The Vase Body Shape

The Vase Body Shape

The Vase is very similar to the classic Hourglass body shape but stretched a little producing one of the most elegant body shapes. Generally Vases don’t have such pronounced small waists and have less rounded bottoms, which are the two differences that separate them from Hourglass ladies. With the longer frame and all those wonderful feminine curves, this body shape is a delight to dress but many Vases feel they are a tad frumpy with big boobs and chunky upper arms.

The key to avoiding this is to think of the old phrase “style never goes out of fashion”. This is not necessarily a body shape best suited to chasing the latest fashions and nor is it necessary to try – you already have one of the most feminine shapes so classic clothes for a real womanly woman are the way to go.

The large boobs that accompany the Vase shape should not be overplayed as this can lead to a feeling of plumpness, concentrate instead on the daintier areas such as the lower arms or legs by wearing three quarter length sleeves or straight leg jeans. In order to show off and accentuate your natural curves, jackets and tops that are fitted at the waist will add some contour around the middle taking your look close to the timeless Hourglass shape but with the extra elegance your high brings.

Keep away from:
Sleeveless tops.
Fussy necklines.
Poloneck jumpers.
Clumpy shoes.

Take a look at:
Pencil skirts with well tailored waists.
Supportive high glam dresses.
Straight jeans.
Fitted shirts with puffy three quarter length sleeves.
Sassy shoes.

Vases Should Ooze Classic Style

Vases are the body shape many women would love to be and you girls really have it made – just think classic style, keep the waist tight and the world’s your oyster!

Also take a look at the Hourglass or Cello if you’re not 100% sure you’re a Vase.


  • I’ve always wonder what type of body do I have. I’m going to star saying that I had a boob job (to reduce from a DD-cup to B-cup) because I was 17 and very conscious about them and how I draw attention to it. I think that if I still had them I would be an hourglass but now I dont know. I’m 5’7″ with 36-29-41 measurements. Most people think I swim because of my broad shoulders but then they ask me if I am a volleyball player because I also have a big butt with toned (big) legs. I gain weight proportionally from my face, arms, waist and thighs and when I lose weight (just by running) people think I’m going to the gym because I look somehow muscular. I also have pretty big feet(size 11) and hands (bigger than most average men hands). I would say I am between a skittle and a vase but I am not sure. If you can reply please help me, I would like to know how to dress by my body type. What I’ve learned these years is that if I emphasize my waist I look smaller than what I really am and I would never use a lose blouse or dress I would look pregnant even though my tummy is always flat (with almost 20 pounds over weight). I’m looking forward to your opinion and answer. If there is a way to send you my picture so you can have a more objective opinion please let me know. Thanks, D

    • Hi D,

      Yes and I imagine your uncertainty isn’t helped if you’ve used any body shape calculators that work on measurements because they don’t include your shoulder size so I bet they say you’re a pear when you aren’t!

      Anyway, I think you are probably right that you’re a combination of (or are between) the vase and skittle. This also seems likely from your measurements (plus broader shoulders) and what you say about emphasizing your waist giving a positive effect – this is a classic dressing technique for these two body shapes. Keeping away from loose fitting stuff is key as you obviously already know, so I’d say try a combination of suggestions from the vase and skittle and see what works for you whilst trying to avoiding anything that emphasises your legs too much.

  • I love the Body Shape Bible and use it in my store to help women dress all the time. It is spot on about the different body types. I am a Vase and the pieces the book suggests are perfect for my body type. I took my Apple shaped friend shopping with the book in tow and she looked so good when we finished.

  • Loving your descriptions but I’m still a little confused. I am 5foot 6′ with a a broad chest and back but medium to small boobs, not a very defined waist, carry any extra weight in my stomach but also have a rounds butt and curvy thighs. I don’t have big enough boobs or a small enough waist to put me in the hour glass category, I’m too wide across my back to be in the pear sections and I look to curvy to be cornet, brick or column! Help! Tossing up between vase (but boobs are too small?) or skittle or …?

    • Hi Steph,

      I’m not sure about this one! Did you try the Body Shape Calculator as well as looking at the descriptions? It might help guide you a little. Picking the right shape is about the relative proportion of different body areas so it’s often quite hard to define the shape without knowing the relationship between these different factors. For example broad shoulders are broad shoulders but it’s whether they are wider than the hips, bottom or thighs that really defines the body shape.

