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Apple-Shaped Women: 31 Rules for Your Body Type

by Tina Boomerina (Christina Gregoire)

I’ve been an apple shape all my life... even when I was 15 years old and was a skinny 110 pounds. Now, after 2 kids, menopause, and a lovely course of prednisone, I’m most def a true, apple-shaped woman. Here are my rules that I’ve developed through trial and error... mostly error.

best clothing styles for big stomach apple shapes

Kimono Top or Dress for Apples

My rules may work for you. On the other hand, your body may be a bit different. However, I’m going to throw them out there because they might help you. Or, maybe some clothing designer will read this and want to make a zillion dollars by listening to my ideas and coming up with a new fashion line called Bad Apples.

You Don't Have to Be Fat to Be an Apple

Even if you’re a skinny young girl, you might have an apple shape, which usually includes a big tummy, small butt, boy shape, top-heavy silhouette. I had that type of body even when I was a young teen. I also had/have big shoulders and short legs (from my peasant side), so if you have narrow shoulders and long legs, you’ll need to alter and adapt my tips to fit your shape. (These days, I have large breasts and I’m even more top-heavy than when I was a kid… oh well... I'm old enough to show cleavage without looking like a hooker.)

Tips for Apple Shapes With Big Tummies

The following ideas are not in any order. I just wrote them down as they popped into my mind:

1. Swing Dresses: If a top or dress doesn’t have a loose shape or a lot of stretch, it’s not going to fit over your preggers-like tummy. Look for swing dresses... what we used to call trapeze dresses during the Mod 60s. If your legs are short or you're over 50, most mini dresses should be worn as tops... not always... but try them on with various bottoms... even wide-legged pants or bellbottoms... to see if you look more balanced.

round stomach tummies what to wear - boomerinas.com tina boomerina

Circle Shaped Body

2. Tunic Tops: Long tunic tops worn over skinny jeans (balanced with boots) might be your "happy look".

3. Texture: Any print or texture that confuses people is good… as long as it doesn’t make you look top-heavy.

4. Top Heavy: Be careful with upper-body embellishments, but play with them because sometimes they work really well. Tops with details (like patterns, color-blocking, or ruffles) at the hips are fabulous.

apple shape outfits clothing

Obi Belt Plus Size

5. Belts: Obi belts (in large sizes) rock. Look for large drapey tops and dresses in swing shapes and then you can put the belt in the right place for each outfit. (Try belting under your boobs… or higher or lower than your waist. Then cover everything with a long open sweater or an unbuttoned longline top.)

6. Drape: Good fabric heals all wounds.

7. Long Skirts: Skirts should usually be long or you’ll look like you’re going to tip over… stiletto heels are the same. (Skirts that come just below my knees make me look dowdy.)

8. Jumpsuits: Jumpsuits are impossible.

9. Necklaces: Long Necklaces are best. Scarves should be long and narrow... but long enough to make a hammock.

10. Kimonos: Anything with the word kimono is good (sleeves, etc). Short sleeves and cap sleeves should be banned from the planet.

11. Pants: No cropped trousers. Printed jeans and leggings are good.

12. V-Necks: Long open necklines make your upper body look more balanced. This includes deep U-necklines and square necklines.

13. Separates: It’s not so much the pieces… it’s how they are put together. Dressing an apple-shaped body is a freaking art form honed by years of embarrassing experiments.

14. Coats and Sweater Coats: Belted coats and Macs are great.

15. Purses: The bigger the purse, the smaller the stomach.

16. Boho: Gypsy skirts are your best friends.

read about apple shaped dress tips for women's fashion

Boho Dresses for Apple Shapes

17. Layering: If you must choose between layered Lagenlook clothing and your husband, you know the answer.

18. Elastic: Almost any dress or tunic is better without an elastic waist. Designers should consider adding stretchy smocking instead of elastication, but they should make sure the waist area is fairly large to start with. We are willing to pay for the extra time involved in making good smocking. We are also willing to pay more for larger amounts of fabric.

19. Hats: The bigger the hat, the smaller the stomach.

20. Jewelry: Try lots of bangles, giant earrings, and anything that might distract from your funny tummy.

21. Taste: Taste is for people with no imagination. (Don’t be afraid to go over the edge, just don’t fall off the cliff.)

22. Column Skirts: No column dresses… column skirts are okay, because you can control the top to control the proportions.

23. Zippers: If it has a zipper, it won’t fit. (This is not always true, but if you're leaving on a jet plane and you don't have time to send things back to the store and do the post-office dance, order something without a zip.)

