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Fashion Tips for a Rectangle Body Shape

A rectangle (straight) body type typically denotes women with slender, boyish frames -a shape often associated with models and athletes. It is one of the easiest body types to dress as they tend to look good in anything; but dressing in clothes that give the illusion of curves, for a more feminine shape, is ideal for a rectangle frame.

Here are our tips for dressing to create a curvier shape:


Opt for…

  • Tops with mid to high necklines – wide V or U, scoop, boat or turtle necks.
  • Off the shoulder or strapless tops.
  • Loose tops fitted or pulled in at the waist.
  • Tops with shoulder or bust detailing/embellishments.
  • Tops with puffed or ruched sleeves.
  • Shirts or blouses with ruffles or ruching around the bust area; and/ or that accentuate the waist.
  • Tops and jackets that accentuate or belt at the waist.
  • Jackets, waist (bomber/cropped) or hipbone length, with structured shoulders.
  • Waist or hip length knitwear.
  • Chunky knits or loose/oversized tops (with a fitted bottom).

NB: A padded bra and/or shoulder pads will also help to create ‘body balance’.


Opt for…

  • Straight or wide legged pants that fall straight down from the widest part of your hip.
  • Cigarette pants.
  • Straight, boot cut or flared jeans with a low or mid-rise waist.
  • Fitted or straight skirts with detailing – pockets, layers or frills for example – that add width to your hips.
  • Shorts with front pleats, pocket detailing or embellishments around hips and/or the bottom.  Select the length that best suits your leg length and shape.
  • Pencil skirts.
  • Full or tiered skirts fitted at the waist.
  • Any skirt length – select the one that best suits your leg shape and/or the look you’re trying to portray.


Opt for…

  • Body hugging dresses.
  • Dresses with fitted bodice and waist and a full or tiered skirt.
  • Dresses that create volume around the bust and/or hips.
  • Dresses belted at the waist.
  • Shift dresses.

NB: Like skirts go for lengths that best suit the style of the dress and your leg shape and length.

Colours and prints

Opt for…

  • Light and/or bright colours – top and bottom.
  • Dark colours at the waist.
  • Bold prints and patterns.
  • Horizontal stripes – wider the better.


Opt for…

  • Stretch or clingy fabrics.
  • Shiny or metallic fabrics such as patent, satin or sequins.
  • Any fabric that hugs the figure or adds bulk in the right places – fine or textured knits, jersey, cotton, lace, chiffon, leather, denim, silk or linen etc…


Opt for…

  • Belts that emphasize your waist or add bulk to you hips.
  • Chunky/statement necklaces and earrings.
  • Scarves to add upper body fullness.
  • Padded bras.
  • The choice is yours…heels or flats; ankle straps or pumps.

Celebrities with Rectangle Body Shapes

  • Taylor Swift
  • Nicole Kidman
  • Gisele Bündchen