Cankles – What to Wear and What to Avoid

Cankle – “The absence of a defined ankle on a person – whereby the calf of the leg merges directly into the foot.” Urban Dictionary

Ankles and calves come in a variety of shapes and sizes, just like most other body parts. Some women are naturally slender in the lower leg and others are not. Hormonal changes, pregnancy and fluid retention can also cause temporary thickening and swelling of the ankles.

Here are a few of my favourite tips on what to wear to visually lengthen and slim the lower leg and ankle, and what you should bypass to avoid highlighting or visually thickening the area.


Full Length Pants – Opt for a straight leg or boot cut style over leggings or skinny leg pants unless you’re wearing long boots.

Boots – Long boots worn over leggings or skinny leg pants will elongate and slim your legs. There are are a few stores that stock boots made for wider calves, such as Autograph Fashion but if you are unable to find a comfortable fitting pair, try some ankle boots, which can be worn underneath your boot cut or straight pants, or  matched colour with tights and leggings to wear with dresses and tunics.


Chunky Shoes – Look for some height and thickness in the heel of your footwear. Think proportionally – a more substantial shoe will make your ankle appear slimmer. Details on the front of the shoe, open backs and round toes are all features to look for.


Cropped Pants – These will draw attention to your calves and ankles. 

Ankle Straps – Direct attention to your ankles and also cut off the length of your leg, visually shortening.

Pointed Toes and Kitten Heels – Will make the foot look too large for the shoe. Think proportionally.


But wait….there’s more!

The length of your pants and boots, and the hemline of your dresses and skirts must also be a factor. Avoid anything that is mid calf length, instead find the narrow part(s) of your lower legs. This is usually just above and just below the knee.

Hemlines should be simple (no frills or flounces) and sit at the slimmest part of your leg. Try matching your hemline, hosiery and shoe colour for a longer, leaner look. 

Last but not least….Draw the attention upwards with a statement necklace, bold earrings or a scarf. Distraction works a treat!

Robyn X

I am available for Personal Style workshops, public speaking, wardrobe and colour consultations and personal shopping styling sessions, based in Perth, Western Australia.

Deciphering Dress Codes – Made Easy

Have you ever been invited to a function and been unsure of the correct style of outfit to wear? Most of us have – whether it’s a beach wedding, a business awards night or a fundraiser,  dressing for an occasion that is not a usual part of our daily life can be confusing and leave you feeling less confident that you would like to be feeling!

Your first step is to check the invitation for the dress code. Hopefully the expectations of the host in regard to guest attire will be clear, and this is usually the case with weddings. You might see the words ‘Formal’, ‘Smart Casual’ or ‘Cocktail’, for example.

If you’re attending an event such as a ball, fundraiser or business awards, the dress code may not be so clear, although clues are often in the title of the event – a black tie ball or a cocktail party fundraiser etc. If it’s an annual event, perhaps you can have a look at websites and/or social media pages for photos from previous years for guidance.

Smart Casual

Probably the trickiest of all dress codes, and you really have to consider what type of function you’re going to – what might be considered smart casual for one event might be too casual or dressy for another. Generally though pants, above the knee dresses and flat shoes are all acceptable.



A knee length dress (above, on or below the knee – whichever suits you best), an evening pantsuit, dress pants and evening top are all appropriate. If you’re a clever dresser, you can go straight from work to play by wearing a simple but well fitted dress, and then changing your shoes, accessories and lipstick.

It’s really best to avoid wearing a full length dress to a cocktail event – especially if it’s a wedding.


Anthea Crawford dress

Black Tie

Black tie events generally start after 6 pm, and are pretty fancy! Men will be tuxedos (yummo!). Floor length gowns are traditionally worn to black tie events, but in this day and age, a cocktail dress in rich colour or fabric will suffice – just make sure your accessories, hair and make-up are immaculate so you don’t look too casual.

White Tie

The most formal of the formal. Dress in a floor length gown, adding gloves and wearing your hair up.

white tie.jpg

Photo from Vogue

Can you wear white to a wedding?

Although it’s becoming more common, I’d check with the bride. The safe bet, though, is not to, as even if the bride doesn’t mind, you can bet someone will take offence at your ‘attempt to steal the bride’s thunder’!


Remember you will feel more comfortable if your outfit matches your style personality so try and stay as true as you can!


I am available for Personal Style workshops, public speaking, wardrobe and colour consultations and personal shopping styling sessions, based in Perth, Western Australia.





How to Wear a Scarf – Perfectly!

Scarves Equal Style in Winter

Adding a scarf can add instant warmth and style to your outfit, and here a few of my tips and tricks to scarf wearing that will raise your outfit much higher in the style stakes.

Your Body Shape Matters.

The way you wear your scarf can make you look taller and slimmer! One of my styling mantras (to do with everything you wear, not just scarves) is not to add bulk to areas you feel are already bulky enough.

If you are big busted you’ll suit a finer fabric scarf tied in a way that creates a deep V, or a scooped cowl. Leave some space beneath your chin!


Photo from Pinterest

For the oval / apple body shaped ladies, scarves worn long and narrow will be flattering. You can also tie a knot in the scarf just below your bust for another look.


Photo from Autograph Fashion

For those lovely ladies who are broader through the hips, thighs or bottom – well, you are the lucky ones! You can go to town with scarves – get on You Tube and watch the millions of tutorials on how to wear a scarf. Scarves are perfect for you – they help to balance, visually creating an hourglass body shape.


Photo from Katies Fashion

The Question of Colour

Because you wear your scarves close to your face, choosing a flattering colour is imperative. If you have a few minutes spare, grab all your scarves, and in natural light, hold each one up, right underneath your chin, and look at the effect the colour has on your skin and eyes. If your skin looks fresher and eyes brighter, it’s a keeper. If not, toss it.


Be Careful of Clutter

Finally, ensure that the scarf doesn’t clutter your outfit – if you have too many focal points to an outfit it (and you) will look messy.

If you have any questions, please feel free to comment below.

I am available for Personal Style workshops, public speaking, wardrobe and colour consultations and personal shopping styling sessions, based in Perth, Western Australia.