24. Wrap Dresses: Wrap dresses (without ditsy collars) are manna from heaven… as long as the dress has enough fabric to wrap around your tum and enough flare that you won’t flash your fans as you get out of your Ferrari.

25. Lightweight: Look for gauzy items and things that say featherweight or lightweight or fine. Then, layer gauzy or see-through things over camis and dresses and stuff like that.

26. Dieting: No matter how skinny you get, you’ll always be an apple. It's your body. Learn to love it.

what to wear if you're apple shaped girl circle big stomach

Jersey Rocks... the Fabric Not the Place

27. Jersey: Jersey rocks… the fabric, not the place.

28. Crew Necks: Crew necklines are icky, but you can play with them by playing with scarves and necklaces.

29. Ruching and Draping: Try anything that has the word "waterfall".

30. Caftans: The most beautiful word in the English language is caftan.

31. Other Body Types: We don’t want to hear you complain about your muffin tops.

I hope some of these tips give you ideas for how to work with your apple shape. I’m a boho chick, so I’m big on Johnny Was hippie tunics and Rachel Pally maxi dresses and things like that, but you can adapt these ideas for your style... like... if you’re a woman who wears classic clothing because you’re stuck working at a bank. And, as for you clothing designers… sit up and take notes.

More Fashion Articles for Baby Boomer Women Over 40, 50, 60:

Women's Travel Clothing - Sheer Clothing Trend

5 Easy-to-Wear Kimono Styles: What's Up With All the Kimonos?

The Year of the Tunic - Fashion for Women Over 50

What is Lagenlook? Cute Boho Travel Wear

Photo Credits: Prshots.com. (Unfortunately, the fashions are from previous years. Fortunately, the same websites often carry fashions in similar styles each spring or fall.)

  • Main Photo: Asos.
  • Kimono Top or Dress for Apples. Asos.
  • Circle Shaped Body: Asos.
  • Obi Belt Plus Size: Slink Boutique.
  • Boho Dresses for Apple Shapes: Monsoon.
  • Jersey Rocks... the Fabric Not the Place: Asos.

What do you think of this article? Can you think of any tips I left out? Leave a comment at the bottom of the page or pin us to Pinterest. Tina

Tina Boomerina (AKA Christina Gregoire) is a Baby Boomer born at the end of 1952. Her mission is to make the internet a kinder and gentler place for Baby Boomer women around the world. Tina's specialty is fashion for women over 50.

Follow Me on Pinterest Follow My Boomer Lifestyle Blog on facebook

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63 Comments

  1. kay kerns

    LOL Bad Apples that's great I wish you could start a clothing line! A great article I was more of a pear at first but life and time have made me an apple

  2. Leslie

    Thank you!! So many "apple shaped tips" don't include the fact we have gigantic shoulders, SHORT LEGS, and rarely a waist. Another tip that works for me is to wear, under tops, the yummie tummie cami's - they help smooth the torso AND help fabric drape nicely.

    I would love to know if you have any tips on shoes and boots to pair with different types of pants - tips specific to apples. I have a hard time knowing if I should tuck my pants into my boots (or if that looks ridiculous), when I can wear heals with skinny jeans (if ever), etc.

    KEEP THE TIPS COMING!! Photos would be great, too!!!! Again, thank you for writing about fashion for the small percentage of us gals who managed to get all the body traits that are hard to camouflage.

    • Tina-Boomerina

      Leslie,

      Your comment has made my day. I wear tunics with jeggings, but I prefer long flowing skirts as they balance my body better than anything else. I will try to do an article and I'll even throw in some photos... that will be good for a laugh and it will help me refine my look. I never know what I really look like until my husband takes a few bad snaps.

      Sorry for the delay in my response. I'll email you. I was sick and then I had to help my daughter with something... and life gets in the way.

      Best,

      Tina Boomerina

  3. Mary Ann Rand

    I enjoyed your blog very much. I am 76 years old and still want to look stylish and "pretty"! Why not?

  4. Mary Ann Rand

    I love your ideas. Finally someone who knows what an apple shape is and gives advice accordingly as opposed to the size 4's in the magazines who try to give us fashion advice by making their clothes just "bigger" such "curvy girl fashions" skin tight sheath dresses. Yes they are plus size but shapely, most of us are not.

    Thank you for your real women blog. Keep it going.

    Mary Ann

  5. Grace

    Loved this. So much truth and humour too. :)
    Thanks for the tips!

