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flatter (one's) figure
To fit one's body well and make it look especially attractive, as of clothing. You look gorgeous—that dress really flatters your figure!
To hold a vain, self-congratulatory, and exaggeratedly high opinion of oneself and/or one's achievements. Yeah, don't flatter yourself—she only asked you out to dinner because she wants to ask you about your brother. Gaston likes to flatter himself that he's the best man in town, but everyone knows he's just a pompous jerk.
See also: flatter
flatter to deceive
To seem better or more promising than someone or something really is. A: "I can't believe that team didn't make the playoffs after starting the season so well." B: "I guess they just flattered to deceive."
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
flatter one's figure
Fig. [for clothing] to make one look thin or to make one's figure look better than it is. The lines of this dress really flatter your figure. The trousers had a full cut that flattered Maria's figure.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
Be gratified vainly by one's own achievement; exaggerate one's good points. For example, He flattered himself that his presentation at the sales conference was a success, or She flattered herself that she was by far the best skater at the rink. This usage is often put negatively, as in Don't flatter yourself-we haven't won the contract yet. [Late 1500s]
See also: flatter
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
flatter to deceiveencourage on insufficient grounds and cause disappointment.
1913 Field Two furlongs from home Maiden Erlegh looked most dangerous, but he flattered only to deceive.
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