--Many women are most narrow just below their busts, and a dress that hugs the body at that point can be really flattering. Vintage clothes are great, because so many dresses were cut to emphasize the natural waist rather than the nook just above our hips we're now used to thinking of as our waist.
--Find the feature that you like the best about your body and play it up. I know it's obvious, but it really does work. Ashley is lucky to have great legs, an hourglass figure, and gorgeous facial bones, so she has a lot to work with. But most larger women have an enviable decolletage. (Give the girls a little moonlight, as a friend would say.) If you have a waist, wear something that shows your shape. If you are more apple-shaped, chances are you have great legs. If that's the case, choose a dress that hits just where your calf slopes in below the knee.
--Stay away from bulky clothing. That counts for coats, too. A boxy coat will just make you look like a chunk of wool. A formless skirt that drops straight from your hips will make you look like one of those doll torsos crocheted on top of a toilet paper roll cover. Not good. The photo below of Ashley shows a great coat for a curvy gal.
I bet you thought double-breasted coats were off limits. But these buttons are placed to make the most of an hourglass shape.
--Larger women can often wear bold prints and dramatic colors well, usually better than their less curvaceous friends. Why not take advantage of this fact and phase out some of the black in your wardrobe? Wear a lipstick-red beaded choker or a four-inch rhinestone brooch.
--Finally, and this applies no matter your size, whatever you do choose to wear, wear it like you own it. Walk with confidence and smile at all those heads that turn to look at you.