  6. Maija

    Oh my goodness!
    Thank you SO much just for being you!
    Finding honest info like this is so rare and so needed/desired.
    I look at apple-shaped stuff now and again and just think:
    "They don't look ANYTHING like me!"
    54, short and pregnant-looking.
    I feel old, fat, and dowdy much of the time.
    I wish you could come help me!
    I'm going to 'follow' you on Pinterest and Facebook...
    Thank you!

    • Tina-Boomerina

      Maija,

      I don't really do much on Facebook, but you should follow me on Pinterest. Leave a comment if you want to join any of my group boards.

      Tina

  7. Donna

    Thank you! I'm going to print this out and stick it next to my closet so I can look at it every morning before getting dressed. I couldn't agree more with #13..... I've been an Apple all my life and have grown to love it but there are days...... I am 5'10 with an ample bosom and long skinny legs. A professional looking suit jacket is my very best friend and can be paired with anything from jeans to a dress. One thing I've learned over the years is that I was completely lost without my tailor. Its nice to know I too can have properly fitting pants, just not without my tailor. Its weird that this is what I've struggled with being an apple shape but its true. My tummy always gets in the way.... And yes, long skirts are my go to if all else fails. Thank you for sharing this. It made my day.

  8. maria

    I love your site.whenever I'm feeling blah about my look. I just tune you in and get so inspired. Love this site.especially love the pics. I too and short and round.ugh!

  9. maria

    I love your site.can't get enough whenever I'm feeling blah about my body I just look at your pics or read your post and feel I've come home
    Love your stuff.especially the pics.

  10. Tina-Boomerina

    ps Tell your friends about my site. Help my Google Rank.

    love ya,

    Tina

  11. Peaches

    This is FANTASTIC!! Ohh the struggles of the apple shaped. lol

    I was laughing out loud at these... i can relate only too well.. But somehow we manage to be fabulous dont we ladies :)

  12. Claudia

    I have been an apple my entire life too. After a child, in my mid twenties, I'm not a bigger girl by any means, but always always an apple. This is by far the greatest collection of apple advice I have ever read. Thanks for my Fashion BIble.

    • Tina-Boomerina

      Oh Claudia,

      You're so sweet. Thanks.

      Some women have child-bearing hips. We have child-bearing stomachs. There's nothing wrong with that. We're just a little different. Einstein was a little different, too.

      hugs,
      tina

  13. Sam

    Oh my gosh....I've come across this article because I'm a larger apple shape (UK 22) and I'm fed up of trying plus-size clothing that still looks awful on me because of my unusual proportions. I'm easily a UK 20 on my lower half and my shoulder area isn't exactly too heavy either - everything else in between - I'm like a helium balloon!! Thank you so much for being honest, real and open about this. I barely see anything out there for us apples but I want to look good and feel good when I look in the mirror instead of bloated and ugly. Thanks again so much for this xx

    • Tina-Boomerina

      Sam,

      I wish I were a clothing designer. Or... I wish a clothing disigner would consult me. There is such a huge market. And, I'm willing to be the fit model (for free).

      Tina

      • Tina-Boomerina

        ps

        I want to add that there is nothing wrong with us. There is nothing wrong with our bodies. There is something wrong with the fashion industry.

        Not everyone is curvy in the same places. This seems obvious to me, but not to fashion designers.

        Tina

  14. Lisa

    Thank you for your tips. I am tall 5'9" and am a firm "apple" thanks to my thyroid. I am learning, let me state that again learning, to love my body. Shopping is a chore for me because most things are tight where I don't want them to be and loose where they shouldn't be. Thank you for your tips. I do a lot of them and am grateful for the new ones. Do you have any tips on where to shop for people, sorry shapes like us?

    • Tina-Boomerina

      Lisa,
      Don't say bad things about your body. It's the freaking shape that God gave you... right.

      There's nothing wrong with you. There is something wrong with the fashion industry. I'll send you a link to one of my articles about brands.

      And, remember that it's not YOU. The problem is the dress, or the top, or the skirt, or the pants!

      Tina

  15. Pam

    This is the best article EVER!! Thank you so much! I,too, would love to know where in the world to shop!

  16. Manja Gustavsson-Sanders

    I have just stumbled across your board on Pinterest, that in turn, brought me to this site.

