In honour of a client I recently helped find a dress for attending a small but more formal evening wedding this weekend, here are some of my top tips for finding your best evening look depending on your body "issue".
For the smaller chested ladies: A strapless, one shoulder, or halter style dress is your best bet. This will bring the attention to your shoulders and clavicle, which is still a sexy part on women of almost any age/size. A form fitting strapless dress is great to show of a small waist. If you want to disguise larger thighs/bottom half, go for one that is fitted at the waist, but flares out with a fuller A-line style (think Mad Men style). Or, if you are self conscious of your tummy, go for a strapless empire cut which will gently float away from your midsection.
For the "fuller on top" ladies: The key here is to downplay the your larger upper half and bring attention below. This can be done by avoiding big bold prints/bright colours/shine up top. Keep it simple in that area, and bring on the shine/sparkle/detail on your lower half. This can easily be done using separates like wearing a simple v-neck or one shoulder (just make sure you have a supportive strapless bra) top with a sexy metallic skirt with knockout heels.
Hiding a fuller midsection or "muffin top": Try a dress that has ruched details around the midsection, or all over. These tiny gathers and drapes of fabric help disguise bulges beautifully.