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Five ways to layer up without looking chunky

Fashion Tips By Esther Muchene
(Image: Shutterstock)

In simple terms, layering is a type of fashion statement that involves combining different items such as blouses, vests, sweaters or even jackets into one coherent look. The art of layering needs a certain approach because it’s easy to end up looking bulky while trying to look stylish.

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It’s easy to assume that the process is simple when you see celebrities or fashion-forward people doing it in a seemingly effortless way. With the right tips, however, you too could learn how to layer your clothes easily. Here are some amazing guidelines on how to layer up without disappearing into your clothes.


  • Keep the first layers light

The first step to looking good while layering is keeping the initial layers light. This will allow you to add more layers comfortably while still looking organized. When you start off with heavy layers, you have less to work with and your look can quickly turn bulky which is what we are avoiding.

It will also be hard to feel comfortable when you go to a warmer place and can’t remove the heavy layers. Start with the lighter layers and save the heavy ones for last. If you wish, you could layer on only light materials. This way, you’ll have more to work with comfortably.

  • Get the right fit

Another way to avoid the bulky look is by wearing proper-fitting items that bring out your physique. This way, you’ll be able to achieve a classy look while layering. When you try to layer up with huge sweaters, for example, it will be hard to bring out your shape because your clothes will overpower your frame.

If the clothes are too small, your outfit might end up looking messy. It’s best to always layer up while paying attention to sizing.

Layer on colours that complement each other? (Image: Shutterstock)
  • Work with colours

One of the best ways to practice layering is by working with colours. Layer on colours that complement each other, or those that are closer in terms of tone. This will make the outfit more cohesive. Doing so allows you to add more items to your look without it being overwhelming to the eyes.

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Also, play around with different textures. This keeps things coordinated and more interesting at the same time. Just because you are layering doesn’t mean you can’t have some fun with your outfit.

  • Play with accessories

Accessories put the layered look together. Throw on items such as scarves and belts to bring out your desired look even more. One challenge in layering is losing your shape in the process. Solve this by adding a belt to your outfit, in order to define your waistline and look less chunky.

You can also coordinate your look by choosing the right bag and shoes because they have a part to play as well. You can select them by colour so that the look is more centred and easy on the eye. Don’t go wild and crazy with your accessories no matter how gorg they are.

On the other hand, adding too many items can be uncomfortable, especially when the sun comes out (Image: Shutterstock)
  • Layer with reservations

Layering is fun but at times, but it’s easy to go overboard with it. Most people opt for three to four layers so that the bulky outcome is avoided. At the same time, adding too many items can be uncomfortable especially when the sun comes out and you start heating up. Limit the number of items when it comes to layering. This will give you a more classy and effortless look.

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