Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Fashion Tips for Women

Looking sexy and gorgeous is a matter of knowing your body, knowing what to wear and how to wear right kind of clothes. Dressing up is an art and if one can master this art then one can be on top of the world. The important thing about dressing right is you should look slim and tall in whatever you wear, no matter what your weight is. Even fat women can look slim if they know the tricks of fashion. Following are the tips that will make women look gorgeous, elegant and stunning!

Pick one hue. Dressing head-to-toe in a single dark color, like navy or black, is the single best way to look like a person has lost a lot of weight.

Skip large patterns. Smaller patterns fool the eye and make for a more delicate look. One should not wear patterns on top and bottom since it tends to add more weight.

You should slip on the right length skirt and stick to just-above-the-knee skirts that play off knees and elongate legs. You should avoid a mid calf skirt, which draws attention to the widest part of the legs, making them look heavier.

Capri pantCapri pants are surprisingly slimming, especially if you stick to dark denim or black and wear those that aren`t too short or too long. They should end at the least-wide part of your calves, ideally a few inches above the ankle.

Wear a sexy T-Shirt. V-neck and deep scoop neck T-shirts elongate the neck and make the torso appear longer by showing off your collarbone.

You can wear clothes, which have thin vertical stripes on anything. They can be the pants, shirts, skirts or dresses, they create the illusion of a longer, leaner body.

Slim down with color. Hot summer hues like pink and yellow catch the eye and are good for body parts you want to play up. Pair them with black, brown or navy -- dark colors recede and are best for areas that you`d like to draw the eye away from.

Office wearFor office wear in western outfits` try out colours like khakis, olives, navy blue, black, beige and off-whites in synthetic fabrics. For Indian wear try wearing cottons linens in fresher tones of peaches, mints, light powder blues and mauves in delicate, soft and classic prints.

Thus if you plan to wear a black trouser, then match it withy a sleeveless jacket in another colour. Add two or three options in neutrals, pastels and a dark bright colour to pair with the trousers.

Darker bottoms with lighter tone tops work out as a practical choice and look great. Team dark brown colours with rust and see the effect. This combination looks excellent and gives a brighter and warmer look. Similarly grays can be paired with blues to achieve cooler looks.

Evening wear no doubt is more design and trend oriented therefore choose it in metallic sheens of dark and bright colours in streamlined clean cuts, offset with colourful scarves, brooches and other accessories. Your evening wear colour scheme must be in blacks, grays, jewel tones of ruby reds, jade greens and mauves, tones of gold and silver convey a feeling of mystery.

Pull out that A-line dress. A gently flared A-line cut is universally flattering and hides large hips.

Look for a pair that sits lower on your waist. And go for boot cut, it is the slight flare fits over sandals and will give you longer, lankier legs.

Wear your pants on the longer side, so they break over the middle of the foot.

Sport three-inch heels. High heels give you a thinner profile and silhouette.

Avoid ankle-strap sandals. The more of your leg and the top of your foot you show, the longer your leg line will appear.

Evening bagPick a well-proportioned purse. Petite women look sexiest with smaller bags, while large women look best with medium-size purses.

Long, skinny earrings and sleek pendant necklaces elongate and slim the face and body with their vertical lines.

Skinny bangles or a bracelet-style watch make your arms look thinner by creating space around your wrist, which fools the eye, making you look slim.

Dark colours such as olive, black, charcoal grey, and navy help make areas appear smaller so wear them where you think you need it. For most women it`s from the waist down.

Avoid shiny or heavily textured fabrics. Shiny fabrics reflect light, making any area appear larger. Heavily texture fabrics only add extra weight.

Sewn-down pleats in skirts and blouses can both create a slimming effect. Include vertical lines in your accessories, such as long chains worn around the neck.

Avoid extensive use of horizontal lines - belts, boat-collar blouses and border print skirts. These styles can add extra width to your body frame.

If you want to appear thinner incorporate dark, cool and dull colours and textures. Dull textures absorb the light like wool or cotton. Some very slimming colours include black, navy, olive, violet, charcoal grey, chocolate brown, plum, eggplant and burgundy.

