Updated: Jul 15
If you have a "Rectangle" figure type, your challenge is to create the illusion of curves because your figure is rather straight up and down with sharp angles that need rounding out. Typically, you are tall and willowy and do not have much definition in the waist area. Your bust is proportionately smaller and your collar bones are relatively prominent, as are your hip bones. These are the areas that need to be softened.
Now, if you are a girly-girl it will be easy to deal with your figure flaws because you will embrace all the feminine textures and patterns required to soften those sharp angles. If you are not, you may not want to hear what I am going to tell you. I will try to incorporate some suggestions for those of you who prefer to dress down, or more casually.
Placed in the right areas, voluminous fabric works wonders for rounding out your angles and creating the illusion of an hourglass when viewed from a distance. One way to add volume is to choose fabric that is poofy, such as soft, thick knits or chenilles. Layers of ruffles work as well. Because your collar bones are so prominent, always add poof around your neckline or decolletage. Choose blouses or shirts with lots of ruffles, or sweaters with cowl necks. Pashminas work wonders for this, as do scarves. Pile them on! If you are abject to wearing ruffles, scarves and pashminas will be a great choice for you. Circular or infinity scarves work best.
Don't forget to add volume to the bottom half of your body as well. Remember, we are trying to create an hourglass and in order to do this we must inject volume at the hip. You don't have to use ruffles here but you do need to bulk up the area. Wearing cargo pants with large pockets, or trousers with pleats will do just the trick. Palazzo pants or wide-leg pants in thick fabrics work as well. If you wear dresses, choosing styles with ruching top and bottom is great for your figure type. Ruching is wonderful for creating needed curves. When selecting any other dress styles, it is preferable they be "fit and flare". Any skirts you choose should be voluminous, or fit and flare as well. Try to stay away from pencil skirts. They will only highlight your bony hip area so are not a good choice!
Colour for the Rectangle Figure
Although the best colour choices for people are usually based on skintone and personality type, placement of certain shades of colour on particular areas of the body can have a profound effect. Because dark shades of any colour will decrease the size and proportion of any area, people with slender Rectangle figures will typically want to avoid them. These people will find light colours, especially pastels, particularly flattering because all throughout the body they need to add width and soften sharp angles.
Flattering Using Pattern
Certain patterns can either flatter a figure or do it no justice whatsoever. A rectangular, highly angled figure needs curvature, that's all there is to it. This is why the best choices for you are circular-type patterns. If you are a person who loves to wear pattern, anything visually circular is your best friend. You don't necessarily have to choose polka dots or circles. Any visually circular lines within patterns will work just as well. Floral patterns tend to be visually circular, as do paisleys and helixes. Remember, any graphic patterns with sharp lines and angles are only going to exaggerate what you already have enough of.
Flattering the Neckline
As indicated earlier, the choice of neckline in tops and shirts, and even dresses can affect the way the collar bone area appears. When you have a Rectangle figure, try to wear round necklines whenever possible. It's best for you to steer clear of boxy necklines, or anything that appears rectangular. Any asymmetrical necklines you choose to wear should be round rather than linear.
Creating a Waistline
The waistline in this particular figure type is typically not well defined. This is why, in order to create an hourglass, a waist somehow needs to be designed. One way to do this is by choosing fit and flare dresses (skirts that balloon out from the waist). Another way is to choose dresses with darker, highly pigmented patterns in the mid-section. (Remember dark colours slim.) Of course, adding a belt to any outfit will define a waist, as well, as long as it cinches in effectively enough.
Flattering Jewellery & Accessories
If you are a tall woman with a Rectangle figure type, you really don't need to add to your height. Avoid overly long rectangular or square-shaped earring and necklace styles and choose shorter, more circular styles instead. Your best choices in earrings are oval or circular studs. Larger, embellished circular earrings are fine as well. Necklaces should have circular gemstones or beads and not be overly lengthy. Keep them up around your neck or decolletage.
As for sunglasses, you can wear most of the styles that are popular right now because rectangular shapes have gone out of vogue. Round sunglasses, particularly are all the rage so be sure to stock up because these were made with you in mind!
Handbag Styles for Rectangles
The handbags you choose should be flattering too. And why not? You take them wherever you go! The best ones for you are, you guessed it, circular styles, but you don't have to limit your choices too much. There are so many bags that are perfect for your figure type, it's really just a matter of what you're comfortable with. I would steer clear of anything too rectangular-shaped or structured, but other than that the sky is the limit.
Shoe Styles for Rectangles
Adding similar elements throughout the figure from head to toe is flattering for any figure type. This is how you visually create balance. In keeping with this, the best choice in shoe for a Rectangle figure is a round toe. A pointed toe will only add length to an already long and lanky figure. A round toe will soften the sharp ankles and add width. If you prefer not to wear a round toe because they are not currently on trend, choose a pump with a toe that is slightly rounded, or a peep toe, rather than one with a sharp point.
Be sure to check out my Pinterest pages for more visual examples of how to style your unique figure at Bliss & Bling: Styling the Rectangle Figure.