Melissa McCarthy's Stylist Has Some Advice For Us

by Gina Jones 2

Since the launch of her very own clothing line, Melissa McCarthy Seven7, in 2015 as well as the imminent release of the all-female Ghostbusters movie, the public's attention on Melissa McCarthy's style has been more prevalent than ever. For many plus size women, McCarthy has long served as inspiration in her talent, in her work, and in her refusal to shy away from bold, traditionally "unflattering" red carpet choices.

The red carpet of the Ghostbusters premiere has already had its fair share of plus size drama surrounding fellow actor Leslie Jones' premiere outfit. As she tweeted in Jun. 2016, no designers wanted to help her with a premiere dress. But McCarthy was sure to secure her own portion of the limelight in a stunning '50s-inspired, lemon yellow dress. It was a dress chosen for her by stylist Judy B. Swartz, who discussed the look and other McCarthy ensembles she has styled with The Hollywood Reporter.

While Swartz, interestingly enough, tracked through the inspiration for several of McCarthy's recent red carpet looks, her advice as a stylist — especially as a stylist to a plus size celebrity — feels invaluable. This is not only because it might allow many of us to learn to dress ourselves as a professional might dress us, but because there's no hint of shame or focus on hiding the figure in Swartz's plus size styling. Of all the advice Swartz gave, however, there's one comment that rings true above all else.

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"The most important thing a woman can do is make sure her clothes fit properly,” she told The Hollywood Reporter. Although Swartz obviously knows this through her experience in the fashion industry, she added that McCarthy is quite adamant that her clothes must fit her body correctly. "What made the outfit work was McCarthy’s keen eye for fit."

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That may sound like pretty obvious, or even condescending, advice, but I'm sure most people (be they straight or plus) have been guilty of squeezing themselves into a garment that just isn't their size. Whether because we truly love the garment or we really wish we were that size — the latter being an unfortunate subject entirely deserving of its own article — the clothing we wear might not always fit comfortably. And in not fitting comfortably, it probably won't make you feel as good as you deserve to feel.

This isn't to say that wearing too-small clothes is inherently negative because it'll create more bulging, or anything of the sort. If you love the feel of your body under a form-fitting dress that's a size smaller than what you normally rock, please carry on! The same is true if you prefer too-big clothes, regardless of what so-called fashion rules say regarding how "unflattering" such oversized cuts might be. Rather, the focus here is simply on choosing the size that fits you in the way you feel most comfortable.

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So how can we be sure our clothes fit properly? Firstly, I'd recommend knowing your measurements. From that point on, you can work out your clothing size in different stores. Ultimately, clothes sizing isn't standardized across shops, and your clothes size only means the amount of fabric and thread that goes into a garment — which is no reflection on your body's size (or worth, for that matter).

If an item of clothing fits you properly, however, it's undeniably going to look better than a piece that just wasn't made for your proportions.


The best way to make sure your clothing fits is to get it tailored to your measurements, or even custom-made. Of course, this isn't a possibility for everyone, and it's far from something that I could afford for each garment in my wardrobe. Learning to tailor your own clothes would definitely save you a few pennies, but who's actually got time for that?

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This means the easiest way to be sure that you're following McCarthy and Swartz's advice is to make sure that you're comfortable in an outfit: You can breathe easily, nothing is pinching or digging in, and you could probably run for the bus if you really had to. Comfort really is the key to "pulling off" any look.