November 05 2020 – Sola Boutique Bantry Admin
Do any of these sound familiar to you - Not being able to reach high shelves in shops? Being called cute or having your head patted? Getting lost behind people in group photos? Being mistaken for a child or teen? Having to hem every pair of trousers you buy? If you answered yes to one or more of these then the chances are that you are shorter than the average 5 ft 5-inch women of Ireland.
Being short has its pros and its cons but when it comes to fashion and styling being shorter than the fashion standard sizes can be frustrating. Here are a few fashion tricks for looking a little taller without always relying on high heels.
Emphasise Your Waistline
Always keep tops at waist length or tucked in at the waist. This will keep your proportions in balance and help your legs look longer. Wearing jumpers, shirts or blouses that hang below your waist will actually make you look shorter by lengthening the torso and making your legs appear shorter.
Using your waistline to its full potential will open up a myriad of looks to you whether you’re short and slim or short and curvy. Start simple by tucking a colourful printed top into an above the knee skirt for a put-together day look or choose a high waisted pair of jeans and a waist-length colour block knit jumper for a more relaxed looked. For nights out try a fancy cropped top and high waisted pleated skirt.
Choose Stripes Wisely
The rule of stripes in fashion is that vertical stripes add length and horizontal stripes add width and make us look shorter. This is great news for any shorter ladies as vertical stripes make a striking statement worn as a dress, skirt, top or trousers. There are endless ways to wear vertical stripes, for both formal and casual wear.
For work and smart occasions choose a pinstripe fitted shirt with a tailored skirt or trousers. A striped dress can work for informal and formal gatherings and be dressed up or down with a smart (waist length) jacket or cosy cardigan.
Master The Monochrome Look
When you wear the same colour from top to bottom you instantly look more slender and that bit taller. This works with any colour palette and is a real statement look. Jumpsuits lend themselves well to the monochrome look for shorter women as they are generally nipped in at the waist with a feature belt.
Go full monochrome with matching shoes and accessories to really get the most from this look. Start with black if you are unsure and get brighter with your looks as you get braver with the style.
Even the most flattering look can be ruined with the wrong accessory. Something as innocuous as a belt can change a look from sleek and slender to short and dumpy - if it’s the wrong choice. When you are aiming to look taller, a thick belt should be avoided as it will chop up your look making you look boxy. Whereas a thin belt will only help to emphasise your waistline.
Bags are another accessory that seem harmless but can actually make you look even tinier. Oversized bags were all the trend a few years ago but for shorter women, this bag style just emphasises their petite stature. A smaller handbag, be it a clutch or shoulder style, will complement your proportions better.
Embrace Long Fashion & Tailors
It may seem illogical to suggest that wearing a long coat or dress will help you look taller but it actually works. By choosing a long coat that comes to your calves or a full-length dress you are creating a sleek, lengthened, silhouette that makes you appear taller.
To avoid looking like you are drowning in swathes of fabric, get to know your local tailor and have what you love altered. There is a misconception that tailors are expensive when in fact they can be very affordable. Using a tailoring service also allows you to by off the rack in more shops rather than pay more for specialist sizes.
Wardrobe Staples For Shorter Women
Your wardrobe staples are the key pieces that last from season to season and can be mixed and matched to create different looks. All shorter women should aim to have these key pieces:
- Pointed, slim heel, pumps to wear with skirts or trousers and lengthen the leg
- A smart, waist length, jacket for dressing looks up
- A long coat for adding length
- A striped dress that can be dressed up or down
- A thin belt
- A ‘goes with everything’ small handbag
- A fitted shirt
- A high waisted skirt
- A pair of high waisted trousers
- A pair of high waisted jeans
Start with these and build up your seasonal wardrobe around them.