Style Advice: the rectangle body shape

Apr 10, 2024

Is this me?

The rectangle body shape is so called because it has similar proportions top and bottom. You’re likely quite straight up and down, with narrow shoulders, a small bust, less defined waist, and small hips and bum.

It’s a gorgeous figure – slim and elegant, so here are some ways to style it to really do you justice.

1. Enhance your top half

The first way to create curves is to add interest to your top half. There are several ways to do this. One is opting for tops with shoulder embellishments (like shoulder pads, sleeve gathers, puff sleeves). Another is with necklines – wide ones broaden your shoulders, round ones add curves, and sweetheart ones create shape round your bust.

2. Nip your waist

Since rectangular body shapes tend not to have such a defined waist, you can do this with some clever styling. Belts are the obvious way – they break up and define your middle. Try opting for dresses with princess seams, like our Astrid dress, to minimise and nip your waist, too.

(That’s called ‘clever tailoring’).

3. Create curves

It’s easy to create curves below the waist, too. With skirts and dresses, choose A-Line or bias cut styles to create volume and shape. Layered and voluminous skirts look stunning. Your best jean shape is the boot cut, but wide leg trousers and culottes are really flattering on you, too.

(That’s called ‘clever tailoring’)

4. Choose colour & texture

Balancing your figure is all about drawing attention to where you want it. For a rectangle body shape, you can do this with colour and texture. Think bright colours, bold prints, chunky knits, and angel sleeves. All of these will give the illusion of there being ‘more going on’ so to speak, and enhance your figure where you want to.

5. Appreciate your small boobs

Small boobs aren’t something to hide – they’re not just gorgeous but you suit tops fuller-busted women can’t pull off. Opt for tops with ruffles, daring deep V-necks, high neck tops (big boobs make these look boxy), and tasteful bralets under blazers or shirts.

Oh, and backless pieces: no bra crew, these are all yours.

And a few things to avoid...

Oversized pieces (they don’t give you shape or flatter your figure)

Boxy tops and jackets (if they end at the waist, they’ll make you look square)

Square and slash necks (they exaggerate your angles)

High rise jeans (emphasise a wider waist – go mid or low rise instead)

Fitted long sleeve tops (they’ll show off your leaner shape)