    Just brilliant, and about time someone made those of us with great legs, small bums, but broad shoulders, with tummies, feel like human beings, and not fashion nightmares.
    I am a corsetiére, and have been struggling with designers who feel women are only 'hourglass', or pear-shaped', and it infuriates me that we are no neglected, and left with really only being able to wear maternity clothing, or being swamped in plus sized clothing (I have size 10 (Aust sizes) legs and hips, and a small cup size in bras, but broad shoulders), that leaves my confidence beaten and bruised.
    My daughter and I have discussed the dilemma of this void in the market, and feel it's about time there was a range of clothing (I prefer alternative fashion (as an 'old' 70' s punk, I loathe commercial clothing, and only wear black) but see a commercial market for it)), especially with the corsets that I make for others, as no one offers apple specific corsetry, which I am now madly working on.
    As mentioned, a brilliant site, well done!

    • Tina-Boomerina

      Manja,

      I love the name of your company... Tied and Waisted Corsets. I agree... we are the orphans of the fashion world. It's a shame.

      I wish I knew how to sew or design or manufacture. There is such a void. And... most commercial clothing is awful, especially if you don't fit the classic shape. I wasn't a punk until the 80s, but I would have been more punk if I had lived in Seattle or London during the late 70s. Instead I was trapped in boring Orange County, California. Not very punkish.

      I was a bit rebellious in other ways, though. Do you think we rebel because the world (and the clothing) doesn't work for us or is it the other way around?

      If you are offering apple-specific corsetry, sign me up... I want some. (I'm in the middle of moving house, but I'll be interested later when I'm settled.)

      And, if you feel like writing about your company and products (in a cheeky way) I'm happy to promote your idea and give you a backlink to your site (or give women your email address).

      I have tried buying a "normal" cheapo corset in the past and it was a joke that ended up in a landfill. I think I'd like a Steampunk corset. Let me know if you want to write something... I'll need photos to give you PR on Pinterest... and I won't be ready to do this for a few weeks. Think about it.

      I'm probably the best-known apple shape biotch in the blogging world. I'll help you if I can.

      Tina

  17. Janice

    Thank you! I never had a waist even at 98 pounds as a teen. I just returned from a very discouraging shopping trip for jeans/casual pants. If they fit my waist they are droopy everywhere else. Makes me feel so fat and unpretty.

    I related to many of your tips and tricks. My 'happy' look is definitely the jeggings, tunic top and boots!

    We need clothes to fit 'real' bodies. So tired of the tight, spandex, show every little crease styles. I see very few people they look good on.

    • Tina-Boomerina

      Janice,

      Hi. Sorry I didn't approve your comment earlier. I've been traveling and I don't always have a good way to get online... or into my website to see comments.

      I hear you about the HORRORS of shopping for jeans. I have a very similar body. I'm sorry that you feel discouraged, but it's not YOU. It's the people who design and make jeans using the same type of fit models that don't reflect the real world.

      Well, obviously, some women must be able to wear jeans with tiny waists and curvy hips. Someday, I will try having jeans made to measure. I've seen a website like that, but I've never found jeans to be all that comfy even when I was a teen... so I've never tried having jeans made for my shape.

      I just wear jeggings that look like jeans. Someday I may try maternity jeans because my tummy (and hips and pelvic bones) never went back to "normal" and my body still thinks it's preggers after 30-some years. I HATE those women who look like supermodels 2 months after giving birth... you know what I mean. (And, I've known several women like that, but I only hate one of them.... haha.)

      So, Janice, if you ever try having jeans made or if you find a good brand of jeans or jeggings or leggings, leave a comment and let us know. Oh, I've just remembered that I used to wear low-rise boy's jeans when I was a teen. You might try something like that.

      As for you clothing designers, read all the comments for this article and my other articles for apple shapes. You will make a freaking fortune when you find a way to tap into this market. Not all women are born with hourglass shapes and big booties.

      Tina

  18. ire

    hey there! great advice! a lot of it has been really helpful
    I have an observation and a question:
    The first is the pencil skirt. Is there a more evil super villian for the apple-sized lady than this motherfunker? I love it on other woman, I really REAAAALLLY want to wear it but it just look horrible on me, any kind of fabric I tried it just looks more awful than the last. That that happened to you too?
    and the question is, I am not short, lets say average, my shoulders are about the same lenght as my hips, my legs are quite long and my arms skinny, but! I have absolutely no waist whatsoever and a tummy that's getting bigger by the hour. I'm I an apple?
    thanks so much for the humor, I'll be following you on pinterest.

    Irene from Argentina
    (sorry for my english, not my first language :)

    • Tina-Boomerina

      Ire,

      Sorry for the delay. I've been out of town.

      I totally agree with you about the pencil skirt. I would use a word MUCH stronger than Motherfunker to describe pencil skirts. Pure evil... unless you're a cute hourglass shape and you want to show off your adorable ass. But, not everyone can fit in pencil skirts.

