I don’t know if you knew this about me, but I’m only about 5 feet, 2 inches tall, (or should I say 5 feet small?) so shopping can be tricky sometimes. Over the years, I’ve discovered some shopping tricks that make finding clothes for shorter people much easier, so today I wanted to share my favorite three shopping tricks for petites!

1. Accept that most things will have to be tailored.

The first step to successfully shopping for a petite frame is just accepting the fact that most things will have to be altered. The average height for women is 5 feet, 4 inches to 5 feet, 6 inches, so most clothing is not made for petite people; therefore, clothing needs to be adjusted to fit your body.

A good tailor will be able to immediately see where clothing should be adjusted to best fit and flatter your frame. It’s always a good idea to find a tailor that you like and establish a relationship with them, as that will make tailoring clothing easier long term, and they will begin to learn how you like your clothing to fit.

If you’re getting a lot of clothing altered, it’s a good idea to look into alterations programs at some retail stores or find a tailor near you. For example, I googled tailors in my area and came across one with great reviews. Taking my items to a local tailor has been so great, because I know my garments will now fit my frame perfectly. Having a professional available to hem a long dress or pants or whatever alterations you may need will make your clothing look that much better on you. It’s a worthy investment that pays off in the long run.

2. Cropped pants are your best friend.

When it comes to shopping tricks for petites, going for cropped pants is one of the best options. Even if there’s no petite section, cropped pants will often work really well on a petite frame. Most of the time if I can find a pair of cropped or ankle pants, they will be the perfect full length pant for me with no alterations needed! I call this a win! Sometimes petite crop pants even work as full length pants on me depending on the inseam length, but you’ll just have to test out the waters and see what works best for you.

Side note: Cropped pants often go on sale in fall and winter because they’re leftover from spring and summer clothing lines, so look for seasonal sales and swoop up all the cropped styles you can!

3. There are some really good petite sections out there.

While a lot of clothing still needs to be altered, there are some really good petite sections out there. Nordstrom has a great petite section, and so does Banana Republic. I’m also finding that a lot more stores are offering pants in “short” length. I recently even found shorter pants at Target! Generally, Zara and H&M work well for petite frames. Because they are international brands, they cater to a wider range of heights for women.

(Whether she’s dishing out advice on how to wear the latest trends or putting fun looks together, fashion writer and stylist Aramide Esubi is always on the move keeping up with the latest in fashion. Email her at [email protected], or follow her on Instagram at instagram.com/thesassypeach.)

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