When you’re petite, it can be easy to make mistakes when shopping, whether it’s online or in store. I’ve done it, I’ve bought things in store and come home only to realise that the item doesn’t look good on my short body. So, I’ve decided to write a little guide that you can bare in mind the next time you go shopping for a new outfit.
Here’s the thing: Changing rooms exist for a reason. If you know this garment in your size is definitely going to fit you, that’s great – but how is it going to look on you? Always go into changing rooms whether you know an item will definitely fit or not.
When in the changing room, here’s what to look out for:
- Where does the item fall?
- How does it fit?
- How can you style it?
For me, I don’t typically like it when a t shirt goes past the crotch area. I know oversized is in somehow, but it can make you look a lot shorter than you actually are, so when you are already short enough, that’s exactly not what you want. For me, I like my t-shirts to just fall below my waist. This way, if I want to tuck it in, I can, and if I want to wear it loose, it isn’t taking a few much needed inches from my legs.
For jeans, if you’re going high waisted then look out for what you wear on top of them. If you’re buying a pair of jeans, take a few different styles of shirts with you into the changing rooms, even if you’re not intending on buying them. This way you get to experiment with your jeans and see how you can style them. I personally like the majority of my trousers to be high waisted, even my leggings, because I can get away with wearing crop tops and they look like normal length t-shirts on me (as seen in the last edition with my Tommy Hilfiger shirt), and also because I like the way a high waisted pair of jeans looks with a t-shirt tucked into them.
I also look out for the fit of an item, I like my shirts loose fitted but not too loose fitted. You can lose the shape of your body when you wear boxy type shirts and this can be very unflattering regardless of your height, and I’m a curvy girl so I like it when a button up shirt has pleats in it and it flows around my waist flattering my body type. If I’m pleased with everything I mentioned, I’ll pop the item in my basket and be on my way!
Here’s the thing, I like to follow trends as much as the next fashion blogger, but I also like to avoid trends too. This is because I like to have a timeless wardrobe, so if I have the same t-shirt in my wardrobe for 2 years, it’s not going to look like something that was only trendy 2 years ago. For example, you really can’t go wrong with a patterned blouse, they look good always and they are timeless – which is important. I also don’t think you can go wrong with leather jackets (faux, obviously), because again: timeless. People have been wearing them for ages and they never look bad. However, if I saw someone wearing those wooden and string Virgin Mary bracelets, with a peplum skirt, I’d have immediate flashbacks to 2010/2011.
Smart Seasonal Choices
What time of the year is it? Right now, we’re in the warmer seasons, but here in Britain it can still get very cold. I like to make my purchases based on what’s practical, during this time of the year, if I’m not going abroad then I cater my wardrobe to what a British Summer is like. Thick cotton t-shirts are usually good for your average day, but whenever we get a heat wave it’s always good to have some camisoles and silk fabric button downs lying around. Culottes are also excellent for this time of the year too, they’re thin yet completely comfortable and practical.
Let’s be honest, we all shop online for clothes and for us shorties it can be often regrettable. My favourite stores for petite clothes are Asos and Boohoo, I feel like their petite is actually petite and there’s rarely any fabric dangling below my ankles or any “petite” t-shirts that still somehow call to my crotch area.
I like Asos because they have videos of the models wearing the clothes, I like to see how the garment falls on them and I always check for extra information on the model, for her height and measurements for accurate reference.
It’s also important to make sure that you’re actually buying petite. I always make sure to filter my browsing so that I’ve got the petite section ticked, but I will double check before buying that the clothes are definitely petite.
This is the main difference for me when I online shop vs when I go in store, I can’t lift up a garment and see it against my body clearly so there’s no way of me knowing how long it falls, sometimes in store I can get away with buying a regular fit dress, but when I buy online I never know where exactly on my legs it’s going to fall, and the hem on a dress is always a dead give-away for where it’s supposed to fall, so don’t make the mistake of buying a dress that’s supposed to fall above the knee, when on you it falls below, because the hem makes it pretty obvious that it’s too long. I never buy dresses online unless I’m 100% sure it’s petite.
That’s all for this post! I hope my tips were helpful and happy shopping! If you’re subscribed to my newsletter, then you may know that I’ve been considering turning The Under 5’5 Club into a newsletter alongside these monthly posts, I’ve been toying with the idea for a while but I’m never too sure whether or not to go for it, so I’d love some feedback perhaps under this post or through my social media on what you think about it!