HOw to dress stylishly when 5'3 and under

(37 Posts)
BellyChancer Sun 14-Apr-13 13:13:03

I think we need a special list of our own.

I'll go first and put my rule,

1) no big loud patterns, ever, no matter how gorgeous. Let the desire for patterns manifest itself through cusions or mugs.

2)

surfandturf Fri 19-Apr-13 19:05:25

I think we must be the only mnetters under 5,3 BellyChancer!!! I wanted to see what suggestions everyone else had as I am under 5ft and haven't got a clue about fashion to suit me...

Witco Fri 19-Apr-13 19:14:55

5' 1" here (waves)! I find that tailored clothes look better on me and I avoid wearing flats if possible, unless I am walking long distances. I make mistakes all the time and sometimes try on maxis (just in case anything has changed!) confused but it's all about proportion and getting the shape right. A minefield!

Dresses make me look taller (5ft2 here)

Never wear flats unless walking.

twofalls Fri 19-Apr-13 19:21:06

Watching with interest. Have no tip though. I need to rediscover my style as its been somewhat lost since I had the dds and started working from home.

Bollocks to the no big patterns rule - I'm wearing one now! With navy leggings and a navy cardie. I look fine, nice even - it's a Fat Face butterfly tunic in lime, navy, white - quite springlike.

Yes to fitted clothes and wrap dresses. And drawing attention to bust, small waist if you have it.

No to 4 inch heels unless you're Kylie grin

NickECave Fri 19-Apr-13 19:22:10

I don't think it's just a case of how short you are since a slim short person can get away with things which a heavier person can't. I'm 4,11 and in my youth was a size 8 and could wear pretty much anything except maxi-dresses but I'm now a norky 12-14 and my options are far more limited. Considering my wardrobe I would say:

1. no patterns

2. no maxi-dresses/maxi-skirts

3. dresses that stop just above or just below the knee

4. no hats

5. wedges or platform boots wherever possible (but not wedge trainers which I can't stand and not high heels which I can't walk in)

6. Jeans don't work for me so I rarely wear them

7. nothing voluminous ie. coats and jackets need to be slim-fitting and not boxy

8. no wide-legged trousers, in the summer cropped trousers work for me as long as they're tapered but I know some people think they looked "cut-off" in them

9. contrasting colours (eg white top and black trousers) break up the silhouette and make me look shorter, I prefer to wear colours which are tonally quite similar.

Fedupnagging Fri 19-Apr-13 19:22:59

5ft here - although a size 12, I can look very 'dumpy' most of the time if I'm not careful!

Yes to no loud/bold patterns
Also, no skirts that end mid calf - knee length or maxi
Yes to more tailored clothes.

Or, long baggy top with skinny's or boyfriend cut trousers/palazzo pants etc with fitted top. Never go all loose fit.

Any more useful tips?

Alibabaandthe40nappies Fri 19-Apr-13 19:23:23

The trick is not to care that you are short. I refuse to totter along in heels when flats are so much comfier.

Today I was wearing pumps and skinnies with a white long-sleeved top, a scarf, and a mac when I was outside. I had 3 compliments on my outfit.

I generally steer clear of loud patterns, but that is a good rule for everyone I think!

Fedupnagging Fri 19-Apr-13 19:25:50

That's almost identical to what I wore yesterday Alibaba but without the mac (or the compliments!).

Alibabaandthe40nappies Fri 19-Apr-13 19:27:41

Nick - I've got wide hips (also big boobs) and I find that wide leg full-length trousers are much better on me than cropped and tapered.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Fri 19-Apr-13 19:29:16

Fedup grin I also agree about the fitted/loose thing.

I only wear wide leg trousers with quite a fitted top, otherwise I look gigantic and like I'm 60 and heading off on a cruise!

VenusRising Fri 19-Apr-13 19:32:25

I think it's important to dress in more tailored clothes, if you're shorter.
I wear clothes which emphasise my waist - large of nork here too.

Having said all that when I was 8 stone I could wear anything pretty much: now I have hips and boobs, and a tummy which bloats out every month, I wear block colours, wrap dresses which emphasise my waist, wear a fab bra to hoick me up, knee length skirt, and slim line trouser.
I also avoid jeans and wide leg trews, and I try and wear a heel- especially now as dcs aren't nuts young enough to run off.

I try and wear block colours, and use scarves to change my look.

MrsCampbellBlack Fri 19-Apr-13 19:47:22

I'm 5ft and to be honest I think I can wear most things [deluded] unless they're voluminous - I just can't do volume in clothes as makes me look pregnant.

MrsCampbellBlack Fri 19-Apr-13 19:50:08

Saying that though I'm an apple shape so there's loads of stuff I don't wear because of that. Also if I'm at my fighting weight its much easier but if I'm feeling chunky its very hard.

I do think its harder to dress well when you're short though but I wouldn't rule any item out. I've worn maxis and think they look fine - I look at petite celebs like Nicole Ritchie for inspiration.

