3 Classic Dress Styles That Complement Your Curves

If you read my post on Figure Flattering Summer Dresses you learned that the sheath, the shift and the fit and flare are three classic dress styles that enhance most body types, and always look stylish and classy.

But before you run out and invest in one of these timeless silhouettes, let me tell you about a few other popular styles.

Here are 3 more types of spring dresses for women over 40 that will complement your curves.  

wrap dresses

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1. The Wrap Dress

Diane Von Furstenberg’s classic wrap dress was born in 1974 and today it’s more popular than ever.  It  is a soft knit dress with a built-in sash that wraps around the body, cinches in the waist and ties in a knot at the front side of the dress.

The design of the dress, with its plunging neckline, lifts and separates your bust, highlights your clavicle and shows off your décolletage. This dress enhances curves or gives you curves where there are none.

A wrap dress looks as great on a date as it does at the office. It’s the must have for every woman.

Wrap Dresses are Perfect for:

Wrap Dresses are Tricky to Wear:

  • If your cup runneth over – You may want to try a camisole underneath if there’s too much cleavage showing



2. The Shirtdress

The shirtdress is simply as it sounds. It’s a long, tailored shirt with masculine detailing. It’s straight cut with buttons up the front, a collar and cuffed sleeves. A shirtdress is made of a stiff material like cotton or can be made of soft jersey, and typically ends above the knee.

It’s a great dress to have in your closet because it is so darn versatile almost like a blank canvas. It’s professional enough for the office and can be accessorized to take you from day to night.

Shirtdresses are Perfect for: 

  • Women with a rectangular (straight up and down) body shape or women with a thick waist – the generous cut hides the thick waist
  • Women who want to look polished and understated at work or play

Shirt Dresses are Tricky to Wear:

  • If you are curvy – try belting
  • If you are pear shaped- Try a shirtdress with a slightly more A-line or flare shape

empire waist dresses


3. The Empire Waist Dress

An empire waist dress is a style of dress where the waistline has been raised up high above the natural waist often as high as just under the bust. The skirt of the dress falls loose down from the bust skimming the body.

This kind of dress draws the eye upwards, creating the illusion of length. Empire waist dresses also camouflage a bottom heavy figure or thick waist.  The bonus is they really emphasizes your bustline and creates volume here even if there isn’t much to start with.

Empire Waist Dresses are Perfect for:

  • slender or petite figures
  • gals with a bulky middle they want to hide
  • bottom heavy figures


Empire Waist Dresses are Tricky to Wear:  

  • If you are apple-shaped (have a large protruding tummy) – you can look pregnant

I hope this has given you some great ideas for spring dresses for women over 40. If you are looking for spring and summer dresses for plus size women, check out this post.

Be sure to send in a photo of you in your new spring dress!


Join the Conversation

4 thoughts on “3 Classic Dress Styles That Complement Your Curves

  1. Thank you for your posts, it’s giving me great ideas . I’ve been struggling to buy the right clothes for my apple shape body. Keep up the good work. I love scrolling through to see what’s new and in style.

  2. Hi- Unfortunately I received this too late and a lot of the dresses at Nordstroms are sold out!!! I loved the first blue one!!!

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