What is Petite Fashion?


Because I’m pretty much branding myself as a petite fashion blogger, I thought I’d do a post about petite fashion.

What does petite fashion mean? By definition “petite” is French meaning small. When talking about petite fashion, essentially we’re referring cuts of clothing being smaller. Typically made for women standing at 5’4” and under as body proportions for these women are mostly on the shorter side than the average woman who stands at 5’4” to 5’7”.

When we talk about cuts of clothing, we refer to each piece of fabric. These pieces are designed to better flatter a smaller body proportion This means you’ll find sleeves cut for shorter arms, inseams on bottoms cut shorter, and dress lengths cut to flatter a shorter woman. Also, not a lot people notice but a lot of jeans and pants have placement for your knees. Since women shorter will most likely have shorter legs, petite bottoms have knee placements adjusted for a better fit. Details and embellishments are also designed to flatter a smaller frame, so you’ll find some prints and buttons smaller than their regular-size counterpart.

While petite is often associated with thin and dainty women, you can still be curvy and petite at the same time. You can also be plus sized and petite as well. I am 4’11” (sometimes 5’0”) and definitely not skinny. I run on the curvier spectrum with my belly, boobs, and a butt yet I do identify as a petite since my body proportions are not even close to that of the average woman. If you’re petite that doesn’t mean every piece of petite-sized clothing will fit you better. I, for one, don’t do well with petite tops as I have a longer torso and broad shoulders. But pants and some dresses are a whole other story.

It wasn’t until about 3 years ago that I started to embrace petite sizing and that’s mostly because I find the fashion industry, whether luxury or fast fashion, largely ignores this market. Most people go along with what is being sold and will make do with regular sizes thanks to the work of tailors. But don’t you wish you could buy something without spending extra on getting it tailored? I feel there has been very little progression in appealing to the petite market. Although with the rise in social media, society becoming very niche-focused, and people becoming more outspoken about everything, we could be on the move into seeing more petite-focused labels.

I hope this helps clarify what petite fashion means since I feel there is a lot of confusion surrounding it. If it wasn’t any clarification and you got this far, I hope you enjoyed this read on me explaining petite fashion! Questions, comments? Leave them below!


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