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Personal Body Types

Main Core Tie

Fashion Design Studio
Strand 5 Standard 2

Time Frame

3 class periods of 60 minutes each

Group Size

Small Groups


Amber Williams


Students will become familiar with four major body types and assess their own bodies and complete an assignment that shows which styles and design details would look best on different body types.


Body Type Pictures, Tape Measures, Figure Type Assessment, Body Type Assignment Handout

Student Prior Knowledge

Knowledge of the function of lines--specifically silhouettes

Intended Learning Outcomes

1. Students will identify the 4 major body types: ideal, triangular, inverted triangle, and rectangle.

2. Students will practice how to take body measurements.

3. Students will analyze body types and make suggestions on how to make a body appear proportioned.

Instructional Procedures


From a distance people notice the outline of your clothes, not the details. In other words, they see your silhouette or outline.

There are four basic body and clothing silhouettes that are used in the fashion industry. They are: (Show the overhead of the basic silhouettes.) a. Ideal b. Rectangular c. Triangular d. Inverted triangle

A woman's body may be classified into any one of the four main categories; most men's bodies are classified into the inverted triangle body type.

One body type is not better or worse than the others. Some are easier to dress; some need help to create the desired silhouette but one is not better than the other.

Share a Judy Garland quote: "Always be a first rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else." ASK: "How can this quote apply to our own body types and the images we try to portray?"

One of the most important keys in dressing your body and making the most of your appearance, is to understand the meaning and use of proportion.

Proportion is the ratio of one thing to another; a comparison. (Use the Basic Proportion Silhouette Overhead) In fashion we take into consideration the following: 1. SIZE-is it equal to, greater than, smaller than; for example, are shoulders equal to, greater than, or less than hips. 2. SHAPE-is it wider than, narrower than, etc. 3. SPACE-is it evenly divided? Have students complete the Proportion Worksheet after watching a demonstration on how to take body measurements.

After measurements have been taken and recorded, go over the Recommended Style Lines for Horizontal Figure Types (table 4-3) in detail. Use several examples in pictures to show how balance is achieved for each of the 4 figure types.

Following that have the students take their body measurements and apply those to the the Figure Type Assignment.

Assessment Plan

The student's knowledge of body types will be assessed with the Figure Type Assignment.


Wardrobe Strategies for Women, Judith Rasband, Delmar Publishers, 1996 Submitted by Amber Williams

Created: 03/25/2003
Updated: 02/05/2018