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karmahappens posted 4/28/2014 10:39 AM

So I need help.

I lost 70 pounds last year and have done well keeping it off.

I have spent the majority of my adult life buying clothes that fit, you know, just covered me.

I start a boot camp this week so I expect to lose another 20 to be completely happy.

My problem is, I still just buy clothes. I get whatever fits and toss it on.

I have zero fashion sense and don't know what to buy.

How do I do this? My daughter is no help, I am too old to wear things she suggests.

I really want to wear some cute summer dresses, but I think my body image needs help.

I just see a blob in clothes when I look in the mirror and don't know how to change that.

I am sure it's near impossible to help online, but any advice I can get would help.

I am 5"6 and have a body that is proportionate.No major issues. I still hate my arms though, so sleeveless is out....maybe after boot camp. And I do not like any cleavage, makes me very uncomfortable, I am fairly small up top, but I still don't like it.

I would actually like to just look nice but need simple, cuz I am seriously challenged in this area.

Oh and accessorizing, really? I just don't have the vision...I am lucky to find 2 matching socks.

karmahappens posted 4/28/2014 10:40 AM

And yes, I feel like a loser even posting this.

Third world problems, I know.

Holly-Isis posted 4/28/2014 10:48 AM


First of all- congrats!
I lost 60lbs a few years ago and put most of it back on and have been yoyoing ever since. So kudos to you for maintaining your hard work!

I'm not a fashion guru, but I can tell you to focus on what feels positive about your body and work from there. Try on clothes, notice where they flatter and where they don't and look for clothes with those features.

Adapt your mindset- you've worked hard physically, now it's time to work on dropping those mental pounds weighing you down.

Push the envelope of what is comfortable to you, just a little. Not so much that you feel like you're going into the "what IS she wearing?" zone, but rather acknowledging that your mental blocks might be the problem rather than your physical appearance. You might find that you get compliments.

A cute/fabulous/sassy/fierce pair of shoes also help!

Congrats again on the hard work!

Amazonia posted 4/28/2014 10:49 AM

What stores do you shop at? I would suggest trying places like Anne Taylor at the mall, rather than JCPenney/Kohls/Macy's/etc, because the selection will be smaller and less overwhelming at first.

Try everything on. Just go in, tell the sales woman you need to buy a dress (make your goal just one at first) and could she please help you? Try on at least 5. If they don't fit, have her bring you more sizes. Once you find your size, all her to bring you whatever other dresses she has in that size until you find one you like on you.

I'm small up top too, and boat neck is one of my favorite styles, but that's hard to find in dresses, more common in tops you can pair with a-line skirts.

karmahappens posted 4/28/2014 11:10 AM

Thanks Ama

I go to Kohls, because I can go in...hit the clearance and be out in 20 minutes.

I buy jeans and tops. Because my job is casual dress and I dont know what to buy.

I actually bought a pair of sandals the other day.

I usually buy 5 pairs of keds for the summer in different colors lol.

I also got a really cute pair of jeans but am now afraid to wear them.

I don't like to draw attention to myself, so shopping for clothes to look nice scares the crap outta me.

I am sure there is some underlying issue I will need more IC for ....

Thanks for trying to help.

karmahappens posted 4/28/2014 11:16 AM


A cute/fabulous/sassy/fierce pair of shoes also help!

sassy and karma do not go together.

My new sandals are in the box, next to the couch I will probably wear them once and change into sneakers.

I love to look at women nicely dressed, I just don't understand how they got from point A. naked after a shower to point B. Looking fabulous.

I get stuck in between

MissesJai posted 4/28/2014 11:22 AM

I just discovered this site and I LOVE IT:

you can enter in your exact measurements and take it from there. Congrats on the weight loss!!!!

Rainbows posted 4/28/2014 11:29 AM

Understanding how to dress for your shape takes time, so you're not a loser at all. Plus our bodies constantly change. It's a really fun learning process, though.

It took me years of working in the clothing industry to really learn what looks right on me and what I love to wear.

The most important part is to figure out what you like. Start with a bulletin board and use it to put up things that inspire you, such as pictures of clothes, fabrics, color swatches, accessories, etc.

Style: What styles do you like? When you are watching tv or reading magazines, what jumps out at you and makes you wish you had it?

Do you like Mad Men, Punk Rock, Hippie/Bohemian, Urban/Edgy, Casual/Athletic, etc?

I love classic styled clothing, because I love the feminine looks from the 40's and 50's. I'm also kind of lazy and don't like to keep up with trends.

Cut/Shape: Understand your body shape and figure out what you love and want to accentuate. Clothes create optical illusions, so choose necklines, waistlines, sleeves etc. to accentuate what you love and minimize what you don't.

This process takes some trial and error. Go through the department store and pick out a bunch of tops with different necklines. Try all of them on and see which ones you love.

For example, I look better in tops that are v-neck, with sleeves and have a longer than average torso. So I look better in tunics rather than regular length tops which are usually too short and land right on my waist.

Color: I choose colors that complement my skin tone and hair color. Some colors such as salmon wash me out, but richer pinks give me a healthy glow. If you love a color that doesn't look quite right, pick the same color in a different hue.

This can really be a fun project for you. Your inspiration board is the first step in helping you pull your ideas together. Once you have a clear idea, shopping becomes easy because you can spot what you want pretty quickly.

