Style Lessons From The World’s First Size 22 Supermodel

Bravo, Tess! Congrats on your cover for People Magazine last month, “The World’s First Size 22 Supermodel!” You are an inspiration. Finally, all of our bodies are being celebrated in print. Tess made her dream of being a model happen. What an encouragement for women the world over…of all sizes and shapes to go after our dreams…to embrace our beauty.

So, how does Tess do it? What tips can we pick-up to make our plus size and full figured bodies work for us at play, at work and on camera?

First, Tess intuitively chooses clothes that work for her Figure-eight silhouette.


Tip 1: Discovering your Body’s Silhouette is the first step to creating looks that flatter your body from every angle.

Tess’s shoulders and hips are relatively the same width, while her waist is smaller, creating a classic figure-eight.

Let’s look at how Tess accentuates her small waist. She has a high hip with a shelf right below her waistline. She places her hands on that shelf, drawing attention to her small waist. Voila, a great pose for her and anyone with a figure-eight!

Tip 2: Tess takes advantage of her beautiful skin and balances her body’s width proportions with those deep wide necklines.

Her shoulders are proportionally wide for the width of her face. Showing all that skin focuses attention on her face and allows us to enjoy her gorgeous complexion.

Her long full hair balances her shoulders, and also balances her long torso.

Tip 3: Tess wears high heels to elongate her short legs relative to her long torso.

Her high heels draw a long line up her leg so we don’t notice that her legs are relatively short. She’s also showing skin below her ankle teasing our eye to travel quickly up from her feet to her beautiful face.

Ok, so what about the rest of us? How can we make ourselves look this good?

Let’s start with Tip 1: Discovering your Body’s Silhouette.

Are you a Rectangle?


If so, don’t even think about highlighting your waist! Instead find a garment with a deep and dramatic neckline that highlights your beautiful upper chest…. Then have the garment drop tunic length and wear slightly narrower skirt or leggings. Choose sassy shoes, and no one will notice that your waist has gone into hiding!

Are you an Oval?


You’re wider thorough the tummy and chest area but narrower through the thigh and hip. Highlight your shoulders with an interesting neckline or collar and have what you’re wearing on top slip right on by your not really there waist. Bring attention to your relatively narrow hip with a sash or scarf. Show off your curvy legs with a pencil skirt that peeks below that hip band, and va va voom— you’re looking gorgeous!

Are you a Triangle?


Your thighs are wider than your hip and shoulder. That pencil skirt is not for you, my dear. Worse, a pair of white jeans that shout, “Look down here at my behind and not at my face!”. Your deliciously sensual and curvy body is asking for a lighter color on top and a nice flared skirt (Gently flaring from your thighs) or a flared trouser. Flare is your friend. Leggings and pencil skirts—the enemy!

Are you an Inverted Triangle?


Your shoulders and chest are wider than your hips. Now, you have the body that IS asking for leggings and pencil skirts! Accentuating your slim legs and feet is dreamy. Flared skirts on you “box” out your natural V silhouette. Draw attention to the slim end of your triangle. The eye will then dance back up to your face for balance.

Remember the great Diana Vreeland’s maxim, “The eye has to travel.” She ruled the fashion world as editor of Vogue for all those years for good reason.

 Alright, Tip 2: Proportion.

Example1No matter what your size, if you dress for your height and width proportions, you will look terrific. It is all about your face. Balancing the width and length of your head and face to the rest of your body is a secret used by all the top fashion stylists and photographers.

  • Is your torso long or short relative to your head and face?
  • Are your legs long or short relative to your head, face and body?
  • Is your face wide or narrow relative to your shoulders and hips?

For example, this beautiful woman on the right has picked a perfect dress for her body. She has wide shoulders and upper arms relative to the width of her face.

By opening the neckline to her shoulder, our eye rests on her face and then jumps down to her curvy leg revealed by the medium length slit. Brilliant. Do we care that she has a tummy?! Do we even notice, she’s gorgeous!

latifaQueen Latifah got it right! The lighter color draped blouse shows off her beautiful neckline as well as diminishes her tummy. The loose deeper-colored jacket slides right by her waist… We don’t care if she has one or not…. We only look at her beautiful smile and presence.

Discovering your body’s silhouette along with your width and length proportions are only two of the many features we analyze to reveal your unique VIDA Signature. Visual IDentity Analysis (VIDA) is a new way of looking at your body and your self. Seeing yourself in a new way and learning techniques to make who you are beautiful every day is what we do at The Style Core.

Tess, you inspire us! Let’s celebrate our beauty and make tomorrow the day we too become memorable, more ourselves, more at home in our own skin.













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Want more tips and tricks to help you look your best? Find options here.