Fashion Myths

Beauty and fashion go hand in hand. The way you dress, the way you present yourself and the way you carry off your clothes depends on how much you know and relate to fashion. Sometimes we think that we know all about fashion but there are a few fashion myths that ought to be revealed.

Black dressBlack goes with everything
Black works well with dark colours and neutrals although it looks best with another black item thrown into the mix instead of one random piece. Black also looks great mixed in equal proportions with white. But too much black is too harsh against pastel colours so a balancing act is needed. However, black can be a woman`s best friend if she wants to look slim.

Big girls can`t wear prints
Flattering dressing is all about balancing proportions. The safest tip to remember is to avoid extremes. This means that if a person is bigger or smaller than average, she should not wear huge loud checks or tiny ditsy florals. Instead, you should go for medium prints that are eye-catching without being loud.

Baggy clothesBaggy clothes make a person look slimmer
On the contrary, baggy clothes make a person look fat. Waisted jackets, frill-edged skirts, scoop necklines and fitted tops are much more slimming than over-sized tunic tops.

Designer clothes are better quality and value
Some items like coats, tailored trousers and evening gowns are worth spending money on because the fit is key. Other things need not at all be such expensive designer stuff.

Fashion Flaws

One is considered beautiful not only by their features but by the way they dress up, by their confidence and their style. If you have mastered all these then you have a very lethal combination and you will be able to rule the world by your beauty and charm. However you often make certain fashion mistakes, which though according to you do not matter but infact these mistakes affect your sense of fashion and style immensely.

Wearing the wrong colours
This is one of the biggest fashion mistakes that you can commit. Just remember one thing that all colours don`t suit your skin tone. The colour that looks great on your colleague or the actress you saw in the soap might not look great on you. Infact it might look the contrary. Therefore you have to learn to recognize which colour suits you and also the profession to which you are associated. Experiment with different colours and stick with the palettes that look best on you, regardless of what`s hot and happening. Don`t waste your money on clothes that make you look pale and ugly.

Wrong make-upInapt makeup
Proper Makeup is an important aspect of fashion. For every occasion you require an appropriate makeup i.e., light for day, heavier for evening, sheer for sports etc. You wear different clothes for different activities in you life; similarly your makeup should change as per occasion.

Rundown shoes
You will look complete only if you are dressed appropriately from top to bottom. Therefore even your shoes should be appropriate for the occasion and should go with your dress. Don`t wear shabby, unpolished and rundown shoes. Polish them regularly. Use a felt tip marker on scuffs, and put a piece of soft carpet under your feet when you drive. And most importantly, invest in a good pair if you`re going to wear them every day. Spend on your shoes that will give you comfort and will look great on you.

Wearing a size too small
If an outfit doesn`t fit, don`t wear it. Squeezing into a size that is too tight for you may feed your vanity, but it will make you appear overfed to everyone else. If the dress you are wearing is not comfortable and you cannot sit or walk properly then it is not going to make you feel beautiful at all and you are definitely not going to look your best. Find clothes that fit or have them tailored to fit and look your best.

Slips that show
The next fashion mistake will be letting your slip show from under your skirt. Don`t use the same slip for all dresses since it might not be proper for all. Buy slips in several lengths and replace them once the elastic wears. For the most discreet linings, buy slips in the colours you wear most often, like black, navy, beige, and white.

Smelling awful
There are some people who smell terrible despite using good perfumes. Drink plenty of water and eat lots of fresh fruits and green salads. Buy deodorant that works with your body. You may have to try a few to find the best one for you, and you may need to change every now and again if your chemistry changes, like after having a baby, starting new medication and going through menopause.

Broken nails, chipped polish
Manicure is a must. Keep your nails clean and evenly trimmed. Always have clippers and a nail file in your purse and desk at work for emergencies. If you`re in a business environment, stick with conservative nail polish colours at work and save the sparkly/neon/funky looks for weekends and vacations. Don`t grow your nails too long if you are working.

