If you’re less than 5’4″ tall, you’re considered a Petite in fashion industry parlance, regardless of what size you wear. At 5’1″ moi-même, I’ve struggled at times to figure out why something that looked so good on a taller friend looked *terrible* on me, even though we were the same size theoretically.
I’ve purchased many, many style books over the years, but very few specifically addressed those of use who are Vertically Challenged™, beyond mentioning that a) we may need to shorten sleeves and pant legs, and b) that we should stay away from large prints. But in my own experience, finding styles that flatter a shorter frame is far more complicated that just saying no to oversized florals and lopping a few inches off a hem. Not all Petite women are shaped the same or have the same proportions. What applies to dressing for shape on a taller person also applies to us, but with some additional caveats.
That’s why when I learned image consultant Imogen Lamport (of Bespoke Image and the blog Inside Out Style) had written a style book specifically for Petites, I was thrilled. Having been fortunate enough to work with Imogen in person, I know first hand that she really knows this stuff Inside Out and in amazing detail. When I received the book, I was even more delighted; I’ve never seen a style guide this comprehensive!
For those who are looking for nuts-and-bolts style advice for Petites, this is the guide for you. From the broadest concepts such as which styles will flatter your body shape, body proportions (which I learned during our workshop are just as important as body shape for selecting clothing styles) and coloring down to details such as which jewelry or sunglasses will best suit your features, Imogen leaves no style stone unturned. The book is illustrated throughtout with Polyvore-type images that clearly demonstrate the concepts Imogen describes.
I learn something new every time I pick up this book. For example, something as simple as where a brooch is placed can draw the eye upward and give the impression of more height.
You can purchase the e-book Never Short on Style here. But if you’re of average or tall height, or want some great tips for travel wardrobes, check out Imogen’s other available e-books, Your Essential Style Guide, and Travelling Light. If you’re fortunate enough to live in Australia, Imogen also teaches workshops and works with individual clients.
Disclosure: Imogen provided a complimentary copy of this e-book for me to review.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 United States License.