Of course she is about a size 0 which helps wink But there's lots of blogs out there for the shorter woman which I like, eg, Wendy's lookbook and you know the one I collaborate on smile

givemeaclue Fri 19-Apr-13 19:51:48

Any shop recommendedations for shorties?

GraduallyGoingInsane Fri 19-Apr-13 19:52:55

I'm 5ft2 - I agree to no maxis! On the hanger in the shop they're about a foot taller than me so that's never going to work!

Wide leg trousers also look rubbish, and I have to be careful where cropped trousers but - 7/8th jeans are a yay, below the knee 'pedal pushers' (showing my age now!) are a nay!

I also find strapless tops make me look oddly short, but that could be my boobs!

teta Fri 19-Apr-13 20:08:06

I'm 5ft 3 on a good day.I often wear head to toe block colour as this elongates my rather broad shouldered shape-navy in summer and charcoal in winter.I add colour with a cashmere scarf or coat.Today it was a burnt orange trenchcoat and a leopard print scarf.I live in M & S indigo and black jeggings as they have a real slimming and lengthening effect on me.Love maxis in the spring/summer especially in navy/blue tile prints with a white tshirt and navy jumper/cardi.I have just discovered jersey skirts from Hush in a maxi and midi length and these are very flattering.Nearly always wear heels-in winter wedge ankle boots or fly wedges and in summer wedge flipflops or fitflops for walking.Definitely don't look right in short cropped things and jackets that are normally recommended for shorties but rather longer jackets/coats.Maybe due to my rather square shape with not much waist definition.I look pretty awful in tailored things,but look great in flowing clothes and tunics.Maybe because i don't have a waist but have broad shoulders.We all sound very different in the way we dress!.

NickECave Fri 19-Apr-13 20:18:21

As I said, I think body shape has more to do with it than height. At the end of the day, unless I put on a massive pair of heels I will look short because I AM short. I try to dress to suit my shape which is hour glass so things that look good on me probably look rubbish on someone slim and boyish and vice-versa. I can particularly vouch for this as I had a totally different body shape in my twenties to the one I have now in my late 30s post-DCs and the clothes I look good in now are completely different.

I don't care if I look short - I am. Sometimes I wear heels and sometimes I don't. I'm a norky size 12. I wear maxi skirts providing they are narrow, wide legged or narrow legged trousers as I wish etc. For me, it's more about making sure I've got things that skim over my stomach a bit - eg: I'm short waisted so belted stuff doesn't really work.

5ft right here. I wear whatever I fancy if I'm honest, I just don't do anything that's too baggy as it makes me look as wide as I am (sm)tall. Bit of slouch is fine, just nothing that billows. Maxi dresses and skirts are easily fixed by taking them to a tailors and having a lot few inches taken off the bottom.

Just under 5 ft, 10/12 bottom half Topshop, H&M. 12/14 on top due to 30G norks.

I wear long skirts and dresses, but they are fitted/tube(?) style.

I wear small pattern, tend to try and elongate by wearing the same shade trousers/shoes/cardi - break it up with pattern/texture and a scarf. Pretty boring clothes really.

I wear non bulky skinny scarves, generally with a pattern

I wear jeans that fit neatly on my butt, if I can find them, it seems to get harder. Fab jeans from the past, ascension jeans, amazingly flattering but can't get them, new look babycords, they were fitted flares, loved them. Favourite pair at the moment have a small faded pattern, from H&M - they are slim fit not skinny and seem a perfect length so they must be cropped!

Length of trousers, even petite too long for me, even with heels, choice is so limited! Especially out in the sticks - pissed off that River Island petite only available online (hate paying p&p) - so I stopped shopping in my local one. Quite tempted to try esprit because they do petite.

PinkMangoSays Fri 19-Apr-13 20:48:15

I'm 5 3 and I agree that it's more about body shape than height. I love maxis in the summer, they are just so comfy and they don't make me look short at all.

I don't ever wear heels just for my own comfort. I tend on a day to day basis wear pumps/uggs with skinny jeans and a large top/jumper/floaty top of some sort. I'm anything from a 4-10 but can't think of anything I wouldn't wear or at least try

BookFairy Fri 19-Apr-13 21:01:42

I'm 5' 0" (size 12 ish) and always look short smile

I wear tea dresses, ankle length trouses, and ballet pumps.

Fedupnagging Fri 19-Apr-13 21:02:33

Yes, it is about body shape rather than height but you can create the illusion of height by what you wear.

Baggy unflattering clothes can make you look small (and dumpy) whereas better fitting and more flattering clothes give you a better line and make you seem taller and slimmer.

I don't particularly mind being small (most of the time) but like to feel like I am walking tall iyswim?