Fashion Design

Fashion is a term used in relation to the latest and the most admired style in clothes, dresses, garments, textiles, cosmetics, etc. Fashion designers work with colours and fabrics. They can specialise in leisurewear, women`s wear, children`s wear, knitwear, sportswear and many others. Fashion design is not restricted to fads, which is generally known as the current look or street wear. It covers everything from uniforms to headwear and is not restricted to western culture. Technically all clothing created for a purpose is fashion design. Fashion design dictates changes in clothing over time. It is often and wrongly perceived that fashion design is restricted to high fashion and label names. Fashion Design grew from serving a practical purpose to a recognized form of art.

Modern fashion design is roughly divided into two categories, Haute Couture, and Pret-a-Porter.
Haute Couture

HAUTE-COUTURE, 2001-2002-ParisThe term "haute couture" is French and it means "high" or "elegant." Couture literally means sewing, or high dressmaking but it indicates the business of designing, creating, and selling custom-made, high fashion women`s clothes. A designer`s haute-couture collection refers to the creation of exclusive fashions made from stylish designs made to order for wealthy and high-status clients. Thus, it is meant exclusively for private customers and is custom sized, cut and sewn made from high quality, expensive fabric and sewn with extreme attention to detail and finish, often using time-consuming hand-executed techniques.

In 1858, Charles Frederic Worth created the first Couture House near the Opera in Paris. The idea behind Haute Couture is an attitude of unlimited creativity where the quality of the art and artistry of a garment is unparalleled. It is similar to a fashion house having a Research and Development Lab where new ideas and techniques are developed with no restraints on creativity or worry about funding.

Haute couture collections are primarily produced in Paris but also in other fashion capitals such as New York, London, and Milan. To be called an haute couture house, a business must belong to the Syndical Chamber for Haute Couture in Paris, which is regulated by the French Department of Industry members must meet specific requirements. A first set of these requirements was established in 1945 and actualized in 1992 by established designers for maintaining respect for these criteria. A simplified set of requirements was established to apply to young, talented designers for their first two years of Haute Couture designing, in order to give them a chance to develop the skill required to move up to the "established" level.

HAUTE-COUTURE, 2001-2002-ParisThe criteria to be met are the employment of at least 20 production people in the House workshop. Presenting a collection of at least 50 new passages (a number of dresses designed around a single theme and shown at the same time) at a show for the press in Paris at least twice a year.It is also required to show the two collections to clients in a specially arranged salon in the Couture House.

If there are new fashion houses, the criteria are to be met during the two-year transition period by employing at least 10 production people in the house workshop and presenting a collection of 25 passages to the press.However, for existing Houses who want to establish an Haute Couture presence, the criteria are to employ a minimum of 15 production people in the House workshop and then present to the press a collection of at least 35 passages.

Only a few Houses currently meet the Haute Couture requirements, which include brands like Chanel, Christian Dior, Nina Ricci, Versace, Armani and Gucci. Some new members are also in the list like Jean Paul, John Galliano, Valentino and Gianni, Moschino, Escada Louis Feraud, Hermes, Hugo Boss, Yves Saint Laurent, Pierre Cardin, Dolce & Gabbana, Ralph Lauren, Fendi, Leonardi Emilio Pucci, Louis Vuitton, Prada, Sergio Rossi, Dunhill, DKNY, Brooks Brothers among others.


Prêt-a-Porter It is the French word for the term "Ready to Wear". Ready-to-wear or prêt-à-porter is the fashion design term for clothing marketed in a finished condition, in standard clothing sizes. This refers to most high-end fashion designers. Some fashion houses or fashion designers create ready-to-wear lines that are mass-produced and industrially manufactured, while others offer lines that are very exclusive and produced only in limited numbers and only for a limited time. Whatever the quantity produced, prêt-a-porter items are usually items that are still high in price, but aren`t one-of-a-kind. These types of clothes are not custom made. They are sized according to the manufacturer`s intended market, which makes them more suitable for larger productions.

