Dressing for my shape: a fitted shirtwaist dress


Preppy, Retro and Figure-Flattering

That’s what I thought when I saw this chambray dress. And even before I tried it on, I knew it would fit me like a glove, and I just had to have it.

I often find shopping for my body shape very frustrating. Finding a skirt that fits well is a challenge; finding trousers is nearly impossible. Even most sheath dresses tend to be tight around the chest and hips and have extra fabric around the waist. It seems that clothes are cut for a more athletic (i.e. straight up and down) figure these days, whereas I have the classic 50’s hourglass figure. I’m also long-waisted, which means that the waistline in most dresses sits just a bit too high, above my natural waist.

I doesn’t help that shops are full of shapeless sack dresses, which no doubt look fabulous of slim and tall models but would make me look frumpy. It is almost impossible to find something with a clearly defined waist. I know, because whenever I find something like that, I buy it.

So, when I find an easy-to-wear, low-maintenance shirtwaist dress that flatters my body without restricting my movements, I’m over the moon. Finally a dress that looks as if it was made for me! And the best part? It has pockets!!!

50s style dress

Seasalt Cornwall dress

over 40 blogger

Outfit details:

dress: Seasalt Cornwall / cardigan: Club Monaco (old) / bag: Gloria Ortiz (old) / 

shoes: Clarks (old) / sunglasses: Marimekko

Do you find it challenging to shop for your body shape?




Linking up with: 

Not Dead Yet StyleElegantly Dressed and StylishGaray TreasuresHigh Latitude StyleSydney Fashion HunterThe Pleated PoppyStyle ElixirGet Your Pretty OnHappiness at Mid-LifeA Labour of LifeDoused in PinkCurly Crafty MomFashion Should Be FunRachel the HatSincerely Jenna MarieMore Pieces of MeColor and GraceThe Wardrobe StylistNot Dressed As LambStyle NudgeCoco et La Vie en RoseFashionably Employed,The Fabulous JourneyLiving on Cloud NineA Well Styled LifeElegance and MommyhoodPosh Classy MomNancy’s Fashion StyleSheela WritesShelbee on the Edge 


  1. Patti
    17 July 2016 / 1:16 pm

    Great dress, and a perfect fit for your hourglass silhouette, Tiina! I am more straight up and down and tend to surrender the waist most days. xoPattihttp://notdeadyetstyle.com

    • Tiina L
      19 July 2016 / 9:54 am

      Thanks, Patti! I just love this dress, it's wonderful to have something that fits so well.

  2. Shybiker
    17 July 2016 / 3:56 pm

    Very nice. The style and fit suit your figure. Good choice.

    • Tiina L
      19 July 2016 / 9:54 am

      Thanks, Ally!

  3. Suzanne Carillo
    17 July 2016 / 5:33 pm

    This is also my kind of dress. Especially with pockets! bisousSuzanne

    • Tiina L
      19 July 2016 / 9:55 am

      Yes, pockets! Why don't they make more dresses with pockets???

  4. Jill James
    18 July 2016 / 10:30 am

    Perfect Summer dress, both the fit and colour, it really was just made for you.I fully understand the dress problem.

    • Tiina L
      19 July 2016 / 9:57 am

      Yes, it's as if it was made for me! I just had to get it.

  5. Nancy's Fashion Style
    18 July 2016 / 10:37 am

    This looks really you! (I think!) The color of the cardigan is perfect on you!

    • Tiina L
      19 July 2016 / 9:58 am

      Thanks! Would you believe that the cardigan is at least 6 years old?

  6. josep-maria badia
    18 July 2016 / 11:54 am

    I really like the dress, has a beautiful print. And I like the combination with fuchsia jacket, it is downright nice look.

    • Tiina L
      19 July 2016 / 9:59 am

      Thanks. I loved the print, too, when I first saw it: sailboats… So summery yet different from the usual flower prints.

    • Tiina L
      19 July 2016 / 10:00 am

      Thank you, that is so sweet of you to say that!

  7. No Fear of Fashion
    20 July 2016 / 7:48 pm

    You are so right. This dress is made for you. Beautiful. You should have a seamstress making dresses for you. What do you think?The fuchsia cardigan looks cute on the dress.Greetje

    • Tiina L
      21 July 2016 / 11:12 am

      OK Greetje, I'm going to tell you a little secret: I actually studied dressmaking (and fashion design) when I was young… So, in theory, I should be able to make dresses for myself. It's just that sewing drives me crazy, I hate it, and I'm not very good at it. I only studied it because at that point I wanted to be a fashion designer and I thought I should know the technical side of fashion, too. And I think I still have my mother's sewing machine somewhere in the basement…

    • No Fear of Fashion
      21 August 2016 / 11:49 am

      Hahaha.. My mother tought me how to sew. And I once made a very complicated cross over skirt with 8 full pleats starting from 20 cm below the waist. I took me 24 working hours. By the time it was finished I was so fed up with it. So I know and u derstand what you are saying. I too have a sewing machine. Just for simple repairs or jobs once in a blue moon.Greetje

  8. Biddy Fraser
    21 July 2016 / 7:33 am

    A really nice dress, Tiina. I might even look out for similar myself!Biddy

    • Tiina L
      21 July 2016 / 11:08 am

      Thanks, Biddy. You know, there is a Seasalt Cornwall shop in Canterbury, in Marlowe Arcade (that's where I bought this dress), or you can try online at https://www.seasaltcornwall.co.uk

  9. Dawn Lucy - Fashion Should Be Fun
    23 July 2016 / 1:00 am

    It can be frustrating looking to dress curves. All my curviness is on my bottom half, but still it's quite a challenge … maybe even more so because of that. IDK … anyway, you look fabulous! Very pretty!Thanks so much for linking up with Fun Fashion Friday!OXOXDawn Lucyhttp://fashionshouldbefun.blogspot.com

    • Tiina L
      23 July 2016 / 8:54 am

      Oh, yes, frustrating is the word!

  10. Heather
    23 July 2016 / 8:51 pm

    The berry cardigan looks so great with chambray and I love the sailboat print.

    • Tiina L
      23 July 2016 / 9:34 pm

      Thanks, Heather!

  11. Alice Warren
    25 July 2016 / 5:07 am

    Very cute shirtdress and fits you perfectly!Thank you for being a part of TBT Fashion link up and hope to see you soon! Alicewww.happinessatmidlife.com

    • Tiina L
      25 July 2016 / 9:26 am

      Thanks, Alice.

    • Tiina L
      30 July 2016 / 8:40 pm

      Thanks, Rania.

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