Pattern camouflage confuses the eye making it difficult to notice convex and concave areas.
Case in point…this Anthro dress that I stumbled across at the Soho store on mega sale. I saw the frock on the hanger, jammed in with all the other dresses in the sales section, the only one of its kind remaining. The detailed pattern reminded me of needlepoint art.
The dress looked too small, but I was so enamoured with the pattern I figured I’d give it a go anyhow.
Although it is snug it doesn’t look too-too much like I’ve squeezed myself into a sausage casing.
Make no mistake…there will be no second helpings while wearing this dress.
The intricate details of the faux needlepoint pattern have magical belly smoothing and butt enhancing abilities. Even back bulges seems to smooth out a bit.
I stumbled across this fantastic “Matador” dress which left me drooling thinking that it too would have magical camouflage powers. I think Frida Kahlo would have looked amazing in it.
Here are some more examples of pattern camouflage that I’ve worn…
Floral jeans or pants
Floral and patterned maxi dresses
The pattern above is so oversized it reads more as a solid colour blocking to the eyes.
Well placed areas of solid colour, like in the maxi dress above give the eyes direction and break up the pattern and create the illusion of a very small waist (even though it is actually my ribcage).
Tips on how to pattern camouflage
1. Make sure the pattern is bold and detailed enough to work their camouflage magic.
2. Be wary of large patterns, they can sometimes make you look larger.
4. Tone on tone patterns are easier on the eyes.
5. Pay attention to the pattern. Does it accent the areas you want? Lines, curves, highlights and lowlights on patterns all direct the eyes and can create optical illusions such as in this gorgeous dress.
6. Negative space in patterns is important as it gives the eyes a place to rest and can also help direct the eyes to certain areas.
Do you like wearing bold intricate patterns? Have you ever tried to camouflage or enhance your body by using patterns?
Linking up with Share in Style Fashion Should Be Fun
Rachel G says
I also like patterns, but I think many of your choices are bolder than any that I typically wear. This most recent dress is especially flattering on you, and you know I think your hair looks really pretty when it’s curly!
carillo suzanne says
Thanks Rachel. I do like my hair curly…it just takes LOTS of work. It will only hold the curl if I wet set it…major pain in the butt. Some of us aren’t lucky enough to have natural curls like you Rachel : )
Jazzy Jack says
I like this new dress, with your tincey waist!
But my favourites are the maxi with the overblown flower and the jumpsuit. I love the free and easy feel. I need one! xo Jazzy Jack
carillo suzanne says
That dress is one of the most comfortable I own. It feels like I’m wearing a nightgown.
I like all your tips 🙂
Wow. These really have an effect. Our brains are affected by them.
I’m trying to add more pattern to my wardrobe, because it is definitely lacking. This post is like a professional “how to” do pattern. Every single look is lovely – and I adore the new dress on you!
Happiness at Mid Life says
You wear patterns so well. I am a fan of patterns but stick to basics like floral, stripes & polka dots. Busier patterns scare me. This is a very pretty dress on you and I love all the great patterns you have shared with us.
Well, you know I am all about a print, as bold as you like, and you have some beauties in your collection, Suzanne. Your new dress looks as though it fits you perfectly, though it won’t surprise you to know that my heart is with your more colourful pieces! I haven’t ever considered pattern as camouflage or as a way to create illusions, I just tend to wear what I like. And among the majority who wear neutrals, block colours or small prints/stripes, anyone who goes for bold prints and colour certainly stands out! xxx
carillo suzanne says
I agree…patterns attract attention, which is probably why I love them.
Mrs C says
The Anthro dress looked almost like delicate lace on grey lining on screen. It fits pretty well. Greta medley of prints but I adore the jumpsuit.. stunning!
The green maxi is one of my most favourite of your dresses, which is saying a lot as you’ve got some beauties. The new one fits a treat!
I don’t own many plain clothes, I’m attracted to wild patterns, the bolder and the bigger, the better. You’re right, print covers a multitude of sins and is a great distraction if your skin is looking a bit iffy or the roots need a touch up.
Loving your curls. xxx
Love that Anthro dress (I love all their dresses) and you look fan-tabulous. xox
I’m all about patterns- but that anthro dress is especially stunning- in and out in all the right places!
You know I’m all about pattern! And I too have stumbled across its magical ability to trick the eye and flatter certain areas. My problem is that I’m also drawn to larger prints, so I struggle with wearing prints that are flattering vs. wearing prints that I love. This dress is sure a hot little number on you! I love when pattern is placed strategically as to elongate certain parts, draw the eye in and up, and accentuate an hourglass figure. This dress achieves all of that and then some! What a score to find stuffed in amongst the clearance rack!
Ooo, there’s that glorious green patterned vintage maxi, which is one of my favourite dresses of yours.
The shape of the pattern on the Anthro dress is perfect camouflage (not that you need it) in the way it narrows in the area of your waist and rib cage. You have a great body, and your curves are hugged in all the right ways by the dress. I didn’t think I could wear form-fitting dresses anymore, but it does all come down to the fabric and the shape.
I LOVE your new dress you found! It is so flattering & sexy…you look amazing in it. And that jumpsuit! And all those maxi dresses! I really want to shop your closet, I bet it’s so bright & FUN! 🙂
No Fear of Fashion says
This is a raving dress, gorgeous, elegant and sexy. What more do you want? Well done buying it. Your link to the Etro dress was a bit too much for me…tsss how expensive.
carillo suzanne says
Etro is one of my all time favourite companies for patterns. They really know how to make them, the right colours…I just love them all. I agree though…very pricey. They are a huge inspiration for when I design patterns.
Wow. So many lovely dresses! That first anthro dress looks especially amazing on you.
Thanks for the helpful tips.
I love this dress on you! I think it is great form fitting and I love the pattern. I love patterns too, mostly florals too.. I love your floral pants, that copper jacket is amazing..too! Great taste.
from the link up,
please stop by, jess xx
The Anthro dress is divine, and looks fabulous on you! all of your patterned selections are amazing, you nail it every time! you are effortless my lady x x x
WOW! That dress fits you like a glove and is worth skipping a second-helping!
LOVE your hair!! And those legs!!
Hollie Ramsey says
I’m not a fan of patterns (not sure why) but I think you rock em well!
That dress does wonderful things! It’s extremely flattering, and really shows off your fab figure.
I love a bit of pattern, though I don’t do many florals. I actually have a dress with a similar pattern on to this, and even though my OH said it looked like wallpaper on the hanger, he agrees that it looks great on.
Lookin’ snazzy there, Chickey. You look great in each of these outfits. As for me in patterns…one like the first dress would do well on me. Where I wouldn’t do so well is with floral bottoms or too big a pattern. I’m curvy through the hips and too big a pattern doesn’t mets mon corps en valeur.
Jodi@ day2daywear says
Wow, I love this post, how informative and I would never in a million years think you were squeezed into that first dress!! its awesome by the way!!!
I have always stayed away from big patterns and ones similar to what you are wearing as examples but will have to try some out.. maybe just maybe they will make me look smaller 🙂
I adore these patterns and love the analytical way you described each one. You wear these patterns so well because you truly understand dimension and scale, plus your Bod is looking pretty great!
I am crazy for each one of your damask skinnies, LOVE the jumpsuit, adore the opening photo of the anthro dress, and the rest of it is awesome, too, but my fingers are going to cramp if I type anymore!
Dawn Lucy says
Okay, I’m sold! I totally need some pattern camouflage in my life! That dress is AMAZING on you! HOTTIE! Love all your gorgeous outfits and pretty patterns.
Thanks so much for linking up with FUN FASHION FRIDAY!