Have fun! I'm really excited for you.

rachelc posted 4/28/2014 11:39 AM

yay Karma on your weight loss!

Here's my advice - stay away from prints. Rock some black, gray or mono color with GREAT accessories. I love me some Kohl's - the Rock and Republic line that is... Can't go wrong with a long button down ever.

Also, pinterest has some great ideas as well.

Everyone should know whats good for their body type. More, Lucky, People Stylewatch - I live for those magazines. They put outfits together for a person...

pmal64 posted 4/28/2014 12:03 PM

congrats on your weight loss and kudus and good luck for your upcoming boot camp!

I don't have any swell advice... I once apologized to my DD for having poor fashion sense! it seems we are very comfy in jeans and a t-shirt most days!!

so, I am following this thread as well!

did I say good luck!

[This message edited by pmal64 at 12:05 PM, April 28th (Monday)]

norabird posted 4/28/2014 12:03 PM

Do you like looking at clothes? Could you learn to like it? Browsing fashion blogs or magazines, etc, going to nicer stores than Kohl's just to see what they have, not necessarily shopping but trying to see what nice things are out there and how you react to them.

I looove getting new outfits and experimenting so it's hard to imagine having the opposite attitude! But try looking at it as an aesthetic thing first and foremost, plus an extension of your identity and how you see yourself?

million pieces posted 4/28/2014 12:14 PM

Watch a few episodes of What Not to Wear on TLC, they often help women with recent weight loss when their mindset hasn't yet caught up to their new bodies. I LOVE the show, have been watching since it started 11 years ago.

Rebreather posted 4/28/2014 12:28 PM

First, congrats on the weight loss! Yay!

Next, you are gonna have to spend more time than 20 minutes on the clearance rack to get well fitted clothing, young lady! lol

I think to start, invest some thought into what you do and don't like about your current wardrobe. You don't have to buy suits and dresses to look nice. A great look can be achieved with casual pieces. While she is a size 2, J's Everyday Fashion is a great blog to get an idea of how to put things together. I would start by finding some looks you like, then start working on how to put it together for yourself.

Do you have a girlfriend who is well put together? Ask her to help you. Go shopping together and try on 100 pieces. I seriously try on 20 things to get 2 good items. Don't take it personally when things don't fit. Not everything can be cut to fit everyone. But it does take time and lots and lots of trial and error.

Lionne posted 4/28/2014 12:33 PM

Oh Karma! I feel your pain! I'm following this thread and eavesdropping, hoping to get help!

Keep it coming ladies!

But...I tried it doesn't take into account height, so the advice isn't helpful for someone who is very short. Most pants do not fit and long tops look silly on us.

[This message edited by scaredyKat at 12:39 PM, April 28th (Monday)]

ThisHell posted 4/28/2014 12:39 PM

I wanted to address the self image thing with a suggestion...I read or heard somewhere that often times women that are anorexic have such a difficult time "seeing" their real body shape if they were heavier before because when they look into the mirror that is what they see-their "before" selves. I'm not insinuating you are anorexic, lol...BUT I do have an idea and perhaps you could give this a try to help.

The suggestion if I remember correctly was for each woman to take a large paper-like the kind you roll out, and draw what they see when they look in the mirror-your "perceived shape" of you... then lay down on that same paper in something fairly snug fitting and have someone draw the "real shape" of you... taking notice of what is ACTUALLY there against what you "see" can be a real eye-opener!

FaithFool posted 4/28/2014 12:42 PM

I find shopping to be absolutely *exhausting*... if I tried 100 things on I'd be dead.

truthsetmefree posted 4/28/2014 14:03 PM

So I need help.

I lost 70 pounds last year and have done well keeping it off. lost me after this.

karmahappens posted 4/28/2014 14:20 PM

Thanks everyone !

I know the body image is tough to break.

I also know part of the fashion phobia goes along with not wanting attention. I find it extremely uncomfortable when people pay attention to me, so I like to blend in.

I work in a male dominated field so being fashionable at work isn't something I want.

But I would like to go out and look ok. I think right now I look presentable, but completely lacking in any style.

I have a few friends that dress nice, do their make up and enjoy it.

I do minimal make up now, and that's fine with me.

But I do need to address the clothes.

The idea of having to try on 100 things oh my.

I think someone should just shop for me.

Thanks so much for all the help.

The boot camp is 5 weeks, so I think I will start with the "seeing what I like" while doing the boot camp, then when it is done I will try to buy something.

It makes me nervous just thinking about it....

MissesJai posted 4/28/2014 15:52 PM

it doesn't take into account height, so the advice isn't helpful for someone who is very short. Most pants do not fit and long tops look silly on us.
I'm 5'1 so I get it. Short pants - petite length. Inseam will be around 29.5-30 inches. Anything longer than 30 will drag. Invest in a good tailor because most clothes don't fit right straight off the rack. Tops should hit at the hip. Shopping in the petite section should definitely open up more doors for you.

Also, watch What Not To Wear - that show taught me how to dress my body and shopyourshape has given me more to build on.

Rebreather posted 4/28/2014 17:22 PM

Then try on ten and do the rest another day. It's going to take some time and effort to learn about fabric, cut, and what looks best. No pain no gain, baby!!

The What Not to Wear folks had a book too that was useful.

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