Fashion houses that produce an haute couture line, such as Chanel, Dior, and Lacroix or Torrente by Julien Fournié, each produce a ready-to-wear line, which returns a greater profit due to the availability of the clothing. Other Designers that fit into this category are Dolce and Gabbana, Louis Vuitton and Dior. Most of these design houses do offer Haute Couture, but also have prêt-a-porter lines. Relative to couture, ready-to-wear clothing is often more practical and informal, though these things are not always the case. The craftsmanship of ready-to-wear clothing is also held to a lower standard than that of haute couture. High-end ready-to-wear lines are sometimes based upon a famous gown or pattern that is then duplicated to raise the designer`s visibility level.

Designers producing ready-to-wear lines generally present a collection each season during a period known as Fashion Week. This takes place on a citywide basis and occurs twice per year. Collections for fall are shown early in the year, usually around February, and spring collections shown around September. Ready-to-wear fashion weeks occur separately from those of haute couture. Paris, New York, and Milan are home to the world`s most famed fashion weeks, but many other major cities such as London, Los Angeles and Tokyo hold Fashion Weeks that are both highly-anticipated and well-publicized.

Ready-to-wear collections can also be divided into designers/creator collections and Confection collections.

Confection collections are the ones we see most commonly in our shops. Stylists design these collections. The brands that produce these collections aim only for a mass public and are in general not searching for a new point of view on fashion.

Designer/creator collections have a high quality, a superb finish and a unique cut and design. These collections are the most trendsetting compared to Haute Couture and Confection. The ready to wear collections often contain concept items that represent a certain philosophy or theory. These items are not created for sales but only to create a fashion statement. The designer`s ready-to-wear collection is also modeled on international catwalks.

Basics of Fashion Designing

Designing Principles

These basics of fashion designing, are a must for every individual wanting to be a budding designer.

The relative length of two parts of a garment is termed as proportion. The degree and method of subordinating some part of a design to other is shown as proportion.

Balance is the equal distribution of weights. (Actual or virtual) Symmetry between the left and right halves of the body in a garment is termed as the symmetrical balance. The purpose of balance is to bring a satisfying relationship between all the design parts.

Asymmetrical designsRhythm is the repeated use of lines or shapes to create a pattern. Rhythm is achieved through:
Symmetrical designs
Asymmetrical designs

Emphasis creates a centre of interest by focusing the viewer`s attention on a specific area of the garment. It is basically the use of subordination in various parts in order to emphasize and highlight certain parts.

Unity means that all elements of a design work together to produce a successful visual effect. Also known as harmony, achieved when the fundamental elements of design have been used to express a single concept.

Fundamentals of Designing
The fundamentals of designing are very important to know the concepts of designing. The elements of designing are the factors that are essential to create the perfect outfit and they are given below.

A line can be thought of as points so close together that they lose their individual identity and form a new entity. Lines act as border between ideas, concepts or steps in a sequence. Since lines can be straight, curved, or irregularly shaped, one can also think of a line as the track of a point in motion depicting various forms. Vertical lines can stop eye movement implying mass and give volume to a structure. They also equate to power and strength. Horizontal lines symbolize rest and relaxation. Diagonal lines being dynamic and action-oriented, they portray dimensions and directions.

A shape is defined as an area that stands out from the space next to or around it due to a defined or implied boundary, or because of differences of value, colour, or texture. It is formed when a line encloses an area. These lined enclosures create an illusionary focus termed as shapes. Shapes can vary endlessly and can suggest physical form and direct eye movement based on the directional movement of lines. Shapes define figure, create ground relationships and relate forms and figures.

It is defined as the surface characteristics of a material that can be experienced through the sense of touch or the illusion of touch. In visual images, actual textures can be used, such as cloth, boxes, small objects, and natural items.

Value is the relative degree of lightness and darkness in a design element. Line, colour, texture, and shape all need value contrast in order to be seen. Value is used to describe objects, shapes, and space.

Colour is the most important part of designing. The primary colours are red, yellow and blue. They are called primary because they are not mixtures of the other colours. Mixing any two primary colours results in a secondary colour. The colour wheel is created when the primary and secondary colours are placed in a circle. Colours directly across from each other on the colour wheel are called complementary colours. Complementary colours used together provide extreme contrast.

