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Message Board > Pattern Modifications, Design Changes & Pattern Drafting > Sewing for Pear Shapes

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Sewing for Pear Shapes
Calling all Pear Shaped ladies - What has worked for you??
Kirstenw
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Kirstenw
Intermediate
SOUTH AFRICA
Member since 9/26/07
Posts: 157
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Date: 3/12/09 1:05 AM

Calling all PEAR SHAPED ladies!!!!! Lets help each other

I thought that I would ask all you pear shaped ladies what has worked for you? My pear shape is narrow shoulders, smallish bust, narrow waist, large diamond shaped hips compared to waist and short legs.

I am slowly starting to learn how to dress and sew for myself. I suddenly realised that there is so much help here on this site and the information is dotted all over. We could benefit from each other successes and mistakes.

Like many of you my weight goes up and down, but our shape stays the same, so this is a question for this SHAPE whatever the weight.

What styles and fabrics WORKS best for our special shape.
What does NOT WORK?

------
Kirsten

http://kirstenssewingworld.blogspot.com/

Sew4Fun
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Sew4Fun
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AUSTRALIA
Member since 6/23/04
Posts: 4868
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In reply to Kirstenw
thumbsup 1 member likes this.


Date: 3/12/09 2:48 AM

Hi Kirsten,
I'm not a pear but I have been reading a really helpful book that I can higly recommend - Trinny & Susannah: The Body Shape Bible.

I just looked up Pear Shape and interestingly all your 'shortcomings' that you list above are mentioned, with concrete advice on how to dress. It also has a list of what not to wear.

I've been finding this book invaluable and very accurate in regards to my own Vase shape and how to dress. I feel challenged a lot of the time too.

Anyway just thought I'd mention it. It's a popular book so maybe you can find it at the library.

------
Belinda. Melbourne, Australia
http://sew-4-fun.blogspot.com/

Kirstenw
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Kirstenw
Intermediate
SOUTH AFRICA
Member since 9/26/07
Posts: 157
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In reply to Sew4Fun


Date: 3/12/09 5:41 AM

There's a book? Thats exciting. The reason why I asked this question is that just yesterday I saw that very show. We are so behind here in South Africa. The show was most probably shown in the UK approx 2 yrs ago. I though it was wonderful but it was impossible for me to remember everything they said so I thought I would ask others that perhaps have tried to apply the rules.
I would still love to know what has worked for others.

------
Kirsten

http://kirstenssewingworld.blogspot.com/

juliette2
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juliette2
AUSTRALIA
Member since 6/18/03
Posts: 1119
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Date: 3/12/09 7:30 AM

I'm a pear. I don't try to disguise my pear-ness -- it's impossible anyway -- but to flatter my very feminine shape. Pear is a good shape to be, but some styles definitely work better than others.

I don't try to make my shoulders equal my hips -- it makes me look bigger than I am. Waist definition is essential.

What works for me: wide necklines, deep v-shaped necklines, vertical style-lines, set-in sleeves. Emphasis at the bust. (D cup).

Turtleneck collars and waistcoats.

Pants with wide legs.

Hats with wide brims.

Jackets with interesting collars.

Skirts that are slim around the hips and flare at the hem. Straight skirts are OK but I find them dull.

What does not work: raglan sleeves, slim pants (ugh!), pencil skirts.

Jackets that end at the hip.

Ditto tops, blouses and shirts.

Cloche hats turn me into a cone!

------
It's a custom-made designer original. I made it myself.

Clareew
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Clareew  Friend of PR
Intermediate
UNITED KINGDOM
Member since 5/10/06
Posts: 1054
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Date: 3/12/09 7:38 AM

I find that I must wear short jackets rather than long, nothing below high hip so it doesn't hit the widest bit. The advantage of this is that it makes the legs look longer. ( I am only 5'2" so longer legs or an illusion of is a real plus)

Jackets need to be fitted in to the waist. I would love to wear a swing jacket but they just add width to the waist.

If my clothes don't go in at the waist it means they don't go in anywhere and I look like one of those weeble dolls with all the bottom weight.

I also find trousers (not tight to the leg below the knee) work well as do long skirts either straight or trumpet - no gathers round the waist for me.

