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Once worn only as lingerie, the simple camisole now plays a role in every season’s fashions. It’s layered under sweaters in the winter, adds dimension to sweater dresses in the fall, peeks out from under cardigans in the spring and serves as the only layer on a hot summer day. Pairing a camisole with a brown dress is the perfect way to cover up any imperfections – but choosing the right camisole is necessary to complete your look.
Before deciding on a camisole, you need to have a good understanding of how the dress fits your body. So, put on a little fashion show in front of your mirror. Try the dress on with no camisole underneath and inspect the view from every angle – from the front, back and sides. Make a mental note of where the dress fits you perfectly – and where it fits you not-so-perfectly, too. Does the dress show too much cleavage in the front? Are you just looking for a little extra support? Are your love handles pushing through the fabric? Is the fabric sheer or see-through?
Ideally, you’ll want to choose a color that either matches the dress or matches your skin tone. Initially, it might seem easy to find a brown camisole to wear with the dress. But be wary of camisoles in the wrong shade. Pairing a caramel-colored brown dress with a darker coffee-colored brown camisole can make your undergarment conspicuous. If the dress is dark, your camisole should also be dark – and if the dress is light, your camisole should also be light. If you can’t find the perfect shade to match your brown dress, find a nude-colored camisole that matches your skin tone instead.
Choosing a camisole in the wrong fabric is a major fashion faux pas. Even if it’s the perfect color match, pairing a silky dress with a ribbed cotton cami immediately takes your outfit from fab to drab. If your dress is made from cotton, knit or sweater fabric, a cotton camisole will work. But if your dress is a fancier fabric – such as silk or matte jersey – you’ll need a fancier camisole as well. In this case, opt for a cami made from silk, lace or a synthetic material.
Once you’ve selected a camisole based on color and fabric, you still need to make sure it fits right under the dress. So, put on a fashion show in front of your mirror again – but this time, wear the cami under your dress. The camisole should be nearly invisible under the dress – unless you’re using it to cover your cleavage in the front. You should not be able to see the hem lines at the top or bottom of the camisole – these unexpected lines draw the eyes to an unwelcome place and take away from the overall styling of the dress. If your camisole is obvious under your dress, it’s too bulky or doesn’t fit you properly.