PlumBear Fri 19-Apr-13 21:19:56

I'm with remus - I'm 5ft and there's not much I wouldn't wear. Obv steer clear of maxis and the very voluminous, but otherwise I wear what I like and think I look ok! I do think fitted clothes are quite important though, for a good silloheute. I don't struggle with top half too much because of freakishly long torso, but finds trousers a bit of a nightmare. Miss Selfridge do some fantastic super soft skinny jeans tho, which i really rate.

CeeceeBloomingdale Fri 19-Apr-13 21:30:38

I'm 5'2" and size 12/14 and I live in over-sized things and flat shoes. I'm also a fan of the maxi and wear patterns. I'm an apple shape which can restrict my choices but height isn't a huge issue, particularly as skinnies don't trail the floor as badly as other jeans and most shops do short lengths now. My legs are probably quite long in proportion to my height with a short torso but I can buy any tops, I don't bother with petite ranges, trousers in a short length are not always the same as petite which is smaller all over. I do agree with keeping oversized things to one area, i.e. teaming a roomy top with skinnies

Pinkglow Fri 19-Apr-13 21:40:23

Theres a lady in my office who is 5' and she always looks really stylish. I don't think Ive ever seen her in trousers but she always has a lovely dress or skirt and top on which are always really fitted, she has loads of curves and they suit her well.

CoolCadbury Fri 19-Apr-13 22:13:55

Am 4ft 10 and a size 12 but quite dumpy with it (a huge tum and big hips). I have been a size 14 and a size 8 as well. And I can honestly say that it's more about body type than height. When I am slimmer, I can wear anything and still look good but I struggle when I am larger to look good. I have maxis (wear with wedges), bold stripes and patterns but mostly in size 10.

The thing that really helps me is that clothes fit correctly. So sleeves/hems are the right length and waist on clothes hit at the right place, and it's not too voluminous. When I have money I use a local tailor, I have the waist lifted and maybe taken in if its a dress, get the hems taken up. I'm finding it a little trickier to do this with very little money but for cheaper items I do it myself but I still take it to the tailors for more expensive clothes.

CoolCadbury Fri 19-Apr-13 22:15:28

mrscampbellblack. I'm not aware of your blog. Where can I find it? smile

CambridgeBlue Fri 19-Apr-13 22:24:25

I'm 5'2 ish and don't find it's my height that dictates what I wear so much as my shape - I'm a size 12-14 hourglass with big boobs and very stumpy short legs so fitted stuff flatters me the most. I've got a maxi dress (plain black jersey) that I think looks really good but it is from the Next Petite range so the proportions are right and I don't think I look like I'm wearing my Mum's clothes.

Guaparesaca Fri 19-Apr-13 22:41:23

I'm 5'1 and a natural inverted triangle- shoulders broader than my hips, ample bosom, flat bottom, straight through the waist to the hips (quite apple shaped) and plump tum.

There are lots of things I know help me to feel good about my lack of height- eg- wearing same colour top and bottom, but I do concur with others who've already said they believe dressing for body shape is far more crucial.

Proportions are really important, no cropped trousers, for example.

Me and my sister have always had a running comment- she got the legs while I got the boobs! You gotta make the most of what you HAVE got.

MrsCampbellBlack Sat 20-Apr-13 06:56:19

Cool - its here - a few of us are 5ft3 and under.

noviceoftheday Sat 20-Apr-13 07:50:25

I am just under 5'2" (waves to fellow shorties!) and take 3 things into account with clothes. My height, my body shape (I am hour glass), I am short waisted (stupidly short on top and 29" legs) and my colouring (deep winter). I think the thing that makes the biggest difference is body shape but its hard for anyone to look stylish without taking all four things into account. It means I don't necessarily follow the fashions.

I wear shift dresses or body con dresses for work and avoid those low waist shapeless dresses like the plague. I also love tea dresses and fit and flare type dresses. Dresses are best if petite but not the end of the world if not.

Tops are hardest. Petites are a must have but rare to find nice ones. Those smock type tops that are popular in summer are a disaster for me so I stick to either shirts that I unbutton as low as possible to create a V or cowl necks. I like tops, jumpers and cardigans to be fitted and ending at the waist. Too short and it emphasises my shortness, too long and it drowns me.

Bottoms, I think I look best in skinnies and straight leg trousers and jeans. Again this is more about shape than height.

chanie44 Sat 20-Apr-13 08:40:15

Can I join you.

I'm 5ft and an inverted triangle so I have broad shoulders and huge f-cup norks. Plus I put weight on my stomach so my top half isn't the best part of me.

I agre slim fitting is better, but my norks make it hard to get things to fit.

EarlyInTheMorning Tue 23-Apr-13 12:49:51

Hellooooo!!!! Another shortie here. I feel all my clothes look better on me if I have the extra height provided by some wedges as I can no longer walk in heels. I find it extremely difficult to find non ugly wedges for wide feet though.

neriberi Tue 23-Apr-13 13:57:44

I'm 5ft 3. I wear pretty much what I like. Its not what you wear, its how you wear it that counts grin

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