Closet Fashion Tips Personal Style

Voluminous Clothes: How not to get lost in them

Voluminous Peacock

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Sometimes I like a little drama in my life. Not the left-over-from-high-school kind of drama. More of the sweeping-ball-gown, sky-high-heels kind of drama. While this is definitely not everyday wear, I do get some of the same joy and pleasure from wearing the more dramatic voluminous pieces in my wardrobe.

The problem is that often these great pieces that I love don’t get a lot of wear. Mixing them in on a daily basis can be difficult. How do you wear a drapey top with a ruffle around its bottom? What do you pair with a full skirt that falls below the knee? What makes a loose-all-over dress not look like you’re wearing a tent? The answer for all of these questions is to pair your voluminous pieces with something that is fitted. Reining in that volume is key! If you want new ways to wear more of the items in your closet, this is one of the ways to make them work.

If your pieces make you disappear because the volume is hiding you, the important thing to keep in mind is to create balance. Pairing voluminous with voluminous can make you disappear in a sea of cloth. Balance the dramatic flair of your voluminous clothing pieces by wearing them with items that are fitted. This way you don’t lose your shapeliness amongst the fullness of the fabric. Thoughtfully restyling the clothes you already own can make your closet much more wearable.

Here are some suggestions for pairing voluminous wardrobe pieces with more fitted items. To make these inherently dramatic pieces more wearable, mix them with fitted pieces that show your shape. The juxtaposition of oversized with slim can make your outfits feel fresh.

Boxy, Drapey or Ruffled Voluminous Tops

If your top is voluminous, try a bottom that is fitted to your shape. Pencil skirts, high-waisted straight skirts, skinny jeans and slim-leg Capri pants are all options that balance volume on your upper body. These will balance out your oversized button-down shirt, peasant top and ruffled blouse.


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Full, Pleated and Oversized  Voluminous Bottoms

If your bottom you want to wear is voluminous, try a slim cut top. Think about using your fitted T-shirts, structured peplum tops, slim cut button-downs, fitted sweaters, and form-fitting vests. Pairing these tops with pleated skirts, oversized boyfriend jeans or culottes can make the dramatic pieces daytime wearable.

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Draped, Ruffled and Swing Voluminous Dresses

If your dress is big or floaty, try topping it with a snug-fitting jacket. A shapeless dress can gain waist definition and overall structure from a tight or shrunken jacket. The result is an outfit that looks fresh and compelling.

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Intentionally mixing voluminous clothes with fitted pieces can be a way to strategically draw attention to your own best features. Use the dramatic pieces of your wardrobe for your everyday outfits.

If you would like some guidance to make new combinations in your own closet, check out our Essential Package. We come to your house and put your closet to work for you.

Mara Arnold

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