right” category, here’s how to make them work:

·       If you have a long, straight torso, placing a belt at your natural waistline just draws attention to your straightness. Instead, try wearing a narrow belt directly under your bustline (likely to be the narrowest part of your torso), or if you have slender hips (frequently the case on straighter silhouettes), sling a wide belt low across your hips. Drawing the focus above or below your waist point creates the illusion of a curvier middle.

·       If you’re short-waisted, avoid too much detail at your natural waistline so as not to compress the proportion of your top half still further. Most flattering is a belt worn “dipped” at the front to create a V-shape—this instantly elongates your torso. The fluidity of a chain or linked belt is perfect for this.

·       Hourglass shapes can really show off their curves with a waist-cinching belt. Go as wide as you want or dare!

All you need now is the right belt and I’ve found some beautiful ones. Suzi Roher’s stunning handmade belts can be found at Wildflower, at The Village on Venetian Bay, Naples. (239) 643-6776.

Fashion expert Cheryl Lampard is the founder of Style Matters International, www.stylemattersinternational.com.

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