Sunday Star-Times - Sunday Magazine - - FASHION WITH KARLYA SMITH -

The dif­fer­ence be­tween over­sized­style gar­ments and clothes that are just too big for you is good de­sign. Signs that some­thing is too large in­clude sleeves that cover your hands, shoul­der seams that sag part-way down your arm and neck-holes that won’t stay put. As for the body of the gar­ment, it will swamp you, in­stead of en­velop­ing you as an over­sized gar­ment will. That might sound like se­man­tics but it can be a fine line and ul­ti­mately you (or an hon­est friend) is the best judge.

A well-de­signed over­sized gar­ment might have the fol­low­ing: Shoul­ders that fit, even when the rest ap­pears not to; sleeves that end at the nar­row­est part of your arm or just above the wrist; and a length that swad­dles rather than swal­lows. If it’s a top, the hem should end at the bot­tom of your, er, bot­tom, at midthigh for tu­nics and at the an­kle or above if it’s a dress.

The proof is in the try­ing on. If some­thing is, for ex­am­ple, in the colour you want, is made of nice fab­ric and is a good cut, but it hits you be­low the el­bow, mak­ing your arms look shorter, it’s well worth in­vest­ing in pro­fes­sional al­ter­ations to get the fit right.

In­grid Starnes’ dress (15) was made es­pe­cially for an Auck­land fash­ion event this sea­son. It’s not in the cur­rent range, but if you wanted this or some­thing like it, you could ap­proach Starnes and ask if it could be made for you.

It can be tricky to grasp the scale of clothes as they ap­pear here, as some of them aren’t stan­dard pro­por­tions. Check out the web­site of each de­signer to see the cloth­ing on a model as well as al­ter­nate styling ideas.

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