The current trend for shoulder pads and puffy sleeves are great for pear shapes as they balance out the hips (I loved the 80s.)

------
Clare

Machines: Juki F600, Juki 654 serger, Bernina 550 for art work, Janome Coverpro 1000cp barely used
A Singer Featherweight Centennial and an old Necci in the loft waiting for TLC

http://art-by-clare.blogspot.co.uk/

Sew4Fun
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Sew4Fun
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In reply to Kirstenw
thumbsup 1 member likes this.


Date: 3/12/09 7:42 AM

Yes there is Kirsten. Funny, I must have read your mind. It takes everything that was explained in the show and expands on it even more. I hunted down the book after seeing the show too. That episode was so enlightening for me. I've never fitted into any of the standard four shapes but having twelve shapes makes so much more sense, at least to me. I finally found a shape I could relate to.

The book is very much like the episode where women of all ages and sizes are used. They say the same thing as you did, size doesn't matter. Reading the book was one of those a-ha moments for me. I was nodding and almost shouting with agreement on eveything they said. It was very helpful.

Anyway it's a great book. If you liked the episode then I'd highly recommend the book. To me it really is the bible. I've read plenty of other body shape books but there were always things I felt didn't applied to me. This one I feel everything applies. HTH

------
Belinda. Melbourne, Australia
http://sew-4-fun.blogspot.com/

juliette2
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juliette2
AUSTRALIA
Member since 6/18/03
Posts: 1119
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In reply to Clareew


Date: 3/12/09 7:59 AM

Quote: Clareew
If my clothes don't go in at the waist it means they don't go in anywhere and I look like one of those weeble dolls with all the bottom weight

Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight! Me too!!!!!!!!!!

------
It's a custom-made designer original. I made it myself.

Nancy K
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Nancy K
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NY USA
Member since 12/28/04
Posts: 8067
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In reply to Kirstenw


Date: 3/12/09 8:08 AM

A lot of pear shaped women wear long jackets to try and hide their hips. Only makes you look dumpy and your legs shorter. Semi fitted jackets that are at the top of my hips. Straight legged pants, a line skirts, though if your width is at the top of your hips, which mine is, I find a pencil skirt works well. I have a large bust and one of the don't wears is a turtleneck. Vertical lines, v necks or scoop necks. Keep any prints in blouses for the most part. Shoulder pads are back in style, and this is a good look to balance my hips, but again, not if the top is boxy, that only makes me look like a box. Belts can be good if you have a fuller skirt below. Shirtdress should be a terrific design for you.

------
www.nancyksews.blogspot.com

nancy2001
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nancy2001  Friend of PR
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AL USA
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In reply to Kirstenw


Date: 3/12/09 9:12 AM

Kirsten, I'm a moderate pear (32-26-37) with sloping shoulders, but I've found I can look like an hourglass when I wear the right clothes. For me this means: black, flat front pants with straight legs and a moderate hem circumference, turtlenecks, jewel necks and high vee necks (I have a long thin neck), semi fitted knit tops in solid jewel tone colors to highlight my slim torso, set-in sleeves and small shoulder pads in everything to balance my hips. In short, I choose everything I wear to play up the shoulders and play down the hips.

Fortunately, a stronger shoulder line is coming back into style. This is good news for pears because many of us need at least a small shoulder pad in our clothes to create a pleasing line.
-- Edited on 3/12/09 9:13 AM --

------
No sewing project is ever a complete success nor a total failure.

julie w
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julie w
Intermediate
AUSTRALIA
Member since 12/25/06
Posts: 775
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In reply to Kirstenw
thumbsup 1 member likes this.


Date: 3/12/09 9:19 AM

Hi Kirsten, I have that same book that Sew4Fun mentioned, it is easy to read and has lots of ideas of what works and what doesn't. As a taster they have some information on .this website
For me I have found that I definately can't wear narrow pants and need a wider leg, preferably with a slight flare or bootleg. My surprise find was a pencil skirt with pleats instead of darts at the waist, I would never have tried this on if I wasn't shopping with a friend.

------
Julie, Perth, WA

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