      (If you have a big tummy you could probably wear a maternity pencil skirt and cover the elastic top of the skirt with a structured - and slightly flared - tunic top that comes about to your upper thigh. This would be tricky to do without looking preggers, but it could be done if everything fit just right and you have a good tailor. Otherwise, I suggest we torch every pencil skirt we see with a giant flamethrower.)

      I would say that you sound like a fairly skinny apple shape. Some people have other names for these body typess: oval shape, brandy snifter shape, etc. Apple is the one I like even though a friend of mine doesn't like being called "fruit".

      If you work and/or you have to wear tailored clothing, I hate to tell you... but most items are made for women with a different shape. You might like Eileen Fisher brand (stupidly expensive, but well made... look for sales) and I have other articles that MIGHT help you. I'll put some links in a comment below.

      If you don't work or you don't have to wear structured, tailored clothing, you will find a lot of fun options with floaty, bohemian styles from Johnny Was and knockoffs brands with a similar boho, hippie style. (You can wear a lot of Johnny Was tunics and tops in work situations, especially the tops in single colors. These tops usually run large. Check out JohnnyWas.com, Neiman Marcus, ebay... and other sites for sales. I'm pretty sure that NM ships worldwide, but you might be able to find something similar in Argentina.

      By the way, your English is spectacular. Don't apologize. (I've been to BsAs for a few days. It was incredible. I wish I knew what stores you have there.)

      I'll look for a few links. If you want dresses that are tailored, try to find trapeze (flared) shaped dresses that are Mod style - a retro look from the 1960s.

      British stores call them something else... usually "swing dresses"... if you have M&S or Debenhams. But check out 60s styles - on Pinterest - the kinds of dresses worn by Twiggy or Patty Boyd or Peggy Moffat or look for anything that says Carnaby Street style. It is sometimes possible to find vintage dresses or remakes of British Mod styles.

      T

  19. Joan Radell

    Tina, I just found this post, and I love you. This week I made myself a dress that was supposed to flatter fuller figures. I put it on and looked like a walking Volkswagen bug. I spent today restyling it. Plain A-line sleeveless shift with bust darts. I added ruching under the bust for shape, lowered the neckline six full inches, and gathered the shoulders for some volume in the bodice. Much better. Pants are my issue...the waist never fits and the backside always sags. I also am very long waisted with a very long rise. Luckily, I have great arms for an old broad, so I can wear sleeveless things. But my shoulders and back are huge. Little by little, I am learning how to avoid looking like a linebacker. Thanjs so much

    • Tina-Boomerina

      Joan,

      You are not alone. I think I am your long-lost linebacker cousin. And, I'm still laughing about the dress that looks like a VW bug. I guess that's why I gave up sewing... things like that.

      Everything always looked so cute on the cover of the patterns, but by the time I did all that cutting and sewing, I ended up looking like a dork. I never got good enough to alter dresses with ruching and gathering and making changes of any kind.

      Forget pants. Try jeggings and tunics... or use your unique seamstress skills... but you'll have to be a true magician to actually get pants to fit. Man-oh-man, I have the same butt.

      And, the best way to avoid looking like a linebacker is to show cleavage... haha... works for me. It's just about the only thing that works. Anything low (Vee or U-shaped necklines)... forget short sleeves (if you're square like me)... elbow or longer sleeves are okay. Sleeveless is okay. Rolled-up longer sleeves are okay. Peasant sleeves are okay most of the time. Angel sleeves with a lot of movement are okay. Off-shoulder peasant/gypsy necklines are good. Anything sexy counteracts linebacker shoulders. Things that would be over-the-top sexy on other women look normal on me.

      I wish I could sew. You are so lucky. Gathered shoulders and smocking can be good if done right. The trick is not looking pregnant. And, that's totally trial and error... mostly error.

      I have found that boho stuff is best on me. Tunics, kimonos, soft layers... and lots of hats for distraction.

      I love your comment!

      Tina

  20. Brenna

    "If you have to choose between Lagenlook and your husband, you know which to choose." BRILLIANT!!! My husband lives in fear of the day I fall off the Fashion Cliff and start actually wearing my collection of vintage kaftans somewhere other than the beach. I went as Mrs Roper for Halloween last year. He still hasn't recovered. I'm a short-waisted apple in her late 40s. Sigh...
    Thanks for the post. It's the most helpful post I've read on the subject!

