Fashion edit: How to look sharp in oversized clothes
5 ways to rock the anti-fit trend without looking shabby
Anti-fit: a term used to denote clothes that are purposely and fashionably designed to not “fit” on the body of the wearer. These garments are usually much larger than the “fitted” or “regular” size.
Are they the answer to the prayers of large-bodied people, or are they a result of fashion in hot, humid climes? Neither.
In Japan, thousands of women were revolting against high heels at their workplace with the hashtag #KuToo. From footwear to clothing – we’re living in a time where women are constantly fighting for the freedom to be free. This is the reason why we’re witnessing a radical shift in the way designers are imagining fashion for this century.
(From left to right): An oversized jacket from Balenciaga; Anti-fit T-shirt from Dior and a largesse overcoat from Indian label Bodice
Perhaps, anti-fit is also a rebellion against form-fitted fashion that encourages unreasonably small sizes and unhealthy levels of fitness.
Christian Dior, for instance, has gone from celebrating wasp waists to making body-obscuring dresses, skirts and suits in tune with Maria Grazia Chuiri’s feminist turnover of the 100-year-old brand. Even Gucci’s magpie aesthetic and Balenciaga’s clothes – often laced with the brand’s signature irony – are veering towards fashion that isn’t just beautiful but also practical.
But, when did our sartorial standards go from restrained to realistic?
During the ’90s, designers started taking the minimalistic approach, wherein people started wearing relaxed denims along with plain T-shirts and knits. The rise of hip-hop brought anti-fit, often marked by baggy silhouettes in cotton, to the forefront. Comfort became the emphasis during this decade, rejecting the uncomfortable clothing trends from the past.
Women are challenging the status quo now more than ever. They just don’t want to look good in their clothes – they want to feel good too. So, if a couple of decades ago clothing was all about body-con silhouettes that often made women sweat and struggle, this decade is certainly about clothing that blends easy with exquisite.
Look like you’re incharge
A simple solid-hued anti-fit dress can double as a nice workwear outfit for the boss lady!
Dress, Anavila; shoes, Melissa; jewellery, Zara ( Ankit Chawla )
Make it work by: “Keeping comfort as the focal-point of your outfit. Anti-fit clothing isn’t partywear. So, keep the vibe cool and comfortable even when it comes to shoes or accessories,” says Bollywood costume designer Rick Roy, who has worked with actors like Vidya Balan and Sonam Kapoor for films like Tumhari Sulu (2017) and Dolly Ki Doli (2015).
Works best for: “All body types. The great thing about anti-fit clothing is that it isn’t size-specific,” he says.
Accessorise with: “Chunky belts,” he suggests.
Don’t look shabby: “Stick to the correct size if you’re of bigger built. A bigger size might make you look bulky. If you’re skinny, you can get away with wearing a dress that’s two sizes bigger,” says Roy.
Make comfort your style statement
An anti-fit maxi dress can define your frame. Just remember to go for fitted tops if you’re bottom heavy!
Dress and trousers, Anavila; shoes, Melissa; jewellery, Zara ( Ankit Chawla )
Make it work by: “Mixing and matching with different cuts. If you’re layering, make sure you wear something fitted along with it. You do not have to wear something that’s anti-fit head to toe,” says celebrity fashion stylist Aastha Sharma, who has dressed celebrities like Aishwarya Rai.
Works best for: “All body types. But, you have to see which type of anti-fit works for you. If you’re bigger on the bottom, choose something fitted on top and if you’re heavier on top then go for something loose at the bottom,” says Sharma.
Accessorise with: “Boots or even sneakers,” she advises.
Don’t look shabby: “Create a balance while styling and not blindly follow trends. Make sure you have fun with the look,” she says.
Suit yourself with easy tailoring
Pair them with feminine blouses and look powerful yet chic in anti-fit suits
Suit, Antar-Agni; shoes, Melissa; jewellery, Zara ( Ankit Chawla )
Make it work by: “Wearing your suit with a soft-looking blouse. Keeping the fabric in mind is important when you’re wearing a relaxed suit. Linen, for instance, works well. And, it’s a great choice for summer as people tend to sweat a lot,” says Rick Roy.
Works best for: “A toned body-type if you’re wearing an oversized blazer. It can actually look sexy if you pair it with heels,” he opines.
Accessorise with: “A big neck piece,”he says.
Don’t look shabby: “Make sure the shoulders fall right. Just because it’s anti-fit does not mean you can randomly pick an oversized blazer and wear it,” he says.
Flaunt your height in a largesse skirt
Stand tall in an anti-fit skirt and look ‘cooler’ this summer
Skirt, top and jacket, Péro; shoes, Melissa; jewellery, Zara ( Ankit Chawla )
Make it work by: “Pairing the skirt with something cropped or a fitted top. Jennifer Lopez recently wore a voluminous skirt and paired it with a fitted shirt. If there’s volume on one side, balance it with something minimal on the other. If your shirt is longer, tuck it in,” says fashion designer Priyanka Modi of AM:PM.
Works best for: “Ideally a tall person,” she says.
Accessorise with: “Either a pair of statement earrings or you can also roll up your sleeves to wear a cuff in one arm,” she suggests.
Don’t look shabby: “Avoid wearing a long, voluminous shirt on top!” she concludes.
Rock every look in a baggy shirt
Invest in a nice anti-fit shirt and pair anything and everything with it
Make it work by: “Pairing it with denims, pyjama pants or even dhoti pants. The possibilities are endless! The best part about anti-fit shirts is that there is a large versatility and freedom as to what you can pair them with,” says fashion designer Ujjawal Dubey of the label Antar-Agni.
Works best for: “Every body type due to the nature of the shirt. Anyone and everyone can rock an anti-fit shirt,” opines Dubey.
Accessorise with: “A pair of funky shoes,” he suggests.
Don’t look shabby: “Stick to the casual, happy and informal feel. Anti-fit formal wear might not work in my opinion,” says Rick Roy.
From HT Brunch, January 19, 2020
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