I spent a good chunk of my life learning how to dress if you are short, and I'm sure the same is true for many of my petite sisters. I used to loathe being short, but in recent years I've come to embrace it. Call me a hobbit; I love anything that compares me to Frodo Baggins! Short, tall, or somewhere in the middle, every height level has its advantages – and each has its own fashion rules. If you end up with dragging pants or skirts that fall way too long, let me help you learn how to dress if you are short.
1 Don't Fear a Tailored Fit
If you want to know how to dress if you are short, remember that it's all about the fit. You can choose an oversized cardigan or hoodie, absolutely, but make sure the items underneath fit you. Skinny jeans are perfect for you, and never pass up a tailored blazer or pencil skirt. You'll look like five million dollars, I promise.
2 The Higher, the Better
High waisted jeans, trousers, skirts, and shorts actually look great on shorter girls. The high waist will make your torso look short, which means you don't. Make sure you only wear slim belts with this look though, if you choose a belt at all, and don't be afraid to wear a longer crop top with your high waisted pieces.
3 Hem when You Have to
The fact is, you may sometimes have to hem your clothes, especially if you love a particular skirt or pair of jeans. You can shop for petite clothing to avoid this, but sometimes love knows no sizes. When that happens, a little hemming will make you happy, so it's worth it to learn – or to have someone who can do it for you. Praise them profusely, give thanks, and do something nice for them in return, because your buddy is saving your wardrobe.
4 Become the Mistress of Monochrome
Monochrome is your new best friend. You don't have to do this all the time, because bright pops of color are sometimes style makers. Occasionally, however, wear all one color, or stick to two timeless solids. You don't have to wear black all the time either.
5 The Rule of Thirds
Using the rule of thirds is key if you want your silhouette to look lovely and flattering. All that means is that you shouldn't bisect your body right in half. That's why high waisted jeans and skirts typically look good on shorter girls. You don't have to go for an illusion of height if you don't want to, but by maintaining the rule of thirds and going a little higher or lower with waists and hemlines, you won't make yourself look shorter either.
6 Avoid Shoulder Pads like the Plague
Shoulder pads have made a quasi comeback, although they're not quite as outrageous as they were in the '80s. Still, if you notice the least little padding in your tops, blazers, and sweaters, either make sure you can safely remove them or put that particular item back on the rack. You want to avoid any kind of clothing that will make you look too boxy and compact, and clothing with wide shoulders will do that.
7 Grab Those Maxis
I know far too many short girls who avoid maxi skirts and dresses for fear they'll look shorter. To that I say, ha! I love maxis, and it's a good thing I do, since I only top 5'4 when I lie. Long skirts and dresses take the emphasis away from your height and put it back on your overall shape. Just try not to choose any hemlines that actively drag the ground, because that's just asking for trouble.
Shorties, unite! You don't have to fear the maxi dress or the midi skirt. You don't have to cuff all your jeans! Most importantly, wear the clothes you like, and don't worry about whether they make you look short or tall. Do what feels right to you, and make your clothing work – even if you have to take up some hems. Do you have any other fashion tips to share with the short girls?