  • Your 12 body shapes are wonderful. My whole life I though I must be an hourglass but never really fitted into the category. As soon as I read your ‘Vase’ description I knew it was my body type.

    I’m currently working in the Middle East and all the ladies I work with are loving working out their body shapes as I have introduced them to your 12 body shapes. Thank you so much for all your wonderful ideas.

  • Hi. According to your body shape calculator I’m a Vase,but I’m still confused. Some other calculators say that I’m an Hourglass,a Pear or a Banana. Would you define my body shape if I give you my sizes? My bust 91 cm,waist 74 cm,hip 97 cm. I’m 166 cm tall. And my shoulders are 42 cm wide. Please help me define my body shape and know how I’m looking…

    • Hi Farida,

      Hmmmm, yes it does seem a bit confusing! For some women the various body shape calculators can offer differing results and our one uses questions because its not all just about the measurements, there’s an element of how these vital statistics feel in relation to each other that is slightly subjective. I don’t think you’re a pear (too curvy) or banana and would say you sound most like a vase because of your height and the width of your shoulders and the ratio between your waist and hips. However, there are lots of dressing techniques that can be successfully used by both hourglass and vase ladies so it could be worth trying different clothes. The idea of finding your body shape is not an end in itself, more a guide to help you look your best and there is always flexibility and personal choice whatever your shape so it’s worth experimenting a little.

  • I think im a vase despite my large shoulders. my measurements in inches are 42, 31, 39. Bust waist hips respectively. I do have quite wide shoulders but a very defined waist. I’m 5,10 and a size 10.(Though even that size is a little too big for my waist sometimes but then doesn’t accommodate my bust) I find that jeans that are right for my hips don’t go over my muscular thighs. (People say i have shapely legs, haha). Its hard to stay trendy at 20 when clothes for your age group don’t ever fit right.

    • Yes, there are quite a few vase ladies with larger shoulders around. The jeans issue is a difficult one as straight leg jeans are normally the best for this shape, I think curves in all parts of the body should be celebrated but it’s hard work sometimes when they don’t all want to play together!

  • hi
    i love your website. can u please help me in knowing my body shape. I am 5.2″ with 32-28-33″ measurements. I ve bulge tummy please tel me how to hide it the best way

    • Hi,

      Have you tried our body shape calculator? That would be a good place to start – good luck 🙂

  • Can you be a vase with broad shoulders? i have broad shoulders, my hips and breasts r equal and i have a fairly defined waist. i am 5,10.

  • I’m 170 cm tall and underweight. I have been told that I’m a slim hourglass with a strong shoulder line (they saw a picture) – but I’m still not sure about my shape.

    Some calculators tell me that I’m a pear (which I don’t think I am). I can easily hide my shape in baggy clothes – which makes my body look boyish (because it hides my breasts, waist and hips – but it mostly hides my waist and hips). Calculators say that there’s too big a difference between my measurements – so I can’t be a banana (I think I look like one though – but I’m used to see myself in baggy clothes so I’m not sure how my body look like).

    I have very slim legs and arms (I wouldn’t say that my legs are long). The widest part of my body is my shoulders and hips (my shoulders are wider than the hips) – and my breast isn’t the same width as my hips. So the biggest parts of me (in this order) are: Shoulder width – Hip width – Breast width.

    Shoulder width: 42 cm
    Breasts: 81 cm (I’m a 65C/65D in EU – it’s a 30B/30C in US and a 30C/30D in UK)
    Under the breasts: 72 cm
    Waist: 63 cm
    Hips: 90 cm
    Waist-hip-ratio: 0,70

    Upper arm: 21 cm
    Thigh: 47 cm
    Calves: 33 cm

    I tried your calculator and it told me that I was a column. Second time it told me that I was a vase (If I said “No” to the: “Is one part of your body wider than another?”-question). Perhaps I’m just confusing myself.

    • Hi Sara,

      Well I think from what you’ve said that the pear shape some calculators suggest is too simplistic for you because the “tale of the tape” is not really always enough, you need to take into account the feel of your shape and also your shoulders which usually don’t appear in simple measurement calculators. I think you sound most like a vase, though one with slightly larger shoulders than is standard for this body shape. This also fits with being told from a photo that you are slim hourglass with a strong shoulder line because the vase and hourglass are closely related.

      A lovely shape basically, many would be very pleased to have it!

