Typically, the term petite refers to women 5’5″ and under, and it’s estimated that petites encompass 70% of the female population in the U.S. Out of this 70%, a large percentage are also plus-size, yet this group is completely ignored by the fashion industry. I started out as a petite plus fashion blogger after desperately looking for images and style ideas for women like me. At 4’9″, I’m a size 12 on bottom and 16 petite on top. Everything I wear has to be tailored or otherwise altered in some way. Mainstream fashion advice, for what it’s worth, ignores my demographic. What works for petite body frames doesn’t necessarily work for curvy petites, and much of the advice targeted at curvy and plus women ignores variations in height and body shape.
I turned to bloggers for fashion ideas, and at first, it was very difficult to find other bloggers like me, let alone bloggers with a similar personal aesthetic. Now, with so many amazing bloggers out there doing their own thing, it’s possible to find bloggers of all shapes and sizes showcasing a range of personal styles. Thankfully, fashion bloggers help fill in the gaps that the industry leaves, with petite plus fashionistas sharing their personal style for a growing audience.
Today, for all my fun-sized curvy fashionistas, I bring you an interview/ feature with a wonderful petite plus fashion blogger, Sarah from Curvily
Height: 5’4″ and a half! Age:30
Location: New York City
What made you want to become a fashion blogger?
I joined Gwynnie Bee in September of 2012, and through their Facebook wall, discovered just how awesome and vibrant the plus size fashion community is. I started following more and more body positive and fatshion bloggers, and after a while, I noticed my perspective was shifting. I wasn’t nitpicking myself as much, and I started questioning the idea that I “couldn’t” wear trends that I wanted to. My self confidence grew by leaps and bounds, and I finally felt like I could have a place in fashion. I wanted to share that with other women, so I started my own blog.
What are the challenges, if any, you face in being petite and plus-size?
I think a lot of clothing, especially in plus size, is cut for taller women, so I have to get creative with pants and skirts. Maxi dresses are the worst – I love them, but many drag even when I wear wedges. I know I should probably get them tailored, but for the most part, I just hold up the hem when I walk! I also have a short torso, so I often find waists on peplums or A-line skirts hit me in the wrong spot. I don’t wear heels too often either, so I have gotten used to being the shortest person in the room at blogger events.
What’s your favorite thing about being petite and plus-size?
I like my skirts short, so I can wear something as a dress that may be a tunic on a taller woman. I also can have more styling options with over-sized pieces, like swing dresses.
What’s your favorite thing about being a blogger? A petite-plus fashion blogger?
I absolutely love when someone tells me they were inspired to try something new because of me, or even better, when they say I’ve helped their self-confidence or changed their ideas about who “fits” in fashion. That is why I blog, so every message means so much to me.
Who/what are your favorite designers/brands?
I love Mynt 1792 for their skirts and jackets – they hit right at my natural waist, and they have really fun, fashion-forward styles. I’m actually wearing their Ambroise vest right now! Cabiria is my favorite high end plus size label – the fabrics are so luxe, the proportions work really well on my height, and the attention to detail and tailoring is impressive. ASOS Curve and Forever 21+ are my fast fashion faves.
Describe your personal style.
This is the hardest question! I’d say its fun, and eclectic chic; pattern heavy with a little downtown edge.
Any bloggers currently on your radar?
So many! Joi from In My Joi has THE best vintage and thrift styles; Georgette from Grown and Curvy Woman rocks bold colors like no other; Essie from Golden Kaleidoscope has amazing bombshell style with a twist. And that is just a few – I’m regularly inspired by the looks on La Pecosa Preciosa, Tiny Red Shoes, P.S. It’s Fashion, Nicolette Mason, and more! I really have a list of 20+ women in my head right now
Anything else you want The Curvy Fashionista’s readers to know?
Fashion really is for everyone, and “rules” that say otherwise are crap. That is easier said than internalized, of course, because we all have a lifetime of “dos and don’ts” floating around in our heads, but it is worth combatting those outmoded ideas to find your own true personal style. If you ever feel yourself shying away from something you want to wear because you think you are too fat, too short, too curvy – too anything, really – remember that the only rule that matters is “Wear what makes you happy.”
This will be a series of petite plus size fashion bloggers! Make sure you tune in next week to see who is next! Make sure you subscribe to the blog below to catch additional interviews!