How to dress to eat (part one)

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I'm going to try and create a comprehensive guide to picking an outfit to wear when you're eating out in Oman. This guide is aimed primarily at women. Here's my guide for men: undo your pants.

So, as this is part one, let's get straight to the core of the matter: the waistline. (I'm going to assume that anyone reading this is likely to be really eating when they go out. Salads and skimping on carbs has no effect on what you wear.)

Two things to think about here. One, comfort - are you going to be able to eat to your full potential and still be happy with what you're wearing? Two, how you look. Picture what the outfit will look like when you're leaving with a bellyful of something lovely.

For the curvy among us, the waistline vs food issue is, once you hide or lose that cinch inwards, your whole silhouette is compromised - if I don't emphasise my waist, I am the same width all the way down. "Reassuringly stocky" is not a description I ever want to hear of myself on the way out for a romantic meal. But the important thing here, and what I hope to help people to achieve, is never feeling so pressurised by the need to look good that you are tempted to hold in your stomach, or, heaven forfend, skip dessert.

Trousers, skirt, any dress with a waist - think about where the tightest point is. A high-waisted pair of pants can be your friend if they hit just above the stomach and flow outwards from there. Conversely, a low rise can be comfy when you leave the house; but post-pasta may need some unsightly tugging upwards; not a good look.

Empire lines and drop-waists can be your friends but go in and out of fashion (it's almost as if designers don't work with the greedy in mind, although that Gatsby phase was a godsend for gourmands).

Choose a dress or top that skims the waistline, so it just touches the outline without clinging. Or, tuck a blouse into pants or a skirt, and then let it billow out a little - it looks like you're being all boho, but really it's so you don't have to skip the bread. That's what I did for the Shangri-La's Moonlight Beach Buffet. I hear buffet, I immediately start planning what to wear to best take advantage of the feast. You have to get up and walk multiple times if you want the juiciest lobsters, past people who don't want to see you cradling a food baby. 

So I wore a well-fitting but not fitted top; a pair of very flowing pants with an elasticated waist that rested happily just above my belly, and had an eye-catching print (prints hide shape). Also I carried a clutch...the beauty of these is that you can hold them right in front of your belly as camoflage. I ate a big beautiful banquet secure in the knowledge that my expanding waistline would stay hidden.

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1 comment:

  1. What a wonderful phrase,I really appreciates with your article. thanks for sharing useful tips with a wonderful, nice and simple photos.