©Nicolette Mason



Here’s my what-to-wear spring/summer guide for all you petite, fashion-conscious women.

Editor: Elnaz Shadman Sirat

One of the most frequently asked questions I received in May was what to wear if you’re short or better said 5’3’’ and below.  Of course not everyone is blessed with long legs, but there are plenty of advantages to being petite. You can wear any kind of heel height and pull off countless looks. Most short ladies don’t realise this as it’s often thought you should avoid maxi dresses or even jumpsuits. Let me first get one thing straight, you can wear almost any look you like as long as you keep these rules in mind.

Showcase your legs

What better reason to show off your legs now the temperature is hotting up and they’re finally able to get some sun. High-waisted shorts and A-line, knee length skirts are key pieces for subtly elongating your frame. If you’re not keen on flashing too much skin, cropped trousers that show off your ankles are a great alternative as long as you avoid styles that sit low on your waist. If you would like to wear longer trousers or jeans, stick with slim-fit cuts and make sure you check the length first before you order. You will find the length of each of our trousers in the measurements chart on the item page. To make it even easier, at navabi we have a selection of trousers that come in short leg, so there’s no need to get them taken up.

©Nadia Aboulhosn

Tip:  Add heels. Aside from ankle straps which cut off your legs, any kind of heel is perfect for lengthening. From sleek courts to shorter kitten heels and elegant wedges, especially in a nude colourway.

©Gabi Fresh

Display your waist

The first rule in choosing tops is to avoid wearing oversized and non-fitted tops but accentuate your middle instead with belts and tapered waist-lines. The same counts for avoiding longer tunics, since they simply take length away from your legs and make you appear even shorter. Instead focus more on shorter tops and blouses with a slightly looser fit or tuck your tops into high-waisted bottoms to create the illusion of longer legs.

Tip: If you’re partial to prints, vertical stripes are a great choice for stretching your silhouette.

Jumpsuits are your best friend

One colour tone jumpsuits give an optical streamlined effect and are very easy to wear as long as you avoid heavy prints. These won’t do much for your frame. Monochrome one-pieces are a chic alternative and also do wonders for stretching your figure.  At first you might be hesitant about investing in one, but don’t underestimate the fashion power of the jumpsuit. Finish your look with a shorter jacket.

©Nadia Aboulhosn

Tip: Seek out a good tailor to take up the hem on styles that fall a little bit too long.


It’s all about the dress

Thanks to their ability to keep us cool and feel summery, dresses make up the majority of our wardrobes in warm weather. When it comes to being petite, you just need to be aware of which styles work for you. Short styles that end around the knees and figure hugging maxi-dresses are the styles to go for. Silhouette-wise, knee length styles can be anything from  A-line cuts to close-fitting pencil dresses and feminine waistline frocks. Maxi dresses should be quite simple with no pleats or ruffles. Try to avoid heavy prints and loose designs that make you look boxy. 

Tip: Take note of the neckline. V-necks and deep, round necks give the illusion of height.

Editor: Elnaz Shadman Sirat

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