    • Tina-Boomerina

      Brenna,

      I love your comment. And, what's wrong with vintage kaftans. They sound totally groovy to me. If you don't want them, send them over to the states (to me). I had to look up who Mrs. Roper was. She's the lady from Three's Company ... I don't watch much telly... but I think her style is just fine. When you start looking like Maude on Golden Girls... that's a different story. haha.

      You're just a baby in your 40s. Send me your kaftans. I'm old. I'm going to morph into a real Mrs. Roper in another year or so. And, so what. I like to breathe. That's more important than my fear of the Fashion Cliff.

      Tina

  21. Pat Rogers

    Tina,
    I'm an apple with a 42" waist and 46" hips. I have 5 pairs of jeans, all the same cut, all ugly, with an elastic waist to accommodate my gigantic tummy but they are about 6 inches too loose around the lower tummy and crotch and I absolutely swim in the thighs of the pants. Ugh. All of the pants that I find that can fit my tummy are enormous around the crotch and thighs. I've been looking for leggings that fit. They fit the waist and hips but are super loose on the thighs; or they show every bump and underwear line in the waist and hips but they fit the crotch and thighs.
    Can you recommend brands for pants, leggings and jeggings?

    I have two sisters. One lost a lot of weight, but she always did have an hourglass figure. The other is fat and jams herself into pants that are way too small. We all went shopping and they tried on NYDJ. My skinnier sister of course looked great, the fatter sister looked passable in some pants and horrible in others. I didn't try any NYDJ brand on for fear that nothing in the Misses Dept would fit in the NYDJ brand and I would cry. By the NYDJ website, I should be a size 20-22 waist and a 14 to 16 hip in the plus sizes. The store I went to didn't have NYDJ in the Plus sizes. Seems nobody does. Have you found any jeans or pants in the NYDJ brand that work for Apples? What pants/jeans brands work for Apples? Your article on brands for apples are geared towards dresses. This article says I should be in leggings and tunics and if I could find some brands, I would buy them, but I can'f find any brands or websites where I can buy them in an 18-20 Plus Petite size. I forgot to add, I'm only 5'2", so I have to add, I'm in Petite and Plus sizes. If you think Apples don't exist among fashion designers, add being a Plus size and short. Forget it. Nothing out there for us.

    • Tina-Boomerina

      Pat,

      Sorry for delay in approving your comment. I'm still moving into new house.

      I cry whenever I try on jeans, too. Jeans shopping is second on the horrible/terrible list. Swimsuits are first.

      I have ordered several pairs of leggings jeans and I'm just about to take them out of the package and try them on.

      ...

      OK. I'm back. I ordered 3 different sizes of MiracleBody jeans and jean leggings. They have totally elastic waists, even the jeans with the fly and the pockets, and they have a bit of stretch everywhere. I'm fairly sure I'm going to keep one of the jeggings and possibly the stretchy jeans. My tummy is upset so it's not the best time to decide which jeans are best. I'll make my decision tomorrow when my tummy doesn't hurt.

      IMO, MiracleBody (by Miraclesuit) jean leggings or stretch jeans are worth a try. My waist is similar, a little over 40" (thanks to a course of crappy prednisone steroids that were prescribed a few years back... waistline was supposed to go back to normal but never did) and my hips are are about 41". I have skinny legs.

      I was able to fit into a size 10, 12, and 14... to give you some idea of the stretchiness. The 10 was tighter in the waist... possibly too tight... but I could breathe (and the waist might stretch out over time), but the legs in size 10 weren't as baggy. The 12 jeans (with the fly & pockets) actually fit me better than the pull-on jeggings/leggings in the same size, so you might give those a try... but it depends on your body.

      You are lucky, you have a little more hips/butt than I have, so your jeans may stay up better. However, you are shorter, so that's not as lucky. My jeans/jeggings were delivered by Zappos, but I'm not sure that's where I ordered them... so look around.

      I think the butt/hips area would stretch enough to fit you, but I've never had hips... so who knows. I think they're worth trying. Either pick a size and cross your fingers (and return them if they don't fit) or try ordering a couple of sizes. You're going to have to roll up the hem or have them hemmed. I have short legs and a long torso and they're long on me... even though I'm almost 5'5".

      But, I don't swim in the jeans. They fit me more like regular jeans than leggings in the leg area. The material is as thick as jeans... so nothing will show through. The thighs aren't bad on me... certainly not 6 inches too loose anywhere.

      NYDJ seem to be made for hourglass figures. They make me cry and I send them back every time.

      I totally understand your problem. I'm supposed to wear a size 18 or 20 too for my waist... but these jeans stretch reasonably well... not perfect... but I wear my jeans with tunics so that I don't look like a pregnant 62-year-old freak... if ya know what I mean. I totally ignore waist measurements in most brands. If I bought a size 18, I would look like a clown. I'd be able to breathe but I'd never wear the damn things.

