Spring has finally sprung—and it’s about time. After what seems like a century of bundling up in puffy parkas and duck boots, it’s safe to assume we’re all ready to trade in those thermal layers for the new wave of spring trends. But as it goes every season, it’s hard for every figure to pull off the new “it’ trend since our bodies come in such different shapes and sizes. Good thing you have Her Campus to make it easier for you! Whether you’re petite or curvy—or anywhere in between—we’ve got tips on how to make this spring’s hottest prints and styles work best for you.
What’s Trending This Spring
In case you haven’t already scoured fashion blogs or stalked runway collections, we talked to Boston-based stylist Elizabeth Kamm to find out what’s big this season.
Stripes are a classic, but this spring they’re taking on an especially striking look.
“This is much different from a nautical stripe; the stripes of the season are very optical, very thick stripes,” Kamm says. “The feel of the stripe is almost reminiscent of a circus big top, having a sort of costumey, fun, irreverent feel. There is a dramatic, Moulin Rouge or Toulouse Lautrec influence here. But, worn the right way this trend is so cool, and looks very clean if paired with at least one neutral element (a solid top, or bottom).”
They say April showers bring May flowers, and that holds for fashion too. “The floral trend is still kicking around but we see even more of it for the spring,” Kamm says. “There are quiet prints- small floral prints in monochrome or soft pastels, and there are bold, vibrant prints accentuating color, texture, and contrast.”
Kamm explains, “You’ll see a lot of pieces that are reminiscent of traditional clothing from around the world. Strong silk and embroidery of and Indian sari, geometric shapes in bright colors like traditional Mexican fabrics. Beautiful sandy, earthy tones from African dress, even eastern European flair like red floral embroidery on velvety black fabrics.” Bon voyage!
So, what’s the best way for you to flaunt these statements? Scroll to your body type and find out!
1. Long and Lean: You’re tall and slender, like Gwyneth Paltrow
How to wear….
Stripes: “Might as well go all out if you’re long and lean and wear the full vertical bold stripe look,” Kamm says. She suggests trying striped pants with a crisp white long sleeve tee and heels. This pair from Forever 21 features thick stripes in black and white, a color combo that was all over spring runways. If striped pants aren’t your thing or it’s a warmer day, Kamm suggests trying a short, horizontal stripe skirt.
Floral: An all-over floral pantsuit or jumpsuit would look great on your bod. “This is such a cool look if you’re long and lean because the floral pattern may overwhelm other body types since it’s such a head to toe-look, Kamm says. “Throw on a solid color, neutral blazer and strappy heels to tone down the look a little.” This floral jumpsuit from Eight Sixty is perfect for a spring day or dinner date.
Global: A halter-top in an earthy or Aztec-inspired print can do wonders for the long and lean. Kamm explains that a halter-top, like this one from Urban Outfitters can “add volume to you if you’re really lean on top.”
Your Best Look
Cutouts, and peekaboo styles: In honor of the warmer weather, show some skin with the cutout trend. “This top trend features structured, tailored looks with windows exposing skin, usually symmetrically around the torso,” Kamm describes. This yellow dress with a cutout front from Forever 21 screams spring.
2. Apple Shaped: You rock curves and a fuller figure, like Adele.
How to wear…
Stripes: “Try a vertical bold striped pencil skirt,” says Kamm. “This will create a very wow look for apples… just be careful that the skirt hugs your curves, and is not too loose or flowy. The fabric should fit snug and be relatively weighty and should not have any sheerness to it. This will create a gorgeous S shape and lengthen you as well.” This black and white striped pencil skirt from Cici Hot is a great deal and it’ll give you the look Kamm describes. She suggests paring it with “a fitted simple black long sleeve top and a black heel. Beautiful!”
Floral: You look best in a floral cocktail dress that hits at “a feminine knee length, or just above the knee,” Kamm says. “Something too long will look like a beach cover-up, something too short may just look too disheveled. The dress should highlight your waist with either great tailoring or a belt to add some edge and contrast to the floral print.” This black floral print dress from Torrid is cinched under the bust and hits at a great length to flatter your figure.
Global: Look for bold, or large prints. “The reason is because the contrast will be flattering for a larger shape and can be very slimming in effect,” Kamm says. “The optic boldness of a big print creates visual effect that pleases the eye and minimizes ‘problem areas’ like a tummy. A small, busy print can just add weight.” This tunic from Roaman’s comes in a bunch of different global-inspired prints, so pick your favorite!
Your Best Look
Embellishments: Embellishments on clothes, such as beading or gold accents, are big this season. “You will see lots of these embellishments along neckline, or down the front of tops and dresses, or along hemlines or cuffs. It offers a flattering accent and draws the eye to your face, your legs, or your perfect manicure,” Kamm says. This white tee with a beaded collar from Forever 21 is especially cute.
3. Petite: you’re a bit shorter than most of your friends and have a tiny frame, like Eva Longoria.
How to wear…
Stripes: Try a shirt with horizontal bold stripes paired with a neutral bottom. “My favorite is bright navy and red striped long sleeve scoop neck top paired with a solid color mini- might be a little early for white but black actually looks great,” Kamm says. This red and white striped tab-sleeved top from Old Navy will do the trick.
Floral: “Petite girls can pull off the floral romper magnificently,” Kamm says. This black and turquoise floral romper from Free People looks great on its own, or with a t-shirt and vest layered over it.
Global: “Tunics inspired by India,” Kamm says. “Bright silks and decorative embellishments will look adorable on petite frames with leggings or short shorts.” You can’t go wrong with this breezy India Print Tunic from Free People.
Your Best Look
Leather: Leather looks hot on a petite figure. “Because leather has such a big visual impact, it will add stature to your small frame without overwhelming you,” Kamm says. These leather shorts from Shopbop can add an edge to any outfit.
4. Hourglass: Your bust and butt are curvy, while your waist is narrow and defined, like Sofia Vergara.
How to wear…
Stripes: Try vertical striped pants paired with a neutral top, which will elongate your legs and flatter your shape. “Accentuate your little waist with a belt…your butt will look amazing and your legs will look longer,” Kamm says. This pair from Wet Seal comes in fun colors.
Floral: A pencil skirt, or a full feminine skirt, will “look great and give you a really cool 1950s vibe,” Kamm says. “I would suggest bold florals rather than smaller pastel florals.” This long, dark floral pencil skirt from Anthropologie gets you that retro vibe. “Accessorize with a modern heel to give your look some edge,” Kamm says.
Global: While a tight dress can really accentuate your hourglass figure, try a flowy maxi dress or one with a high-low hems for a more casual feel on a spring day. “Avoid empire waists but instead find styles that really kick in at the waist,” Kamm says. “Choose liberally the size and color of your print, whether it be Aztec inspired, or inspired by a beautiful fabric from Africa.” This knit high-low dress has a cool lace back and a unique pattern.
Your Best Look
Athletic dresses: “These dresses have a fitted bodice and are short and flirty,” Kamm says. This textured mini dress from Free People has fun embroidery around the waist and comes in a spring-friendly turquoise color. Kamm adds that a dress like this shows off your shoulders nicely, but if it’s still chilly, she says, “throw on your favorite blazer.”
So, no matter what your body shape is, you can spring into spring and look your best with any of the above styles picked just for you. Happy shopping!