Basic Silhouettes

A line - silhouetteA silhouette refers to the outer shape of the garment. In this section, various types of silhouettes are incorporated as the Indian silhouette. Thus, the basic Indian silhouettes are as follows:

The most common silhouette that has the hem larger in proportion to the chest and waist measurement, thus giving the classic `A` appearance.

This has a straight cylindrical shape to the garment achieved by giving same measurements to the chest, waist and hem. The effect is best achieved when overall the garment has a close fit. This silhouette works very well for the younger customers.

tent - silhouetteThis silhouette is achieved by flaring the garment from under the armhole. It is important for the garment to be close fitted at the bust.

Empire line
This refers to a panel dividing the garment horizontally into two panels below the bust.

This kind of silhouette does not have a symmetrical form. It can be achieved by varying the true colours, panels, hemlines etc.


Ornamentation of fabric with the help of prints and stripes inherent on fabric or with the help of superficial adherence has evolved over the ages. This generally forms the grooming up of the art of design. Different kinds of prints and patterns are used to evolve a design pattern. Following are the different kinds of motifs.

Ethnic MotifEthnic
Prints such as the bandhej, batik, paisleys, chitons, French provincials and other country prints evolving from folklores and influenced with traditional customs are termed as ethnic prints.

This motif is also known as the natural motifs, which are basically depiction of inspirations derived from the nature such as flowers, animals, landscapes and similar inspirations.

This motif uses geometrical figures such as dots, stripes both horizontal and vertical with other geometrical motifs and the combinations are termed as geometrical patterns.

Abstract MotifsAbstract
Uses of abstract to depict the unknown have always caught the fancy of the people and are often used for design based ornamentation.

This motif is an abstract floral pattern that has a stylized depiction of floras. A very common motif used for textile.

Plaids and Checks
Use of a combination of linear lines for creating equal sized checks and unequal sized checks known as plaids, has been a common motif for design development.


checked motifsColour is the most important part of designing. The basic colours for the various seasons are given below:

The neutrals are the classics, which work best with almost any colour and season.

Summer Colours
The summer radiance refers to a bright, intense and energetic colour palette.

Earthy Colours
The earthy colours give a rustic feel, they are associated with natural fabrics like jute, linen and cottons and also in terms of leather, wood, bone and shells for accessories.

Pastel Colours
The placid pastels refer to the light and soft colours.

Monsoon Colours
The monsoon moods are reflected in deep and dark shades of browns, blues, greens and yellows, which are reminiscent of a rain forest.

History of Fashion

It is a well-known fact that the rich and the famous have always influenced the seasonal trends but so have political figures and royalty. Even the media and the magazines are not way behind to report us about the daily style checks! Before we go ahead any further regarding fashion, it is beneficial for us to have knowledge about the key moments in fashion, triggered by various socioeconomic movements during the twentieth century.

Maharani Gayatri DeviFrom the 1900`s, one can find a whole lot of change and evolution in the history of fashion. It is exotic to know about the fashion fiestas right from the sheer elegance of Maharani Gayatri Devi`s pastel chiffon sarees, to the stylish paired down dressing of the 90`s. Apart from the Indian icons, one cannot forget the worldwide youth icon-Princess Diana, the Princess of Wales and whose death was a severe blow to the high fashion world, where her clothes were the daily news.

Highly prosperous societies have a chance to offer a variety of different fashions, to choose from the clothes or accessories. Fashion houses and their associated fashion designers, as well as high-status consumers (including celebrities), appear to have some role in determining the rates and directions of fashion change. Fashionable clothing started spreading rapidly from the upper classes to the middle and working classes in the West. As communications improved, evidence shows fashion also started in other parts of the world. It so happened that the everyday European styles replaced the traditional clothing styles of Africa, Asia and America. As national economies grow increasingly, international, clothing styles have become correspondingly global. Young people in Johannesburg and Jakarta, Boston and Buenos Aires all tend to wear the same kind of clothing. However, different cultures have modified these originally European styles in accordance with local values and lifestyles.

