Dressing for your shape (4): Petite

Dear friends, I hope you don't think I've given up on my shape style series... I only took a little breather for the holidays but I'm now ready to start again, beginning from what I find the prettiest of all shapes: Petite! I think Petite women are so cute and feminine, I wish I was one of them, but realistically at a UK size 10, even though I'm 5'15'' I'm more an Hourglass.

Shape du jour: Signorina Petite

This lady is small and slight all-over, under 5'3'' (160cm), with a small and defined waist, and a balanced silhouette. There is a world of difference between Petite and short. All short ladies are not Petites, as you can see from my own case. Petite women can sometimes be overwhelmed by their clothes and accessories, so simplicity and good fit are key. If you can, get most of your clothes altered by a professional seamstress, from sleeves length to waists etc, it's the best way to achieve the perfect fit. Alternatively shop at places where petite sizes are available (most US brands offer this option) or designers which are known for catering for smaller frames. Go for simpler shapes and avoid too much detail, and try to steer away from massive accessories which will drown you.

What works?
- Heels, obviously
- Dresses, preferrably above the knee to show some leg, as that will elongate your frame
- Tailored and fitted clothes are your friends
- Block colours, especially from your waist down, are better
- If you like prints go for small prints or stripes, preferrably up top, and don't go for big patterns

What doesn't?
- Ruffles, pleats, frills... anything that will shorten you
- Girly sugary colours, unless you don't mind being mistaken for a 10-year old
- Anything baggy needs to go
- Lower-waisted trousers make cut your legs, don't even go there

Jacket: L'Agence Silk Jacket
Simple, elegant, yet incredibly feminine with its mini-scalloping edge, this is bound to be a sell-off for SS2012!

Jeans: James Jeans Twiggy
For trousers and jeans go for higher waisted skinnies or straigh-legged pieces, and steer well away from multi-pocket versions or wide flares...

Top: Warehouse Blouse
Just because I said simple doesn't mean you need to forego all detail. This bright-coloured lace-sleeved blouse will bring attention up and away from your shorter frame.

Bag: Marc by Marc Jacobs Bag
Large enough to accomodate all your knick-knacks on the move, but not so big that it will give you permanent back ache or overwhelm your shape, perfect!

Dress: Issa Jersey Dress
This little number has gorgeous detailing, but it's simple enough that it will not overwhelm a small frame. It shows a good amount of leg as well, and, cherry on the cake, it's on sale.

Shoes: Kurt Geiger Leather Pumps
A nude pump is the best way to elongate the leg, fact. No wonder it's such a popular shoe trend...

One last word: accessories are good for Petite ladies, but thread carefully, and go for medium-sized hooped earrings and bright scarves over cow-boy belts or UFO-sized hats.

(Shape illustration borrowed from the Channel 4 website)


Anonymous said...

Love your blog.I really enjoy reading everything.

LittleS said...

@Anonymous, thank you very much for reading me, I really appreciate it!