I recently bought an adorable baby-doll dress, and I love everything about it…except its way-too-low neckline. What can I wear to make it less racy without being too obvious about covering up? —Kelsey

I love me a baby-doll dress! I actually have a similar issue with a vintage ’70s one I’ve been aching to wear. Though I’m RARELY the type of gal to shy away from something low-cut, this dress has a deep enough neckline that I could easily drop some Reese’s Pieces in there and never know it. The solution, I’ve found, is to layer a frilly top with a pussy bow under the ol’ thing. For the uninitiated, a pussy bow on a shirt or dress is material draped from the neck that you can tie into a bow. If your dress isn’t skintight, you should be able to fit a pussy bow top underneath—just shoot for something sleeveless so it doesn’t look bulky.

What’s cool about a bow is that it will draw attention to your chest, but not in a way you’re uncomfortable with. If your dress is dark, I’d go for a light blouse, but if it’s patterned and you REALLY wanna go wild, look for printed blouses—I love a nice mix of patterns! This can add to the cute ’90s-goes-mod look that I imagine your dress is evoking. Here are some of my favorite sleeveless pussy-bow blouses, both plain and patterned:

Clockwise from top left: Black Tie Blouse, ASOS, $41; Buttoned Tie Neck Bodysuit, Forever 21, $6; Solid Tie Neck Blouse in Raspberry, JC Penney, $20; South Florida Spree Top in Pink Hearts, Modcloth, $33; Nice to Meet Cute Top, Modcloth, $43; Chiffon Bow Neck Tie, ASOS, $15.

Clockwise from top left: Black Tie Blouse, $41, ASOS; Buttoned Tie Neck Bodysuit, $6, Forever 21; Solid Tie Neck Blouse in raspberry, $20, JCPenney; South Florida Spree Top in Pink Hearts, $33, Modcloth; Nice to Meet Cute Top, $43, Modcloth; Chiffon Bow Neck Tie, $15, ASOS.

If the pussy-bow thing doesn’t work for you, the last resort in all cover-up-related matters is a button-up cardigan or bolero. It might be the easy way out, but it’ll do the trick, and there are plenty of cute cardis out there. You can also concentrate on cute accessories, tights, or socks to make your outfit extra special.

I’m pear-shaped, with a small waist and big hips. I looove showing off my figure by wearing high-waisted shorts, pants, and skirts, but I have trouble finding stores that carry high-waisted bottoms that fit me! My parents refuse to let me buy clothes online, and I’m tired of only being able to go to Charlotte Russe because I’m a bigger size. Do you know of any other stores I can go to? —Chrissy, Arizona

Let me put on my Sherlock Holmes hat and get to work! First of all, I’d suggest generally looking for a stretchy jeggings-type style when shopping for the jeans of your utmost dreams—these can work wonders for us ladies with curves!

It’s really rad that, these days, many denim clothiers like Eddie Bauer, Levi, and Lee have created collections specifically made for helping curvy chicas find a perfect fit. Since I don’t know your hip-to-waist ratio, I probably won’t be able to find the EXACT style that’s perfect for you. It’s going to take a bit of search and conquer on your end—so let’s take this to the mall!

You can find the Levi Curve ID line at JCPenney, so that’s a good place to start. As we continue on our mall store search, let’s go grab an Orange Julius and then swing by Sears to take a look at their jeggings. Forever 21 also has some cute styles you can try. After F21, let’s grab a soft pretzel (I’m feeling snack-y today, can you tell?) and take our chances over at Hot Topic, where we’ll check out some of their high-waisted stretchy jeans.

Hopefully, by this point, you’ll have found something awesome, but if you’re finding that the jeans you try are fitting your hips and booty perfectly but too loose at the waist, you might want to opt for a bigger size and then get the waist taken in by a tailor. GROAN. I know tailoring sounds daunting and annoying, but it’s really the only way you’ll be able to get a legit fit for your hot bod. Otherwise, you’ll have to keep trying until you find the One (denim brand, that is).

It’s unfortunate that your parents won’t let you try shopping online. Is it because of the hassle of potential returns? If that’s the case, I can’t say I blame them (though plenty of places offer free returns these days). If they do decide to chill on the anti-internet-shopping rule, places like Unique Vintage, Modcloth, and ASOS have some really cute high-waisted denim styles in both plus and regular sizes. The search might seem hard at first, but going fashion treasure hunting can be a seriously fun pastime. Don’t give up! ♦

If you have a fashion-based quandary that you know only Marie can help you with, send it on over to [email protected].