What is petite?
Petite is a term used in the fashion industry to describe a woman who is 5ft 3 (162cm) or under. Petite women come in all shapes and sizes, regardless of whether you’re size 4 or 16. Most people believe that petite means skinny, but in actual fact being petite refers to your stature not your weight.
If you measure up with at least two out of the five points in the image below, you most definitely have a petite body frame and petite clothing would be suitable for you.
I would classify myself as petite, as I measure up with all five points in the image, standing just over 5ft tall. I also have an hourglass figure, so petite clothing is perfectly designed to suit my body frame.
What is petite clothing?
Petite clothing is designed to fit women 5ft 3 and under and is cut to petite women’s proportions, by taking into consideration measurements such as narrower shoulders and shorter neck-to-waist, arm and leg lengths.
From experience, anyone 5ft 3 and under will know that clothes shopping can be a bit of a nightmare. T-shirts become dresses, midi dresses become maxis and jeans always end up six inches too long, making us look completely unflattering.
Annoyingly, there’s normally only a small section within stores that actually cater for the petite woman. However, there has been a growing presence for petites on the web where retailers are not confined by rail space. The art of folding your jeans and making alterations will finally become a thing of the past.
I’ve trawled through many online retailers offering petite clothing and have made several purchases from high street favourites – Topshop, Dorothy Perkins, Next and Debenhams to online-only operations like Asos, which I hope to share with you soon.
In the meantime, here’s some of my favourite online retailers for petite clothing:
Let me know what you think and remember all good things come in small packages!