Friday, January 31

Le Petit! A Fashion Guide to Dressing Your Petite Frame

Ann Taylor

We all know good things come in small packages, but petite dressing can be a challenge. While I'm not technically petite (since I am 5'5), I do have narrow shoulders and hips, which means I often have to shop in the petite departments for better-fitting skirts and dresses. Plus, a lot of my friends are petite in stature (believe it or not, at 5'5 I'm the tallest one in the group)! Needless to say, I've had my fair share of shopping in the petite's section.  What's the key to nailing the trends when you're under 5-foot-4?  Adjust scale and proportion.  Here's everything you need to know about dressing your small frame:

1. Raise your skirt hem a touch.
Aim for just above the knee for an elongating effect.  A cut with a slightly higher waist will do it too.

2. Get a leg up in boots.
Knee-high versions can be too long, while ankle booties cut the leg off.  Choose a mid-calf style instead.

3. Don't disappear in outerwear.
Pass on trendy oversize coats in favor of trimmer, structured wool ones hemmed-right above the knee.

4. Join the boy's club. 
If you wear a women's size 2 or 4, shop the boy's department at Brooks Brothers, Crew Cuts, or Zara for wool blazers or boyfriend cardigans in sizes 12 or 14.

5. Scale your bag. 
Size as well as shape matters.  Select a medium hobo or cross-body purse instead of a roomy medicine bag or an oversize square tote.

Dolce & Gabbanna
Jill Stuart

Charles David
Neiman Marcus

Alexander McQueen


White House Black Market

Forever 21
Sergio Rossi
Stella McCartney

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