top of page

Outfit Breakdown: Analyzing an Outfit to Teach You How to Build One

Did you read the post I wrote about an outfit breakdown? Everyone seemed to LOVE it so I’m breaking down another outfit to help you learn how to analyze each part of a striking ensemble. I believe that deconstructing an outfit is going to be useful for you as you build your own outfits!

Here’s what I’m looking for from each outfit:

  1. Flatters the body shape - complementing it with the best styles

  2. Uses the right colors - not just the right Color Code but color in the right places

  3. Accessorizes for impact - everything from statement jewelry to interesting handbags can elevate an outfit and I want to see the right scale for her body type

  4. Attention to the finishing touches - a flattering hairstyle and updated makeup is an essential part of completing the look

Don’t overlook any one of the four; they’re equally important. I’m hoping my deep dive into the details that make up a stunning outfit will give you the information you need to make good decisions about your personal style.


Our model for this week is:

Sue: Retired Nurse and Mid-wife

Height: 5’6”

Color Code: Cool

Medium Frame = Movie Star in our Style Personality System

Body Shape: “X” body type with a little belly

What’s working well:

  • She has great glasses and an amazing haircut! She’s on trend, modern, classy and beautiful.

  • Her jacket and top work with her Color Code. Her pants, in a pink-y coral, work but could be more pink.

  • She’s wearing the right metal for her Color Code, too!

  • Silver: Bag(coordinated with her hair color), Chunky Loafers

What’s not working:

  • The bag is too long. A crossbody bag should fall at a place where your hand can easily access it.

  • When you are balancing your outfit with bold color blocking, we want to balance that with a stronger necklace.

  • The earrings are too small. Her elegant, longer neck would look lovely with a longer earring.

  • The front tuck bunches too much at her belly making it look bigger than it is.

  • The sleeves on the jacket are a little too long.

Look at the transformation with my recommendations:

  1. Tuck in the top.

  2. Add a silver belt. She’s long-waisted and the belt creates a center that shortens the top half of her body.

  3. A shorter, chunkier necklace.

In the next version of this outfit, the long necklace brings the eye inward and creates a slimming effect, although it wouldn’t work with the crossbody bag. Be careful when wearing necklaces with your cross over bag! I just love this look!

Now, in this version,

  1. The white button-front blouse causes too much bunching.

  2. She turned her crossbody into a small bag, which was too small for her frame.

The makeover:

  1. Pop the collar.

  2. Add the crossbody.

  3. She shortens the strap on her bag.

  4. She brings it toward the center of her body to cover any bit of a tummy.

Doesn't she look great? Some small changes made a big difference!

Sue is part of our Closet Outfit Planner community and we'd love to have you over there, too! Here's a link to check it out:


Remember my advice for creating effortless elegance:

Body Shape is recognized and flattered.

Color Code is understood and the right colors are in the right places.

Impact comes from accessories that are the right scale for body type.

Finishing touches do not go unnoticed and make all the difference.


Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page