  • I don’t know if I am a vase or a column. My I don’t feel like my waist is small enough to be a hourglass/vase. I do tend to gain weight in my tummy once I’m above 10 stone. Currently I am 5’3” and 137bs. I have a small/fragile build so I definitely feel “thick” right now.

    My measurements are:
    shoulders (circumference)39″
    bust – 38″ (34D)
    waist – 30″
    hips – 38″

    • Hi Jenna,

      To me you sound like you might be an Hourglass. From your height and weight you are obviously not a large lady by any means and more petite Hourglasses can have a tendency to feel they get a little bit thick around the middle, simply because they don’t have the height to spread out their lovely curves! I think you aren’t tall enough to be a Vase and too curvy to be a Column, so I’d say you are probably an Hourglass.

  • I don’t know what I am either!
    Will you help me?

    I think I’m either a shortlegged Vase with no boobs, an Hourglass with no boobs, or a Pear with broad shoulders and big arms.

    Height: 165cm
    Cup size: A
    Clothing size: 10

    I’m broad shoulder and back but have no boobs, I have muscular arms, a long defined waist, short muscular legs with saddlebags, and a round booty.

    I’m in the middle of everything! Hahaha!

    • Hi Kerri,

      Oh wow, you’ve really got us scratching our heads too!

      I think we’d have to agree with your suggestion that you’re probably an Hourglass with a smaller bust than is typical for this body shape. It’s the overall feel of the shape that counts and your curves make it sound like the Hourglass is probably the best fit.

  • I think I am a vase but Im not quite sure
    I have broad shoulders and small breasts (too big for B, too small for C)
    my waist is small, but it doesn’t gracefully go out like an hourglass, but like a pear. I have a big booty, and muscular thighs and large calves with small ankles
    I am so confused on my body type, could you help me?

    • Hi Qatie,

      I’d say probably not a Vase because they don’t tend to have booty and often lack the small waist. From what you say about your small waist but larger bottom and muscular thighs, you sound more like a Skittle.

  • Thank you soooooo much for this body shape calculator. I am liberated. Wow…….., am 5ft 11, with bust 42, waist 36, hips 45. I am not an hourglass , i now know that am a vase because of my waist and full bust. My buttocks are not so well rounded. But what do you think?

    • Hi Irene,

      Thanks for the kind words, it’s always great to hear visitors have found the calculator useful 🙂

      Yes, from your height, measurements and what you mentioned about your bottom, it certainly sounds like you’re a Vase – you lucky thing!

  • Hello

    Please, please, please will you help me?

    I don’t fit into any of the shapes so possibly I’m a combination of some sort.

    I’m 5ft 7, my mesurments are 39, 30, 40.5

    My frame is balanced portions (my upper body is the same size as my lower body), my waist is fairly low.

    My in shape is 36 C/B bra size, my boobs look medium-small, rounded and pert.
    My rib cage is straight and goes down, gently curving out wards (slight to noticeble waist definition), but my waist isn’t tiny small with great waist definition. My hips slightly turn in wards and then I curve back out, my thighs look shapely and curved.

    My shoulders look around the same size as my thighs/possibly widest hip measurement, but as my hips go in slight my shoulders look slight bigger, (it looks like a slight chunk of my hips missing. I also have a slight tummy podge but mostly flat stomack.

    From behind I look more curvy and my waist definition looks more prominent, looking noticeble. My waist goes in at a point and curves out and looks rounded.

    I also have a nice rounded shape bum, that looks cute, said a friend.

    When I measure my waist to hip ratio it’s 0.73.

    I hope you can help.

    If I had bigger hips at the front I’d be really happy with my shape and I would look curvier but they go in slight so it miss matches my shape.

  • Hi Holly,

    Well from what you say it seems that you are an Hourglass. Although you mention about your shoulders appearing slightly bigger because of your hips, it sound from the general feel of your shape that you’re quite balanced.

    The fact you feel your waist isn’t tiny doesn’t stop you from being an Hourglass because even though we tend to think of this as being part of the Marilyn Monroe classic Hourglass, most women with this shape are not like that. Because you said your waist definition seems more prominent from the back this also suggest an Hourglass particularly when combined with your vital statistics.

    Hope that helps a bit!

  • omg omg omg, I just commented on another one that I though I was, but this describes me perfectly!!!!! Finally!!! (lol, I was going with “amazonian hourglass”)