In particular, religious beliefs have also influenced the clothing that women wear in public. Thus, a woman in Iran or other Muslim communities may wear blue jeans and a T-shirt at home, but cover them up with an enveloping robe called a `burkha` when she goes outside. People also enjoy wearing their traditional clothing on holidays and other special occasions for reasons of national or ethnic pride. Let us now see the history of fashion worldwide and their influence in India through the ancient ages until date.

Trends for Women

India is a land, which has a lot of diversities and the same is reflected in clothing styles. The variety of apparels is simply superb ranging from ethnic styles to Indo-western to trendy sexy western styles. There is distinct designer women apparel for every occasion. And now trends for women has taken a new turn. Gone are the days when the sari reigned supreme. Gone are the days when Indian men and women were hesitant to show more than an ankle. Today fashion in India has its definite divisions. Types of fabric ranges from cotton to soft georgette, chiffon and graceful silk to chic look leather and velvet. Cotton is always in demand in summers because it is skin friendly, cool and easy to carry but requires good maintenance. Silk adds glamour and is available in exclusive varieties. Velvet is popular for its soft mushy touch. Let us look into the divisions of fashion.

Traditional Wear

Lehenga CholiThe gamut of ethnic wardrobe encompasses the six yard long graceful Sari, the all time favorite Salwar Kameez and Lehanga Choli, a dress of festivity. Women attire in ethnic styles to embellish their look. Ethnic is classic and maintains the essence of our culture. Among women`s traditional wear, Sari is the most elegant. Intricate embroideries mainly Chikan, Phulkari, Kantha, Zardosi and Zari work with studded beads adds a sparkling effect to the wardrobe. Young females go in for Sheeshakari, Meenakari, Kundan and beadwork. These embroideries draw attention and add great value to the fabric. For daily wear Bandhani, Batik, Block and handprints are just ideal. For wedding parties and other festivities, Kanjeevaram and Banarsi silk sarees with suitable glittery jewelry can just do wonders.

Popular fashion trends for women in the present 20th century is that of Indo-western, which is a fusion of western, styling with Indian flavor in it. Indo western style is a classic. It basically consists of short Kurta cum Kurti with a trouser. To complement it girls just wrap up a gorgeous bright colored stole/ scarf around their neck. Kurti is the latest fashion trend of this summer. Salwar Kameez is definitely an all time favorite. It is a dress for all seasons. Simple yet elegant, it can be worn in all occasions. It is actually an origin of Punjab and Kashmir, but everyday some new pattern of suit is hitting the market. Short Kameez with Patiala salwar, Parallels and Churidar and short designer dupattas look absolutely stunning. Another competitor is Chaniya Choli popularly known as Lehanga Choli. New arrivals include Sharara, Garara and Lancha with tight fitting tops rather than usual Choli with deep side cuts, which give a chic look.

BandhaniLatest fashion trends for women, this season is of classic designer Indo-western apparels. These indo-western fusion wear is a blending concept of western styling with essence of Indian culture. It has become the fashion style of Indian working women. In fact, Indo-Western Lady Garments has gained popularity worldwide. Made up of rich brocades and vibrant rainbow colors it has cast magic on women. It consists of three major elements: the Kurta, Trouser and a short Dupatta. Influenced by Bollywood, new arrivals are hitting the fashion boutiques almost every now and then. New trend for woemn is of sleeveless tops having deep necks and long slits. This Indo-western style has no fixed shape and size. Kurti / short Kurta looks simply fabulous. They come in beautiful pastel shades and exclusive fabrics with intricate embroideries. Silk and Khadi kurta is hot and happening. Traditional beads, Meenakari, Mirror work, Kundan, Resham and Zari embroidery designs are popular among youth. Fashion designers are creating new innovations by using ancient Patola styles of Gujarat, Chikankari of Lucknow, Punjabi Phulkari and Hyderabadi designs. Designer Dupatta is tied around the neck or simply draped around the arms.