      I know nothing is going to be perfect but these Miracle jeans/jeggings are better than NYDJ for apple shapes. I wish they were cheaper... but I'm not going to learn to sew jeans.

      MiracleBody jeans don't hold in my tummy... but I'm not expecting miracles. I take several medications that make me fat. What can ya do? You "gotta" stay alive.

      I don't see them in plus size, but you might try a 14 and/or 16. If you need a plus size, you might consider NYDJ in a low rise so it doesn't come up to your tummy. But, the MiracleBody jeans have a lot of stretch... so what the heck. You can send them back if they make you cry.

      As for what I've been wearing forever: I have a pair of jean leggings from Soft Surroundings that I've been wearing for years. I just ordered another pair and I'm not sure (yet) if they're the same... I hope they are. They aren't tight in the legs... but they work okay. They go up to 18 Misses and PETITE or 3x Women's. The ones I own are not as thick as the MiracleBody jeans/leggings. If they're like my old jeggings, they're not bad. Mine are totally stretched and worn out... but I wear them anyway.

      I wore out my old Trouve leggings from Nordstrom... so they're not bad. I recently bought some ridiculously expensive Eileen Fisher black leggings and they are very comfortable on me. I think they're the stretch ponte style... over $200... but they work fairly well. I have to pull them up when no one's looking, but I guess the whole world knows that now. It looks like some of the Eileen Fisher leggings come in petite or plus (not both) but you might try one or the other. They stretch, but can snag... so be careful with rings. I like the way the fit but not the price. However, I wear my favorite jeggings and leggings for 10 years, so it's not a bad investment.

      Let us know if any of these brands work for you. Tina

      • Tina-Boomerina

        Pat,

        I've also found some decent leggings on various discount sites from time to time. I don't remember which ones. Just look around.

        The quality is sometimes not as good, but sometimes it is. And, I think $200 for a pair of tights... which is essentially what leggings are... is ridiculous. I wear my different leggings in different ways.

        T

        • Patricia Rogers

          Thank you so much! I'm printing all of this out and then doing some online shopping. Interestingly, I have been receiving Soft Surroundings catalogues for a year or so but just recently ordered from them. I was able to find two pairs of pants that fit, not perfect but OK. I sent a lot of stuff back, but kept some of the tunics and plan on ordering more. I like their stuff because they have a lot of tunics that are made for people like us. I will try the pant style you recommend from them. I will also try the other brands and will report back. Thank you!!!!!!

          • Tina-Boomerina

            Pat,

            I've been off trying to fix tech problems... and I think they're mostly corrected. What a time-consuming chore. It took weeks.

            Yes, I have several outfits from Soft Surroundings. They are hit or miss, but the good stuff makes up for the misses.

            Please, please, please tell us if you find any brands (or specific styles) you like. We are all in the same boat.

            I can recommend any brand because I don't get paid to represent any company. We are totally uncorrupted here at planet Boomerinas.

            Personally, I shop everywhere. I'm careful about ordering things that can't be returned... but I buy unreturnable stuff from time to time if I know a little about the brand, the price is right, and I know someone who would like it if it doesn't fit me. But, most places I buy from take returns... so I just keep trying different styles and different manufacturers.

            It's a frustrating experience, however I would be wearing a muumuu everywhere... even in the snow... if I couldn't shop online.

            The real bummer is that sometimes a brand (and style) will fit and the next time I order the same thing it will be too tight in the waist.... probably made in a different part of China... who knows.

            Anyway, tell us what you find. Please. Even telling us what DOESN'T fit may help.

            Thanks. And, the same goes to all other readers. If you like a brand or a website, tell us. No, not you spammers. I won't approve spammy comments... even if you are an apple shape... haha.

            Tina

  22. Kit

    Hi. I've just found this after searching for advice on how to dress as an apple. This was triggered by a miserable afternoon trying to find a dress for a friend's impending wedding.

    I have thyroid problems; is there a correlation between being apple-shaped and a dodgy thyroid? My mum is also an apple; she apologised to me once; I told her it wasn't as if she'd chosen her shape either. I have been rather cheated on the boobs; I'm not busty, as apparently many apples are, but I've been a rather modest 36B. Having put on heaps of weight (thank you, depression and thyroid!), I now seem to be going a bit there and am inconveniently in between a B and C cup.

