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Outfits for Petite Ladies: 10 Ways to Look Your Best as Petite Lady

Every petite lady has one particular thing in common —  her small frame. Many times, this is a challenge when dressing up, especially because she wants the perfect outfit for her frame. If you’re in this shoe, worry no more as we show you the best outfits for petite ladies.

But first, let’s start with the basics.

What is a Petite Body Frame?

Contrary to what most people think, petite has nothing to do with weight. 

It’s all about stature (height) instead because petite women are of different sizes and shapes.

According to Jeetly, if you have two out of the following features, you’re petite:

  • You’re is 5’3 (162cm) tall or under.
  • Your shoulder width is 31-35cm.
  • Your neck to waist is 37cm or less.
  • Your arm length is 51-55cm.

In addition, regular sleeves and straps are often too long on petite ladies. And the pockets, shoulders, or knees of ready-made garments usually fall in the wrong places.

It’s not your doing that you’re petite.

It’s the work of your creator.

Where it becomes your doing is how you style yourself. And if you wear the wrong clothes for your frame, don’t blame it on nature.

Blame it on you.

To avoid that, let’s get to the nitty-gritty of this article.

How to Dress as a Petite Lady

lady wearing yellow top with green pants

Before you wear the outfits for petite ladies, you must know your body type.

This is essential so you can wear clothes that flatter your figure and not the other way round.

Other than that, the ultimate goal that guides what a petite girl should wear is to lengthen and create a flattering silhouette.

The outfits for petite ladies should always elongate your stature. They should also accentuate more parts of your body than others.

Furthermore, what you wear shouldn’t make you look boxy or wider. It should instead make you look slender and taller.

But this doesn’t always happen all the time with ready-made apparel. In other words, not everything you buy from the store will have your exact petite size.

That’s why it’s important that you have a good tailor who’ll always give your clothes the necessary fit and adjustment to suit your frame.

What Clothes Look Good on Petite Ladies?

1. Fitted Clothes

pretty lady wearing fitted orange dress

If you’re petite, avoid oversized clothes. They’ll only add extra bulk to your look.

Instead, wear clothes with the perfect fit. But if you want to wear oversized clothing, ensure you balance it up.

lady wearing fitted top and skirt

For example, you can wear an oversized shirt with a pair of skinny jeans or add a belt to the shirt to cinch your belly region.

lady wearing fitted top and palazzo

Another way to create balance when oversizing is to wear a palazzo with a fitted top.

2. Heels

lady in short black dress wearing heels

Another great outfit for petite ladies are heels.

Since the goal is to appear taller, do this by wearing heels. 

However, this doesn’t mean you should discomfort yourself because you’re trying to enhance your height.

lady in top and ripped jeans

Start with heels that aren’t too high. If you can’t do stilettos, go for wedges, block heels, and platforms.

lady in black dress with heels

You can as well read up our style guide on how to walk in heels. It’ll get you started and ensure you don’t get uncomfortable while trying to be stylish.

3.  Belts with Pants/Skirts

petite lady wear wearing top and pants with belt

To give your legs a lengthened illusion, wear belts that are the same colour as your pants or skirts.

lady wearing top and skirt with belt
petite lady wearing white shirt and belted black pants

4. Accessories that Suit Your Body Size

lady wearing short hat

Don’t wear oversized accessories. You’re petite, remember?

They could swallow your frame up.

lady carrying a small bag

Instead, wear accessories that are in proportion with your face and body size.

lady wearing colorful outfit

The bigger you are, the bigger your accessories can be to create moderation.

5. Dresses

ladyy wearing white dress

You can wear a knee-length or midi figure-hugging dress, flare dress, high-low dress, wrap dress, sheath dress, etc. 

petite lady wearing black and green dress

Dresses will also ensure you achieve the rule of thirds in fashion that is necessary for petite ladies.

short lady wearing lemon dress

6. Vertical Patterns

petite lady wearing stripped shirt and pants

You want to elongate your frame and as such, it is important that you avoid horizontal patterns. They only make you look wider and shorter.

lady wearing vertical stripped pants

Instead, wear clothes with vertical stripes and patterns. You’ll look tall with those.

petite lady wearing vertical print dress with cap

7. V-necklines and Off-shoulder

lady wearing v-neck red top with black pants

Dresses and tops with v-necklines will open up your neckline and lengthen your frame. 

lady wearing off-shoulder jean dress

Furthermore, another neckline that suits petite ladies is off-shoulder.

lady wearing v-neck black top with jeans

It’ll create space between your neck and chest for a lengthening effect.

8. High-waisted Pants, Jumpsuits, and Skirts

smiling lady in a yellow blazer and blue jeans

To create a long vertical image, wear high-rise pants with heels and a short top. If you want, you can tuck in the top.

lady in red top and green pants with red shoes

You can as well wear wide-leg, high-rise, or skinny jeans to appear taller. 

petite lady in a bra top and slit skirt

These outfits for petite ladies will make your legs look longer.

9. Light Colours, Solid Colours and Three-quarter Sleeves

lady wearing lemon outfit

Light-coloured clothes will bring some attention to you. 

lady wearing orange outfit

Solid colors will flatter you better than loud prints which only drown your figure.

And shirts or dresses with three-quarter sleeves will make your arms appear longer than when you wear long or short sleeves.

10. Mini Skirts

petite lady in print top and blue skirt

Your legs are relatively short, quite alright. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t flaunt your beautiful thighs when you feel like it.

lady wearing ankara kimono with matching mini skirt

Mini Skirts are a great option for that. If you decide to adorn your petite frame with this wardrobe staple, check out our guide on how to style mini skirts.

lady in shirt and jeans short skirt with heels

These outfits for petite ladies apply to all petite women. However, it is important that you consider your body type when dressing up.

You may have a petite apple shape while your petite friend has a pear shape. Which outfits work for you both?

Read up our style guide on how to dress for your body type and find out.

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Victoria B. Willie

Writing has always been a part of me. From writing stories as a young child to studying Communication Arts in the university, it has always been more than a medium of expression to me.

And then one day, I found myself toeing the path of an entrepreneur and becoming a fashion enthusiast. This made me develop an interest in content marketing and copywriting which I've been chasing alongside my fashion career.

That aside, when I'm not sharing style articles, selling with stories, or creating fashion-forward pieces for Ria Kosher, you'll find me telling wild stories that always come with a twist.

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