Are Horizontal Stripes Unflattering?

Traditionally we’re encouraged to avoid horizontal stripes as they make us look wide. But this rule isn’t always right – in fact they can sometimes make us look slimmer. So much so that a study by York University found that women wearing stripes across the body were overall considered slimmer, when compared with wearing vertical stripes. 

Our long, straight cut jackets by POM Amsterdam look great with stripes because of their flattering length. Available in black and blue 

That’s not to say you should now only stick to horizontal stripes. Vertical stripes can elongate the figure when worn in the right places. They look especially good on trousers (even one stripe down the side can do wonders for lengthening your body). And diagonal stripes are also a great look, as they’re interesting and when placed over larger areas, will have a flattering effect.

Top: Our Jaice pants have a cool sports lux vibe, that really lengthens the body. Bottom: Our 100% cashmere Stella Cardigan features large chevron stripes that cut across the middle, hiding any lumps and bumps 

The point is, it’s not about the stripe itself, but the garment it’s on and where they're placed. Whether you wear vertical, horizontal or diagonal, make sure you still choose a garment that has a flattering cut. Try to imagine it without the stripes, and only go for it if it would still look good if they weren't there. Moreover, if you're wearing vertical or horizontal stripes, make sure they draw attention to your best assets and/or slimmest parts.

So next time you see stripes, don’t disregard them immediately. Consider the garment as a whole, and then decide if it’s the right piece for you. 

Our 100% cashmere Sienna Sweater's slimming fit, combined with narrow horizontal stripes is a winning combination 

Tags: Style Tips


  • Posted by Marie-Thérèse on

    I’ve been telling my readers and my clients this for years. Like everything else, it’s all about proportion, placement and posture. The width of the stripes are crucial, where they are placed is essential and whatever you do, stand up straight and don’t slouch. Nothing looks good on a slouchy woman unless she is a 19-year-old runway model.

    Cheers, M-T

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