Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Safety in Numbers, or, Why Layering is Actually a Great Idea After All

A reader asked...
"Could you please collaborate on the basics of layering, such as color, texture, length combinations, most office-friendly variations, casual looks, basic pieces one must have etc…"

When this trend started gaining popularity last year (2005 or thereabouts), I scoffed. We're all trying to appear as thin as possible, so why would we add thickness to our bodies by layering clothes? I live in California and therefore there are only a very few months in the year that layering makes any sense.

Then, around January 2006, I noticed the plethora of cute, lacy camisoles that were floating around stores everywhere. I couldn't resist the feminine touch they added to my outfits! Once I read How Not To Look Fat, I was a layering queen.

Here are some great reasons to try layering, if you haven't already:

Warmth A camisole or a thin undershirt can add an extra layer of warmth, which is a special benefit for our cold-climate fashionistas.

Smoother is thinner
Think layering will make you look bulky? Think again. If the problem spots on your bod are covered up, you'll look and feel better. Laying minimizes back fat as well as poochy tummies.

Fun with color Layering is a great way to doll up drab outfits. Are you wearing an all black ensemble--pants and a top? Simply add a cute cami underneath that V-neck top and you're good to go! Bring along a couple different colored camis on a trip, and you've got a new outfit for every day of the week!

Modesty factor A few months ago I bought a wonderful great black dress from Target. It was versatile and flattering...with one major problem. It showed off all my business in the front. You can be sure THAT won't fly when I'm directing choirs! Now, with my new-found super layering powers, I can wear that dress anywhere, without fear of elementary (or junior high, or high school!) kids giggling behind my back.

Next week, I'll talk about the principles of layering--what to pair with what undergarment.