    I have always loved jeans, but it has been a battle to find good ones, ie ones that fit. My current pair (yes, I only own 1 pair ATM) are from NYDJ and they fit like a glove. I can sit down in them, and everything! :)

    I still don't have a dress for this wedding, though :(

    • Tina-Boomerina

      Kit,

      I'm so far behind in answering comments. I hope it's not too late for the wedding. If it is, I'm sure your body hasn't changed in the interim.

      Depression and thyroid crap... bad combo for tummies. I get it!

      I would love to know which style of NYDJs you wear. I can only wear stretchy jeggings. Here I am making a fool out of myself to show women why I wear jeggings: http://www.boomerinas.com/2015/09/13/best-jeans-and-jeggings-for-apple-shapes/

      I'm sorry about the freaking depression-and-the-holidays delay. Do you still need help finding a dress? I'm not sure if I can help, but I'm only two months behind... ATM... so, why not?

      Tina

  23. Nikki

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! I am an apple and even when my BMI was so low I was almost hospitalized I was an apple, and wondered why my perma-round shape would never leave. Long ago my go to style became long flowy tunics with skinny jeans or leggings and it works. Love these tips.

    • Tina-Boomerina

      Nikki,

      Thank YOU. You must be my cousin. I love your comment. I was an apple even when i weighed 100 pounds. I totally get it. Thanks.

      Tina

      • Tina-Boomerina

        ps

        Nikki, do you have any other tips? You sound like you could be my little sister, you poor thing.

        If you've found any brands you like or if you've figured out how to dress your body in a way I haven't discovered yet, please let me know... as long as it doesn't involve learning how to sew.

        Tina

  24. Onika

    Thank you Tina for great advice and making me laugh! Here in South Africa we just suffered from very high temperatures... difficult for a menopausal short legged apple like me to still look elegant when it is so humid and warm... Any advice on what to wear to a wedding?
    Keep up the good work!
    xx
    PS: I hate high heals

  25. Tina-Boomerina

    Onika,

    I am so far behind in approving comments I’m sending everyone this canned speech:

    I’m sorry if it took me a long time to get around to approving your comment. It’s been a difficult month or two. This article explains some of it: http://www.boomerinas.com/2015/11/26/overcoming-writers-block-fashion-ennui-12-steps-to-cheer-up-older-women/

    If you don’t want to read my excuse, I’ll tell you right now… I was feeling depressed because the holiday season fills my thoughts and my kids live far away… but it’s more than that. Oh well. I’ll survive.

    However, I have a month’s worth of comments to approve so I’m even more depressed because I’m ridiculously far behind, but here I am. I promise to be more prompt in 2016. My resolution is to STOP PROCRASTINATING… and to STOP FEELING SORRY FOR MYSELF. Will I keep my resolutions? Doubtful.

    Happy New Year! And, let me know if you still want ideas about what to wear to a wedding or if the wedding has come and gone.

    Tina

  26. phr

    Thanks for the pics! I'm so tired of websites with whole blocks of text describing outfits, but with NO pictures.

    I'm an apple, but I'm only 4'11 and petite. I'm also quite slender--it's weird because when I lose weight (wonky, stress-related eating habits) I become almost an hourglass. It's like, I still have SOME waist definition.

    If something doesn't fit, 9 times out of 10 the problem is 1) too snug across my shoulders and 2) too snug @ my waistline. Yet because of my height, the neckline/shoulder area will be too loose and floppy. Bras are challenging--I'm busty, yet bra straps are almost always too long.

    I used to HATE leggings/jeggings in the 80s, but now I like them when paired with a loose top, even if it doesn't always cover my butt.

  27. Kayla

    Thank you so much for this article. It's so hard finding the right fashion for an apple body type. I search plus size fashion and find all the pictures of plus size women who are proportioned well and look great! And I'm like "what the heck!! I have no butt! That will never look the same on me!" It's so hard to find what a true plus size Apple woman should wear, but you explained it well. I will have to use your advice next time I go shopping. Thank you!!

  28. Stacey Miracolo

    I enjoyed reading this so much. Clothing means too tight on the chest and waist, too baggy on the rear. It is hard to feel feminine. I have this shape no matter how thin I got. Now Im older and heavier and it is harder than ever to find clothes. I understand the styles I am supposed to wear but I cannot find them anywhere. I don't know where to shop.

  29. nancy thompson

    While I LOVE Johnny Was, it is priced out of range for the average woman. I wish there was a similar style that was more affordable. I love Flax clothing as well. You can layer,mix and match pieces, it's extremely comfortable and it lasts forever. Thank you for the tips!