How to go oversized without looking oversized

Brooklyn designer Ilana Kohn on why she loves the oversized look: “It’s so casual and easy. And you never have to suck it in.” Pretty much sums it up to the tee. That and the fact that when it’s a million degrees, out all you want to wear is a sack, and you CAN. The oversized look has been an underdog trend in fashion ever since women rejected the corset in the 1920s. Coco Chanel’s elegant and fluid silhouettes followed, then over the years there was always some kind of champion for things that left everything to the imagination, often led by Japanese designers like Rei Kawakubo at Comme des Garçons. “I used to only wear oversized dresses with a really slim pant. Now I wear oversized dresses with oversized pants. My mom thinks I’m crazy, but I really like it,” admits Garmentory co-founder Adele Tetangco, our resident oversized champion.

So how does one wear the oversized look without losing your shape? A few tips from the experts:

  • “Balance it out with things that are more form fitting,” says Ilana. “Like skinny jeans and sandals or a ballet flats with an oversized shirt.”
  • Adele is a fan of a little DIY. “The trick to not looking too hippy in an oversized dress is to remove the pockets.”
  • “Pay extra attention to length,” Ilana warns. “A couple inches too long, an oversized dress can become frumpy. But cropped just above the ankles or mid calf, it can be perfect.”
  • It’s all in the bookends of an outfit for Adele. “Adding a heel slims the look (if that’s at all possible), so does putting your hair up in a high bun.”

So there you have it. Clothes you can swim in for the win. Go forth and conquer the look! (A little inspiration below.)